Founders Backwoods Bastard | Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Backwoods BastardFounders Backwoods Bastard

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
"Wee Heavy", cave aged in oak bourbon barrels.

Added by CortexBomb on 01-30-2007

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Reviews: 1,822 | Ratings: 8,022
Photo of gshak
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

First time trying this. 2016 release, bottled 9/29/16. Sampled 11/6/2016. Poured into a wine glass at refrigerator temperature.
A - Pours a garnet red with half a finger's width of tight white bubbles that quickly recede into a thin ring. Alcohol legs observed with spotty lacing.
S - The nose is yet to open up as the beer is still cold. Can detect mild barrel notes (wood), torched sugar, raisins. Smells sweet.
T - For a beer at 11.2% with barrel influence, this drinks amazingly smooth. Warmth felt in the chest after the liquid has gone down the windpipe. Save for that, there is no hint that this beer is north of 10% ABV. Starts out slightly sweet, and immediately the barrel influence is felt, with notes of almond and vanilla tempering the sweetness. The hops are just enough to create an amazingly well-balanced beer. The backend is all barrel, this one.
F - The mouthfeel is slightly thinner than what I would expect for a beer this rich, but that is not a negative. Just goes to show that Founders has crafted an incredibly drinkable beer, that will appeal equally to the uninitiated as well as the connoisseurs. It would not be hard to put down a few of these in a hurry!
O - I've heard great things about this beer with a few months on it, but in my opinion, this is good to go fresh. I still have a few more bottles that I will likely sample at 3 months' interval - but that is just for intellectual curiosity. If you have just one bottle, it wouldn't be a mistake to drink up now.

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4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Just released for 2016 and I picked up two four packs this week :)
I had this last season for the first time and loved it as many others from Founders .
Beautiful color, taste and smell !!
Been drinking two a day and getting ready for the football game to start, so today's pouring will begin shortly :)

Highly recommended to all !
One of my new favorites and if I can grab another four pack I'm going to try and tuck a couple of bottles away until next year .

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Photo of Damian3477
4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

At the liquor store it was a toss up between blue moon oatmeal cappuccino stout and this. 16 per 4 pack
And I was thinking it would be hard to drink in comparison to the other beer.

Bought refrigerated , left on freezing windowsill with window cracked then allowed to be warmed up a bit.
The most drinkable beer that's smooth as you can imagine.

Brewed 9/26/16w and it was recommended to fridge 6 months and drink in spring. No taste of alcohol perhaps due to waking up without brushing my teeth.
If their is a taste it's so smooth and balanced by the powerful malty bourbon sweetness.
Better than kbs and breakfast stout.

Drank out of bottle and it hits you after 15 minutes when bottles almost empty.
11.2 percent.
This is amazing and amazingly drinkable beer to my surprise. I hope the next bottle is identical.

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Photo of whatthehull
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a snifter/tulip/wine hybrid glass from a 12 oz bottle

A - Swampy blood red and soil brown with a less than one finger creamy tan head and some sugar legs and lacing

S - This ale even smells creamy. Bourbon and oak are on point, wow. Vanilla, sugar, caramel, some sarsaparilla, booze, tons of malt both dry, sweet and a tad roasted, green and brown earth, peat, over ripe fruits, baking spices, very yeasty, a little floral and the hops are super earthy.

T - Creamy malts, bourbon and scotch barrels, slight smoke (maybe peat), slight earthy hops, cracker yeast, tons of vanilla, a bit of baking spices minus the cinnamon, sugar up the wazoo, fruit leather (berries and figs), caramel, molasses and just plain awesome.

M - Full bodied, great balance, great complexity, medium balance, medium acidity and a awesome barrel aged ride from beginning to end.

D/O - This one is awesome fresh and also made for the cellar. Perfect for all times of the year,but it does fit the fall winter weather perfectly. Something to considering sipping on for Thanksgiving, Christmas and for sure on New Year's eve and day. If you want to impress those at your dinner party or just a social gathering. Founders does it again.

Final thoughts - A high price at $15 per four-pack but the taste and 11.2% ABV will make up for all that. The "Old Ale" on tap would be super amazing.

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Photo of SargeMcCluck
4.41/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque dark brown with ruby highlights. Not much in the way of a head, but what is there is a tightly packed, foamy rim of cappuccino brown.

Big hits of browned butter and caramel come from the bottle. Add some boozy fruit and you've got an aroma that has me dreaming of Christmas pudding and cake batter – lovely. The taste follows, but leans a bit more toward the smoky, bourbon end of the spectrum. There's also a surprising amount of drying bitterness coating the palette and throat with this one. Combined with the ABV, that makes for a very slow sipper.

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Photo of Suds
3.88/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Reddish brown in color with a tan head. The aroma is intensely malty, with lots of fruit and wood complexity. Fig, old wood, earth, cherry, The taste is fiercely warming...boozy alcohol. After the ABV sharpness, however, it is becomes somewhat smoother than expected. Flavorful, full, and engaging. Excellent.

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Photo of JetFeather22
3/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is extremely overrated.
Doesn't taste anything like a scotch ale, it is hoppy, which scotch ales aren't and you can barely taste the oak aging..
I should have known this beer wasn't going to be that grate considering it was made by an American brewing company, I think if your going to label something a scotch ale it should be made like a scotch ale. The IBU's on this beer are 55 and they shouldn't be even half that, also I can taste the fact that there American grown hops and not English hops like a scotch ale is supposed to be.... All in all though its not that bad, it's just not as good as the rateings are saying it is

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Photo of BWood
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Looks dark dark red/brown. Little head that completely goes away.

Smell is great. Malt and barrel show up nicely.

Taste is amazing. Rich but subtle at the same time. The barrel is strong but not overpowering. I get some dark fruits and vanilla.

Feel is silk. Smooth as butter bourbon feel and creamy throughout. The flavor coats the tongue and lingers well after the sip.

Overall this is a phenomenal beer. I recommend grabbing as much as you can. Not much I would change about this beer.

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Photo of puck1225
4.34/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter. Deep dark red- brown color with a thin head and good lacing. Rich sweet smell. Dark fruit taste, raisins, dates with a boozey aftertaste. An excellent fall beer.

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Photo of ssm462
4.67/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Looks amber rich with full head. Smells like a sweet malt scotch with Some toffee. Tastes deceptively smooth and sweet. Definitely see the barrel flavor without too much hops characteristics. No alcohol bite. High carbonation. Overall a delicious beer that will give high ABV fans a middle ground between the hops of an IPA and the heaviness of stouts.

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Photo of HoodviewBrew
3.92/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look- dark brown/black with an even 1/2" head
Smell- bourbon, sweetness like molasses.
Taste- Strong malt taste with hints of molasses, bourbon, raisins, and fig. There is an initial alcohol burn that detracts a little from the taste.
Overall- pretty good but not great.

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Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.66/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep mahogany red with a thin, creamy off-white head.
Smells of dark fruit and cherries, malt and oak.
Taste follows the nose with a wonderful bourbon presence. Brown sugar or molasses. A little bourbon burn.
Smooth as can be.

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Photo of Barracudas
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer from Founders! It lives up to it's reputation! The smell is sublime and the taste is just so subtle. They did a very good job with the barrel aging! It also has a very nice kick!

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.81/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

9/26/16, 1 month old, Served at 45 degrees in a snifter.

Backwoods pours a mahogany and prune juice colored body, much like its brother, the Dirty Bastard. The head is tall and egg foam yellow, spilling over and staying at 2 fingers in my snifter. The body when held up to the light looks a lot like a cranberry-cherry cocktail. Just deep, dark reds with a little light at the bottom.

Wouldn't you know, it smells just like Dirty Bastard. Raisin, prune, plum, maybe some fig and cherry notes. Very faint bourbon barrel.

The flavor of this beer is pretty singular...but still a bit complex. Its got the signature DB flavor, but what surrounds it is enhanced notes of dark cherry, fig, and a shot of whiskey. Some hottness, dryness, and peated malt finish out the profile. The more it warms it develops licorice flavors as well.

Feel is sticky, hot, dry, and that order.

Overall, a bit disappointed here. I was expecting more from this BBA version but alas, it's simply DB with some enhanced notes. Not even close to KBS like some are raving about - KBS is in a different zip code entirely. I'm glad I got a chance to try one rather than investing in a 4 pack. For the price, it's a loser.

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Photo of Reema
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Serving type: 12 oz bottle into a snifter

Pours a deep crimson brown, with off white foam settling on top. Smell is of rich caramel, toffee, slight vanilla, and intense oak qualities. It smells awesome. Taste is of initial caramel toffee, with a slight fruitiness, intense bourbon oak flavor after that lingers for a few moments. Feel is medium, with enough carbonation to not be flat. Overall this is a great beer with awesome oak characteristics.

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Photo of Cthulhusquid
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look: One finger white head, dark brown body.

Smell: Oak, dark fruits, some caramel, maybe a hint of peat.

Taste: See above. This is pretty fruit and oak forward.

Feel: Medium body and carbonation, a small alcohol bite but turns to warmth. No wonder, with the 11.6% abv.

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Photo of Feldpausch
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2016 batch poured into a snifter. Finger size head that dissipates quickly into barely any. Deep dark brown and smells of oak, scotch, and bourbon, almost like your grandpa's cottage somewhere up north in Michigan. Taste is an outstanding deep malty/toffee undertone with a strong bourbon aftertaste. Overall, this is another great, buy-as-much-as-you-can-while-its-around Founder's classic! I will be cellaring a few alongside my KBS for a year and 3 years to see how age makes this incredible beer taste!!

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Photo of Boccu
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a nice head. Fades quickly. Coloring is like maple syrup. Light bourbon,Carmel aroma. Taste is of light scotch, Carmel, dark fruit to roasted nuts. Light smoke which balances it. Then with a nice bourbon oak finish. Big stout fan.

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Photo of DrinkThemAll
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours a mahogany and half a fingers off white head.

Smells of bouron and oak. Sweet malts and maybe a tad bit of toffe. Some bread as well. Smells like a Trappist.

Taste of sweet malts, oak and a tad of bourbon and toffe. Very bready and Very smooth for its alcohol content.

Mouth was very nice. Medium bodied with a nice oaky smooth finish.

I would definetly drink this guy again. I think I would prefer a breakfast stout instead, but a solid beer nonetheless

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Photo of captaincoffee
4.11/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy deep brown with smallish cream colored head. Head dissipates a bit quicker than expected leaving spots of lace and a ring around the glass. Nose is dates, burnt sugars, vanilla, barrel cellar mustiness, and a bit of sour apple. Flavor follows, and although initially sweet, turns much drier that expected and quite woody with mostly oak into the finish where it wasn't very present early. Hot/boozy even after cellaring for 1 year. Mouthfeel is not cloying at all, but just medium with the booze thinking it out. Overall, a good beer, but I can't go as high as most here as I just don't think it comes together cohesively in the end.

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Photo of Mateo2699
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown mahagony hue, small off white colored ring of head with very little lacing. Rich maltiness in the aroma, big hints of oak and bourbon with doses of brown sugar and caramel. Following the nose well, big brown sugar, sweet malt and caramel hit the palate initially with nice sweet bourbon kick in the back end. Medium mouthfeel, somewhat boozy after taste with low carbonation.

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Photo of joaopmgoncalves
4.76/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Ordered it from Beer52, and poured to a regular kitchen glass due to lack of proper beer glass.

A: The body is black with amber hues with a very nice beige head that showed lots of consistency, lacing and will to be on top of the beer for all time.
S: The aroma was just perfect, this is totally my kind of beer. You could smell tons of bourbon on this, presenting itself like the basic pillars of the aroma only allowing you to smell the malt a bit later. Gosh, amazing.
T: When you first sip the beer, it's very sweet with a very big profile of awesome bourbon that goes along very well with the malts. Technically, it seems that the "bourbon-ness" of the beer is the same characteristic the malty one, but only read differently on different mouth/tongue zones.
M: The body is medium to high. No bitterness in the end but no one asked for it. To finish it great style, the alcohol goes unnoticed, which makes this a very noble beer. Mouth-wise, perfect, 5.0.
O: I've had very few Founders beers in the past, this is for sure my favorite.

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Photo of Hyptochrons
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

dark brown ruby colored with an off white head that hangs out and leaves excellent lacing. pungent aromas of caramel, dark fruit, oak & scotch. on the palate is toffee, caramel, vanilla, and a good amount of barrel character. mouthfeel is decent, medium bodied.

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Photo of Amguerra305
4.27/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

pours a deep dark brown mahogany color. Glows like a dark red amber when held up to the light. Not entirely opaque. The barrel does not predominate the smell like other barrel aged beers. Definitely prevalent boozy oaky barrel but balanced out by the sweetness of the actual beer. Notes of toffee and caramel with a touch of butterscotch. Taste follows the smell but the butterscotch becomes more pronounced. The sweet taste of the beer predominates with a lingering hop/burnt bitterness hint on the back end. It is surprisingly viscous but still medium heavy body. Definitely coats your lips and leaves them a little sticky but nothing out of this world. Overall I would say this is an excellent Scotch ale the only improved with the barrel aging. The barrel definitely added a nice complexity to what is most likely an already great beer. Definitely worth seeking out.

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Photo of gman1602
4.69/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours as a Wee Heavy ought to and smells like a Scottish isle. Bourbon barrels make a nice sweet bourbony note on the aroma of the Scottish malt, while the flavor is a really nice balance and finish of scotch ale and bourbon barrel. Develops on the taste buds like a fine scotch. Freakin excellent. There is a slight bitterness and that is why this is not a 5 (some may not even notice!). Still, worth seeking, worth buying enough bottles for aging, and a steal for it's 11.6% of smiles it pours on the mind.

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Founders Backwoods Bastard from Founders Brewing Company
4.26 out of 5 based on 8,022 ratings.
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