Deca 10th Anniversary | Founders Brewing Company

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Deca 10th AnniversaryDeca 10th Anniversary
102 Ratings
Deca 10th AnniversaryDeca 10th Anniversary

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerBeing on 06-25-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 102 |  Reviews: 75
Reviews by CoolJosh:
Photo of CoolJosh
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Generously thrown in as an extra by Derek (hoppymeal). This beer was poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass.

The beer pours a very dark murky burgundy red. No head which doesn't come as a surprise. Still appealing given the style. The smell is that of caramel, vanilla, raspberries and alcohol. The taste is similar and has some bourbon characteristics on top of all else that is there. Incredibly smooth with a nice roasted texture in addition to a toasted pecan flavor. Really enjoyable, and a slow sipper but very drinkable nonetheless.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an oversized wine glass a deep rich burgundy with some residual tawny hue a thinner off white head atop,whoo this is brash on the nose deeply malty and fruity with some vanilla rum notes,cherry,caramel,a bit of nutmeg as well the hops are very muted aroma wise at least.This is a sipper for sure,big sweet malty flavors dominate from the onset caramel and vanilla-like sweetness with deep dark fruity esters a mild nutty aspect underneath,the alcohol will kick ya as well but I like the pain finally a noticeable pine hop note shows thru late and emerges more as I drink more.Big chewey meal in a glass it cuts thru the bit of chill in the air here in WNY tonight,another killer brew from Founders they should be proud,cellar this if you can hold it.

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Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from my cellar. Thin head. Amber in color. Smells sweet with a hint of booze. Taste is also fairly sweet with a bit of fruit in there; reminds me more of an English barleywine than an American. Mouthfeel is smooth for the ABV of 13%. ABV is detectable but this is a very drinkable big beer. Recommended. Thanks to fartingdog for this brew in a trade a while ago. I just dealt with 90 minutes of whiny crying children & this hits the spot.


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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a tulip glass)

A- This beer has as dense brown body with a slight reddish glow at the base of the glass. The head is made up of big bubbles of light tan with a slight yellowish hint. With each sip the head slides down the glass leaving a trail. The carbonation is good and made up of lots of tiny bubbles.

S- The smell of sweet caramel malt and a soft hint of chocolate malt has a light pine note. As it warms there is a slight perfume hint to that caramel and a note of dark roasted malt in the background.

T- The taste of caramel and dark roasted bitterness give way to a light cream and white sugar note with accents of dates coming through as it warms. There is a light bourbon and cola note in the finish and a soft clove note aswell. The finish is pretty smooth and not really sweet.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel and a light slippery texture which is finished with nice alcohol heat.

D- This beer has a good balance of sweet malt flavors and nice alcohol heat. The malt had some nice complexity and the yeast flavors enhanced that. I didn’t notice any hops in the taste but I didn’t miss them at all.

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Photo of pwoods
4.09/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thank to hoppymeal. Derek added this AS AN EXTRA! You're a class act, bro.

22oz. brown bomber poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a deep mahogany, completely opaque. A short head forms and falls decently fast. Very little lacing.

S: Sweet malts with a pleasant alcohol line. A touch of smoky and meaty aromas.. like a touch of turkey dinner, herb rubbed and roasted game. There's a really unique mint aroma that fits very well.

T/M: Very different. The mint is very pronounced in the taste. Not unpleasant but just very unexpected. Hop bitterness is nearly gone and only has a touch of pine and citrus. The malts are sweet but not thick or syrupy. Again, just a touch of herb turkey/game. Alcohol comes out a bit about midway through and more as it warms. Body is only about medium to medium full and carbonation adds a bit of smoothness. Finishes a bit dry.

D: Tasty and extremely unique. The bottle says 13%. A bit surprising until about halfway through the bottle, lol. Keep up the good work, Founders.

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Photo of Christopher0331
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Gonzoillini
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

Photo of hammer09
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a viscous, burgundy-brown that diffuses what little light is able to pass through. Visible signs of carbonation are essentially non-existent. With very little head development and its syrupy profile, I know that this is going to be a substantially heavy beer. Although not identified as such on the bottle, this is definitely reminiscent of a barley-wine.

Smell is sweet and malty with notes of raisins and/or grapes. There is also a bit of an estery pinch to the nose upon further agitation. Hop character is muted with most of the aromas dominated by aged fruit. Smells delicious and potent.

Taste is definitely alcoholic, but not harsh as I expected based on olfactory observations. Flavor is sweet, but complex; earthy and fruity. Dominant flavors are raisin, apple, and some vanilla. Good, but strong. At this point, there is not doubt that this is a barley wine.

Mouthfeel is warming due to the presence of alcohol, but not harsh. Slick and sticky character with minimal carbonation. A bit crisp on the tip of the tongue, but otherwise fairly smooth.

This is a very enjoyable brew and meant to be savored. Worth the price per bottle, however? For a 10th Anniversary limited release, I would say yes. If I could still find this, I'd be interested in cellaring this for a year or two to see how it ages.

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

22 oz bottle into a couple of snifters. Big thanks to HopDerek for splitting this one with me.

Pours a deep, clear ruby with a 1/2 finger of soft mocha colored head. Retains mostly around the edges, with some thin wisps in the middle. Swirling throws a rich cascade of lacing up, that lays in thick swathes on the sides of the glass. The aroma is very malty sweet, with notes of thick toasted grains, toffee, dark fruits, bread, and some fruity citrus. The hop character, that was probably more assertive when fresh, has faded into some smooth smelling herbal and spicy character. Touch of warmth as well in the nose, but anything to worry about.

The taste starts with a nice thick base of malts to it, with roasted grains and bread mixing with syrupy toffee sweetness. A flush of black currants and some more citrus style fruitiness fill out the middle. Finally, despite some age, hops still assert themselves in the finish with a light bitterness that not only balances out some of that heavy sweetness but also imparts a drying and spicy feel on the palate. The mouthfeel is full bodied with a surprisingly soft feel to the carbonation that then gives way to a more viscous feel towards the back. As a matter of fact, this defintely sips very nicely for a 13% beer.

Over a year and a half of cellaring has been kind to this, holding down the bitterness, allowing the sticky malts to shine, and most of all, tempering some of that high ABV. Hefty and flavorful, this was a most pleasant American Barleywine to sit down with.

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Photo of Beertracker
4.65/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Founders Deca (Tenth Anniversary Ale pours up with a modest effervescence that creates a tight, bubbly beige colored head that blankets the dark copper-russet brown body. The head retention is surprisingly good for being such a strong beer. The aroma showcases a bigtime maltiness with notes of burnt sugar, caramel flan & treacle pudding. The hops have become very subdued, but combined with the spiciness from the yeast offer herbal complexity interlaced with a tinge of fruitiness (dried orange, grape seed, oroblanco) that barely manages to escape the huge sweet toasted maltiness. The flavor is multifaceted with burnt caramel & honey sweetness upfront followed by a firm toastiness (graham crackers, gingerbread snaps) with a hint of chocolate. The hop bitterness has subdued and offers just enough to provide a smooth, balanced finish. This baby's strength becomes more evident towards the finish, but never detracts. Awesome stuff! I'd have to report that this Belgian-inspired barleywine has held up remarkably well over the seasons and is certainly a testament to the American craft brewer's spirit. Here's a late toast to Founder's 10th Anniversary!

Better late than Never!

CHEERS! Beertracker

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Photo of GRG1313
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of CortexBomb
3.82/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pour is dark amber to red with a slight, off-white head on top. The nose betrays sweet malty aromas and spice...dark fruits.

The flavour of this is exceptionally sweet malts combined with a dominating herbal spicy combination. Caramel. Some dark fruits (plums) with some light fruits (pears). The herbal qualities were quite unique.

The mouth was thick and oily, heavy coating. The drinkability was simply ok.

The bottom line: A unique commemorative brew from Founders. A bit pricy, but it's worth trying out.

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Photo of SpdKilz
4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed at Twisted Spoke. Bottle from Founder’s 10th Anniversary. Released 2007.

Appearance – Pours a hazy mahogany color. The haze dissipates once the bubbles make their way to the top of the beer. Less than half a finger of head is achieved with a relatively vigorous pour. The slight head dissipates leaving almost zero lacing.

Smell – I will admit, this was the lackluster aspect of the beer. Extremely one dimensional – sweet dark fruits and caramel/toffee. That was really all I got. I had to let the beer warm up almost to room temperature to get a better aroma from it (it was very slight even served at cellar temps).

Taste – Thankfully the taste was quite good and more complex than the aroma. The initial sip results in a overall sweet flavor profile. I get a hint of oxidation up front but this disappears almost immediately and honestly the more I drank this the less I tasted it. The flavors were honestly very nice. There is a spicy spice aspect to the beer that stays with it throughout the sip. Lots of dark fruits such as plums, over ripened cherries, and figs. A heavy candied aspect is prevalent (as the person I was with can attest to), and having this mixed with a caramel and toffee backbone would make one think it would be cloying… but one would be wrong. The whole beer comes together at the end and really does taste spectacular.

Mouthfeel – Lower carbonation, utterly smooth and creamy mouthfeel, finishes a hint spicy and boozy.

Overall – This has to be, bar none, the most quaffable barleywine I have encountered. While there is still a slight alcohol flavor to it, it helps detract from the sweetness of the beer, keeping it in check. Coincidentally, I was in the middle of trying to get this beer in a trade when I saw this on the menu and decided to get it for the hell of it. Later that day the trade did not happen so I’m glad I choose to get this beer. I’ll probably never get a chance to try this again, but am glad I was able to try it now.

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Photo of akorsak
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A 650 mL bomber purchased at Capone's almost 2 years ago. Still has the rather exorbinant $25 price sticker on it.

A: The barleywine is a full mahogany red color, hazy throughout except for one small patch of bright orange glow near the bottom of the glass. A thick head has left a robust lace around the mouth of the glass.

S: The nose is very malty, bready with a raisin and brown sugar presence. Toffee aromas add a sweetness that matches the brown sugar.

T: A licorice sweetness, laced with some ginger, nutmeg and cinnamon gives the ale an interesting start. Having never read the label, I didn't know that the ale was spiced. A nice surprice. Behind the spice profile, a malt bomb is waiting to explode. Syrupy caramel and toffee define the malt body and support, in addition to the spices, a citrus hop profile that has clearly degraded. My first burp also had a coffee aftertaste, releasing an interesting depth that doesn't pop out of the taste.

M: The mouthfeel start off spicy, interesting for a barleywine. The malt body has a dry sweetness that mixes well with a mild (due to degradation) hop profile. A Christmas barleywine.

D: The spice profile is strange, almost out of place within this barleywine. It makes me anxious for the first wave of each sip to pass. What is left afterwards is a solid barleywine that I'd sip on for at least half of a day (a whole day may ruin me).

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Photo of emerge077
3.96/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Renee & Jim for this one! Review from written notes.
Cellared 2007 bottle.

Served in a tulip glass. Dark copper color, almost a fossil amber jewel tone when held to the light. Thin layer of off white foam that settles to a thin frothy ring that has a slight collar around the edges.

Spicy and bready aroma, lightly sweet with some oxidation creeping in around the edges.

Rich flavors of port and carob, toffee, plum, chicory. Soft carbonation, creamy feel, finishes dry. Alcohol seems to have mellowed out completely. It's aged pretty gracefully, and retained some interesting complexity. Definitely better than I remember it tasting 2-3 years ago.

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3.65/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours to a dark brownish amber body that is almost opaque. A strong pour creates an inch and a half of perfect tan head leaving scattered rocky lace as it slowly fades. Nose is a sweet and spicey mix with notes peppery yeast, cane sugar, and glazed raisens. First sip yeilds a syrupy sweet consistancey that has prune or raisen thickness to it. You also get a musty sappy hop feel that reminds me of a sweeter double IPA. Mouthfeel is a thick hue with an odd combination of honey and coriander like spices. Alchol is very well hidden for 13%, and only shows itself like a bit of cough syrup. Drinkability is good for such a beast of a beer but half a bottle will do nicely.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was a big time want of mine and was graciously provided back about this time last year in the Fight Club: Project Mayhem BIF... Czoch75 devastated my wants list... I shared this with the usual suspects over the weekend.... Thanks doesn't say enough.... Clint, you are a Rock Star!!

Deep amber.. very clear... sorta thin yellowish tan head... still nice lacing... pour looks viscous.

Nose shows thick caramel and a bit of unidentifiable spice and some background cherry.

Flavor is complex.... a bit of raisin and some figgy qualities... some mild yeasty phenols remind me slightly of white pepper and minor clove... but the proof is in the great malt profile... yummy ... Eric kept thinking this was "wood aged"? I don't think so, I was just amazed at all the flavor packed into the bottle.

Body was medium/full with a lighter than expected carbonation that lended well to the mouthfeel.

I was able to pick out the "Belgian" yeast qualities a bit, but overall, this was a very nice BW... I honestly believe it could still handle another year or two pretty readily.

Thanks again Clint for the beatdown... It was a good hurt ... Now when are we gonna do it again? :-)


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Photo of mikesgroove
4.45/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I received this gem in a BIF sometime last year, and I had it sitting in the cellar ever since. Well I happen to notice it last week and decided to put it in the fridge to drink sometime down the road. After a long day, I came home and wanted something a little stronger this evening, so I decided to go with this one, as well it looked like it had the cure for how I felt.

Appearance - The pour was rather nice with a dark brownish amber with some nice highlights of a honey color laced in throughout. Very nice color, and nearly opaque from all the haze and cloudiness that was interspersed throughout. A smallish, maybe an inch high of off white colored foam came over the top of the glass. It hung around for a good couple of minutes before settling down to a thin film that stayed throughout the rest of the session. Very nice overall presentation, with a little bit of side glass lace throughout.

Smell - The aroma was rich and very sweet. What surprised me was there was no sense of alcohol in here at all, none, with a very sweet malt character to it. Lots of caramel and honey were all over this one, and blending in nicely with hints of cloves and grasses. Very mellow aroma overall with nothing really standing out or becoming overly heavy in any way. Just a very solid offering so far.

Taste - The flavor was soo mellow, and the alcohol soo well hidden I almost did not know what to do wit myself. This was literally tremendous in its nature, but its actuality was just sublimely mellow. A very nice honey soaked raisin like menagerie of earthy sweet flavors just opened up all around. Just richly complex and subtle, I am in awe with how well this was made. It is a phenomenal barley wine. Started out with a huge rush of caramel flavored toffee that was equally as sweet as it was mellow. Some nice underlying grains in the back really coming through, and all evidence of the 13% ABV is gone. This was almost too good to be true. Complex and earthy. There was a nice bit of light yeast flavors, some apples maybe, but this was mostly sweet bready malts we were dealing with here, and very good ones at that. A slight bit of a grassy hop note in the finish, but not too drying, was leaving a nice long lasting sweetness in the profile.

Mouthfeel - Really a lot of quality here with a rich thick Mouthfeel that was really just about perfect, a little more carbonation and it would have been. Thick, almost like a syrup in its consistency, it really drank like a true barley wine. Not slick at all, but very thick in the feel.

Drinkability - Here I would have to say that this was outstanding. This is a 13% barley wine, which drank like it was about 7%. I really never did detect any alcohol in it any way shape or form, it was just that good. I struggled not to drink this one too fast, as I found my sips getting bigger and bigger with each passing minute, really exceptionally drinkable.

Overall, I thought this was more then worthy from Founders. It was harsh and in your face like some other of their brews are, rather it took the subtle route to get your attention, and boy did it ever. I would love to get another one of these to see what a year or two could do to it. If you can find this one, get a hold of it now, its worth it.

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Photo of enzofan
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of errantnight
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Joe1510... thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Finally and arbitrarily pulled this one from the closet tossed it in the fridge and went to town all on my lonesome... and while I enjoyed the heck out of this, a tear is shed that there wasn't someone to gush over its awesomeness with while consuming (fiancee not a huge Barleywine fan).

Anyway... poured a rich ruby brown, clear, with a pleasing rich viscosity and just a pinch of carbonation lifting through the murk. Overall lightly carbonated and works within the style and with the specific flavors, and it's a pretty color, but a bit of lacing or something would have been cool.

Aroma is... just an awesome melange. Off a rush of rich malt comes a citrusy burst of hops that folds back into a bit of a fruity ester... candy/dried fruit towards plum. A full inhale yields a bit of a roasted edge, and finally spices start to reveal themselves in the distance... some black pepper and clove or cinnamon. That said, this aroma doesn't really pop until late in the proceedings once the alcohol really has a chance to make things pop... so knocked back just a tad.

On the palate, however, this is an absolute gem from start to finish. A smooth, velvety texture reveals itself as not lacking more prominent carbonation, and the forward dark roasted caramel notes blend perfectly into a firm but forgiving bitterness. Endlessly sippable. The Belgian yeast (blended with American yeast) really takes a serious backseat, only revealing itself in pops of some of the fruit flavors, and perhaps accentuating the existing spices just a tad. Balance is fantastic.

Loved this beer. Wish I had another. Or Founders would brew this again. Frequently. In California. Interesting, complex, drinkable, substantial but not overbearing. Superb craftsmanship. More!

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark ruby brown in color. There is a bit of a frothy ring of head around the perimeter of the glass. Smell is huge and robust. Plenty of toffee and caramel malts. Just the way a barleywine should be. Taste is more of the abundance of toffee and malt. Just a hint of hops in the end. Perfect balance to round out the beer. Huge and viscous mouthfeel. This has all the qualities of a world class barleywine. Everything that I look for in a barleywine. The ABV is so well hidden that I can't believe it.
My only complaint is that this was an anniversary beer and not a regular offering. Founders seriously needs to consider making this at least as a seasonal.

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Photo of mdm46410
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a shaker. This beer poured a slightly cloudy, dark mahogany color with a thin, yellowish/tan head that quickly disappeared, leaving a few large bubbles floating around. No lacing was left behind, but the beer was very oily and coated the sides of the glass. The aroma was made up of candy sugar, dark fruit, alcohol, sweet caramel malt, and a touch of maple syrup. The flavor was similar to a barley wine. It included notes of apple, maple syrup, very sweet malts, and candy sugar. The alcohol was apparent, but not overwhelming. The mouthfeel was definately full-bodied and very thick. It had an almost syrupy consistency that coated the tounge and mouth. Very minimal carbonation. An interesting beer, and one worthy of representing Founders 10th anniversary.

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Photo of splax23
5/5  rDev +19.9%

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.67/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 22oz bomber to snifter on 2/4/12
*From notes

-- Thanks for the vintage tick, Johnny --

A: Not the prettiest girl at the prom. It's an almost ugly shade of brown. A decent pour yields no lacing and a very minor collar. There's also a weird top lining to the beer, kinda thick.

S: Somewhat stale and quite piney hop oil. It's stodgy, like it's been in the cellar for half a decade (which it has).

T: Even this far in, it's still pretty damn hoppy off the bat. It's also got a really resiny quality to it. The mid is a touch sweet, and the finish features the malty spine and a touch of earth.

M: Like almost all of Founders brews, this thing feels great. Thick and rich, yet approachable and really well put together.

O: Nowhere near the top of the Founders depth chart, yet it's still a solid non-BA American Barleywine. I'd bet dollars to donuts that when fresh, this drank more like a DIPA then a traditional Barleywine, as the hops are rather pronounced and in your face.

All in all, I'd say get into this one if you've still got it, as the beer seems to be fading, and with haste.

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Photo of GbVDave
4.47/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Kentucky Breakfast Stout snifter. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist! Heather and I were lucky enough to have sampled this on draft at Founders in the fall of '07, but I lost my notes shortly afterward. This review is for the bottled version. This review is dedicated to my retired Greyhound, Bunny, who turns 7 today!

A: Pours a hazy, chestnut-brown color with some ruby highlights. As expected, the khaki colored head is virtually non-existant. There is a creamy and bubbly ring with a splotchy skim. Lace is limited to random specks and minimal ropes.

S: Delicious creamy caramel with notes of chocolate, plum, toffee, vanilla, vegetables, raisins, cherry, and tantilizing alcohol vapor burn.

T: Immediate sweet caramel flavor that's followed closely by bittersweet chocolate, cotton candy (!), marshmallow (!!), dates, brandy, rum raisin bread pudding, vanilla, plum, toffee, alcohol, vague spiciness, and a bit of subdued & earthy hops.

M: HUGE! Sweet, creamy, and very sticky with incredible balance offered by a dry spiciness and alcohol tang. So smooth and oily with an awesome dry and spicy snap at the end. A near perfect mixture of sweet, spicy burn!

D: I can't believe this is 13%! We seem to remember that the fresh draft version of this had more of a bitter hop presence. A year in the bottle has mellowed the bitterness considerably but amped up the delicious sweet malty complexities.

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Deca 10th Anniversary from Founders Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.17 out of 5 with 102 ratings