Nemesis 2010
Founders Brewing Company

Nemesis 2010Nemesis 2010
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Barleywine - American
4.19 | pDev: 10.5%
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Nemesis 2010Nemesis 2010
Reviews: 510 | Ratings: 941 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by nickadams2:
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nickadams2 from New York

4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A_Pours black with reddish brown hue when held to light. Half inch khaki head dissipates into a thick, bubbly ring. Gobs of lacing cover the glass.

S_ Hoppy citrus, pine, and sweet malt.

T_ Surprisingly well balanced. Hops upfront but don't necessarily dominate.Citrus,pine,cherry,figs,sweet malt,cream and a hint of chocolate.Slight espresso in the aftertaste. Everything comes together beautifully.Slight alcohol burn.

M_Thick and viscous. Kind of syrupy. Coats the mouth nicely.

D_Definite sipper. Very enjoyable though.

Sep 06, 2010
More User Reviews:
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Pencible from Virginia

4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: This poured a nearly opaque dark cherry with a bit of tan head.
S: It smelled very sweet, like raisin and pineapple and molasses and toffee, with some citrus and powdered sugar and a bit of bready yeast.
T: It tasted very sweet too, like powdered sugar and caramel and milk chocolate. This was balanced by lots of bitterness, primarily of grapefruit and pineapple. It also tasted a bit of bready yeast and alcohol. It had a super bitter and clean aftertaste, with some alcohol warming.
M: It was somewhat thick with moderate carbonation.
D: This had a huge and tasty flavor that balanced tons of bitterness with tons of sweetness. It had a nice body, but could have been fuller. It was pretty hot too, so it needed to be sipped. Age could probably really improve this, but it's quite nice fresh.

Nov 05, 2010
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FernMaster from Missouri

3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

I would usually pour this into a snifter, but I was feeling sassy.

Nemesis pours a very dark brown. The rim if you tip it shows a darker reddish brown color. Usually I don't expect a lot of head in a barleywine, in this there is very little and moderate lacing. This has better lacing that most, so bravo.

The smell is loud, just big. Caramel and dark fruits are definitely at the forefront. There's also this wooden smokey smell to it as well, like burnt toffee. You can also get a hint of the booze that lies in this 12% beast, which adds an unwelcome hint of heat in the nose.

Usually I'm so-so on the barleywine style, but this is one I really like. For me it's sometimes hard to get past the big alcohol taste in barlywines and the brown-sugar muskiness, like a rotted woods smell. Nemesis, like I said, I like. It's a good balance of the alcohol adding a nice touch of spice on the finish without being overbearing. There's a brown sugar, toffee, caramel flavor that's a good balance with this sort of piny raisin bitterness. It's peculiar, but very good.

The mouthfeel is nice, it's a big bold body which upholds the flavors very well. I wish there was a little less of the alcohol though as it does affect the mouthfeel a bit by burning like a bourbon. But that's my only complaint about the mouthfeel. It's else wise a very drinkable barleywine. Usually I sit and sip them, but I don't need to do that (as a survivability tactic) with Nemesis. All in all, it's a very good, bold barleywine. One I like a lot, which is a good thing considering the crazy price tag.

Jan 27, 2011
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warnerry from Michigan

4/5  rDev -4.5%

Oct 26, 2013
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TypsiYpsi from Michigan

3.25/5  rDev -22.4%

Nov 21, 2012
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prototypic from Ohio

3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The 2010 Nemesis release is a very dark mahogany color. Seriously dark for a Barleywine. It's not quite opaque. Light cuts through and reveals a few burgundy highlights. A tan head barely covers the surface before disappearing completely. Lacing was extremely light. Apparently, 12% abv was too much for it.

The nose is good. It's very, very malty. No doubt about that. A mix of roasted, caramel, and chocolate malts seems to be present. It's a little sweet, but the cocoa-esque chocolate seems to balance it out. Dark fruit is definitely noted. Raisin, fig, plum - the works. While I'm sure the hop presence faded, there are definitely remnants of pine and light citric notes. Alcohol is masked extremely well for a 12% abv beer.

The flavor is consistent with the nose. The malt base is big. Caramel, cocoa, and roasted malts mix well, and create a nice, sturdy base. There's a slightly sweet flavor, but it's not too sweet. Dark fruit flavors of plum, fig, and raisin emerge quickly and add nice depth. They work extremely well with the malt base. The hop presence has definitely diminished, but is still noted and has more of a bitter kick than you might expect. This one really does feature the whole gambit - tangy, sweet, and bitter. Hints of anise, molasses, and tobacco round it out. Alcohol is blended extremely well, and isn't much of a factor.

2010 Nemesis has a medium body. Carbonation is extremely light. Honestly, it feels a little too thin. Despite the wealth of malt, it somehow needs a little more body. For a beer of its size, it definitely is easy drinking. I wouldn't guess 12% based solely on smell, taste, or temperature.

In my not so humble opinion, Founders did an exponentially better job with 2010 Nemesis (compared to that of 2009). This is a very dark Barleywine that's full of flavor. I think I'd prefer a little less of a roasted flavor, but it is very good. Easily the roastiest Barleywine I've had to date. If you have an opportunity to trade for a bottle or two, it's well worth it.

Mar 19, 2011
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rpstevens from New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -4.5%

Nov 15, 2011
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Naugros from New Jersey

4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thin but tight head...not very long lasting though. But this IS a barleywine and I've never had one with a rich, thick head with staying power. Dark brown, almost looking like a lighter-colored stout in the body, but with more carbonation evident.

Not a very strong smell but what there is of it is dominated by malts, as you'd expect. Dark bread and dark fruits is the impression that I get. I expected more of a vinous characteristic but it's not there. The 12% abv is very well masked so far. Sure you get some red wine but you don't get the alcohol. Impressive.

Okay, the alcohol makes its entrance in the first sip, but not in an overpowering, vaporous or solvent way. It's well-balanced with the other flavors which are earthy, exhibiting hints of chocolate, black pepper and some of that dark fruit. There's also a bitterness and the hint of citrus in it that makes me believe there's a hops presence that's bringing it forward...backward actually, as it hits the back of the throat, but it does hit more forward on the palate than I' used to. If it weren't for the absence of Belgian yeast this would taste a lot like a Belgian quadrupel...and a good one at that.

The bitterness is strong but doesn't stick around too long. The alcohol intensifies on the nose and the tongue as the beer warms and leaves a warming sensation on the roof of your mouth. If you're not a fan of that what are you doing buying a barleywine?

Not a beer to drink everyday and definitely not one to have more than one of in an hour. This is a gentleman's beer that is best sipped on a cool evening. This could be one of my favorite barleywines to date, but I've only had about five of them...there's still research to do!

Sep 22, 2010
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KFBR392 from Illinois

4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A local micropub sat on their keg of this until today when they unleashed it.

Appearance: Very dark, almost pitch black. No head to speak of, beside a very thin lacing on the edges of the glass. Above average lacing on the edges of the glass with each drink.

Smell: Very subdued overall. A lot of strong booze/bourbon, vanilla, hops, and barley. The barley comes off very potent.

Taste: The front is a silky vanilla bourbon booze ride. The body evens out and shows off the strong accents of barley. Finish is medium dry alcohol bite. There is some decent complexity here but overall nothing outstanding.

Mouthfeel: Cleans off the palette, almost dangerously drinkable. Good thing my girlfriend was with me to drive, this one went down awfully quick.

Overall: I was so excited to hear about the Founder's take over which included this great brew. Definitely had the feel of a well aged barleywine. I will definitely be going back for some more.

Apr 16, 2013
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Georgiabeer from Georgia

3.2/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours very dark brown, almost black. Little head. Very heavy malt nose with molasses and charred sugar and some bitter and earthy hops. Really I find this quite heavy and a bit overbearing. The taste has that same combination of heavy bitterness from both the hops and charred sugar, and a stiff, dry, heavy maltiness. Fairly leaden and really nothing here that elevates this above the norm. Relatively thick in the mouth, and fairly unremarkable. For my money this is a wildly bad value. Oh well.

Sep 19, 2010
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CHickman from New York

4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours opaque black brown in color with a 1/2 inch creamy tan that faded on the fast side and left very good lacing and a ring of foam around the top of the brew. Fair amount of sediment left at the bottom of the bottle.

Smells of chocolate, coffee and hops up front with caramel, molasses, toasted grains, sweet malt and some light citrus hops; aroma like a hoppy stout with some dark fruit, rum and cocoa mixed in - a very nice nose.

Tastes of chocolate, coffee, caramel, molasses, cocoa, sweet malt, toasted grains, caramel, biscuit, citrus hops, piney hops, raisin, dates, burnt wood or smoked wood, and vanilla followed by a slightly bitter pucker in the dry finish. Hops and roasted malts balance each other out with the malts having an edge in control and almost giving off a barrel aged feel to it. Overall flavor is quite tasty and gets more complex as it warms.

Mouthfeel is oily and slick, with very light to no carbonation, and a heavy body that makes this a slow sipper, yet somewhat easy to take down.

Good drinkability as this tasty beverage hides the ABV so well that you won't see it coming; they did a really nice job of making such a strong beer relatively easy to drink. This is a nightcap or one and done beer to appreciate as it warms, and I highly recommend this beer, but it's no session beer.

Nov 13, 2010
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Patchmaster from Indiana

4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The much hyped early release Nemesis packs a mean punch and wouldn't mind sitting on it for a few months to see if it's calmed down.

A - Very dark with a small head. Immediately goes away leaving little to no head. Just a small amount of lacing.

S - I would say this has a ton of chocolate, coffee and very woody!

T - Very solid with a lot of woody taste.

M - Low carbonation with a creamy smooth body

D - This is where I think it needs a few months. I think that towards the end it gets a little boozy. Why am I nitpicking though it is 12% so what would you expect.

Sep 11, 2010
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Keith_R from Georgia

4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Nov 10, 2012
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peabody from Kentucky

3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours out very dark brown to black with 1/4 finger of tans suds that dissapate quickly. Lots of lacing here probably because of the alcohol.
Strong fig/raisin smell with with a caramel charred malt and the alcohol in tow.
Taste is malty sweet at first then a bitterness ensues and bam the alcohol! Sits hard in the back of the throat.
Aftertaste of sweet molasses and bread and alcohol. The hop biterness only comes in after the alcohol is gone from the palate.
Drinkability is not so great. Too much alcohol here.

Sep 06, 2010
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DoubleSimcoe from Pennsylvania

3.43/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Founder's Nemesis on tap at Bodega in Columbus, Ohio. A 10-oz pour priced at $11 (WHAT!?). Lucky me I got it during Happy Hour, half price...

Appearance: Very dark, almost black. Faint head. Thick lacing. A hefty brew!

Smell: Light compared to the appearance and taste. Booziness comes through. Some hops and malts in a nice balance, but mostly booze. Toastiness floating around.

Taste: Some oak and vanilla, as if it were barrel-aged. Booze through and through. A gentle bitterness at the end of the sip.

Mouthfeel: Low to medium carbonation, medium body, lots of booze. Warming.

Drinkability: Low, obviously. It really is too alcoholic. Don't love it.

I find this brew to be a little lost... black barleywine? I don't detect much roastiness here... and this doesn't really taste like a barleywine to me. More like a strong Black IPA, but not quite.

I've had Nemesis twice on tap and I can't get to love it. It is unbalanced and hard to enjoy.

Sep 29, 2010
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beerhan from Ohio

4.73/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

It's about time I review this beer but I've been too busy drinking it all week. I must say that this is one of my favorite beers of all time but has one big flaw--It is way too drinkable for being 12%


Poured into a snifter, dark black with a thin quickly dissipating brown head

Smells quite tame, little chocolate, dark berries

Tastes very chocolatey with a smooth finish. Very little bite. As nemesis warms up it feels more like wine and chocolate being paired together. It's an all around beautiful experience.

Way too drinkable, I keep kicking these back. I have been paying five dollars for a decent sized snifter and have been very happy. It just tastes and feels so good that I am sad that this beer will only be made once.

Sep 19, 2010
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waddellc2 from Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dec 02, 2015
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tpd975 from Florida

4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the man known as Masterski. Thanks for looking out for me Alex.

A: Pours a nice rich black hue with an nice tan head. Nice retention and some nice sheets of lace.

S: Aromas of roasted malt, chocolate, char, and grassy green hops.

T: Very bold roast just short of char. Grassy hops and loads of chocolate malt. Hints of coffee and a bit of toffee. Light ash with a bit of citrus.

M: On the fuller side of body, rich and smooth. The hops are still present without being too bitter. Boldly roasted from start to finish.

D: Good I like it. I want more to age a bit.

Sep 16, 2010
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SpdKilz from Illinois

4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to the most standup BA I know, Kevin (kzoobrew) for this great beer. Cheers friend! Can't wait to try it.

Appearance - Pours into my Bell's Tulip with an impressive dark color. I really didn't believe how black this was until I held it up to the light and nothing came through, even around the edges. About a finger of tan/mocha colored head is achieved with a rather vigorous pour that dissipates at a moderate pace, but leaves nice, light lacing on the glass.

Smell - Caramel, oranges, molasses, dark fruits such as plums and raisins, burnt brown sugar, roasted malts, just a hint of chocolate, and slight hops.

Taste - Honestly, similar to the nose. It begins with a rather sweet flavor of caramel, brown sugar, and the dark fruits as mentioned in the nose. There is a nice citrus bitterness from grapefruit and orange, more prevalent than the nose would have indicated that nicely accentuates the sweetness of the beer. At the tail end of the taste, there is coffee, a slight cocoa bitterness, and just a tad of vanilla. As the beer warms, there is a nice estrangement of earthiness that makes itself prevalent. A damn tasty beer, though not as "barleywine" as I would have expected.

Mouthfeel - One of the highlights of the beer in my opinion. The first sip made it known to me this beer was to be taken seriously. Very smooth, creamy, medium to almost heavy Mouthfeel. Lower carbonation, and finishes just a hint dry/bitter.

Drinkability - I really do mean it when I say the alcohol is masked extremely well here. I detect literally no alcohol in the initial taste (it is there slightly) and again, very little alcohol warming. This I find quite impressive seeing as this is a 12% beer and in addition is relatively "fresh" in regards to when it was released. Kevin was right about drinking it now - I get to taste the nice hoppy bitterness intertwined with the prevalent yet not overpowering sweetness associated with a barleywine. A very good beer and am extremely glad I was able to try it.

Nov 11, 2010
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thagr81us from South Carolina

4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from bottle into a Green Man snifter. Poured a massively dark brown (basically black) with a one finger tannish off-white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, bitter hop, grapefruit, and sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, caramel, citrus, slight citrus hop, and sweet alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. With that said, it is definitely a sipper as it definitely has a big boozy aspect going on here. The flavor and aroma on this one were very nicely balanced though. I could see this one sitting in a cellar for awhile and doing QUITE nicely. A definite must try.

Mar 02, 2011
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jbdpsu82 from Pennsylvania

4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

May 09, 2016
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srandycarter from California

4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Damn close to black. Very little head, ring only, tan. Some spot lace.

S - Wow! Big Barleywine malt, vanilla, cooked dark fruit, licorice, tobacco, cocoa and booze.

T - Big flavors match smell. Lots of sweet big malt, some anise, burnt coffee and cocoa.

M - Medium to heavy, great carb and good balance considering.

D - I LOVE this beer!

Oct 10, 2011
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ColdPoncho from Ohio

4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Illegible bottled on date

A - Big dark body from a deep mahogany pour, big frothy tan head with some signs of good lacing

S - Sweet balanced malts, chocolate, roast, heat, wood, smoked meats, dark fruits. Nice complexity

T - Dry and sweet fruits and malts, some smoke and roasted malts. Nice profile, wish I had another to age a bit longer.

M - Great big viscous and thick body, very smooth, a bit dry. Quite nice.

O (D) - A good, well-rounded and interesting beer. Again, I wish i had some more...oh well.

Mar 29, 2011
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Khazadum from Illinois

4/5  rDev -4.5%

Jun 02, 2012
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mmars010 from Virginia

4.75/5  rDev +13.4%

Sep 12, 2014
Nemesis 2010 from Founders Brewing Company
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 941 ratings