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Founders Nemesis 2010 | Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Nemesis 2010Founders Nemesis 2010
934 Ratings
Founders Nemesis 2010Founders Nemesis 2010

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mcann2pu on 07-29-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 934 |  Reviews: 507
Photo of brentk56
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours a coffee brown color with a modest, but tight-bubbled head that leaves some patchy lace behind

Smell: This is one of those beers that I could smell all day, with a big pithy grapefruit character with a chocolate/burnt caramel aspect underneath

Taste: Starts out with the burnt caramel flavor that by mid-palate is utterly destroyed by the 100 IBUs of pith and pine; the longer you swirl it in your mouth, the more intense it becomes, just assaulting every taste receptor on the tongue; the chocolate starts to appear underneath, as well, along with a hint of vanilla that leaves me wondering about a bourbon barrel influence; after the swallow, the flavors merge together but the tongue is so devastated that it is hard to recover

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: More like a black double IPA than a barleywine, this one just is too much for my palate; to use the byline from another brewery who might also have brewed this beer, I guess I am not worthy

Nb: Tried this beer again in Nov 2011 and rather enjoyed it. The caramel and chocolate flavors, up front, blend nicely with the piney hops (which no longer assault the tongue)

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Photo of sweemzander
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. August 06, 2010 bottled date on the neck.

(A)- Pours a very dark brown almost black color that produced a good tan colored foamy head. Decent retention; actually it is great retention considering the ABV. Lets lots of spotty lacing behind. The darkest Barleywine I have ever seen.

(S)- A rich malty profile. Almost has a roasted character to it that is rather stout-like in character. A nice caramel and fig-like sweetness.

(T)- Very similar to the smell. A wonderful rich malty barley profile with a great caramel sweetness. Bitter, but minimal and fitting. Rather smooth despite the robustness of it.

(M)- Where in God's name is the 12%ABV?! Smooth as can be for the style and has a great malt profile. Hoppy as hell, but barely noticed due to the richness of the malt profile. This delivers a party in the mouth. Ridiculously smooth for the style.

(D)- A sipper for sure due to its richness, but a homerun for the style. Superb ABV integration, but it does catch up to you later on. The bottle did not last long. Well-done yet again Founders!

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Photo of Slatetank
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap @ Al's of hamden, served in a 12oz ale glass.

The color is deep coffee brown and the clarity is translucent w/ thick pale tan cap and ring bead. The aroma is of raisin and bitter herbs with slightly toffee aroma and mild citrus notes. The mild cocoa is pleasing in the aroma

The feel is great w/ bitterness and carbonation full on entry and slowly succumbing to the malt w/ very mild warming and slight malt sweetness coating the palate, very balanced overall - a masterful combination of textures

The flavor is great with the sweet raisin and mild citrus notes that are hinted at in the smell with bitter cocoa and mild pine in the fresh hop flavor the taste carries a nice low-key roasted which seems muted by the fresh american hop flavor. There is a slight candied currant type flavor with subtle spice and dark sugar complimenting. The drinkability is smooth as any 12% beer wishes to be, an awesome American Barleywine with Founders I am convinced fresher is always better especially when the hops are involved -this beer has a lot of fresh hop flavor.

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Photo of argock
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a clear oversized wine glass. No freshness date but 2010 vintage. 4-pack purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $20.99.

A: Deep brown with huge 1-2 finger light tan head with unreal retention for the ABV and numerous scattered thin strips of lace.

S: Delicious mix of woody, herbal, and citrus hops mingle with roasted and caramel malts. Alcohol is readily apparent with a fusel quality.

T: Exceptionally rich, full flavor with massive chewy caramelly sweet maltiness. Malts bring a chocolatey roasted character with a light molasses note. Hops are big too with earthy herbal notes accented with citrus. Unlike in the nose, the alcohol is pretty well in the back.

M: Slick and mouthfilling with a huge body and sweet caramel malty and citrus, earthy, bitter hops aftertaste.

D: Amazingly drinkable for a fresh American barleywine -- slick, full-bodied, full-flavored, with a unique roasted quality. I am already looking forward to taking another shot at this brew next year.

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Photo of portia99
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (bottled 7/14/10) poured into a Brooklyn snifter.

A - Pours a nearly opaque and extemely dark brown color (almost black) with marginal ruby highlights when held to a very bright light. A quckly dissipating, creamy looking tan head that falls to a thick collar with lines of lacing left behind.

S - Green and citrusy hops up front layered on top of a rich smelling malt base filled with a good caramelly aspect to it and some nice roasted malt too. Very fruity...lots of dark fruits, prunes, cherries, and maybe a touch of raspberry too. Alcohol is also noticeable in the nose.

T - Dark roasted malt, charcoal, burnt toast, coffee leave the first impression with a sizeable hop bitterness and citrusy hop flavor. Light caramel and tons of dark fruit in the middle and a lingering bitterness and slight astringency into the aftertaste. Alcohol is rather well hidden in the flavor profile despite the 12% level. A light kiss of vanilla enters the flavor profile as the beer warms up a bit.

M - Medium bodied, not as thick as I expected it to be and perhaps a bit lighter than desired too. Alcohol is only marginally noticeable and really only after the swallow with a lingering "burn" on the back of the throat that is noticeable on the exhale. Carbonation is just on the low side of medium...gives a somewhat creamy feel.

D - Nice beer overall. Barleywine?...I don't know, had a lot of imperial stout-like qualities in my opinion, but I suppose barleywine is an ok style descriptor here too. Seems like Founders rendition of SN Bigfoot, but not quite as enjoyable, at least in my opinion. Think I'll hold on to some to see how it ages...perhaps do a side by side some time with some Bigfoot vintages...

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Photo of rudylaw
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours medium to dark brown with a sizeable head.

The aroma is packed with chocolate, toffee, caramel, wood and a bit of hops.

Taste hits you with chocolate, caramel, hops, bread and vanilla cookie. Fairly sweet finish but somewhat dry as well thanks to the hops that are present. Founders constantly doctors with, and usually always improves on, these high gravity beers and this is no exception.

This 2010 version is very smooth! Medium body with medium to high-medium carbonation.

This barleywine is shockingly drinkable now... I can't wait to try it again in a few months!

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Photo of bonkers
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on-tap at Pinnochio's. It has a dark, thick cola like appearance with a medium white, sticky head. Big citrus/pine on the aroma. Lots of hop flavor, but pretty balanced. The citrus really shines and is especially prevalent in the finish. A full bodied brew that drinks like a much smaller brew. This beer goes down way to easy to be a 12% beer, IMO the alcohol is almost to well hidden. A great beer that deserves to be seeked out.

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Photo of JordanEllwanger
4.02/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A very dark burgundy ale with a thin caramel colored head. A tiny ring of sediment at the bottom of the bottle. Smells super hoppy and malty like a very high volume of alcohol. The foam is very dense and sticky. Quite a lot of malt in there nearly like a stout, but very hoppy like an IIPA. Feels pretty good. Not to harsh but not a session beer either. Definitely a sipper. Cheers!

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Photo of RustyDiamond
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Really nice cola brown pour with a finger of tan froth. Head dissipates after a sip leaving a nice ring along with spotted lacing.
Leather aroma along with whiffs of molasses and the rum & espresso soaked ladyfingers in a tiramisu.
Smoked malt and resiny citrus hops up front. Black IPA? I think not as more rich dense malt comes into the picture. Molasses with a hint of deep dark fudge. Bitter and hoppy in the middle, more of the citrus and even some spruce tips. Huge vapor of green minty hop riding on top of a phenol wave leaving quite a sensation on the palate.
Took me about an hour to finish, and wouldn't have another one in a session, but it was not a chore to drink.
Definitely green tasting but I really like it. Certainly should age excellently.

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Photo of 33nickadams
4.44/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a- pours dark, not much head, some lacing, held up to the light I see some maroon
s- lots going on here, I am not experienced enough as a ba to describe. I do sense some chocolate and alcohol smells.
t- once again, my novice palette has a hard time describing it. A little bitterness and alcohol is tasted.
m- It looks dark and has a lot of alcohol, but it is relatively light in the mouth
d- I find myself constantly smelling and sipping trying to figure this one out. I only have one, but I find it to be a very interesting beer. I would need at least 2 for me to figure out was is going on in this beer!

This beer really throws me for a loop. I really like it and it is very complex. I'm in way over my head in trying to describe it. I would say that this is a turning point in my ba career.

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Photo of chase2634
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A: Pours really dark, like maple syrup dark. 1/2 finger of creamy dark tan foam spreads out on top and sticks around for a while. Plentiful lacing left behind.

S: Nice aroma of hops, brown sugar, roasty malt, and raisins. A little grapefruit in there as well.

T: Very complex with interesting dark fruit, dark roasted coffee and a touch of grapefruit/hops at the end.

M: Starts malty and sweet with some obvious hopness to it. I don't sense much alcohol in this one even at 12%. Dark roasty malts kind of linger on the tongue though.

D: Overall I felt this was a step up from the 09'. I realize they're two different animals but this felt like a more thorough effort from Founders. I can't wait to try the 2011!

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Photo of dudemuskie
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

God bless The Andersons in Toledo, Ohio! So happy I found this. Was able to snag one bottle of this for about $6 as opposed to dropping $21 for a 4 pack!

Appearance- Pours a deep cola brown, practically opaque with a soapy beige head. Lots of drippy lacing.

Aroma- Big, nose tinglingly boozy nose with rich dark overripe fruity notes. Almost a sherry-like deep fruitiness with warming alcohol in the sinuses! Hints of rich malt (coffee, dark chocolate, and black malt) beneath lie beneath the thick alcoholic blanket. Intense to say the least!

Flavor- Starts off like a viscous young barleywine with rich malty notes of dark caramel, big resinous hops, and a healthy dose of alcohol....and thats just the start! A very nicely balanced, rich and almost creamy middle leads to everything big in a beer- big mouth coating hop bitterness, rich complex malty sweetness, and a very healthy dose of alcoholic strength. Intense finish lingers heavy on the palate- feels like i might be burping this one up for the next week!

Mouthfeel- Full bodied and feels even fuller with the alcoholic strength. A bit of a creamy feel in the start-middle makes for a great transition into the finish and an incredibly fun beer to drink. Decent balance in the mix of it all

Overall- An intense flavor experience while young. I feel like my face went numb half way through this beast! Drinkability only limited by the sheer strength of this brew. Definitely recommend laying a few of these down for quite some time before enjoying! Either way, if you can't wait (like I couldn't) and have one now, drink it a little warmer and it opens up nicely. One hell of an oral experience that definitely tells 'the man' to suck it! Absolutely worth a try if you can find it!

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Photo of Patchmaster
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

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Photo of elgiacomo
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottled July 14, 2010.

Pours medium dark brown with a large, dense tan head that leaves some lacing and holds a foamy island and ring.

Aroma is wonderful and complex, a lot of chocolate, toffee, cookie dough, tobacco, brown sugar, then strong piney hops really come to the forefront, also some vanilla and oak, yeast and bread.

As good as the aroma is, the flavor is even better, lots 'o chocolate, caramel, rich dark fruits, toffee, brown sugar, good amount of hops, earthy/piney and some juicy citrus, overall good bitterness with some sweetness too, decent alcohol bite, but less than I expected, and everything comes together extremely well.

Mouthfeel is smooth, velvety, but not thick, medium bodied, medium carbonation.

Yum, yum, yum, can't wait to see how this one evolves...

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Photo of JAXSON
3.61/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle, appears black but is actually a very deep mahogany, with a thin ring around the head. Nose is heavy caramel malt, some dank hops, and dark fruits. A bit metallic. Good, heavy malt in the mouth, just a light hop presence that reminds me of saaz or something. Little metallic kick in there I don't enjoy. Some dates and prunes fight through, but the hops just don't mesh right with this nice deep malt. Why couldn't they just brew an English-style barley wine without having to "jazz it up" by creating some kind of black IPA hybrid?

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Photo of glazeman
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a snifter, split with airohead2001.

A: The beer pours a dark brown with a ½ finger off white head that has nice retention and moderate lacing.

S: A lot of maple syrup on the nose. Some brown sugar in the middle, and then a finish of toffee and alcohol.

T: A tad bit sweet at the start, then a some bitterness at the end. The dominant flavors that I get up front are The dominant flavor at the finish are

M: Wow. I love the mix of high viscosity and carbonation in this beer. It sits on the tongue well and has a wonderful aftertaste.

D: I would definitely have this over and over again. It was interesting, tasting, and at 12% ABV easily drinkable.

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Photo of nrbw23
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a very dark brown color with a bit of red head lights when held to a light. A tan colored head with good retention and leaves good lacing.

S- Pretty interesting roasted malts, chocolate and tropical hops.

T- Hops are citrusy with some pineapple and a bit of pine. The malts add great balance, with smokiness, caramel and sugar.

M- Lighter side of being full in body and low carboantion. Very creamy and smooth.

D- Very solid I like the complexity here. I like this one better than last years since this one is not nearly as hot.

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Photo of oglmcdgl
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at hulmeville inn.

A- a small cap of off white head atop a murky dark brown brew. Head leaves a few patches of gooey lace that slowly slide down the glass.

S- dark roasted malts and a sticky hop oil hit. Booze and wood. Some sharp fruity pops come up in the background.

T- huge agressive hops and alcohol open with deep roasted malts. Hops come off with some grapefruit and pine. Malts bring a touch of chocolate and dark bread. Tons and I mean tons of alcohol at first bit as the brew warms it blends in and works a bit more. Bitter and roasty finish.

M- medium body and a tight lively carb. A quick swish in the mouth bring a real nice creaminess for a moment. Super hot.

D- this is a monster of a beer. Maybe even to much for me. Its all over the place at first but with some time it comes together and starts to impress. Its is very hot but I'm sure with some time it will mellow out.

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Photo of jjanega08
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= The pour looks thick I must say. I didn't think there would be much carbonation because last years Nemesis didn't have much but this one has a nice looking finger high head that has some pretty nice retention as well as some nice lacing on it. The heads color is a little bit of an off white color. The beer itself is nice and black. There are some highlights in it that shine through a little but looks black from the center.

S= High hops and a suprising amount of toastyness to it. Sort of biscuity in a way. There is also a little bit of roast to it unless my mind is playing tricks on me. Really nice balanced smelling barleywine.

T= The taste is unique for sure. You get a lot of the piney hop flavor to it as well as some deep roast. Hearing it called a "black barleywine" this is almost exactly what I expected. Or it could be an double black india pale ale...DBIPA. Balanced is a good way to describe it.

M= The mouth isn't as thick as I though it would be based on the pour. A great amount of carbonation keeping it a little lower is perfect.

D= This is a wonderful beer. The alcohol is hidden very very well and the flavors are all bright and vibrant. I wouldn't be suprised if this style takes off.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.27/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Ah yes, the Nemesis, hooray for hype, and hooray for actually getting a 4pack before the Madison hoarders snatched it all up like last year

12oz single, 4pack from Star

appearance: served in my great lakes snifter, very dark body, wavy tan suds, garnet hues

smell: Big - green hops poking out through a thick layer of roasted malts, sweet dark chocolate, and booze soaked dark fruits

taste: big bodied - rum soaked fruit, fig, green hops, dark chocolate, peat and smoke, fiery alcohol, rich and very complex. The grapefruit and pine from the hops clashes with the thick chocolate malts, but it seems to harmonize in the end. I'm not sure it's worth killing a man over, but Nemesis is a winner and my 4 pack won't make it through September

mouthfeel: rich and full bodied, big hop bite, spicy rum in the finish

drinkability: all things considered, ok

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Photo of jonvan04
4.49/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my NEW stone RIS snifter. It poured very dark brown to black with very little head. The aroma is great blend of dark chocolatey malts. The taste went from the dark malts to some bitter hops. They didn't necessarily blend together, but I loved it anyway. Most of the prior reviews said they couldn't imagine finishing more than one, but I finished mine and felt like I would love a nother couple of these. Considering the weight and bittnerness plus the style, I found this very drinkable. I don't know if this was supposed to be a barleywine which it's listed as or a dark IPA but I couldn't care less, this was great.

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Photo of klikger
3.79/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip

A - Almost black - very, very dark brown. No head; little lacing.

S - Caramel, brown sugar, bourbon, and more booze.

T - First impression = ultrasweet, boozy Black IPA. The middle expands the initial malt profile, with notes of pumpernickel bread, caramel, and molasses joining the piny hops. The end is sustained sweetness, partially offset by hop bitterness.

M - Not much carbonation; creamy, but a touch syrupy as well.

D - Is anyone really taking down more than one bottle by themselves? C'mon...

A decent barleywine at present, hopefully time will smooth this out a bit. Pick it up if you can, but don't feel bad if you have to spend your $20 elsewhere.

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Photo of glid02
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Leon's Full Service in Atlanta.

Pours one shade from black with a 1.5-finger tan head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of caramel malts with hints of roastiness and loads of sticky pine hops. As it warms the hop aromas gain additional complexity with the addition of floral and earthy notes.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Thick dark caramel malt flavors are quickly joined by robust pine and earthy hop flavors. Midway through the sip slight amounts of roasted malt flavors and semi-sweet chocolate make a brief appearance before fading out into a solidly bitter ending. As the beer warms hints of alcohol hit the back of the palate on the way down and the bitterness increases further.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this beer smelled very nice however the flavor profile was a bit too muddled and didn't meld as well as I'd like. An interesting beer that's worth a shot but I wouldn't trip over myself to seek it out.

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Photo of cochell
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The 2010 Nemesis is a superhero's worst nightmare. This brew inflicts retribution or vengeance on the palette. At first glance the Nemesis is black and dense; when I held it to the light I noticed a dark reddish hue on the edge of my glass revealing the Nemesis's true color. The head is of thick foam russet in color that retreats quickly to the outer edges of the glass and dissipates lacing the goblet with a round ring.
I took a big whiff of this Juggernaut. Then plotted like Dr. Doom as to my next move. Another mighty sniff revealed a perfume of hops, chocolate, floral, pineapple and booze. The nose was so amazing in knew this brew would surely offer frenzy of flavors in the first sip.
Grabbing the goblet, with nearly Magneto like powers, I thrust the glass high into the air. The first sip was smooth; Very similar to the nose but with subtle pine and citrus to compliment the malt and chocolate notes. Then the enormous hop bitterness was like Venom to my mouth. It delightfully burned and spiked my tongue with a tingle of orange, citrus and pine followed closely by the Onslaught of burn from the alcohol.
Mouth feel is medium with a sticky back end, woody and acidic on the swallow. This 100 IBU 12% ABV brew does not disappoint but in large doses, like any super villain, could decimate all. I did finish all 12 ounces but realize afterwards 8 ounces would be plenty for this slow sipper.

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Photo of jt31914
4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had it on-tap yesterday and then in a bottle today

A: Black, or at least very very dark brown. Not much lacing or carbonation, but that's to be expected.

S: Booze, barley, dark malt/chocolate almost. Nice hops as well. An interesting smell, but probably the weakest part of the beer.

T: Phenomenal! I much prefer this to '09. Heavy barley and dark malt tastes mixing on the palate, with a nice faint nuttiness to balance out the strength of the flavors. Also, some alcohol heat on the finish, but it is almost welcome warmth to me.

M/D: Smooth, almost velvety like bourbon as it sits in your mouth, and then finishes just as smooth. Admittedly not overly drinkable, but for the style it's in my top 5 for sure.

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Founders Nemesis 2010 from Founders Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.18 out of 5 with 934 ratings
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