Founders Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
BEER AVG
4/5
Founders Brewing CompanyFounders Brewing Company
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

235 Grandville Ave SW
Grand Rapids, Michigan, 49503
United States

(616) 776-1195 | map
www.foundersbrewing.com

Notes:
Monday - Saturday: 11am - 2am
Sunday: 12pm - 12am
Non-smoking Indoors, huge front porch for smoking. (heated winter room coming!)
Much larger room, with huge 25-seat custom mahogany bar.
Expanded Deli Menu and Hours:
Monday - Saturday: 11am-11pm
Sunday: 12pm-11pm
Store: 12pm-8pm
Live Music Thursdays and Saturdays featuring Stage, House PA and Sound
Pool Table, Real Dart Board, and Shuffleboard.

Added by BeerAdvocate

Grab a complimentary copy of BeerAdvocate magazine here while supplies last.
BEER STATS
Beers:
101
Reviews:
30,457
Ratings:
128,291
PLACE STATS
Score:
97
Reviews:
305
Ratings:
1,027
Avg:
4.4
pDev:
4.77%
 
 
Taps:
18
Bottles/Cans:
7
Cask:
Y
Beer-to-Go:
Y
View: Beers | Place Reviews | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 305 | Ratings: 1,027
Reviews by adamette:
Photo of adamette
4.35/5  rDev -1.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Based on a visit there 10 17 09 with some notes but also additional recollections. This and New Holland were the top two reasons for making a Michigan beer trip which means that long ago when I saw where Founders was located I got the idea of visiting here. I was very much looking forward to visiting here for months. Located near the thriving city of Grand Rapids, the modern brewpub of Founders greets the visitor. There is a lengthy main hall with a winding, serpentine bar with about 100 tables and the brewery facility at the far end. Very spacious, modern.

Atmosphere Very college, organic, hippie appearance but also with significant modernity since it is very open with visible brewing equipment through windows all of the way to the left as you enter. On the right is the long bar (it probably seats 30?) and seating for another 250 (?) makes up the bulk of the main area of the brewpub. I can recall rows of tables with loose chairs on either side. There is an "order window very near the entrance on the right before you get to the bar and, of course, this is where you order food, get a beeper and then return to get your food. Interesting system since there are no "waiters" or "waitresses." 4.0

Quality Very high since everything is presented in proper glassware and great pride and care is taken to present the beer accurately. 4.5

Service Very good indeed. I mentioned to the bartender during an afternoon that I am basically making a tour of beer places in Michigan and he was welcoming and interested in where else I had visited. Before I left he gave me about half of a pint of what turned out to be a mixture of 3 different beers, including two different vintages of Dirty Bastard. That was generous an unexpected and welcomed. 4.5

Selection Well if you love craft beer then the selection is simply great. I tried a few new beers I had not heard of before that night, Founders Hole Mole, Founders Hand of Doom, Founders Newaygo County Cherry, and all of their standard line up including FBS, a pleasure to try on tap from the source. 4.5

Food Pretty good. I ordered a turkey sandwich and it came in a basket with chips and a pickle as I recall. It was good and fresh. 3.5

Value Just fine but I was honestly not looking at the prices.

Notes: A great Beer Advocate place.

 2,297 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of SpAiReArGsEonNE
3.97/5  rDev -9.8%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

Photo of chuckgietzen
4.18/5  rDev -5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of bwbetts
4.28/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Scotty_Karate
3.89/5  rDev -11.6%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4.75 | selection: 3 | food: 3.75

Photo of Willtravelforbeer
4.76/5  rDev +8.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

Photo of Big_Neezy
4.65/5  rDev +5.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Founders is committed to excellence and it shows. Everything they do is bold and confident and in Michigan beer scene, this is the place to be.

Cancel your evening your evening plans and get a ride because this place is worth a long sit. Their draft offerings are spectacular and catch them during certain seasons and you might be lucky enough to score the fabled KBS or CBS. While Founders in a bottle is great, the first hand tap room experience is even better because you're getting it from the source.

Menu is mostly sandwiches and they do not have a grill or fryer. They don't need to. While they're not in the deli business, those sandwiches are outrageous in flavor, quality and size. That's just the Founder's boldness coming through. Absolutely get a sandwich on the marble rye and with one of Founder's own beer mustard. Most sandwiches hover in the $7-10 range and it's great value for dollar. The double-decker is about $14 but it fed me twice for that price. The French bread pizzas are all the rage now but I'm a sandwich guy.

Service is kind of hit and miss. The place starts packing them in early in the day so you can always expect a crowd. Post work hours to get crowded so expect longer waits. I had very good service sitting at the bar but mediocre service from a bearded hipster who gave us the cold shoulder the whole time. Yes, we're tourists and no I don't have a man bun or mountain bike but my money still spends the same. However, most employees we have encountered are very nice and helpful.

Beer. The whole reason why you came speaks for itself. They will always have the standards (class 1) but venture out and try the seasonal stuff too. The Breakfast Stout is that much better from the tap as is the Rubaeus. I tend to stay in the Class 2 beers. Typically, if you order from the Class 3 list, you are limited in the order to either 1-2 glasses. This may account for limited quantity or even alcohol content. You come to enjoy, not get smashed.

Nice relaxing setting which has live music several days a week. The open mic music nights are great and showcases local talent. Note though, it can get very loud.

 2,169 characters

Photo of seanchai
4.29/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

Photo of LaGuarns
4.14/5  rDev -5.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

Photo of jessewilliamson
4.85/5  rDev +10.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

Photo of Antg8989
3.46/5  rDev -21.4%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4

Not overly impressed with my visit. The best part was the food which was good. The beer selection was okay. The vibe was decent for a larger craft brewery/restaurant. The service killed our visit. (In a bad way).

 212 characters

Photo of Bethaz83
4.86/5  rDev +10.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5 | food: 5

Photo of FlaviusG
4.33/5  rDev -1.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

Photo of JuanAlberto
3.6/5  rDev -18.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 5

Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4.39/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of AlexFreudenberg
4.8/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

Photo of admiral64
5/5  rDev +13.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

One of the top breweries around. Great beer, great food, great service. Waiter actually sat at our table and talked beer with us! It was lunchtime. Definitely my favorite brewery. Go visit!

 189 characters

Photo of cadaugherty
4.21/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of barnzy78
4.11/5  rDev -6.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.75

A friend of mine and I finally made it over to Michigan to visit Founders Brewing Co. Leading up to the visit, customer service was great and we managed to score some tickets for a scheduled tour and tasting ($30), which turned out to be awesome. The tour and tasting was limited to 14 people, which seemed to be the perfect amount of people in order to hear everything our great tour guide, Luke, had to show and tell us along with allowing for conversation to be opened up during the tasting. The smaller group also gave it a VIP-ish vibe which was a bonus.

As for the place itself, we got there shortly after they opened and were greeted quickly by a server. There was plenty of room at both the bar and the multiple seating areas - but filled up very quickly by mid-afternoon. The beer list was exceptional featuring both year-round and limited release beers. The chips and guacamole we ordered was average.

Service was great, but got a little confusing when different servers rotated past our table asking if we needed anything - there must have been 5 or 6 different servers. Which was fine until the time we needed to get over to our tour. Nobody seemed to want to let us pay our tab. We asked 3 different servers and time kept ticking. We ended up being late for our tour because we kept waiting for our tab and we were also given the wrong meeting place for the tour by one of the servers. We were just hoping for a bit better communication by the servers and a quicker check-out.

All in all, we still had a great time, and those complaints could very well be isolated incidents. Before we left we checked out the store & bought some beer and a few knick-knacks. I really wanted to get the flat-billed brewery hat but I thought $28 was too expensive so I passed on it. I would definitely go back again.

 1,815 characters

Photo of BretMC987
4.51/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25

Photo of Feldpausch
4.68/5  rDev +6.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Photo of Apok23
4.34/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.25

Photo of TFB5
4.4/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Photo of jpbolton
4.39/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75 | food: 3.75

Photo of Poloplaya
4.11/5  rDev -6.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75 | food: 4.5

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Founders Brewing Company in Grand Rapids, MI
97 out of 100 based on 305 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe