Style: Brown ale with orange peel and cherry
Brewery: Founders Brewery
Founders Brewing Company was founded in 1997 by Mike Stevens and Dave Engbergs and is located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Since 2019 it is majority-owned by Spanish brewers Mahou San Miguel This beer has been aged in bourbon barrels along with orange peel, orange extract and cherries, with the idea of producing a beer version of an Old Fashioned cocktail. I bought this a few times for myself before putting in the tasting. I knew had good it was, so I had to share it with more people!
It had a lovely deep ruby colour with a light off-white head that held well and a medium to thick body. Those bourbon, oak and orange notes kick through in the aroma instantly and were so enticing. All these aromas followed through into the taste, with the orange peel oil becoming more prominent. On the palate, the beer was thick and sticky. The warming alcohol was noticed by added to the experience rather than being distracting. One negative I found was that the brown ale character was almost pushed to the side too much, and it became all about the oak and orange. I would have liked to have had more of the ale notes in the taste. It tasted rather Christmassy, with the spiced orange prominent in every sip. The aftertaste was long, with that spied edge continuing long after swallowing.
Did they create a beer version of the Old Fashioned? Absolutely! I think they recreated the cocktail well, and it had all the major components in place. Since the tasting, I have purchased more of these for myself, and I’ve loved every one of them. Very nice indeed!