Tagged: Founders Brewing

Review: Founders Brewing Co. | Azacca IPA

credit: foundersbrewing.com

credit: foundersbrewing.com

I suppose there are musicians who have aged into their art gracefully. Ironically, when I started writing this, David Bowie was still alive.

Even more ironically, near injuriously, there then are musicians who have aged like bananas,
And Keith Richards still tours.

…Something else about Ice Cube and Are We There Yet.

Then what’s left are the pajamas-in-the-daytime set.

These are those whose appeal you equate with spending the day sipping coffee until 1 in the afternoon, milling about, before driving 5 blocks up the street to the discount grocery store where you buy five potatoes, one beer, maple syrup and toilet paper while glaring at the couple in North Face apparel in a strangely classist manner.

Does life still have the same meaning under fluorescent light?

You stand in the checkout line, becoming itchy beneath your fleece, wondering if it’s psychosomatic. You’re captivated by the smell of fried resignation coming from the deli department. The chicken carcasses dance their post-mortem pirouettes. They glisten, all pretty and clean. They exist fondly as they do formerly. Soon, you wonder this of yourself. The high school sophomore who rings up your groceries asks for your ID. You pause, momentarily; shocked that you realize you have memories older than she is. She sulks and heaves her uncaring arm forth, demanding legal rectitude in the form of a seemingly meaningless magnetic plastic totem.

This robotic bitch has never been haunted by heartbreak or the inevitability of death. Or, maybe she has, and you’re just too cold as to exist beyond the confines of your hollow, garbage vessel.

You know: those artists you feel just awkwardly comfortable approaching when it comes to their latest endeavors, like Morrissey, or Dr. Dre.

So, yes, I guess I am saying that Founders Azacca IPA is sort of like Morrissey or Dr. Dre. I guess that sounds pretty great.

…but it’s pretty yeah.
Since the day Mike Stevens and Dave Engbers founded Founders, they have at least attempted to brew along the cutting edge. The question now is: ArE They FUKin 2 Old 2 BrU?
Well, they are at least using a new, fresh hop in their attempt to stay relevant.

…In a glass, it resembles 4C iced tea clutched in the fingers of an angry aunt, smoking a pack between a kid and the delicate cycle. Translucent to transparent, it carries a slight haze with an off-white inch of head that recedes to a soapy film.
Sparse bubbles rise slowly from the bottom of the glass. Congratulate them.

My nostrils aren’t necessarily arrested, but perturbed by suggestions of orange sherbet, apricot, some sort of bullshit earthiness like wet leaves.

Wait, wait,

there’s something else. Something I can only describe as peach chutney follows.


let’s just call it Ritz crackers with some Smuckers’ orange marmalade on top.

I taste orange, melon—cantaloupe, light mango, grapefruit. There’s a grape characteristic distinct enough to the point of being reminscent of grape pop rocks. It tastes… irresponsible. It hearkens to the reckless abandon of one who pisses on walls of city hall, of one who bothers arguing that it’s in the name of liberal values, shouting, “I READ THE NEW YORK TIMES! I KNOW WHAT I’M DOING! I’M ALIVE! WAKE UP WORLD!”

…but I’m not necessarily saying this is a good thing.

The mouth touch is clean, yet not exceptionally thin—somewhat watery. Therein lies a medium to light mouth touch, dry, astringent finish.

I don’t know. I appreciate what Founders is doing, but with a beer like this I can’t help but feel they are sort of like the cool mom with the tight clothes who claims to like Kendrick Lamar because she heard he was a Grammy nominee, but cannot get his album title right (“Pimping a Butterfly?).

I’m not expecting you to understand.

*8.3 out of 10*


Review: Founders Brewing Company | KBS, 2014 Edition

PC: beerpulse.com

PC: beerpulse.com

The Godfather.
Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
Babe Ruth.

…Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout.

The things marked in our lives, these things—these intrinsically perfect things—these things that are objectively good baffle us, disturb us to the point of anger, but also inspire us and lend a shred of light and meaning to our lives. In our age of all things relative, where the plural is fashionable and the valuable pass like stenches from open manhole covers, the stalwarts of quality—these bastions of true grit—the Lenny Bruces, the Orson Welleses, the Karls Markses, the Js Rs Rs Tolkiens, provide stability and artistic and moral direction in our lives.

Getting a bottle of KBS is like getting Batman to show up to your birthday party.

It took me three years, but I got it.

You could not imagine my excitement.

This rare find—this standard—was finally in my hands.

Kentucky Breakfast Stout is a beer that truly needs no introduction, but always deserves one. It is an Imperial Stout brewed once a year by Founders Brewing Company of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Brewed with chocolate and coffee, it is aged in Bourbon barrels placed in caves, where it is left to mature and ripen into the legendary beer it is. Critics worldwide sing its praises.

I poured the drink. It quietly sank into the glass. I stiffened in multiple places. It was beautiful. There was just nearly an inch of white coffee looking head (and rightfully so). It had intense alcohol legs up to my neck. It was pitch black; teeny-tiny bubbles climbed along the edges rising slowly to the top, feeding the head with a sticky lacing around the glass.

The aroma was purely nostalgic.
I am 6 years old
Wandering down the
Aisles of the grocery store where
The bags of coffee hang above me, the sweet
Pungent roasts waft generously, garrulously
I smell roasted cashews and
Chocolate, but
Like fudge,
From a brownie
A chocolate fudge brownie
Out of a bite of Ben and Jerry’s—

There is a brilliant roasted maltiness to the nose as it lingers a bit, tinged with a metallic mineral smell. Raisin and prune, there’s caramel as it warms. I find Bourbon, but it’s as gossamer as possible
(an idea).


The train screeches with the utmost alarm before it plows into the damsel in distress, tearing her asunder.

It is awful. It’s
It’s like

A date
Scarlett Johansson
So beautiful and
So completely
What is happening she
Says she
Has KB S but
It’s IBS and you cannot talk let alone get near to her due to her intense halitosis
That fucking halitosis that fucking garlic rotten ass bean curd loving ruby slipper wearing broken little fulcrum bending westward towards OBLIVION
The beer is unimaginably horrible.
It has this unmistakable muddled flavor parading away, pretending to be utterly complex. It’s somewhere between an imperial stout and a “fine,” “dry” “red wine.” It’s like a latte flavor from a suburban Hell of a Starbucks, where the barista has a hole in each ear, each eyebrow, each eye socket— it hits you up front, followed by the sickeningly cloying vanilla from the bourbon oak barrel. Then there is a strong, almost unsweetened chocolate flavor that pushes through with a tart cherry flavor. It’s leathery, so leathery, like the tannins from a red wine, or like a Great Uncle Bob’s backside. It cuts so deep with a very intense dryness like a switchblade digging into
Every nerve fiber
Tangled in the bloodied mess of sinew and fat muddled all to Hell.

I’ve listened to
Too much
Kid A and
It’s still April 1, 2014
The beer is undeniably stupendous
Like the corresponding album.

The last gulp was a creamy and smooth, but so effortlessly dry and clean.
Is it perfect?


I am not sure.
Nevertheless, as I begin to dose off listening to “How to Disappear Completely,” I realize that in a few days, this beer will also disappear completely. Off the shelves, until next year, it will descend into bellies or basements to digest or age, respectively. It is a remarkable beer. No bullshit, no quirky remarks, it’s just a damn



*9.8 out of 10*