It’s been a bit since I’ve grabbed some of Founders Brewing’s newer barrel-aged offerings. I certainly trust them but they’ve got so many awesome ones that I tend to grab them first.
When popping in to the liquor store today and hearing their latest is a take on an Old Fashioned cocktail, I was sold immediately. I’m down for the Highball Drifter from Founders Brewing.
Founders Brewing makes some of the very best barrel-aged beers in the world. That barrel program has expanded over the years and most everything has been wonderful but only a selection are truly masterful. Is Highball Drifter one?
The glass fills with slick fluid that’s a deep brown with a touch of reddish-brown around the edges where some light can shine through. It’s clear, unlike the crazy hazy trends. A small bubbly white head forms and eventually falls. There’s lazing on the walls of the snifter but they too eventually fall into the lush liquid and leave just a ring of white foam around the edge of the glass.
The nose is filled with big bitter orange peel. It smells like you squeezed and then swiped the rim of the glass, despite the fact this beer has never touched that spot.
There’s just a touch of sweet aged cherry and a distant dab of bourbon in the background.
As far as Old Fashioned cocktail in beer-form, this has it. The blast of bourbon isn’t there but it’s expected in a beer when it’s not actually a craft cocktail.
A big sip fills the mouth with super-rich golden malt. Touches of toffee and creamy caramel. The body is big and there are toasty notes of oak barrel and a touch of vanilla.
Each mouthful is met with a nose of that wonderful aroma of sweet orange and a hint of cherry as you put your face in the glass each time.
There isn’t the alcohol heat you’d normally enjoy in an Old Fashioned but this is what you’d have without that heat overpowering the aroma and flavor. It’s like you took the overpowering pieces away and are just left with those wonderful bits. So smooth, malty, and a touch of fruit and barrel.
Friends at Founders have brewed some of the best beers out there for years and their barrel-aged action is generally off the level. This one is one of them.
Grab a 4-pack of Founders Brewing Bottle Shop Series Highball Drifter and enjoy serious Old Fashioned action turned into barrel-aged beer.