“Think classic sea fairing ports, local pubs, and weathered old fishermen,” says Founders Brewing Company of its Curmudgeon Old Ale. Now that is a drinking demographic I’d like to be associated with! It sure beats Bud Light and the social climbing d-bags they pander to in their TV commercials. So what’s an old ale, you ask? Well, without getting too overly technical about it, old ales are traditionally sweeter and stronger than your regular ales, largely due to extended aging (hence the “old” part). I’ve never tasted a Founders product that I didn’t love, and the mighty Curmudgeon is no exception. Brewed with molasses, heavily malted, and oak aged, this bad boy is ridiculously smooth for an ale that weighs in at a whopping 9.8 percent alcohol. Like any good old ale, it’s a little bit boozy tasting and a whole lot sweet. The molasses, caramel, and dried fruit notes dominate this malt bomb’s bold flavor. But at 50 IBUs, there’s just enough hop bitterness to balance things out and separate the Curmudgeon from all those dark ales out there that are just too sweet. If not quite the best ale that Founders makes, it’s still quite excellent and dare I say underrated. Old ales aren’t exactly the “sexiest” beer style. But as a connoisseur of malt-forward dark beers, I have to rank this style high on my list. The Curmudgeon is great for this time of the year, when temperatures begin to decrease and you wanna sit back with a warming, flavorful brew. I could totally see myself drinking with the weathered old fishermen in some Upper Michigan Peninsula dive, sipping my old ale and savoring every malty swig. And where would the Bud Light drinkers be? Out the door once it became apparent there was no Black Eyed Peas on the jukebox. Curmudgeon men prefer Johnny Cash - or Iggy Pop!