Beer Review 0095: Founders Double Trouble

Founders Brewing Company, located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has brewed some of the highest rated beers on this website. See my reviews of their Breakfast Stout (100 points) and Red’s Rye PA (94 points) if you need any evidence of the standard this brewery sets.

Started up in 1997 by Mike Stevens and Dave Engbers, both of whom quit their steady day jobs in pursuit of the dream of beer, Founders began life as a company brewing merely ordinary beers. A change of philosophy soon followed, and they started making beer for themselves, not for the masses. It was a following of the heart, and like most things of the heart, it leads you down the right path.

Double Trouble is an Imperial India Pale Ale, which the brewery says is made to “turn your world upside down.” Check out the two faces on the logo — they are advertising hops that get you both coming and going. Weighing in at 9.4% ABV (alcohol by volume) and 86 International Bitterness Units, this is a big beer.

This beer is a seasonal beer, with availability running from the middle of January to the end of May.

The pour produced an average size head of lasting quality, with a creamy and frothy texture. The drink was a classic golden beer color, with a slight cloudiness to it and a few particles floating throughout. All beer that Founders brews is proudly unfiltered. The lacing was excellent, and this was an enticing appearance for a beer.

On the aromatic side of things, this wasn’t potent to the nose but was generally good, with a nice heavy hop bouquet of mainly citrus. There was plenty of grapefruit, supported by hints of tropical fruits and pine, and a grainy maltiness, with slight hints of caramel.

Double Trouble provides a large grapefruit blast, hitting the palate with fantastic notes of the perfectly ripened citrus before edging into a grassy middle, and finishing with a drying bitterness. A thick, resinous pine note is displayed as the beer washes down, leaving the chest with an alcohol warmth. The mouthfeel can be described as foamy and slightly creamy.

If you love big IPA, you’ll like this one, but the casual drinker will be overwhelmed by the bitterness. I thought Double Trouble was a great beer, and certainly one I will return to, but the lack of balance prevents it from becoming a classic beer. I would consider this a high value beer, meaning the cost of the brew is excellent for the quality you get.

If you see it, nab it while you can.

Founders Double Trouble, 93 points. Price: $9.99 US for a four pack.

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