Doomed to drink great beer
A Review of Doom by Founders Brewing Co.
Posted on 1/23/2014 by Chops
There are some breweries out there that flat out demand your attention. Not because they are reckless, whimsical, or beat you over the head with million-dollar ad campaigns, but rather because they brew fantastic beer with a boldness that can punish unworthy palates. Founders is one such brewery, and it's easy to see why with ornery offerings like the Backwoods Bastard Wee Heavy and the Devil Dancer Triple IPA.
So imagine the sheer terror of a beer like Doom. Founders decided to take their award winning Double Trouble Imperial IPA and age it in bourbon barrels for four months. The resulting concoction was so jarring that they named it Doom. That's like Johnny Knoxville imploring the Jackass crew to exercise caution. Needless to say, this brew made me nervous.
In the glass, this beer had a warm and hazy orange coloration. It came with a frothy white head that had surprisingly good retention. On the nose, I was greeted by an onslaught of sweet bourbon. While certainly large and in charge, it was by no means a steamroller character like with most barrel-aged beers. I could also find notes of tropical citrus, vanilla, oak, and malty caramel. At this point my nerves calmed a bit and I was reminded that Founders knows exactly what they are doing. I sighed in relief and dove in for the first sip.
Wow, Doom was amazingly smooth and balanced for such a beastly barrel-aged brew. It was surprisingly flavorful and easy to drink with an accessible medium body. The bourbon character was understandably dominant, but it presented itself as much more sweet than aggressive. The other half of the flavor profile consisted of tropical fruits like mango and pineapple, plus notes of vanilla, coconut, oak, butterscotch, piney hops, orange peel, caramel, and grapefruit. The alcohol nip was warming and noticeable, but mercifully restrained. The beer finished clean and exited with a sweet aftertaste of bourbon and tropical citrus.
Overall, Doom is a fantastic barrel-aged behemoth. Founders struck gold with this uniquely delicious interpretation, one that I can easily recommend to a majority of beer fans. Seasoned beer geeks will be blown away by Doom's silky smooth complexity. I do caution novices for obvious reasons, but Doom's high accessibility also makes it a wonderful introduction into barrel-aged brews. Doom is now a beer I regard as an educational tool for curious minds. Want to experience what barrel aging is all about? Doom. Don't like bourbon or hoppy beer? Tough, Doom.