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Founders announced their 2017 availability calendar today, confirming several momentous changes to the brewery’s lineup. The year ahead also holds significant importance as the brewery’s 20th anniversary year.

Beginning in 2017, Founders will launch a brand new series that celebrates their highly regarded barrel-aging program, which is responsible for popular beers like KBS and Backwoods Bastard. Throughout the year, they will be releasing six different barred-aged beers, including KBS in April 2017 and Backwoods Bastard in November 2017.

Details about three of the additional beers in the series will come later in the year, but today the brewery announced the first release, Frootwood.

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Frootwood is a cherry ale aged in oak barrels that have previously held both bourbon and maple syrup. Frootwood will be available in some states as early as January, with remaining states seeing it by February. Founders plans to release it in the taproom on January 25, 2017 and it will have a suggested retail price of $14.99/4-pack and $11.99/750mL bottle. The entire Barrel-Aged Series lineup will be offered in both 750mL bottles and 4-packs of 12oz bottles.

foundersFounders will also release their entire seasonal lineup in 15-pack cans, in addition to 6-pack bottles, beginning with Azacca IPA in January 2017, though some regions may see it even sooner. Azacca IPA will be available January – March; PC Pils will be available April – August; Mosaic Promise will be available September – December.

foundersAll Day IPA will also be offered in a new package, a 19.2oz single-serve can, beginning in early 2017. All Day IPA has seen tremendous growth since it was first packaged back in 2012 and that momentum informed the brewery’s decision to begin canning it in 2013. Founders has since been the first in craft to release the 15-pack of cans with All Day IPA and looks to expand upon its success with the 19.2oz single-serve can format, which customers can expect to find at venues like convenience stores, ballparks and arenas.

“We are amazed at what 2017 looks like for the brewery,” says Co-Founder and President Dave Engbers. “Mike and I see the launch of the Barrel-Aged Series and the continued growth of All Day IPA as the culmination of years of hard work and sticking to our guns. We can’t think of a better way to kick-off our 20th anniversary.”

The 2017 calendar also reflects the departure of Pale Ale and Devil Dancer. Pale Ale Nitro will still be available on draft across the brewery’s distribution footprint.

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harvest party

Founders Brewing Harvest Party is one of our absolute favorite parties of the year, celebrating the annual release of Harvest Ale, the award-winning wet-hopped ale! Harvest Party is an all-day, ages 21 and up event in the taproom focusing on their hoppiest offerings. This Saturday, October 15 your paid entry nets you access to the event, a commemorative 2016 Harvest Party pint glass, and a complimentary pint of Harvest Ale or any Class 1 beer. There will be live music from 5pm-close, special food offerings, firkins, one-offs, rarities, and some beers brewed just for the event!

*There are no advance tickets for Harvest Party, just cover day-of only. Admission is $10 for the General Public, $8 for 2016 Mug Club Members.

Live music will be provided by:

Horse Feathers (Folk Rock from Portland, Oregon)

The Hackensaw Boys (American Roots, Punk & Bluegrass from Charlottesville, VA)

Dos Santos Anti-Beat Orquesta (Psychedelic Cumbia from Chicago, IL)

Riley Anglen & The Big Guns (Soulful Blues, Gospel & Southern Rock from Nashville, TN)

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Founders announced today that is will release Lizard of Koz, an imperial stout brewed with blueberries, chocolate and vanilla aged in bourbon barrels, as the second Backstage Series beer of 2016. This is the first time Founders has released Lizard of Koz.

This one is near and dear to our hearts. Our Brewmaster, Jeremy Kosmicki, wanted to make the birthday of his little sister, Liz, a special one. So he did what he does best and brewed a stout using a few of her favorite ingredients: fresh Michigan blueberries, rich chocolate and vanilla – aged in bourbon barrels to round out those beautiful flavors. Liz was floored and we think you will be too.

“Lizard of Koz represents everything we love about the Backstage Series,” says Co-Founder and President Dave Engbers, “Inspired, creative, a little bit out there and exploding with flavor. The perfect way to cap off 2016.”

Each 750mL bottle of this rich, tart stout has a suggested retail price of $18.99 and will be available in limited quantities across Founders’ distribution network, which currently includes 39 states, in December. ABV is yet to be determined as brewers are currently pulling the beer out of barrels.

The Backstage Series is made up of boundary-pushing, experimental beers. Affectionately called “the brewers’ playground,” intent is to take the diehard Founders fan experience to a wider audience—though all of the beers are released in limited batches. Since its introduction in the summer of 2011, Backstage Series beers have quickly become some of the most sought-after releases in the industry with past hits including Bolt CutterCBSCurmudgeon’s Better HalfBlushing MonkDoom and 2016’s first release, Mango Magnifico,

 

About Founders Brewing Co.

Established in 1997 by two craft beer enthusiasts—Dave Engbers and Mike Stevens—with day jobs and a dream, Founders Brewing Co. brews complex, in-your-face ales, with huge aromatics and tons of flavor. Founders ranks among the top 20 largest craft breweries in the U.S. and is one of the fastest growing. The brewery has received numerous awards from the World Beer Cup and the Great American Beer Festival and RateBeer and BeerAdvocate users often rate its beers among the best in the world. Located in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan, Founders is a proud member of the Michigan Brewers Guild. For more information, visit foundersbrewing.com and follow us on TwitterInstagram and Facebook for more updates.

 

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Founders Brewing Co. announced today that it will release PC Pils, an American-hopped Pilsner, as part of their 2016 seasonal lineup. PC Pils will also be the first beer released in 15-pack cans since All Day IPA.

Pleasantly crisp, perfectly clean and profoundly crushable, PC Pils is Founders’ take on the classic Pilsner style. While Noble hops have been the preferred choice of Pilsner brewers around the world, Founders elected to brew PC Pils with their favorite flavor-packed American varieties. Piney Chinook, pleasantly citrus Cascade and punchy Centennial make this an easy-drinker with floral hop characteristics.

“PC Pils will be a great seasonal offering to support our six year-round packaged products. We are really excited to offer PC in the 15-pack can package and we hope to see the beer enthusiasts rejoice at the news. We definitely did,” says Founders Co-Founder and President Dave Engbers.

PC Pils joins two other favorites as part of Founders’ seasonal lineup, the tropical hop delight Azacca IPA and single-hop darling Mosaic Promise.

PC Pils will be available across Founders’ distribution network in 6-pack bottles and 15-pack cans beginning October 1st, with some markets seeing it as early as September. It will have a suggested retail price of $9.99 for 6-pack bottles and $17.99 for 15-pack cans.

 

Founders Brewing Co. announced today that Pale Joe, a pale ale brewed with coffee, will be released on draft and in 6-pack bottles this September. Proceeds from the sale of Pale Joe will go to benefit ArtPrize 2016, the world’s largest art competition held annually in Grand Rapids, MI.

Most coffee beers begin with a dark, stout or brown ale base. Not this one. Your eyes will tell you one thing, but your palate will tell you another. Light in color but full in flavor, this golden ale features notes of gently roasted, fruit-forward coffee. Pale Joe features a special blend of high-end Ethiopian coffee expertly roasted by our hometown neighbors at Ferris Coffee and Nut. It’s the lovechild of your favorite iced coffee and, well, beer. Pale Joe comes in at 5.4% ABV.

Founders Brewing“Pale Joe came out of my current infatuation with pale, sessionable beers,” says Brewmaster Jeremy Kosmicki, “Being the ArtPrize beer, I wanted to play with expectations so I experimented with adding coffee to a lighter, pale ale. Turns out, using gently-roasted, fruit-forward coffee adds a nice roasty flavor that does not complete with the malts in the beer.”

This is the fourth beer brewed to benefit ArtPrize. Previous releases include Inspired Artist Black IPAMosaic Promise and Spectra Trifecta.

Founders Family members were given the opportunity to submit their portfolios to find an artistic match for the Pale Joe label, without knowing anything about the beer. Lead Cellar Operator and Kendall College of Art & Design graduate, Aaron Rossell, was chosen for his striking character illustrations and unexpected use of color. Aaron developed the character of Pale Joe, a leathery, dirty-overalled man as a symbol of  blue-collar, hardworking, coffee-sipping Midwestern farmers with the hope that he can help bridge the gap between artists and common-folk.

ArtPrize, an international art competition, promotes critical dialogue and collaboration through new, creative ideas among a large and diverse population of people. As an innovator in redefining what beer can be, Founders believes that experimentation is central to the human experience—whether one experiments with grains and hops or markers and watercolors—and that sharing one’s creation with the public is a brave act worth celebrating.

“We’ve always been thrilled with our strong relationship with Founders, the official brewery of ArtPrize and one of the best craft brewers in the United States,” noted Christian Gaines, ArtPrize Executive Director. “Our partnership, now in its fourth year, is built upon a mutual passion for our community, and a shared commitment to challenging the familiar — exemplified in Founders’ latest special release for ArtPrize Eight, Pale Joe.”

This year marks the eighth edition of ArtPrize, which will take place September 21–Oct. 9, 2016. The Founders taproom will be a venue for the eighth year running.

Pale Joe will hit shelves beginning September 13 in Michigan, Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, New Jersey, New York City and Boston, MA with limited availability on draft across our remaining distribution network.

Grand Rapids, MI  — Jason Ley, craft beer enthusiast and modest underdog from Grand Rapids, MI, has been quietly brewing an idea for a TV show for almost the last two years. Now, it’s ready to crack open.

modern ahabs

The show, titled Modern Ahabs, explores the hunt for the world’s most elusive craft beer. With this generation’s boom in brewing, craft beer has become more than a casual pastime hobby. Like rookie cards in mint condition or vintage toys still in their original packaging, craft beer is a worldwide phenomenon — a drinkable collector’s item. Modern Ahabs dives into the unique fanaticism that steers the pursuit for these highly sought-after, coveted trophies — known to enthusiasts as “whales.”

The pilot episode features Kentucky Breakfast Stout (KBS) by Founders Brewing Company, of Grand Rapids, MI.

Ley, who created the show, wrote and produced the episode. He enlisted the help of director, Ben Wilke and his video production company, Deep End Films, to film and edit Modern Ahabs. Modern Ahabs is a non-staged, reality-style episodic series.

Filming took place in Grand Rapids, MI in March 2016 during KBS’s city-wide release festivities, KBS Week. Locations featured in the pilot episode include HopCat, Derby Station, The Winchester, The Meanwhile, and Founders Brewing Co.

Ley will host the premiere of the pilot episode of Modern Ahabs on Thursday, July 21, 2016. It will take place at Wealthy Theatre, 1130 Wealthy St SE, Grand Rapids, MI. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. This free event is open to the public. KBS will be available on draft. *Membership to Wealthy Theatre is not required to purchase KBS for this special, general admission event.

Ley’s ultimate goal for Modern Ahabs is to partner with a major TV, cable or streaming network — to develop a series of multi-episode seasons, with each episode featuring a different national or international craft beer whale.

https://youtu.be/-aHawetlyHo

founders fest

Thousands spent last Saturday ringing in what’s sure to be a very hot summer at Founders Fest 2016. This year’s celebration of beer and music featured eight musical acts, food and goods from local vendors, and carnival-esque sideshows by Super Happy Funtime Entertainment.

 

In the stifling heat, imbibers promised to hydrate with a water for every beer and enjoyed rare favorites like CBS and Lizard of Koz as well as staples like Red’s Rye, All Day IPA, and Rubeaus. People refreshed themselves at water refill stations, which featured misters spraying cool water.

The block party went well into the night, ending at 11 p.m. Attendees ate, drank, danced, and sweltered. It’s likely that many spent Sunday nursing a sunburn and a hangover.

 

Photography: Steven Michael Holmes

Grand Rapids–Founders Brewing Co. announced the ninth annual Founders Fest, an outdoor celebration of live music and beer, Saturday, June 18 from 3-11pm. An anticipated 6000+ attendees will make the sojourn to this year’s event, held on Grandville Avenue between Cherry and Bartlett, the streets surrounding the brewery

“We’re very much looking forward to hosting Founders Fest again this June,” said Vice-President of Retail Operations, Mark Dorich. “The festival is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to Grand Rapids and West Michigan for contributing to the success of the brewery. This year is a little extra special, musically-speaking, as every band in this year’s line-up has performed in our taproom at some point in the past.”

founders brewing

The festival features two headlining national acts: The Motet, preeminent improvisational jazz and funk outfit from Denver, Colorado and Lee Fields & The Expressions, one of the innovators of soul and R&B hailing from Brooklyn, NY. Other performers include July Talk, an indie blues group from Toronto, Ontario; The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band, American Roots virtuosos from Indiana; The Main Squeeze, funk, soul and indie rock from Los Angeles; Dos Santos Anti-Beat Orquesta, Latin dance from Chicago; The Go Rounds, country-tinged psychedelic indie rock from Kalamazoo. The FBC All-Stars, a classic rock super-group comprised of all Founders employees, will also be part of the lineup.

The list of beers that will be available at the event include year-round favorites as well as a number of taproom-exclusives, which are rarely bottled and distributed.  Local food vendors will again be serving up food at the event. “Artist’s Row,” a space for local designers and artists to sell their wares, will again be a feature of the festival.

Roving and auxiliary entertainment, including stilt-walkers and aerial dancers, will again be provided by Super Happy Funtime Entertainment.

Founders is once again partnering with The High Five Program, a local community organization that assures the prevention of litter and significant reduction of waste streams at large-scale events. In the past three years, the partnership between the High Five Program and Founders Fest saw an incredible over 90% waste diversion and they hope to improve upon that this year.

Ticket sales began Friday April 22, 2016 via foundersbrewing.com and at the Founders Company Store.

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Discounted General Admission early bird ticket sales will be available beginning Friday, April 22 at 12pm to Saturday, April 30 with a price of $25 each. Discounted General Admission advance tickets will be available from Sunday, May 1 to Friday, June 17 with a price of $30 each. General Admission day of show tickets will be sold at the gate (as capacity allows) with a price of $35 each. Founders Mug Club members can purchase discounted advance tickets from Friday, April 22 to Friday, June 17 for a price of $20 each with a day of show price tag of $25 each as capacity allows.

The event is limited to ages 21 and older.