Many of us eagerly await the releases of the beers from Founders Brewing Company's Back Stage Series. The latest was Bolt Cutter, a barley wine that commemorates Founders 15th anniversary. The beer was released in mid November, 2012. The brewery has clearly gotten the hint that craft beer lovers were having a hard time acquiring bottles from this limited release series, as the last two releases have been fairly to find in stores. Indeed, a few days after the release of Bolt Cutter I saw about 20 bottles in the beer section of a grocery store. I still see bottles of Frangelic Mountain Brown in stores. I must admit, however, that I miss the pleasure of finding a bottle or two of these previously rare beer releases.
I purchased several bottle of Bolt Cutter to put away in my cellar. At 14.5% ABV, they will age well. I love the story behind the label. You can read it here:
The beer is pretty much what you would expect from a barley wine--sweet maltiness offset by a strong hop bitterness and a strong alcohol character. I like barley wines and this is an excellent example of the style. I was glad to see that for this back stage release the brewers at Founders decided to go with a traditional style. I look forward to seeing how this fine beer ages over the next several years.