Founders Brewing Company

Happy Harry’s Brewery of the Month – March 2021

Written by: Colin G – Founders Sales Representative

Founders was established in 1997, in Grand Rapids Michigan, as Canal Street Brewing Company by Mike Stevens and Dave Engbers.  The two were recent college graduates with full time jobs when they decided to take the plunge into brewing.  They came up with a business plan, took out some loans, quit their jobs, and opened up their brewery, Canal Street Brewing Co. 

Their initial label on their beer had a picture of all the Canal Street breweries with “Founders” above it.  This label recognition led to the inevitable renaming of the company to Founders Brewing Company.  Over the last 24 years of business, the brewery and its offerings have changed quite a bit. Founders went from being a Michigan only offering, to be available nationwide.  As the brewery grew, expansions needed to be made.

Founders now offers two locations in Michigan, where beer is made. The original Grand Rapids location, as well as the new Detroit brewery. This expansion of production helped make Founders a national player in the market. Best known still for their All Day IPA, the brand has been anything but stagnant. Founders has created new offerings including variants of the World Renowned KBS, as well as bringing beers out of retirement due to demand for some tasty classics, including the new release of Panther Cub.

Lastly the biggest announcement for Founders in 2021, is the launch of Mas Agave Premium Seltzers, available in 6 packs as well as a 15 pack sampler. Founders has proven to be a brewery that is continually growing, and with new innovation is showing no signs of slowing down. Here is a look at a few options available at all Happy Harry’s locations.

Tasting Notes

Centennial IPA

ABV – 7.2%  IBUs – 65

Get ready to bask in the glory of the frothy head’s floral bouquet. Relish the citrus accents from the abundance of dry hopping. This one’s sweet, yet balanced. Malty undertones shake hands with the hop character for a finish that never turns too bitter. Available in 15 Packs.  RateBeer Rating: 98

Rubaeus Raspberry Ale

ABV – 5.7%  IBUs – 15

Optimizing the flavor of fresh raspberries, Rubaeus is Founders’ way of celebrating the joys of summer year-round. This stunning berry-red masterpiece is the perfect blend of sweet, tart and refreshing. No question about it, this beer is 100% Founders.  RateBeer Rating: 96

Panther Cub Barrel Aged Porter

ABV – 9.2%  IBUs – 30

A robust porter, Panther Cub is aged in the finest bourbon barrels available along with a kiss of maple syrup and vanilla extract. The aroma of maple and vanilla notes combine with a surprisingly deep character  to make this rare creature on to gaze upon fondly. Don’t let it fool you, this kitty has claws.  Beer Advocate Rating: 90

Mas Agave Premium Seltzers (Strawberry, Lime, and Grapefruit)

ABV – 4.5%  Calories- 110, Sugars 4g

Creativity. Flavor. Innovation. Founders high-quality approach brought them to the forefront of the beer conversation. It also leads us here: meet Más Agave Premium Hard Seltzer. Founders elevated your usual seltzer by adding premium ingredients: blue agave nectar, cane sugar, real fruit juice and a dash of sea salt for good measure. With a bold aroma and crisp taste it’s a refreshing foray into the future.


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