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Founders Breakfast Stout - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders Breakfast StoutFounders Breakfast Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

12,233 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 12,233
Reviews: 3,265
rAvg: 4.52
pDev: 9.29%
Wants: 1,203
Gots: 2,838 | FT: 173
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed with flaked oats, bitter and sweetened imported chocolates, Sumatra and Kona coffee.
60 IBU
Released on Sept. 1, 2010.

(Beer added by: marburg on 07-26-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 12,233 | Reviews: 3,265 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bcostner1
4.53/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black. Thick, creamy, foamy tan head. Pour beautifully. I always forget just how dark this beer truly is.

S: Coffee. Sweet, delicious coffee. Some chocolate. Roasty notes. Great nose. Can't stop sniffing it.

T: Absolutely one of the best. Great coffee on the front end complimented perfectly on the back end by sweet, smooth, delicious chocolate. Even get a little malted milk ball character at the end (which I like a lot). Perfectly balanced. Outstanding.

M: Almost like drinking a thick, rich, iced coffee shake. Definitely a sipper. Coats the tongue and mouth beautifully, not cloyingly. Because it is heavy, 1-2 tops per sitting (if I could get that many) would do it for me.

Overall, like everyone else, I love this beer. It is between this and Terrapin WNB as to which is my favorite coffee stout. Can't go wrong with either one though. Founders, please come to TN!!!

bcostner1, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of cbbjr
4.95/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-deep black with beautiful brown head and heavy lacing

S-you get a little of everything good in the world. A lot of chocolate and coffee.

T-heavy on dark chocolate at first, then a smooth but strong coffee flavor. A little bit of spice and no harsh alcohol taste. Perfect combination of sweetness from the chocolate up front before the bitterness kicks in.

M-pretty robust, particularly for an oatmeal stout

This is one of my top five beers. It is damn near perfect. I have had CBS and KBS, and while they are great, it is hard to beat regular Breakfast Stout.

cbbjr, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of WrathsU
5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Deep brown to black colored body. Think brown lively head. Long lasting and well laced.

S - Tons of chocolate up front. Complex coffee, oatmeal, and earthy notes behind the more obvious chocolate.

T - Heavy amount of coffee in the very front. Swiftly followed by a rush of dark and bittersweet chocolates. A twang of bitterness is in there but it is unclear if it belongs to the roasted barley or a hop bitterness. Alcohol is very well hidden and only a slight trace remains.

M - Heaviest bodied beer I've ever had. Very thick and sludgy. A medium low amount of carbonation.

D - One of the best beers I've ever tried. Certainly the best stout I've ever had. If you can find this beer, buy it!

WrathsU, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of ryguy210375
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Pours a "dark coffee" black with a small but respectable head. Head appears off white with cinnamon color mixed it. Frothy and slightly murky.

Smell - Strong Expresso, Coffee, with bits of dark chocoloate/cocoa.

Taste - Excellent. Immediately hit by the expresso/coffee bitterness. However, it quickly fades into a smooth, silky, bittersweet chocolate with noticeable hints of cream and vanilla. Finish is expected; that of lingering coffee and cocoa. FBS finds that perfect middleground of sweetness where it's present and just enough, yet not anywhere near cloying. Perfect amount of sweetness to balance out the coffee biterness mid palate without being overdone. Alcohol is barely noticeable (and what is noticeable blends into the coffee/chocolate very complimentary), and I was having it at room temperature instead of chilled which would probably take it right out.

Mouthfeel- Smooth as silk. I would say it's a rich, medium mouthfeel. Not as thick as I was expecting (a plus for me personally), but it definitely feels like there is a bit of melted chocolate that provides smoothness and just a tad of stickiness.

Overall - Superb. It goes without saying though, that you must be a fan coffee/expresso flavors. The chocolate and hints of cream and vanilla are clearly noticeable, but the coffee dominates. Seek it out and give it a go if you can get your hands on some.

ryguy210375, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of gigaknight
4.65/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured hard and optimistically into a pint glass (didn't feel like scrubbing a snifter later), presenting a dissipating film of peanut-butter colored head. Little lacing to speak of, however the brew is still rather cold, so I'm sure it'll get stickier as it approaches room temperature.

S- I've enjoyed Breakfast Stout several times now, but this bouquet never gets old. Rich torrents of sweet espresso and milky chocolate greet the nose even while relatively cold. As the beer warms, the coffee stands out even more, and a bit of toasty vanilla peeks out as well.

T- As expected, coffee dominates the front end of the palate, followed by the unfolding sweetness of rich chocolate and a well measured bit of lactic tang. The coffee notes here lack any tone of oxidization (as lesser breakfast stouts may), and the balanced nature of the beer's sweetness is without compare. Not even approaching cloying, the complexity of this brew allows every element of its palate to emerge and blend gracefully.

M- Rich and silky with just enough carbonation so as to not let the robust flavors accumulate too heavily on the tongue. Chews well, and is remarkably sessionable despite the lofty alcoholic content.

O- It's no secret that this is world class beer, and I feel like it's become much more readily available in the midwest during its seasonal run, thus spoiling me towards just about any other stouts I bring home in its place. I honestly haven't had actual coffee this smooth and well-defined, and that goes double for any stout that regulates its own sweetness so well.

gigaknight, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of HossMcGraw
3.85/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Mixed feelings on this one; I've been anxiously awaiting to try it and found it to be a well-made beer, but not something I would actively seek out.
Pours thick and viscous with no head or lacing to speak of. Nose is coffee that's been sitting around for a while, bakers chocolate and something a bit sour. Not overwhelmingly so; some may call it dark fruit but it comes off as a bit sour to me.
Taste is quite bold; follows the nose with a super dark chocolate and lingering espresso on the tongue.
Mouthfeel was a huge letdown. No carbonation (not that it was expected), and quite thin. Despite the thick appearance, mouthfeel is surprisingly thin which feels strange considering the bold flavors.
So..kinda conflicted about this. It tastes delicious but isn't particularly attractive and feels weird in the mouth which makes it difficult to enjoy. Just overall kinda let down. I think maybe I just need massive tongue-numbing hops to balance this. I've been a fiend for hops as of late. I gave it some points cause I appreciate the craftsmanship even if it isn't for me

HossMcGraw, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of orangesol
4.2/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on nitro-tap at The Fridge on their opening day.

A - Pours dark as night black with a nice creamy one and a half finger tall khaki colored head leaving thick rings of lace down the glass. The cascade effect caused by the nitro-pour was a thing of beauty.

S - Smells of rich espresso, bakers chocolate, and vanilla. Good balance of dark roast to sweetness. While all the flavors are there I think the nitro dulled them down a bit.

T - Starts off with a huge espresso kick that never really fades away. Hints of sweet bakers chocolate, vanilla, and the dark roasted malts help to keep the coffee in check as much as they can but that is next to impossible with this beer. The finish is a mix of dark roast and light sweetness, lingering on the pallet for some time. Like the nose, I believe the nitro may have dulled the flavors a tiny bit.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderate carbonation. The rich, creamy, feel was nearly perfect for this beer. It got a tiny bit watery at the very end tho.

O - Still one of my all time favorite stouts. The nitro pour, while offering amazing looks and feels, does hurt the smell and taste a tiny bit. I will never turn down a pour of BS but I may stick with regular tap from now on.

orangesol, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of Keithstone44
4.78/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a jet black with a minimal head. great lacing that stuck around until I finished the glass

S: very pungent coffee smell in the beginning. some chocolate and sweet malt sneaks in at the end. wow this beer smells good.

T: Coffee is very evident in the foreground, followed by dark chocolate. This is seriously a meal in itself, delicious.

M: Super thick, its like drinking an alcoholic milkshake. Perfect level of carbonation

O: One of my favorite imperial stouts.

Keithstone44, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of scninmer08
4.55/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black as night with a thin, khaki head that was quick to recede. Wish it had stuck around longer. Looks delicious!

Smell: The coffee is definitely upfront, with the chocolate working its magic in the background. Definitely one of the best-smelling beers I've had.

Taste: Stays true to the smell. The chocolate comes more into play here, but as the beer warms, it is balanced nicely by the hops, which add to the bitter coffee flavor. Though I love big malty flavors in a stout, I think this brew stays true to its concept of being a coffee/espresso stout.

Mouthfeel: Somewhat creamy (could've used a bit more), but with just the right amount of carbonation. The alcohol is hidden very well.

Overall: I was skeptical about all the hype surrounding this beer, but I was definitely blown out of the water with this one. It's by far the best stout I've had, and I hope to get my hands on Founders CBS and KBS soon.

scninmer08, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of lstokes
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

There's not much I can say except that this is absolutely masterful--it's very dark, very smoky, lovely cereal taste, with dark full chocolate on the front of the tongue and then an incredibly long coffee finish, maybe one of the longest finishes I've ever experienced in an alcoholic beverage. So smooth yet thick, so assertive, such a great combination of chocolate, espresso, and just enough hop bite... the only reason I can't give it 5s across the board is that I've had Kentucky Breakfast Stout, and I liked that even better.

lstokes, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of tjkinate
4.22/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer sitting in my cellar for awhile and decided today was a good day to bust it out! Needless to say, I'm glad I did.

A: Deep, dark brown allowing no light to penetrate. The brew was topped off with a subtle, burnt khaki head that dissipated rather quickly, but did exhibit some lacing.

S: Strong coffee notes dominate, after a few more sniffs I was able to detect some nut and oatmeal undertones.

T: Iced espresso? Yes, very tasty espresso at that! Gotta say, not what I was expecting. The brew has a nice semi sweet start and is finished appropriately with lingering coffee bitterness. Upon completion, I am confident in stating that I have not experienced a more satisfying coffee influenced beer.

M: Medium bodied, low carbonation, semi dry.

O: Very unique and satisfying brew, thank you Founders.

tjkinate, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of aorloski
5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Dark as night, motor oil, viscous, can't see a damn thing through it. barely any head, but the khaki bubbles linger and make it gorgeous.

Smell - WOW coffee, espresso. If you have ever had a chocolate covered espresso bean this is what it smells like

Taste - Exactly like the nose. Chocolate covered espresso beans, some char in the backbone, such an amazing beer.

Mouthfeel - Chewy at 8%, perfectly carbonated.

Overall - This was a short review for me, but this beer gets an absolute A+ for me, balanced perfectly, nothing too over the top, just an incredible beer. Coffee, chocolate, espresso shine through, i feel privileged to be able to drink this. Thank you founders.

aorloski, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of mryuk
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours an extremely dark brown with almost no head. midnight. no light seems to able to pass.

smell is strong coffee and nutty with tones of chocolate. very nutty, no hops, some smoke.

taste is strongly coffee, smoke and chocolate.slightly alcoholic, a little sweet and fairly smooth. bitter finish seemingly from the coffee.

mouth is thick with medium carbonation.

very good coffee stout. not quite as smooth an up to par as KBS but excellent all the same.

mryuk, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of dgugliuzza
4.88/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My 50th review here on BA. I still remember my first review like it was yesterday. Here's to 500 more...Now on to Breakfast Stout.

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter

Black as a coffee bean with a thin layer of dark tan head. Many large bubbles line the rim of the glass.

Smells of roasted coffee beans, chocolate and vanilla. The coffee is aromatic like a extra bold blend. Fantastic balance between sweet, bitter and roasty.

Extra bold espresso flavor with a milky sweetness. Chocolate and vanilla are both present and provide excellent compliments. The finish is bittersweet like a chocolate coffee bean. I can't say enough about the flavor profile. It is the King of coffee stouts.

Creamy and smooth, viscous and bold. Medium carbonation. The alcohol is well hidden under the rich coffee and chocolate. Easy to drink.

This is Founder's signature beer with good reason. It tops my list of best coffee stout. Extra bold roasted coffee and silky chocolate combined with a creamy mouthfeel make this a flawless offering.

dgugliuzza, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of grittybrews
4.33/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nearly black pour with a thin film of quick-receding dark tan head. Aroma dominated by slightly bitter espresso and just a trace of cocoa.

Moderate carbonation and a thick, creamy mouthfeel. Huge coffee flavors strike a nice bitter-roasty balance. Subtle chocolate character emerges before a more bitter espresso finish.

Great heft to this beer and lots of coffee character, although it drinks lighter than its 8.3%.

grittybrews, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of busterwhite
4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass. Pours black with a small tan head. Good amount of lacing.

Big coffee aroma backed up with chocolate and a slight hop aroma

Coffee and chocolate flavors up front with a nice balance from the hops in the finish. Very well balanced between the big flavors of the coffee/chocolate and the hop bitterness.

Full bodied and well carbonated.

This stout lives up to its reputation. Excellent balance and mouthfeel.

busterwhite, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of tone77
3.55/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a black color with a very small head. Smell is of coffee, roasted malts. Taste is also coffee up front, some malts, a bit of oats, just a touch of alcohol. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a good quality beer.

tone77, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of fsvan
4.13/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottle into New Belgium globe.

A- Black. Not a hint of light gets through, not even at the thinnest edge. A finger of thick, dark tan, stick head that leaves lacing just from tilting the glass.

S- A big smelling beer to be sure. Dominated by bitter coffee grounds up front. The chocolate comes in behind that. The oatmeal is pretty well hidden by the punch in the nose that is the coffee notes.

T- Again, a big wallop of coffee up front. Chocolate malt backbone. Finishes with a nice hop bitterness.

M- Pretty damn near perfect. Thick, silky, smooth...coats the mouth.

O- FBS is a very good beer, but I am not as smitten with it as many others are.

fsvan, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of beagle75
3.88/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Opaque black color with a quickly diminishing residue of beige foam. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: At its coldest this beer smells overwhelmingly of coffee, like freshly ground beans. As it warms it develops deeper, more mocha-leaning qualities that suggest unctuousness. No alcohol is detected.

T: Begins off-dry, with early roasted malt that is slightly bitter and astringent. When combined with the coffee nose, the qualities of coffee are maintained here. Acidity is present but does not detract, remaining at an acceptable level. The middle displays a woody chicory quality, some mild cocoa, and cardboard. Honest coffee aromatics are abundant in the finish, where bitterness is closely tied to the coffee qualities, rather than possessing the herbaceous qualities indicative of hops. No alcohol is detected.

M: Medium to thick viscosity, slightly syrupy without being cloying, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: This double stout seems to have all the bases covered, but like its peers that also occupy the range of 8-9% abv, it would be so much more impressive if it were not as strong. Hops are apparently not for breakfast, leaving this beer to gather its aromatic qualities almost entirely from the coffee that is quite bold in its sensory profile. It is able to be more than just a one-note coffee bomb, even though coffee is the single most intense quality present. Oddly, there is too much cardboard present for a strong stout that is this fresh. Despite the heavy coffee presence and other minor question marks, this beer is easy to consume while staying interesting from start to finish.

beagle75, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of Jules11788
4.4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark espresso-black; pinky-width head that fades fast; light lacing

S: Super smoky wood, chocolate, spicy bitter coffee

T: Same as the nose -- smoky wood, roasted coffee, dark chocolate

M: Medium-bodied, smooth and buttery, medium carbonation

O: The best non-Imperial Stout I've ever had, period. This has so much flavor in it and comes off surprisingly smooth, I would definitely get this again

Jules11788, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of mattyb
4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours very dark dark brown, almost black. Small caramel heads appears then retreats to the sides of the glass.

S - Smells of black coffee with a slight hint of chocolate.

T - First taste was 30 minutes after it was removed from the fridge, the coffee was overwhelming with slight bitterness. Let it rest 30 more minutes in snifter and it began to open chocolates and oats start to come out. Near the end of the glass(1.5 hours removed from fridge) it came all together, coffee, chocolate, and oats.

M - Light carbonation and very creamy body.

O - This is one of my favorites, I should have learned by now that this is much better the warmer it is. Next time I will let it sit at least for one hour after removing from the refrigerator.

mattyb, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of vrushing88
5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured this from a bottle into a snifter.

The deepest black you could imagine but still holding a very subtle hint of red in the center, and a reddish-brown, very thin head.

Very distinct chocolate and malt smells, while not overpowering.

Very creamy, chocolate malt and oatmeal taste.

Heavy but not over heavy feel.

Overall one of the best stouts available. Creamy, dark, potent, and relaxing.

vrushing88, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of keanex
4.85/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle dated 9/12/2011 into a tulip glass.

A: Pitch black with a 1 finger dark caramel colored foamy head that sticks around for a long time. Head retained perfectly after many sips and stuck to the side as drank.

S: A mellow aroma of chocolate, coffee and oatmeal comes through very nice and balanced. Slight hops smell and a milk smell also make an appearance.

T: Fantastic. Oat foretaste into chocolate into fresh coffee flavor. Extremely well balanced with slight hops.

M: Medium to low carbonation with a thick, slightly syrupy, body.

O: This is my new favorite stout, extremely well balanced, extremely fresh and fantastic flavor. I am going to pick up another 4 pack as soon as I'm done work tomorrow.

keanex, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of FoundersFanatic
4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- dark black with a nice caramel head.

S- good smell. The most prominent smell is a strong java smell of coffee, with bitter chocolate

T- very strong taste of coffee with some flavors of oatmeal and chocolate as well. Nothing stands out too much other than the coffee flavor, but overall the taste is really good

M- thick, smooth, creamy sums it up.

O- a really good Imperial Stout that isn't too strong like some cough syrup tasting Imperials, but isn't too weak either. Very smooth, very delicious, very strong... it's ma go to brew! Not a session beer, one is enough usually. On tap at Founders it tastes quite a bit better than in a bottle, more so than most beers.

FoundersFanatic, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of biga7346
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a brandy snifter

A: Black coffee, dark chocolate, thin tannish head, spotty lacing

N: Coffee, oats, milk chocolate are pretty dominant in the smell; a fleeting suggestion of hops, there's black pepper, whole milk, some medicinal phenols; marshmallow and toffee, chocolate candy like Rolos.

T/M: The creamy oats makes this beer smooth drinking. Wonderful notes of cocoa, coffee and milk, mocha, chocolate chip muffin, buttery notes, cookie dough; balance is present with hoppy suggestions in the finish along with an espresso-like bitterness, as a matter of fact that is dead on the aftertaste in an espresso. Some burnt sugar, pie crust, rum bread. Like all Founders big beers, the alcohol is just non-existent, this stout is such great drinking not sure if it gets much better for a seasonal stout that is pretty much in abundance every year.

biga7346, Oct 15, 2011
Founders Breakfast Stout from Founders Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 12,233 ratings.