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Founders Breakfast Stout | Founders Brewing Company

3,662 Reviews
For Trade:
Founders Breakfast StoutFounders Breakfast Stout

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Availability: Sep - Dec

Brewed with flaked oats, bitter and sweetened imported chocolates, Sumatra and Kona coffee.

60 IBU

Added by marburg on 07-26-2003

User Reviews
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Reviews: 3,662 | Ratings: 15,808
Photo of LunaChick
3.7/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I don't review based soley on my taste for something. This was a super-hyped brew for which I had high expectations. I tried it, reviewed it and then kept trying it to see if my thoughts might change.
It pours a very thick near black with a full, well retained tan head that laces the entire glass. The aroma is rich coffee. A hint of chocolate but mostly freshly ground coffee beans. The flavor again is mostly coffee. Strong, slightly bitter and even smokey. Chocolate does come through near the end. The oatmeal adds a thickness and sweetens it slightly but doesn't quite balance it. Alcohol is not present even as the beer warms. Not a big deal because this is a very thick brew that is best sipped and enjoyed over time to allow flavors to develop. Some vanilla comes thru as it warms but the predominant aftertaste is a smokey, bitter turkish coffee flavor.
Very smooth and thick in the mouth with low carbonation. Full bodied flavor that clings all the way down. A sipping beer not meant to be consumed quickly or in large quantitities.
I understand why the Kentucky version of this is so highly sought.

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Photo of Natural510
4.27/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottling, 2008 edition.

A thick, black pour resembling motor oil. No head or lacing in appearance.
Very pungent coffee aroma, along with that of sweet, dark roasted malts and a hop note.
Strong roasted coffee flavor backed with bitter cocoa. Roasted malts come through along with a noticable piney hop flavor.
Despite lack of carbonation, it leaves quite a notable mouthfeel with the distinct hop kick (not something I expected in a stout of this magnitude) and a reverbaration from the alcohol content.
Overall a quite drinkable heavy stout; alcohol is masked quite well and the malt & hop characters meld niceley together. A bit heavy on the coffee, but I think that is what they are going for here.

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Photo of koopa
4.35/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: quite opaque in color with a thin caramel head that quickly dissipates. Some lacing and an overall look of quality that entices.

Smell: Can you say coffee?

Taste: Notes of chocolate are overpowered by a dominant coffee character found in this fresh sample. A good amount of acrid/bitterness as well. Very nice taste and that is saying a lot considering I am not a coffee drinker! No alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel: I was very surprised by how thin the 2008 batch is. I really was expecting this brew to be a bit more hearty. Then again that only adds to the drinkability!

Drinkability: Much easier to drink than other full bodied viscous stout examples. The alcohol has no presence.

Overall this is a great American Stout and will be one of my go to stouts.

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Photo of Neilio
4.23/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a great brew for the fall/winter. Very dark with a little brown head. Smells like over cooked coffee. Tastes very coffee with subtle chocolate undertones. Feels very smooth, not as viscous as I anticipated. Great for sessions or if you're just trying to warm up on a cold day.

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Photo of Nutleybeer
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Insanely good. Heavy and so rich, like a meal in a bottle.

Poured nicely. It literally resembled motor oil, pitch black in color. That doesn't sound enticing, but in this context it is. A mild charcoaly head remains after the pour.

A roasted scent hits your nose, leaves you knowing what is coming. A deep, rich flavor. Cooked cocoa/chocolate/coffee essence. Incredibly creamy, smooth and satisfying. The roasted taste just lingers on your tongue long after you swallow your sip. Almost like the best cup of iced coffee you ever had.

This is a serious beer. Not sure what I would serve with it. Would probably go well with desert (chocolate cake and vanilla ice cream).

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Photo of philbe311
4.35/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Sleek glossy black color... No light gets through this one... One fingers worth of cappuccino colored foam off a standard poor... Leaves nice lace on glass... Looks like a stout should...

S - Dark roasted coffee... Roasted grains... Mild chocolate... Very mild hints of toffee...

T - Coffee and grains dominate... Hints of chocolate... A hoppy bitterness is present as well... Some very subtle smoky characteristics on the finish... A minor booziness...

M - Medium to heavy bodied... Incredibly smooth and well balanced... Coats mouth fully... Quite delicate for such a high ABV stout...

D - Complex & enjoyable... Smooth and very drinkable... Loving it... A job well done by Founders...

Bottle / Artwork - Mischevous boy shoveling foot into his moth out of a Founders bowl... Grayish black and white label...

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Photo of BirdFlu
4.38/5  rDev -2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Founders' breakfast stout really lives up to what one would expect from reading reviews on it, let alone the description from founders. It pours a dark black with a brown, cappucino-colored head. Smells of coffee. Not even just coffee, but moreso espresso. The flavor too, its much moreso a dark espresso flavor than just coffee. With the noticeable chocolate in it, as well, it is very, very reminiscent of chocolate-covered espresso beans. Thats basically exactly what this is.. a beer that is like drinking chocolate-covered espresso beans. Mouthfeel is fairly typical for a stout, though a little on the lighter side, definitely not as heavy as many stouts, which is a plus to me. Drinkability is, I feel, as good as a stout can be. That is, it's something to enjoy at home. Def. not for having while out at a bar or party (to me, at least).

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Photo of jwc215
4.75/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours shiny, pitch black with a thin, lasting brown head that leaves lines of lacing going down the glass.

The smell is of chocolate and coffee - great selections of each - with some mollasses. There's an underlying earthiness and vague fruitiness.

The taste is of rich, roasted coffee, rich chocolate - bittersweet. Light roast and bitterness balance sweetness. A touch of milk seems to come through as it progresses. Rich and complex with a slight acidic touch.

It has a rich, creamy full-body that is silky smooth.

Rich and complex, yet so drinkable - dangerously so - esp. for abv. Nice way to start or end the day (or both!) Great selection of coffees and chocolates that come out and work with each other well!

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Photo of dancinwillie
4.22/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours black, with a chocolate mousse-like dense, creamy head. I poured a little too aggressively into my goblet, and it almost got away from me. The head was actually hanging over the rim, but it receded and I didn't lose a drop thankfully. The whipped desert looking head has receded somewhat, leaving some lovely lacing.

S: Aroma is full of dark chocolate and good bitter coffee in almost equal portions. It smells very warm and inviting. Something in there reminds me of a cream/milk/sweet stout. Can you smell lactose? I don't know. But that's what it seems like.

T: Bitter chocolate, strong coffee, creamy goodness. Decent hop bitterness, although I'm not able to even get close to identifying the strain. Just enough to somewhat balance this malty brute. Alcohol is a little hot, but not too bad. A bit of cellaring might do wonders here.

M: I would drape myself in velvet, were it socially acceptable. Being that it's not, I will take my velvet in Breakfast Stout form. And that's the mouthfeel, liquid velvet.

D: Drinkability seems high, but I wonder if my palate would get fatigued a little. A lot going on here, and definitely a sipping beer. I could drink a few of these, but I would probably be ready to embrace sweet slumber at that point. Not to mention that it's a seasonal release, so ultimately I would have to say medium to high drinkability I suppose. Cheers.

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Photo of oneredarm
4.78/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Poured a Dark Brown almost Black. Short head dissipated quickly leaving no head at all.

Smell - I get a big nose full of roasted coffee and chocolate, but also some hints of Vanilla. When I swirl it and smell it right after, I pick up on more hops.

Taste - The coffee is not overpowering like some other breakfast stouts. It makes is real smooth and light. An alcohol flavor makes a brief appearance but leaves quickly with a warm feeling in the mouth. The aftertaste of roasted coffee lingers in a good way.

Mouthfeel - This beer is solid, not too thick; just the right fullness for a stout.

Drinkability - I could down about two or three of these with no problem. Would be a great complement to a Saturday tailgate before a college football game.

I am blessed to live in Grand Rapids near this fine brewery. It is the halfway point on my commute home. I was pleasantly surprised to see the new batch of Breakfast Stout in the cooler and had to grab a 4 pack to go. I am reviewing the first one so I can relax and enjoy the rest. I am going to the Michigan Irish Music Festival this weekend and I think I'll enjoy the rest in the morning before I go. Thanks to Founders for another fantastic brew!

Temp - 45 degrees
Glassware - Large red wine glass

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Photo of JToad
4.22/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip. It pours a dark opaque, motor oil like viscosity. Caramel like head, with nice heavy lacing on the side of the glass.

Intial smell of coffee. Tobacco undertones. Chocolate is subdued, but there. Just the smell alone is enough to get you excited.

Tastes of roasted coffee. Slight tobacco on the back end. Bitter metallic presence, but not that overpowering. Dark bitter chocolate on the sides.

Nice consistent mouthfeel. Not as thick as other stouts, but very clean finish.

I love it better than the kentucky breakfast.

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Photo of daftafne
4.33/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip. Appearance resembles oil though with a tinge of brown. Poured with vigor, it produced no head. Zero clarity and almost black with tan lacing on top and at edge. Smells of chocolate, coffee beans, and a bit of vanilla. Tastes of roasted malts, coffee, and chocolate with a hint of sweetness followed by a very pleasant bitter. Surprisingly light mouthfeel. Creamy, smooth, and if I didn't know any better I'd say it was NA. Medium body. Nice and bitter but leaves the palate quickly. Highly drinkable and delicious!

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Photo of UA8
4.8/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Pours a thick, opaque mahogany. Heads a bit lacking might be because of the viscosity of the beer or just my bad pour still a nice light cocoa color and whats there is dense.

S- Smells like a rich deeply roasted cup of cafe mocha. I can practically taste the coffee beans.

T- Breakfast in a glass. Leads with dark roasted chewy espresso bean flavor with hint a bitter-sweet chocolate and a slightly sweet malt backing.

M- Thick and viscous a bit of a chocolate milk texture.

D- This quite the tasty stout. One of the best Ive tried thus far. It has a lot going on and the name is befitting I could definitely sit back on a fall evening with a few of these.

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Photo of tedpeer
4.08/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce poured into a pint.

A - Pours black with a thin khaki head. Settles to a ring around and whispy layer. No real lacing.

S - Roasted malts and coffee.

T - Coffee. Slightly bitter linger.

M - Smooth. Thick. Creamy. Medium carbonation.

D - Yes.

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Photo of Foxman
4.53/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

It pours a black-hole, Stygian onyx, as featureless as a "2001" monolith. A finger of khaki tan head, fluffy and mousse-ish, sinks to fuzzy surface froth. Berms of lacing curb the inside of the glass.

In order to incorporate all that's there, this aroma demands a laundry list: charred malt, burnt sugar, black coffee, baker's chocolate, soy, crisp esters, dried sloe, black molasses, and alcohol, all in various and varying degrees.

Upon sipping, (and with great anticipation, I might add) roasted malt is dark with heated sugar, singed grain, and dark molasses, all granting an ensuing bitter bite. Rich espresso, sharp and of the earth from whence sprung the beans, melds with unsweetened chocolate. Dark dried fruit, soy, cocoa, and an understated spiciness move into an airy, warm wash of alcohol. Dusky grain is very slightly residually sweet, but esters are quite crisp and join the dark roast character to dry it promptly. The finish is bitter, crisp, dry, and exceptionally clean, which is quite an undertaking considering the flavor's density. It's rich, well-blended, and wonderfully complex, but not inextricably so.

Full bodied, it's thick, full-weight, oozing presence, with a sharp dry glow in the end that leaves the tongue wagging like a happy dog's tail.

The only thing that stops me from actually enjoying this for breakfast is the fact that I'm always in a rush early in the day, and not taking the time to reverentially savor this richly complex and artfully pieced-together brew would be a zymurgical sin. And the ABV be damned, an AM buss just makes this all the more worth experiencing. I'd only had a sample at a fest some months ago, so I had an idea what I was missing. Bliss is knowing I don't have to miss it any more.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.37/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Breakfast Stout just got to NJ!
Single, twelve-ounce bottle just copped from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield...
Pours a jet-black, motor and engine oil dark-black hue with hardly any head and very minimal lacing...
Smell: Bursting with Kona Coffee, Deep, dark chocolate, and rich, roasted malts...
Taste: Flavor strongly resemebled the aroma, literally inundated with strong, assertive nuances of rich, deep, dark, roasted chocolate, dark cocoa powder, espresso, and thick malts...
Creamy, rich, thick mouthfeel
For an 8.3% ABV, this went down very easily without the slightest hint of alcohol...
Excellent stuff...
Highly recommended...

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Photo of drxandy
4.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz to standard pint, pours an oily black opaque - mocha head fades

smells of roasty malts, chocolate, coffee

tastes of chocolate followed by delicious coffee, oats, slight bitterness in the finish, sweet but not overtly, good flavors and balance, very drinkable, yum! - compared to fresh the hops have die down, in a very good way.

mouthfeel is creamy smooth, amazing, coffee lingers in the finish, one of my favorite stouts - mmm

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.52/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a solid black with a stingy tan head that laces all the way down. Aroma is roasted coffee on top with some bittersweet chocolate, faint dried fruit, and a bit of ash in the background. Taste is more of the same coffee and chocolate. Bitter coffee in the finish. Mouthfeel is silky creamy smooth. Full bodied brew, medium to low carbonation. Awesome brew, in fact one of favorite, especially fresh. I'd drink this one even if it wasn't breakfast time :) Don't tell anyone, but I prefer this to the KBS

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Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.64/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Breakfast stout pours a very dark black with slight brown highlights at the edges with a thin mocha colored head on it. The nose on this beer is an assult of rich and complex bitter coffee, bitter chocolate, roasted grain, oats, and wood. This is truly one of the best noses you will find on a stout. The flavor profile is a perfect match for the nose with a rich wave of bitter coffee at first quickly followed by a rush of bitter chocolate. The roasted grain also makes an appearance as does cherry and vanilla, but those flavors are lingering in the background when compared to the coffee and bitter chocolate. The mouthfeel isn't as thick as one would probably expect, but it is medium to full bodied and velvety smooth. I don't get a great deal of alcohol on the mouth, but I do feel the warming alcohol in my stomach. The drinkability is really fantastic on this brew, but I wouldn't have to many of them in one sitting, and would be best in moderation.

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Photo of jdoncbus
4.62/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured jet black into a Piraat tulip, thin brown head that leaves an oily film and polka dot lacing.

Thick aroma that consists of dark chocolate, espresso roast beans, wood, cinnamon oatmeal, & honey. A very pleasing and relaxing smell to say the least with a farewell shot of booze...

The beer hits the palate with a surprising crisp and slams the taste buds with bitter french roast coffee, baker's chocolate, molasses, heavy roasted malt, and a piney hop finish that leaves the mouth very dry. The finale is a warmth of alcohol down the esophagus.

Calling the overall flavor bold would be the understatement of the year and after a few sips it really evens out. One of the best Iimperial Stouts I have had and a must try for any advocate.

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Photo of nrbw23
4.5/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Brews Cafe in Grannville. Served in a tulip.

A- Pours a black in color with a nice tan head.

S- Wonderful roasted malts and coffee. Chocolate, faint vanilla, and a touch of oats.

T- Tastes of roasted malt, bitter unsweeted dark chocolates and coffee. Slight bitter after taste - may be some hops in there.

M- Thick and creamy. coats the mouth. oily with minimal carbonation.

D- Incredibly rich and wonderful. A pleasure to drink. Highly recommended.

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Photo of roadhouse
4.42/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I couldn't believe it when I walked into the liquor store this afternoon and there was one lone four pack of this stuff sitting on the shelf. I'm stoked to try this stuff. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a snifter.

Appears a very dark and opague black with a half inch dark tan head that sinks down to a thin coating. It can easily be revived with a little swirl though. Leaves some spotty lacing on the side of the glass.

Aroma is wonderful. Loads of deep roasted coffee, dark chocolate, charred wood, and the lightest touch of caramel. A bit of alcohol is noticeable in the background.

Taste is even better than the aroma. At first there is a big burst of coffee. Then the chocolate flavors come out. They are strangely delicious, bitter and sweet at the same time. On the finish the coffee comes back to leave a lingering aftertaste. If there's any hop bitterness in here, the roasty flavors cover it up.

Mouthfeel is medium, but very smooth. I was expecting it to be a bit thicker. Really the only downside to this beer.

I was not let down by this one. If the mouthfeel was a bit thicker this would be even better. If you are lucky enough to have the chance to get your hands on some of this, don't pass it up.

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Photo of shroompod
4.45/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a layer of mocha foam , some lacing.

Aroma is predominantly coffee , some roasted grains are apparent.

Getting a lot of chocolate tones on tasting . Coffee , roasted barley, and some residual sweetness . Not hop profile. Delicious.

Mouthfeel is somewhat lighter than expected but still medium to heavy. Decent carbonation.

Overall a treat I'd like to drink everyday.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.56/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured on-tap at the Flying Saucer Draught Emporium, Raleigh, NC. Served in a tall snifter.

The beer goddess sets before me a godly beer. The body is an inky, seal brown hue and capped by a creamy brown head. The foam shows no hints of receding, but slowly does minutes later, etching remnants of its bubbly goodness to the insides of the glass. The aroma of FBS is heavenly, with sweet espresso roast blended with dark chocolate smoke, and fresh hops. However, it came off as bit muted when compared to the best of the best american double stouts.

I expected a phenomenal taste to this beer and was far from disappointed; Breakfast Stout is delicious. Rich, bitter chunks of baker's chocolate give way to milky espresso, caramel, roasted grain husk, and hops galore. I was surprised by the level of hoppiness in this one--enough to bitter up the palate but not overpowering the more delicate chocolate malt complexities. I'd give the mouthfeel a "6.0" if possible, with its slick, creamy body and perfect carbonation level that wakes up the tongue and finishes strong. Overall, I can't say enough about this Founder's brew except "Welcome to NC!!!" Keep the good beer pouring, gents.

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Photo of abankovich
4.57/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an intense dark black with faint hints of brown at the edges. A great tan head compliments the blackness perfectly. Tightly laced bubbles cling to the sides of the glass.

The aroma is the richest, bitter coffee smell I've ever experienced with a rich chocolate aroma following right behind.

The bitter chocolates and coffees are amazingly prominent with a mild alcohol burn throughout. The oatmeal keeps the smoothness intact the whole way through. There is also a great hop presence that works well. It's not dominant by any means, but it is there.

My only wish is that the mouthfeel was a little more full. It is definitely medium to full bodied, but I could stand it a little thicker. That said, this is a delicious beer that I would sip on all night and finding any fault in it at all is very hard to do.

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Founders Breakfast Stout from Founders Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 3,662 ratings.