Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - Founders Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

2,849 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 2,849
Hads: 11,068
Avg: 4.56
pDev: 17.54%
Wants: 4,384
Gots: 5,263 | FT: 411
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout | 11.20% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-13-2004

This stout is brewed with a hint of coffee and vanilla then aged in oak bourbon barrels for over a year.

Note, this is NOT simply barrel-aged Breakfast Stout. It is an entirely different beer.

Now labeled as "KBS."
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 2,849 | Hads: 11,068
Photo of MCImes
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is everything a HUGE coffee bourbon chocolate stout should be. Pours like thick oil. Smells of coffee, bourbon, alcohol, and dark malts. In your mouth it rocks your pallet. Its thick and chewy. Founders nailed this because its not too sweet. It has enough to hold up the body, but is still dry enough that I could drink a few of these if it wouldnt kill me, and then Id be all out =( The bourbon flavor in this is amazing. They nailed everything about this beer.

This beer deserves 100. The only thing Founders could do to improve it is MAKE A LOT MORE!!!! It was HARD to get this year in MN. ( make it year round too. Seriously, start a Kickstarter campaign. BAs will pay for a stand alone KBS brewery)

 709 characters

Photo of WOBrewstraveler
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed on tap from a snifter at Plan B in Simsbury, CT. I didn't want to go right out with all 5s for this review, but truthfully could find nothing to critique that wasn't on-par and expected in the style. It poured black as pitch with a cocoa-colored head. The nose is complex with coffee and vanilla notes right up front preparing my palate for deliciousness. And delicious it was, with all the roasted coffee at first, followed by the sweetness from the bourbon-barrel aging and malts. An outstanding stout, worthy of 100 rating.

 539 characters

Photo of jneiswender
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this beer at the Extreme Beer Festival. SErved in a taster glass, cool. pours a black brown body and a nice hot chocolate like head. Smells like a pancake breakfast. tastes, smooth with wonderful notes of syrup, roasted malt, coffee with enough hop bitterness to balance. No strong alcohol flavor. Thick and wonderful without being cloying. What makes this work so well is that no flavor is overpowering yet easily layered and distinguishable. Just perfect.

 461 characters

Photo of RobertConway
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had my first bottle last night after securing a four pack in a trade. Probably the best example of a bourbon barrel aged coffee stout I have ever had. I would love to try this fresh, but even with a bit of age, it was still incredibly balanced and delicious.

 260 characters

Photo of Glanzman
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 ounce bottle served in a pint glass.

Pours a thick, jet black color with a tan, 1 finger head. Minimal lacing.

Smells awesome! Dark roasted malts, chocolate, coffee and bourbon.

Taste awesome and exactly how it smells.

This is an exceptional beer... worth the hype and the $6 per bottle I paid.

Savor this one! A 10 out of 10.

 334 characters

Photo of Brewfan
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Recieved in a DLD trade w/ Sman (insert #'s here).

Poured into my oversized DFH snifter.

Jet black body. "How much more black can it get? Really, the answer is none. None more black". -Spinal Tap
Like I said, very dark body. Dark tannish/brown head. 1finger. Decent retention. Heavy whisps of lace left in the glass once the head subsided.
Huge malty coffee and bittersweet chocolate nose. Semi smokey bourbon with whisps of marinated figs and peat. More alcohol comes through as the beer progresses.
Sooo smooth on the tongue. Oh my god. This is one smooth beer. I'm gonna be all over the place with this one between mouthfeel, taste and drinkability, because I think all 3 play into each other.
Chocolate and coffee instantly assault my palate. But it's a good assault. Bourbon and vanilla oakiness come through almost as fast. This is gorgeous. I find myself wanting drink this beer faster than almost any beer I've ever had. I have to force myself to slow down at every sip. Sips turn into swigs which turn into gulps. And this is definitely not a gulping beer. Although it goes down like one. This is too drinkable for a 10% beer. The bourbon is well present, but so well balance that you don't recognize an alcoholic "burn". It's just not there. I almost want to chew this beer there's so much flavor. I feel like I'm rambling, but it's hard to put into words everything I'm tasting.
This is one hell of a beer. I'm gonna leave it at that. Thanks to Founders for this offering. My first perfect 5 beer.

 1,524 characters

Photo of FriedSlug
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Black with tan head great lacing. Smells of chocolate, coffee, bourbon and toasted oak. Tastes the same with a great balance. Pretty much a perfect beer.

 153 characters

Photo of soupyman10
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I will start by acknowledging that I might be a touch biased with this review. After buying one of these and hiding it away for a couple months before my big going away party (joining a beerless nation for the Peace Corps), my dad threw it down, not even thinking. After racing all over the state to find another one, I finally had it, with a couple hours to spare. So basically, there was no way I was going to dislike this one. And I didn't. Pours a perfect pitch black color, with two fingers of tan head on top that slowly dissolves down to a delicious looking film. Aroma is crazy strong coffee, alcohol, spiciness, and some breadiness. Tons of roasted malt. Excellent aromas. Flavor is fantastic. Alcohol spice works in perfectly with the roasted malt on the back of the tongue. Definite but subtle bourbon flavors. Nice sweet dried fruit and brown sugar on the tip of the tongue. A nice hint of chocolate as well. As it warms, a nice zap of winey liquor at the end. Truly an incredible flavor. Body is creamy and full, with perfect carbonation. Can't say enough about this one. The best beer I've ever tasted, bar-none, and a great farewell to beer drinking, at least for a little while.

 1,194 characters

Photo of Crittervision
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Fack it. Best beer to share. So good. Coffee-y bourbony. Damn. Lacing slowly falls from the top to the 7/8 area of the glass. So goddamned good. A+s throughougt.
Sooo good. To the no I won't do it. Too damn good. Luckily I have a lot left. My favorite I've tasted but i know I'm gonna love CBS since I looove maple syrup.

 322 characters

Photo of OB1Kubota
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What can I say this is the best stout ever. Thick, heavy, delicious, complex, may cure brain damage, water on the knee, and if made in large enough quantity, may be the conduit for world peace. Praise the lord and pass the KBS. More words needed, but words will only keep me from waiting for the first week in April when KBS is sold for all of 5 or 6 days.

 356 characters

Photo of crob3888
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours the color of cold brew coffee - mostly black with brown around the edges, and a nice small brown head that sticks around and leaves some lacing.
Smell and taste are both dominated by a ton of chocolate, smooth cold brew coffee notes (no bitterness), and flavors of chocolate covered dark cherries, vanilla cream, caramel, and a smoothness from the bourbon and oak. Overall, it deserves the hype, a great beer.

 416 characters

Photo of RoBotGod
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Every possible thing I want out of a beer is in this one. Every part of this was good even right down to the package. Its also just getting better with age. The pour looks great. Very dark black with that dark tan coffee head. The smell has breakfast all over it. Coffee and chocolate and sweet vanilla jump out. A lot of sweet bourbon notes up front and then finishes with a dry coffee taste that it leaves in your mouth. Alcohol was not very notable to me. This was my first 5 of 5 after 60 beers reviewed. A kick ass beer.

 525 characters

Photo of SpiersBrewingCo
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I hate to give a beer a perfect score especially after it being the 2nd beer I am reviewing on BA but I have had my fair share and I know a good, perfectly amazing beer when I try one. And this is it.

A: Pours still with lacy dark chocolate pecan colors and thin head that edges to the side of the glass.

S: Smokes the nose with intake of tobacco, smokiness, chocolate and staled bourbon essence.

T: Light and silky while cold with burnt coco flavors, maybe some toasty marsh mellows, finishes on the taste buds with a smooth flavor of bourbon as it warms up, hints of pecans and even darker chocolate.

M: Still as the black night, steady, thick but ready to go down perfectly from start to finish.

O: This beer changed my way of thinking, experiencing and most likely brewing beers. A style unique but does not shun anyone from enjoying and experiencing a very delicious stout.

Thank you, thank you....

 909 characters

Photo of dbell23
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Since this beer's younger brother got a 5, this one does as well. Admittedly I love breakfast stout. KBS is even better. Same look, better smell with great whiskey notes added to the chocolate and coffee, taste is incredible with nice whiskey undertones, mouthfeel is the same as breakfast stout which is perfect for a stout. I really like the bourbon taste with an already great beer. I'm really sorry this is so hard to get in Hooterville where I live but at least I have another one to enjoy. This is a must have if you like imperial stouts.

 550 characters

Photo of msondel
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I'm not typically a fan of a warmer beer, but this one gets significantly better as it gets warmer. Patience is almost impossible with this beer, but resisting for 10 minutes at room temperature is worth it.

 208 characters

Photo of founddrama
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Like vanilla bourbon. Holy shit that's amazing. Mouthfeel not as full as if expect but seems just right. I don't even get the coffee and chocolate notes. Which is a good thing because as I've said before: coffee- and/or chocolate-forward stouts are cliché.

#MensJournal100Best2014

 282 characters

Photo of mellowmark
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz. stubby brown bottle to an Oversized Wine glass. 2011 vintage. $16.99 for a 4-pack.

Appearance: Black as night with a dark and I mean dark brown 1-finger creamy head. No transparency in the liquid whatsoever. Head retention is moderate. Great lacing, thick rings.

Smell: Bourbon barrels for sure. It's very very woody with sweet brown sugar undertones. Roasted freshly ground coffee. Dark and milk chocolate really start to come out as it warms, like a fine bourbon chocolate Belgian truffle. Very little alcohol is detectable, if any. Some earthy tones, like fresh cut grass. I could go on. It's phenomenal.

Taste: Sweet up front, mild bitterness in the middle. No sign of the booze until the end leaving a pleasant warming sensation in the back of the throat and in the chest. Citrus comes through towards the end and plays around for a little while leaving your mouth juicy and wanting more. Chocolate and roasted coffee flavors are present. Vanilla bean. Earthy hops come through at the end. Fine bourbon and smoked wood dance on your palate till the next sip.

Mouthfeel: Mouthfeel is full and extremely creamy due to a low carbonation level. This really is a perfect mouthfeel. Absolutely zero harshness for such a big beer must not be easy to pull off. The flavor and nose express themselves even more as the beer warms without adding any of harshness attributed to some other IS's when consumed at higher temperatures.

Drinkability: Very High

This should be more of a sipper than it is. The smoothest and most disguised AD/IS I ever recall drinking, with an amazingly complex nose and flavor up the wazoo. Well worth the wait and the money. I feel like I am ripping THEM off.

 1,708 characters

Photo of kwakwhore
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Simply the best stout I have ever had. Amazing complexity with something new in every sip. The chocolate, coffee, vanilla and bourbon flavors meld in a way I have not encountered in any other barrel aged stout. Thanks to asams10 for providing me with a beer I've wanted to try for years.

 288 characters

Photo of gnemesis
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 12oz bottle into snifter. Pours black like oil with a thin brown head. It smells of coffee, chocolate, slight toasted malt slight booze. The taste follows with vanilla and bourbon. So delish! Let this warm a bit. This ale is full bodied- almost syrupy but in a fantastic way. I would love to drink 4 of these but the ABVs remind me to consume slow. This will only get better with age. My second favorite beer of all time.

 433 characters

Photo of Italktomyself77
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was a beer that I was very excited to finally get to enjoy! It was dark and full of complexion. But not overly powerful as some stouts can become if not aged appropriately. This was a wonderful beer. Great Aroma. Nice smooth mouth feel, creamy almost. Just a delight!

 272 characters

Photo of Crftbrfan
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

09 vintage from a bottle.

Pour is viscous, black, motor oil. Just a slight hint of mocha head. disapaits quickly.

Aroma is all chocolate upfront. Followed by toasty coffee. Burbon hints around the edges.

Taste is amazing. Bitter chocolate and coffee. Sweet bourbon on palate. Amazing smooth throughout.

Simply the best beer I have ever had.

 345 characters

Photo of RayVen
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well, we'll, well. KBS...must be.... Unicorn blood. Elixir of Life! Holy water. Water from the fountain of youth. Perfection. All I can say is, you have to try it for your self. Perfectly balanced stout. When you drink it the heavens of your senses open up. No too much or too little of anything. Coffee.... Vanilla.... CHOCOLATE.... Simultaneously

 348 characters

Photo of beer4colin
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh My!!!

I have enjoyed KBS from bottles but today I had the extreme pleasure of having KBS on tap at UBH!,, Tommy! thank you!,

I am not getting into it (a full formal review) except to say this was the most incredible, dare I say orgasmic, tasting that I have ever had?!?

Chocolate, vanilla, coffee..everything is there. A beauty that needs no further description.

 368 characters

Photo of TomTwanks
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh the infamous KBS, what a treat. Too bad I practically had to give a testicle to get some! Well, it was worth it...
Pours a deep deep black with a dark mocha head.This is a great start...
Smell - Vanilla, bourbon, coffee grounds, sweet chocolate, roasted malt...in that order for the most part. Just outstanding.
Taste - Very similar to the nose, but wow so integrated. I mean, its so balanced. Def the most balanced stout I've ever had. So good. It would be hard to top this in any genre or beer. Holy shit, no wonder why assholes chase the truck for this...screw it I'm gonna rob the truck driver!
Mouthful - So smooth, so complex, so inviting you for another sip. Medium to heavy. Fantastic

Overall - don't read this, get this is you can. Founders did it again...between GI and Founder's barrel work, theres no need to move from the midwest! Stunning world class beer

 873 characters

Photo of donniecuffs
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had the distinct pleasure of sampling this once again relatively recently at a Founders promo at The Blind Tiger in NYC, but since I first sampled it on draft at The Tap Room in Warren, NJ, I got to show some love in this review to Kevin Torpey, who does a great job getting great beers like this on tap at a bar inside a hotel (Somerset Hills Hotel).

Into a tulip glass, it poured black with one finger of brown head that retained and laced extremely well. Smelled of oak, chocolate, chocolate milk, hazelnut liqueur, modest licorice, and cherry-vanilla. The taste was a fantastically balanced mixed of the aforementioned flavors, with a cherry-vanilla/modest alcohol-presence finish, and leaving a spiked chocolate milk aftertaste. No carbonation, and medium to full thickness...like liquid silk on the palate. This is another one of those beers that you would think could not be sessioned, yet it goes down extremely easily. Absolutely outstanding beer.

 960 characters

Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) from Founders Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,849 ratings.