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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.

2,805 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 2,805
Hads: 10,806
Avg: 4.56
pDev: 17.54%
Wants: 4,273
Gots: 5,076 | FT: 416
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

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: 2,805 | Hads: 10,806
Photo of jcflorian
4.25/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

I don't get the hype for this beer.

It is a very solid Imperial Stout, but in my opinion pales below its Breakfast Stout counterpart. Not in same league as CBS.

Look and smell are both top notch, but the watery mouthful really bothered me. A beer like this should be rich and think , not watery.

Points off for otherwise a rock solid stout

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Photo of jow_42
4.24/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 Vintage (drinking 03/2015) poured into a Stone RIS tulip

A - Pours a jet black with half a finger of tan/khaki head

S - Coffee, chocolate, dark chocolate, subtle bourbon. Wish the bourbon was more present in the nose of this. Sweet milk chocolate follows, roasted coffee bitterness underneath the sweet chocolate aromas.

T - This is a tasty beer. Tons of chocolate, coffee bitterness, but hardly any bourbon is present. This almost tastes like a brownie dipped in a cup of coffee. The coffee on the finish is great. The barrel is lacking though. No oakiness, no vanilla, nada.

M - medium bodied, but not quite chewy. Wish it was chewier.

O - Tad bit of a disappointment considering the hype. Really wish the bourbon was there. As a standard stout, this would be amazing. Grading as a BA stout, it comes up a bit short. Might just be the 2014 vintage isn't as strong as others?

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Photo of Rammed96
4.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

What an experience!
Multiple levels of flavor. Chocolate, vanilla and you can actually taste the bourbon as it hits the back of your mouth. It coats your entire mouth and the flavor stick around for a while.

This is a must try beer.

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Photo of Tripel_Threat
4.48/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful from aroma to taste; big, bold, and boozy. You will feel every ounce of this 11.5 monster, tread slowly. Is it worth the hype, lines, and lists? Somewhat. Try it at least once in your life.

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Photo of mr-jj
4.63/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to snaotheus for the chance to try this. Poured into a snifter.

Color is completely opaque black with a thin khaki head. Smell is delicious - coffee, chocolate, some vanilla, bourbon. Taste might be even better - a great balance of all of the things I like in a stout. The coffee and chocolate are balanced and neither dominates. The bourbon flavor adds additional complexity. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Overall, a great beer.

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Photo of Moose90
4.48/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2015 bottle, dated 03/04/2015

A — Pours a deep dark brown hue, there is a real deep darkness to this one. Quite thin and dark head appears on top of the beer, leaving behind some spotty and sticky lace.

S — Smells of sweet dry cocoa powder, bitter dark roasted coffee, bourbon, huge sweet caramel, sugary, cinnamon bourbon tone, bit of oak as well as a little bit of alcohol heat.

T — Tastes like the nose though not quite as sweet, really bourbon forward, which I enjoy, little bit of chocolate, very little to no coffee character.

M — Medium-Full bodied, somewhat light actually, incredibly smooth and easy drinking.

O — Very nice overall, I expected it to be a bit heavier but it was a little thin. Good depth of flavor overall though.

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Photo of Berrymon
4.45/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

It was great - a phenomenal beer. I had the 2015 version. Recently had 2013 & 2014 BCBS which I thought were both superior to this though. My take was that KBS '15 should age a bit. There was a sharpness to it that made me think the edge could be smoothed out with a little more time. I have one more that I'll wait on. It was still an incredibly delicious beer.

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

Honestly the best beer I have ever had, I'm pretty sure explication isn't needed for why this is one of the top 5 beers that's still being produced RIP CBS

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Photo of donspublic
4.83/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had this on tap this past weekend while in Tulsa. Found this at a Mixology bar, never discount a non beer centric joint.
Served in a slender stemmed tulip and had about 2 finger light tan head. Smelled of chocolate, coffee and a slight hint of bourbon
Taste was unlike any other barrel aged beer I have had before, it was more of a muted bourbon taste with very little alcohol burn. This is a beer that I would get a case of if I could.
I have one sitting on my desk now that my daughter scored when she was traveling up north. I was planning on opening it this month, but I think I will save it now for winter and a cuban. Well done Founders

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Photo of Vogie
4.58/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Spiegelau stout glass. Bottle date not visible, however the case I pulled it from said 2/25/15.

Pours an awesome motor oil with two fingers of mocha colored pancake head. Aroma is dominated with dark chocolate, vanilla, and wood. Slight whiffs of dark coffee roast, dark fruits, and black licorice? Taste is a chocolate bomb! Loads of chocolate, vanilla, oak, dark fruits, and a alcohol burn going down. Mouthfeel is the star of the show. Smooth, creamy, and decadent.

An exceptional stout that everyone must try. Worthy of the hype? Perhaps not, unless your new to the craft beer scene. On the sweeter end for a barrel aged stout but I'm not complaining. This is probably one of the best barrel aged stout I've had to date.


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Photo of EmperorBevis
4.34/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

looks like expresso & real big coffee roast aroma
Tastes like a really good Irish coffee.
deceptively easy drinking
Fantastically enjoyable, world class?
Hhmmmm nearly, need to research further.

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Photo of drone
4.46/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2014 variant, huge thanks to @fsckewe for providing me with a bottle. Gorgeous coffee and chocolate notes, no 11% notes anywhere to be found. Masterpiece.

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Photo of 2014LM2X1
4.84/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am a convert to coffee BA stouts; there's something about Bourbon and coffee that really just works. KBS is the best I've had so far; there is so much chocolate, coffee, and barrel at play. It seems as if all the flavors are just fighting to dominate the experience but never quite do it. Very complex, very well balanced, absolutely delicious.

P.S. If Founders could put the craftsmanship of KBS into a Mayan chocolate stout a la Xocoveza, I would give it a 5, no questions asked.

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Photo of pwilliams211
4.49/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2014 bottle. I like this one with some age, all notes are still present, but everything is needed together into a toasty and a pretty complex beer....and it's insanely smooth no booze at all!

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Photo of Mehinaman
4.77/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is my favorite of the bourbon stouts that I have tried. Goose Island is a great bourbon stout as well, but I find this one a little less boozy overall which makes the difference for me. It's a great beer, but don't let the "breakfast" in the name fool you as this beer packs a punch. You might not want to drink it and then head to work. :-)

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Photo of Illmaticzx
4.24/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A black dk khaki thin head
S roasted coffee bakers choc slight bourbon
T dk chocalate, bourbon, not much coffee
M a little thin for a stout
O not quite as great as i hoped, like backwoods better

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Photo of BayouBengal1537
4.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a jet black with 1 finger tan head into a tulip glass. Smells of dark roast coffee, bitter chocolate, roasty malts, big vanilla, big bourbon barrel character. Taste follows with roasted coffee, milk chocolate, bourbon & oak, vanilla. I gave the mouthfeel a 5 because it was easily the silkiest imperial stout i've ever drank. Overall, one of the best imperial bourbon barrel aged stouts I've ever had.

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Photo of Gorilla_Biscuits
4.83/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Smooth creamy coffee and chocolate malts stand out the most. The barrel aged taste isn't as strong as expected, however this beer is amazing. One of the better imperial stouts out there.

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Photo of StJamesGate
4.46/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Viscous jet black that's opaque even with a light behind it and a pocked finger of sepia foam that puts up a good fight but fades under the heavy ABV. 4.25
Fig, leather, cold coffee, oak chips, black shoe polish, blackberry skins, then baker's chocolate, booze, and caramelized sugar - evolves as it opens. 4.5
Ganache, with beef jerky, candied black cherries, dates, coffee candy, creme brulee, and a woody-honeyed bite with a touch of grass. 4.5
Caramel-coated hazelnut finish and spicy drying linger.
Heavy, oily, chewy, hot, smooth, 4.25

The best meals are not just packed full of flavor, but different flavors with each bite. This does that: whiskey in coffee one sip, chocolate plum bonbons the next. Chocolate is big, dark, and right upfront; coffee, less so. Dark fruit all hit on the sweet side, though there's the occasional astringent fig note or hit of dark malt acidity. A massive stout, all right, but incredibly drinkable - one sip follows the next and it's tough to slow down. I’d like to knock off a couple of the boozy notes from the bourbon and see what happens after 6 months.

Another beer that I was prepared to slam but actually lives up to the hype.
“Never has twelve ounces seemed so much like six.” - BuckeyeNation

The right beer to mark moving house.

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Photo of BranfordBound
4.64/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap at Walrus + Carpenter in late April. The weather outside was still damp and chilly at nice, so this should fit right in. Pours black as night in the snifter glass, small dark tan head rises slowly and sticks around. Deep, complex aroma that gives hints to its strength and barrel-aged origins. The initial flavor is the sweetness and strong coffee, this is followed by the barrel flavor and intense notes of bourbon. Finish is boozy (in the slightest way) and roasted. Char and bitterness remain on the tongue with some chocolate. Vanilla isn't too perceptible as it can be easily confused with the bourbon. Thick and heavy body is actually somewhat easy to drink. Overall one of the best Impy stouts I've had.

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Photo of dlcross
4.98/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Look: Dark as night.

Smell: Sweet smell with malt and toffee. Hints of vanilla and white oak (obviously).

Taste: A bit of alcohol burn, in a good way. Reminiscent, of a good cup of bourbon spiked coffee. Still sweet with a hint of bitter (delicious) coffee on the tail end. Roughly equivalent to the nectar of God's balls.

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Photo of VTR
4.4/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

After several years of failing to get this during the release I surprisingly found it on tap yesterday. It was poured into a snifter. The nose was a mix of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, and bourbon. I couldn't resist taking a sip from this dark brew with a great khaki head. The taste followed the nose but some of the flavors were faint and then the bitterness hit me. OK well I am always one to let my stouts warm up to see if they develop. This beer got better as it warmed. Once warmed all the flavors developed and meshed together very, very well and the bitterness subsided. The flavors danced around your mouth while the beer felt very silky. Ok now the bourbon was there but it did not overpower the beer letting all the flavors and roastiness come through. I really enjoyed that the coffee was not over the top. While I have been let down by other highly sought after beers this is not one of them. To me it was a different animal than the highly acclaimed BCBCS. All I can say is I was very impressed with this beer. Hands down one of the best beers I have had. I am going to head down tomorrow afternoon and hope they still have some left in the keg!

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Photo of smcolw
4.52/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Served, on tap, in a brandy snifter. Good starting head but it settles quickly to rim bubbles. Leaves a small amount of blanketing lace and a couple of spots. Deep dark mahoghany brown where the faintest of light passes.

Chalky milk chocolate aroma up front. Mild alcohol with a powdered cocoa kicker (distinct from the milk chocolate.)

Extremely smooth, perhaps the silkiest, velvety mouthfeel ever. This stout works backwards--it starts with a black patent malt bitterness but this fades as the as a strong sherry-like grape sweetness takes over. Strong alcohol finish with semisweet chocolate overtones.

Usually I'm slightly disappointed by the "top beers". While they are typically great, they usually aren't worthy of their effusive accolades. This one, though, does not disappoint.

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Photo of Mattygross44
3.27/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3.5

I just cant join the hype beer club with this beer it had a very pungent taste off the bat very sweet almost tarty as it warmed it got better but as a very die hard stout drinker and a ex bourbon whiskey drinker this just was a mediocre beer for me. Some of the beers that get a 75-88 score on here taste sooo much better to me. I guess ive been spoiled with parabola and other top of the line as people say beers for to long ...Michigan you can keep this out on the east coast and i will enjoy my west coast stouts out here!! Def would not buy glad i got in a trade.

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Photo of maxifunk777
3.91/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Another disappointing whale a good beer just not a great beer will try another real soon to see if it changes my mind. Sunday Morning Stout is so much better than this beer. I drank a non-BA plead the 5th and enjoyed slightly more.

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Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) from Founders Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 2,805 ratings.