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Founders Imperial Stout - Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Imperial StoutFounders Imperial Stout

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6,539 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 6,539
Reviews: 1,704
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 8.49%
Wants: 615
Gots: 1,762 | FT: 137
Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-12-2005

90 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,539 | Reviews: 1,704 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of xavier390
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of brealbg
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of JohnnyChicago
4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 64oz growler into a snifter.

A: This is about as perfect a picture an RIS can paint. Pours like melted black chocolate and forms a beautiful brown head that refuses to fall. Beautiful.

S: Rich chocolate and maltiness. Hops are citruscy, medicinal and earthy.

T: Bakers chocolate, tobacco, toffee. Hops are big here and balance the rediculous malt flavours very nicely.

D: For a beer this big, the does not drink like it. Mouthfeel is full and velvety.

Overall: This is a remarkably good beer. One thing you can say about Founders is that they know their stouts. Smooth and balanced, yet assertive and extreme. Damned good beer.

note: I also had this in bottles. I saw no change between the two containers; same great beer.

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

Poured into a snifter.

A: Pours as black as the depths of Hell with 1 finger of deep brown head that dissipates quickly. Has fine webbed lacing and a good film that clings to the glass.

N: Highly aromatic. Roasted barley, dark fruits, caramel, bittersweet chocolate, espresso, molasses and black licorice.

T: Bittersweet chocolate, black licorice, roasted barley and espresso upfront. Mid-palate has rich caramel, espresso, figs, overripe plums and I’m even picking up some faint citrus and floral hops. Finishes with truffle, dark chocolate, dark fruits and some pine & citrus hops.

M: Full bodied, silky, chewy, sticky, dry and bitter.

O: I haven’t had this beer in two years and I’m glad that it still lived up to my expectations. Excellent roasty chocolate, espresso and dark fruits are all over this one. Overly impressive appearance and mouthfeel. Just phenomenal all around! Founders is the king of Stouts.

Photo of inlimbo77
4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle. Bottled 12/29/11. Poured into Boulevard snifter.

A: Pours like motor oil, for real. Thick as hell! Basically no head. What faint tan head that was there settles into a ring around the edges of deep brown and reddish hues. The swirl conjures up a quarter finger dark tan head. Little sticky lacing bits. Alcohol feet clinging to the glass.

S: This is the base beer for KBS, no? You can tell. There isn't much coffee in the nose, it's dominated by deep dark chocolate and milk chocolate notes. Maybe a little dark fruit behind. Some raisin maybe? And I do actually get some dark espresso beans after a while.

T: Bitterness from the IBUs on the tip of the tongue for sure. I do get what some dark roast coffee beans, espresso. Then really deep bitter dark chocolate follows. The finish is very long. You do get some warming from this big beer! It's not soft like FBS, that is for sure! This might benefit from a little age, as I feel it's a little hot right now.

M: Full bodied and chewy as hell. Coats the mouth totally.

O: Impressive again from Founders. Their beers are just so well crafted. This is an A beer for me, and might go higher with a little time.

Photo of pjs234
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of JimmyW
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of hefehead12
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of areich6
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of nrs207
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Hopfenpeter
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured a dark, almost black and produced a reddish brown creamy head, which leaves nice lacing after dissipating.
The smell is chocolate, coffee and plum.
Tasting the beer, chocolate ad coffee notes are certainly dominant up front. than the roasted malt flavors give the beer a smokey feel in the middle. In the end some hop character is noticable.
The almost syrup like beer is extremely drinkable. What a great brew this is. The ABV of 10.5 is well hidden. Certainly one of my favorite Stouts.

Photo of ixodus
4.47/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours motor oil black in color with a chocolate color head. Head retention is moderate with decent lacing.

S: Ground coffee, burnt malt, sweet vanilla, dark chocolate, caramelized raisins. Aroma is strong and a little bitter.

T: Dark coffee, rich dark chocolate, sweet vanilla, roasted malts, slight hop bitterness, it has an interesting burnt/smoke taste to it. The beer is bit hot.

M: Thick, viscous, rich, and creamy, carbonation is on the soft side.

O: Overall an excellent RIS, one of my favorites. I definitely recommend.

Photo of Madjr
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of jtierney89
3.65/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black, pure black. No color when held up to the light. Has a thin deep brown head.

Coffee and roasted malts on the nose with some charcoal.

Big bitter black chocolate taste up front. Overwhelming yet delicious. Impeccably blended dark malt flavor with incredible hop balance. Bitterness is big and nice. Huge slick mouthfeel. Flavors are abundant with lots of coffee, licorice and dark chocolate along with the oddities brought on by the hops.

Touches of charcoal and leather come through on the taste as well. Flavors can be a bit harsh and undesirable at times. Smooth velvety texture of the brew is nice though.

Hop presence is pretty killer (in a good way, but at times in a bad way)

The beer is big and complex but doesnt beat the beauty of breakfast stout. Still a great easy drinking RIS though. Alcohol is incredibly well hidden with only hints of it on the breath.

Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
4.38/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a tulip

A: Pours a very viscous black, thick and unrelenting, with just a trace of burgundy fizz. Yes, the head is almost red, a dark red.

S: Aroma is heavy with licorice, bitter coffee bean and dark chocolate. There's something almost funky on the backbone, it could possibly be rotten walnut but it's almost mildewy like oyster, which has indeed been done before.

T/M: It tastes very thick and coats the mouth. Bubbles are rare but complementary. More coffee, nut and chocolate are prominent up front with some licorice on the back end and just a touch of alcohol on the finish.

The thickness is what strikes you with this one, there aren't many this thick. A really good imperial stout.


Photo of beesy
4.3/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle dated 12/22/2011 into a standard Founders pint glass.

A - pours a dark, inky black with a half finger of dark brown head.

S - lots of roast character. Dark bitter chocolate notes also present

T - Taste bud overload - such a nice beer. Tons of roast from the beginning to the end. Chocolate up front with toffee in the middle and just a touch of caramel on the end. A very firm hop bitterness that lingers slightly on the palate. Slightly warming. Slightly chalky or minerally

M - full bodied with just a slight slickness. A touch of chewiness.

D - low

Overall, a fantastic beer I enjoy immensely. A lot of imperial stouts seem to shy away from being overly roasty - this one delivers in the roast level. Just another kick ass beer from Founders.

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

Tasting note founders imperial stout

12 oz bottle poured into mad elf tulip

Aroma strong bitter coffee, bakers chocolate, roasted barley

Appearance black,black, and more black.  Mocha head lacing that lines whole glass

Flavor coffee, bittersweet chocolate, rum, toast, raisins

Mouthfeel/Drinkability nice level of carbonation, not as smooth as breakfast stout but not bad.  Might be able to drink two at a sitting

Overall once again founders doesn't disappoint.  Can't wait till febuary for kbs!!!

Photo of phils93rul
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of SawDog505
4.76/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a 20 oz Duvel giant tulip, bottle dated 12/22/11 thanks Founders. Pours pitch black with and amazing 3 inch dark mocha head, beautiful lace that settles into a half inch foam. Smell is dark chocolate, coffee, molasses, bread, and a hint of liquorice. Wow the smell good, but the taste is among the best. Dark chocolate and roasted coffee are the main draw, with a very strong hoppyness. Mouth feel is big, drinkability is high, great amount of life for a large ABV, and not crazy dry. Founders please distribute to N.H. some day. Every thing you do is so consistently good and often GREAT. A treat for RIS fans.

Photo of frenchblood21
4.7/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into Goose Island Tulip.

Appearance- Pitch black with a half finger of dark tan head. Beautiful looking stout.

Smell- Chocolate and coffee...not much else.

Taste- Same as the nose, but throw in some malty alcohol.

Mouthfeel- Just wonderful! Thick and creamy...like drinking delicious used motor oil.

Overall- Great beer...Not as good as Breakfast Stout, but not much is.

Photo of MichaelBurns
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of tatums1984
4/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of crossovert
4.21/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle.

It pours a thick, viscous black with a creamy and foamy dark tan head. Quintessential look.

The smell is pretty good. Nice raw barley character with some caramel, coffee, and cocoa. That typical "imperial stout" scent is there which I equate to herbal alcoholic root beer in a good way.

The mouthfeel is thick and viscous and the flavor is dead on for what an Imperial Stout should be. It is bitter, roasty, not too sweet. A gem

Photo of Troville1990
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of jhb138
5/5  rDev +14.7%

Founders Imperial Stout from Founders Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 6,539 ratings.