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Founders Imperial Stout - Founders Brewing Company

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Founders Imperial StoutFounders Imperial Stout

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6,374 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 6,374
Reviews: 1,657
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 8.49%
Wants: 593
Gots: 1,657 | FT: 125
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: 6,374 | Reviews: 1,657 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of aasher
4.3/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The Imperial Stout pours an oily, very viscous, lifeless black sludge with no head, just slight dark khaki bubbling. It smells of both bitter and sweet dark chocolate and features freshly ground coffee bean aromas. It tastes of both bitter and sweet chocolate with good roastiness with a touch of alcohol on the backend. It's very, very thick and coats the mouth like cough syrup. It's very good and has excellent flavor but the thickness is a little over the top, even for an imperial stout. This beer is definitely a sipper.

Photo of matthewalee
4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 bottle poured into a Deschutes Snifter

A - black as black can be. Oil pour almost. very good looking

S - starts with chocolate but with a bit of alcohol to it. not much, but a little followed by some sweet candy and then you sticking your nose into the glass for about 15 more sniffs trying to figure it out...

T - as good as it gets! Coffee....Chocolate....maybe something smoked? just a lot going on and really chewy. The last thing you taste is candybar going down the hatch. There is a reason that this beer is off the shelves withing a few weeks of delivery to the chicagoland area. I'm glad I delayed part of my life in getting this stuff.

M - Full. leaves you wanting more for sure. Good carbonation for sure with some stickiness to it.

D - What can you say? One of the best breweries out there putting out a sought after Imp. Stout after all the other great ones that have been around and talked about. here's the catch...Founders gives you a taster of it then it's gone. Like a recent reviewer said, bring on the KBS!!!

I think this stout will do great with some age and thanks again Founders...I'm sure you made many people happy with this batch!

Photo of warbird07
4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage poured into a 10oz snifter..

Wow...This beer poured Black with a lingering ecru head. Not much lacing with a sticky, boozey residue that stains the glass. Exactly what I expected. Smell is lovely..chocolate,slight coffee, anise,a bit of alcohol. Taste is bitter chocolate, roasty malts,good hop bitterness,molasses sweetness, 10.5 apv masked well. Mouthfeel is just about spot on, with good carbonation and a slight chewy finish...I wish I could drink this year round,,

Photo of foogerd
4.16/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours like an oil spill, slick and slippery out of the bottle. Black as night, a head is produced that has this gorgeous deep dark coffee color, sexiest head I've ever seen. A real looker of a brew.

S- Smoked anise, lots of roast character, dark cacao chocolate, a creamy lactose aroma wafts over. A bit of sharp bitter booze.

T- Totally an anise/black licorice bomb, with dark chocolate and burnt bitter coffee taste at the finish, packaged in a tasty very drinkable format.

M- Very smooth slick body, low carbonation but very appropiate.

D- A foward in your face Russian Imperial Stout that goes down with ease. Whats unique here is that this brew is big all around, in flavor and abv, yet its drinkability gives you the ability to enjoy all its robustness. Would pair excellently with a creamy rich desert.

Photo of Avantyawn
4.65/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served at cellar temperature as suggested by Founder's. Last 4 pack at Whole Foods. I was excited to see a Founder's offering I have never seen on the shelves. While Imperial Stout is not my everyday beer style, I jumped on the chance to try a new Founder's brew.

A: I don't know how I couldn't give this a 5 for appearance. Dark as dark can be, no light makes it through this. Thick luscious chocolate dark brown foam head. Amazing in appearance.

S: Bright and lively alcohol, thick coffee aroma , bittersweet chocolate syrup and sour plum, soy sauce. Toasted grains and tea. The smell opens up as it warms up. Amazing

T: Tastes like grainy sweet chocolate desert syrup. This is an amazing tasting beer. With all of the robust sweetness present, it still has a cloaked bitter vibrant finish. I am close to giving it a 5. A beer genius must have come up with the recipe for this. Bravo.

M: Creamy and delicious. Gentle, bold, intense, and satisfying!

D: This is a sipper, but its so good that it doesn't have to be if you catch my drift. Dangerous beer alert, man this is good!

Photo of weizenbob
4.84/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Today I'm whetting my whistle with a Founders Imperial Stout and Breakfast Stout whilst I wait patiently for next month's KBS release. This 12 ounce bottle of Imperial Stout was purchased at Pere Marquette Expeditions in Ludington, MI. Founders bottle dates in black ink which is literally impossible to locate on a stout, yet alone read. After the pour, the empty bottle revealed the date to be unintelligible as the ink had been smeared. No worries; I know it's this year's batch.

I poured this into a wine goblet. An aggressive pour yields about half a finger of straight up brown head. The pour is thick and nearly resembles chocolate syrup coming out of the bottle. Head retention is poor but at 10.5% abv I'm not surprised. As far as the color, it is expected that an imperial stout would be near-black, but nary have I seen as dark a stout as this. If I were to christen this shade of black, I would call it "Smell the Glove".

Speaking of the smell, it is pretty awesome, and not the least bit glove-like. Chocolate is huge in the nose. Alcohol is not far behind. The aroma is akin to a chocolate liqueur. There is no subtle this or hint of that. It's just chocolate cranked to 11.

This is smokin' hot on the tongue. The chocolate strikes first, and it is very sweet and syrupy; but its reign is brief. The alcohol smashes its way to the surface like the Incredible Hulk; and this beer is angry! After the alcohol kicks me in the teeth I start to notice the chocolate syrup again, as well as a hint of coffee. There's a nice bite of bitter hops on the finish, which although noticeable, pales in comparison to the chocolaty sweetness and alcohol. How this doesn't come off as boozy is far beyond my comprehension.

This stout is heavy duty in the mouth. It is thick and syrupy and basically everything that you dream a stout should feel like. The carbonation feels mild though I can see small patches of active bubbling on the surface. It's just a heavy beer. The thickness coats the throat on the way down the hatch, leaving surprisingly little alcohol burn in its wake. This is awesome.

The drinkability is superb. As hard hitting as the alcohol is, this is very thick, very smooth and very sweet. The mildly bitter finish reminds you that it's a beer, and if it weren't for the prominent alcohol bite this would receive a perfect drinkability score. It is an amazing sipper of a brew, and if there was ever a candidate for some cellaring experimentation it's this beast. Per usual with Founder's stouts, I will take this four-pack, drink a couple now and stash a couple away for next year. After this alcohol cools off I'm expecting the most velvety chocolaty treat that you can find in bottled form.

For what it's worth, I prefer this to Breakfast Stout. Bring on the KBS!


The Two-Schlitz Scale™: (see my profile for an explanation)
Puny lager cannot hurt Imperial Stout! Imperial Stout smash!

Photo of John_M
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very pleasantly surprised to see this on tap at Al's of Hampden yesterday.

The beer pours a dark, almost vicuous brownish black color with very good head retention and considerable sticky lacing. The nose is all RIS goodness, consisting of considerable coffee, vanilla and dark chocolate. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this moderately sweet stout, but with enough underlying bitterness to buoy that sweetness very nicely. Mouthfeel is smooth and very long, and I get a hint of licorise in the finish that is attractive. Drinkability is pretty good, though you can certainly tell the abv. is up there a bit.

While no KBS or CBS, this is still a very solid, very enjoyable RIS from Founders. When it comes to imperial stouts, I think it's readily apparent that the folks at Founders know what they're doing.

Photo of BBP
4.82/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours about as black as beer gets. Has a moderate amount of dark brown head, and produces tons of lace.

S- Magnificent aroma. There's tons of bitterness in it from the roasted malts and cocoa, and I'm sure it has it's share of hops as well. Very much dark malt as well. If I had to use two words to describe it, I'd pick cocoa and bitterness. A bit of licorice in the nose as well.

T- First it reminded me of Peche Mortel, and then it reminded me of The Abyss. That being said, it's damn tasty. It has an incredible amount of chocolate in it, and a ton of dark malts, roasted malts, coffee, and licorice as well. It's jam-packed with flavor, and I'm wondering how it can be so inexpensive as I'm drinking it. It has so many different malts competing with each other and your taste buds are the real winner. I find with many imperial stouts, there's a certain flavor that they play on, and it is pretty dominant, but this has several flavors to work with, giving it a lot of depth. The bottle says 90 IBU's, and it helps me understand how it can somehow maintain balance.

M- Heavy but not entirely thick. Carbonation gives it a smooth finish. It's on the dry side, and a bit stickier than most.

D- Extremely drinkable. It reminds me of a ton of very thick full bodied stouts because of the flavor, but at the same time, it doesn't go down like a meal. It's a full, solid stout, but it drinks easy. I picked up 1 4pk to try it, but had to grab another 2 to stock up on it. I'd buy a whole case if there wasn't duty at the border.

Photo of russwbeck
4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours out of the bottle like syrup. Black as the night with a very small brown head that doesn't hang around for too long.

S: Smell is roasty, full of chocolate and some coffee, a slight hoppiness.

T: A bit of a bite up front, followed by nice chocolate and fudge. This gives way to a dry coffee finish.

MF: Very thick overall, but not as thick as I thought it would be watching it pour. A bit a of bite, not much carbonation overall. I'd call it almost silky.

D: Decent drinkability. I really enjoyed the taste, but don't think I could put down too many in a row.

Late 2010 or early 2011 vintage paired with the late 2011 edition. I'll be referring to the former as the 2011 vintage, and the latter as 2012

A: The 2011 pours out of the bottle with only a very thin light brown head, while the 2012 forms a beautiful, large brown head. Neither has a great retention and the 2012 laces much nicer. For both, the beer sits a motor oil black in the glass. (3.5 / 4.5)

S: The smells have really similar qualities, but the 2011 has developed really nicely. The 2011 is big on dark chocolate, and features molasses and booze. Only a really small amount of roast, if any at all, remains. In terms of 2012, coffee and roast play a much larger role. The booze and molasses level on each are pretty much the same, but it works a bit better in the 2011. The 2012 by contrast, seems to be a little bit more disjointed, or perhaps just a bit bigger. (3.5 / 4)

T: Starting with the 2011, the chocolate is definitely the focus. Undercut by some booze, the taste is sweet and surprisingly has a really roasty finish. The 2012 is certainly a better put together beer. The chocolate is still the base, but the coffee and roast really assert themselves nicely. The added roast seems to have covered up the booze. Still sweet, the fresher taste is better in my opinion. (4 / 4.5)

MF: Both are really thick, but the 2011 certainly showed more alcohol. The 2012 had a much dryer finish and a more pleasant mouthfeel overall. Both were still pretty drinkable, but the ABV did wear on my after a bit. (3.5 / 4)

O: This is a really phenomenal beer and is a great representation of the style. I think it aged pretty well, but it still tastes better fresh. I still have a few left, so we'll see how it hold up, but I'd say drink it fresh and don't look back! (4 / 4.5)

Photo of TheBungyo
4.61/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2008 Bottle.

Onyx. Obsidian. Coal. I could throw out synonyms for black for days, but hopefully the hint is clear. This is one dark beer. The head, a half inch high crown the color of runny mud, lasts for a minute or two before dissolving into a glass hugging ring.

Nose is baking chocolate, chocolate syrup and booze. Not this beer's strongest suit but still very good.

Man oh man does this taste good. First sip and my mouth is assaulted with rich fudge, milk chocolate, baking chocolate, and a finish that mixes char with more milky chocolate. This is just an amazing example of an imperial stout. Finish is nice and dry too.

Only a mouth luscious and thick could do a beer like this justice and this mouth does. Smooth like velvet.

If I didn't have a job to go to tomorrow or a limited supply of this I could drink this one forever. Wow.

Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.34/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Founders Imperial Stout is roasty, a little smokey, and licorice-sweet.

It poured black with no head and it left very little lace. The smell was strong and smokey; the flavor was sweet and candy-like, dominated by licorice, but with a roasty finish and a hint of smoke. The feel was fantastic, with a great deal of breadiness and bitterness to perfectly balance the sweet flavor.

Founders Imperial Stout is a balanced RIS with a huge alcohol presence and a great blend of sweet and roasted flavors and a bitter and smokey finish.

Photo of Gmann
4.42/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black color with a thick brown head that slowly disipated into a solid ring.

The aroma is fantastic. Milk chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate are forefront with hints of very light coffee. Typical founders stout aroma, wonderful.

The flavor is a mix of milk and bitter chocolates, roasted malt, and caramel. This is a dark milky way in a glass. There are some subtle dark fruit notes to round out the flavor.

The feel is unreal, so smooth. Full body with soft carbonation, silky silky silky feel. Sweet and bitter on the palate; finishes bitter.

Great beer.

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

Served on-tap in a pint glass. Deep dark, black body with a small dark tan head. The head dissipates quickly but leaves nice rings of lace all down the top half of the glass.

Aroma - nearly perfect. Rich chocolate up front, followed by dark fruit, roasted malt and a just a touch of tart hops at the back end. Every other whiff I get a hint of alcohol, but not much.

The taste is amazing. The chocolate, toffee and roasted malt flavors blend effortlessly and are not harsh in any way. I detect nearly no alcohol.

This is the best non-barrel aged stout I've ever had. Delicious.

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

Finally, a beer getting excited about! This brew has it all, and I give it high marks on all aspects for the style. It's thick, nearly chewy, black as night, roasty, coffee in nose, bit-o-licorice in the taste to go along with the nose. I could honestly live without the licorice, but, I'm sure it's there for some reason. Not much in the chocolate, but, not overwhelming in the coffee either. However, there is a lot of flavor! When finished, there is sediment in the glass. There's just too much stuff in the beer to be absorbed! I love a nice RIS, and I would have to say this is my new favorite! Better than Old Rasputin, Brooklyn Chocolate, and even Chocolate Yeti. (High praise from me indeed!) Seek this one out, and hopefully, you'll find a 4-pack for $11 or $12.

Photo of CooperEllis
3.89/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12oz into the DFH snifter.

Pour is deep and dark brown, with a rich chocolate head that leaves a mess of lacing across the brew and sides of the glass.

Very strong licorice aroma; some malt at the back but simply overpowered by the licorice.

Full rich flavor. I had this paired with dutch gouda and the flavors balanced nicely, the mouthfeel comes into play a good deal with the thickness of the stout allowing more of the complexity to be revealed as it takes longer for the liquid to clear the palate. Roast, licorice, coffee and malt.

Very thick but not syrupy. Good carbonation. Really spot on mouthfeel.

Aside from the abv being masked in the flavor and the nose by the stong licorice notes this is quite an easy (perhaps too easy) a drink.


Photo of zoso1967
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This bad boy pours an impenetrable black brown with one of the darkest heads I have ever seen. The head is pretty much the color of a very dark hot chocolate. This is the second beer from this four pack, so I knew to pour it hard and right down the center. With the subdued carbonation it created a pretty modest head that slowly melted into the liquid. The lace that this beer produces is stubborn and clings to the snifter making interesting designs.

The aroma on this beer is incredible. It consists of: fudge, black coffee, bitter cocoa, caramel, molasses, anise, black cherries, bread and a hint of citrus. All of this is set off by a slight alcoholic hotness. This is one of those beers that I enjoy sniffing before every sip.

The flavor is super rich and intense, picking up where the aroma left off. Plenty of roasty coffee character mixed with decadent fudge, bitter cocoa, char, dark fruits, toffee and some prickly citrusy hops. Just like in the aroma there is a bit of heat, but it is kept in check quite well. The coffee and chocolate flavors are amazing in their intensity and richness. This is a great after dinner beer.

The mouthfeel is pretty serious, just like every other aspect of this brew. I would consider it to be full and it has a nice smoothness to it. The low carbonation is spot on with just enough to keep it from getting too heavy on the palate. The finish is laced with roasty malt, sweet molasses and spiky hops.

This is one to savor and for good reason. What this beer lacks in subtlety it makes up for with bold and complex flavors. Every sip you can latch on to a different aspect and be wowed by the skill it must have taken to make a beer like this. When I approached the end of the glass I enjoyed a bit of good quality 60% cocoa chocolate with what was left and this beer made the chocolate taste disappointing.

Photo of rrski198
4.1/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First review done at room temperature.

Second done at 40 degrees. I will take both and give the ratings as an average.

A: Jet black and oily thick pour. Little cola/mocha colored head that disapeared quickly. Little to no lacing. (No difference)

S: Sweet chocolate malt followed closely by an odd metalic/dirt scent. Cant quite put my finger on it. Nice hop bitter/earthy backbone. (Second review; Bitter sweet malt, spicy alcohol, charred wood, nails it for the style.)

T: Big fluffy sweet wave up front followed closely by the metal/dirty flavor. Quite off putting. I do like the hop and alcohol spice at the end and this sticks around the sides of my tongue. (Second review; burn malt up front, followed by burnt brown sugar and charred wood, fiishes with some really nice alcohol heat and a great hop bitterenss around the sides of the tongue. This is a real nice example of the style and while it is colder, the alcohol is much milder. it doesn't kick ight up front.)

M: Thick, chewy, oily. Spicy from the hops and booze with a mild tingle on the gums. Booze is right up front here. (Second review; Thick syrup, has the consistency of simple syrup. Great sweet/bitter balance. The heat from the booze is there, but very subdued.)

D: I am interested to try this beer at a colder temperature, however, with this review, I have to say I am quite disapointed. Founders is a first class brewery and this just doesn't measure up to their standards. There are many more imperial stouts out there that are head and shoulder above this. (Second review; Ok i retract everything. At a colder temp, this is quite awesome. I usually use North Coast Old Rasputian as the standard for this style and this is quite close. I have totaly re-done my review based upon how good this was at a colder temp. I am very impressed, but then again, I ahve never been let down by founders. I used to think that Stone was my favorite brewery, well, they have company.

Photo of TheFightfan1
3.82/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to a colleague at my work for getting this for me. Poured into a snifter. Pours very thick almost like syrup on pancakes in my glass.Opague black with a tiny light brown covering some lacing globs throughout. Heavy,Heavy,Heavy.

Smell is naturally dominant in roasted malts,chocolate, slightly sweet lactic aroma. Subtle hop presence.

Taste is all chocolate.Followed with a sweeter caramel backing. Slight fruit taste of plum,raisins,even fig. Hot on the breath with a blast of hot alcohol on the palate.A slight smoke as well in the finish.

Mouth is very thick and syrupy. Slick texture,full bodied a slight chore to sip.

A solid R.I.S. and I do like just about everything I've had from Founders but this to me doesn't belong in the Top 100 beers of the world. Very basic.

Photo of chilly460
4.38/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Completely black and opaque, looks thick as it's poured. Nice dark brown mocha head, this looks like a RIS should.

S - Lots of roasted coffee, anise, licorice, and big malt background. Lots going on here, very warm aroma.

T - Slight roasted bitterness but not overboard, big chocolate coffee flavor. Some "woody" flavor, maybe some leathery tones. Finishes vanilla and roasted malts. Really liked this one.

M - Founders does it again, this is oily thick with chewiness and minimal carbonation. Just like a RIS should be.

D - I like that it's not over-hopped like a lot of American RIS, this one is drinkable as a true RIS style comes.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of hooliganlife
3.96/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

vintage 2009/10 release, aged 1 year.

pours jet black with a nice viscosity. chocolate like head that gives way to a light cocoa retention. light lacing.

scent is a bit light. roasted malt, dark chocolate, and a rich toffee dominate. light vanilla bean.

a bit light in flavor, although blended quite well. a nice infusion of robust roasted malt, bitter chocolate, and espresso. very dark but balanced.

very full, chewy, and with a nice moderate carbonation. has some bite to it. gums tingle, could be from alcohol although its well hidden.

this is pretty decent, not a sugary desert bomb that many imperial stouts turn into. has some bite it. i dig it.

Photo of Auracom
4.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From notes. 12 oz. bottle on February 6th, 2011 in a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

A - Completely opaque, oily black coloring. No light getting through this one. One finger mocha-colored head. Light brown coating on the sides of the glass.

S - Huge, huge roasted nose. Some booze, caramel malts, some coffee, lots of dark chocolate.

T - Much of the same as the smell. Alcohol is a bit less apparent in the taste. Slight bitterness and more sweetness coming through as well.

M - Body is thick as hell. Oily coating lingers on the tongue for quite a while. Extra chewy. Carbonation is just enough. Really enjoyable in this aspect.

D - Gets knocked here for the abv, just too much detection/presence.

*Having revisited this one multiple times, including in a recent stout tasting, I'm deciding to bring the score up a bit. FIS seems to have my ideal base profile for an imperial stout. I still think it has a bit more heat than I'd like when fresh though.*

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

poured from 2011 bottle into snifter.

pours a gorgeous black with thick fluffy brown head. after a few minutes it settled down leaving no square cm of glass without lacing.

chocolate, roasted malts and maybe even some cherry hit the nose. the high bitterness balances out the sweetness exceptionally. the alcohol is there but blends nicely. it never slaps you in the face like many high abv brews.

nice and creamy with a thick body. in my opinion, simply perfect.

easily my favorite Founders Stout.

Photo of surlytheduff
4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from 2011 release (I cannot for the life of me locate the inkjet bottled on date), drank from a snifter. The beer poured a deep dark piano-black, and initially seemed like it wasn't going to have much of a head. Then it was like a mad scientist's experiment, with black jets of bubbles shooting up towards the surface. After a few moments it settled into a beautiful 2 1/2 finger choclotey-brown head, which left wonderful lacing as it receded.

The aroma was full of sweet and roasted malts, fresh Starbuck's coffee, rich chocolate cake and a little bit of hops. The taste was phenomenal. Bitter dark chocolate, roasted bready malts, a little bit of alcohol, some hop bitterness and iced coffee. It was very well carbonated, a medium to full body and a mouth-coating creaminess. This was the freshest I've ever had FIS, and it was truly a wonderful experience. Three thumbs up!

Photo of ChadQuest
4.65/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Squid Ink. Pitch Black. Head slowly forms into a menacing monster of coffee colored magic.
Aroma of chocolate and roasted malts, downright espresso when you get right into it with your nose. this is one hellava stout aroma. If the visual and aroma presentation doesn't make me wanna get into this, i am a sick person.
This mother is sooo smoooth, such a absolute rich creamy roasted flavor, like milk chocolate with finely ground espresso baked in. Just so deep and dense, endless.
HHmmm...i might go get a case. i could do this again for the rest of winter. no problem.
If this was a Waxed bomber sold one day, it would be massive, but 12oz bottles can't fit much hype inside, just amazing beer.

Photo of argock
4.52/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap in a 10oz stemmed clear glass snifter at beer Run (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Completely opaque black with burnished cakey brown 1/2-finger of head with good retention and lines of lace sedimenting the glass.

S: Black forest chocolate cake with a light cherry cordial glaze is my best stab and encapsulating the aroma. The dark bread aroma is unique with a delicious bittersweet dark chocolate punch and plenty of cold black coffee to go around. The breadiness is a definite departure from FBS. Hops are tobacco and earthy.

T: Flavor is deep and rich with chocolate and coffee mingling with that same cakey, dark sweet bread flavor that finishes with an ample dose of earthy hoppiness. The dark maltiness is not underplayed a bit, and alcohol is not detected. This went excellently with the double chocolate cake for a wonderful dessert.

M: Full-bodied without being overly viscous or oily. Rich and creamy it has a palate-coating quality that flows seamlessly.

D: A fantastic imperial stout. Without a doubt, I will have to find some of these bottles when they come around and stash them away. Compares very closely in quality to Bell's Expedition Stout, but Founder IS definitely lands on the sweeter, breadier side of the style versus more roasted and hop-aggressive.

Founders Imperial Stout from Founders Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 6,374 ratings.