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Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) | Founders Brewing Company

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Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.40%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
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."

ABV varies by batch.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-13-2004

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Reviews: 3,052 | Ratings: 11,946
Photo of Gables
4.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

First experience with KBS. 2016 poured into a tulip. Coffee, chocolate and bourbon just as advertised. Velvet in a glass, I don't know if I'd even age this one as the coffee pairs wonderfully with this brew. Awesome

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Photo of h0wdy
4.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Look: Deep brew.
Smell: I detected a strong smell of coffee throughout the entire brew.
Taste: The smell of coffee was in the taste with a nice finish of the liquor.
Feel: A worth while investment to your beer collection in my books!
Overall: Over the course of drinking this two nights in a row, I would recommend to pick this up the next time you see it for at least a tasting of one bottle!

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Photo of Raff1150
4.16/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I will start by saying that I don't particularly love stouts. I will try to be objective.

L: Pretty standard look for a stout

S:Lots of coffee and and chocolate

T: Again lots of coffee and chocolate, followed by bourbon

F: Impressively light for a 12% abv. This is what really made the beer for me. I was expecting something more thick from such a high abv dark beer.

O: I am not a huge fan of stouts, and this beer was not enough of a revelation to change my opinion. I would probably not pay the ridiculous price for this beer again (I'd like to see this site add a "value" tab in addition to LSTFO). But compared to other stouts, this one does have features that stand out. So if you are a stout fan, go for it! And PS: yes it's better at room temp.

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

Dark black with a light mocha colored head. Has a slight creaminess to it.

Aroma of sweet chocolate up front, with the bourbon behind it, not overly aggressive but its bright and present.
I dont really smell the coffee.

Taste is chocolatey fudge and bourbon. There is an alcohol burn in the back of the throat at first, not as bad as the beer warms. The vanilla appears as it warms as well.

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

Bottled 2/16/16. I'm comparing this to the only other beer I've tasted like it - Alesmith's BBA Speedway.
A - A nice pour out of the bottle at about cellar temperature, yielding a mocha head that dissipated quickly. Not quite as sludgy as the BBA Speedway.
S - Huge aromas of bourbon and coffee straight out of the bottle. Some oak and vanilla, but the coffee and bourbon are pretty much dominating everything else.
T - Intense bitter coffee notes, sharp bourbon, chocolate, roasted malt.
F - Feels thinner than the Speedway. Perhaps the beer is a touch too young, and the alcohol and the hops combine to give it a thinner mouthfeel than it otherwise is.
O - A very impressive beer that will likely be better in a few months from now.

Edit 5/6/2016: What a difference a month makes!
The alcohol has subsided a bit, and that allows the coffee and chocolate to shine. The mouthfeel is much improved as well. This is definitely on the fuller side now. Looking forward to cracking open another bottle in 2 weeks from now to see how it has developed.

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Photo of Reckage
4.91/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottled on 3/4/15. Little over a year cellared, busted this one out for the Walking Dead season finale. Look is black with some light on the edges, nice mocha head, some lacing here and there. Smell is bourbon alcohol with coffee lite chocolate. Taste is amazing, like a bourbon coffee fudge dessert bar with bourbon leading the way. Mouthfeel is medium heavy, leaning towards medium. Overall a crazy stout with crazy hype, love it from start to finish. Let this beast warm to get full effect. Did not really see any big improvements from a year of age, but am looking forward to grabbing 2016 version this Tuesday. Top notch brew indeed, now just need to get my hands on the ghost which is CBS.

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Photo of atr2605
4.5/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-pours black with a tan head with great retention
S-cocoa, vanilla, oak, toasted marshmallow
T-more cocoa and vanilla, tons of roasted coffee, and more toasted marshmallow
M-full bodied and creamy
O-excellent imperial stout, oak adds nice complexity and smoothness

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Photo of BrewsingBuffalo
4.68/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2016 Vintage|Bottled 02/16/16

L: Pours a near-black, with a mocha-like head that which recedes to a creamy collar. Some lacing is apparent, but not in abundance.

S: Roast, coffee, bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, booze, a slight hint of smoke, and some dark fruits.

T: Similar to the aroma: Roast, coffee. chocolate, oak, bourbon, char, vanilla, a bit of booze and it's accompanying heat, a lingering roasty bitterness that is not at all overwhelming or out of place.

F: Lighter than expected (which is a strength for my palate) Very smooth with moderate carbonation and a stickiness that compounds over time.

O: Fantastic. Brilliantly complex and the flavors are delightfully balanced. The booze is slightly more apparent than I'd like, but I presume a little time will assist in that regard. Highly recommended.

Note(s): Warming this beer before serving is imperative to experiencing all of it's lovely nuances. 10 minutes out of the fridge was not sufficient.

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Photo of mobrado
4.36/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Not among my favorite bourbon-barrel-aged stouts, but very pleasant nonetheless. Surprisingly the vanilla and cocoa notes almost overpower the coffee for me (not a bad thing). The main drawback is that it feels thin for the ABV. Terrific value when compared to some other barrel-aged offerings (if you can get it).

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Photo of PhillyB
4.99/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Damn. I was really hoping this beer was overrated and that it wouldn't be as great as I'd heard.

Look: Black. Pours like used motor oil, thin brown head.

Smell: Slight alcohol, dark fudge, black coffee, heavy cream

Taste: Dark chocolate fudge, espresso, and a vanilla/bourbon that grows as the beer warms.

Feel: Thick, creamy, and almost oily. There is an ever so slight alcohol nip in the beginning and towards the end. Just gives a nice warming sensation, very well balanced.

Overall: This is the only 5/5 overall I've given, and it is rightly deserved. This fulfills every expectation I have in a Imperial Stout, and surpasses it. Well done Founders, well done!

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Photo of jphipps83
4.61/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Not a stout guy, but couldn't pass it up when my local asked me if I wanted it. Bottle poured into a snifter, 2016 version. Black in color, little head that disappeared quickly. Bourbon, bourbon, bourbon, with a little chocolate on the nose. Taste is great, bourbon and chocolate are very heavy, and a little heat in the aftertaste. Thick, viscous mouthfeel, goes down very easily to be such a heavy beer. Glad I got this one, and will seek out again. I would put this slightly ahead of the Abyss, great beer.

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Photo of ShawnoftheD3ad
4.68/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Such an excellent stout. Very coffee forward this year. Alittle bit thin on the mouthfeel but hopefully a little age will cure that. Not as hot as I heard but freshness will make that noticeable. Bottled 2-16-2016

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Photo of MACrist
4.76/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

APPEARANCE: Pours a rich black with a finger of tan head that settles down quickly into a foamy ring. Good looking carbonation when rocking the glass. Some spotty lacing and legs down the glass.
AROMA: A whiff of bourbon right off the bat. Molasses, nice coffee, chocolate, and vanilla notes, and also slight licorice, smoke, and leather.
TASTE: Basically everything I got in the aroma with the bourbon coming out first and then a nice blend of all the other flavors following along with a nice lingering, growing bitterness.
FEEL: Plenty of carbonation but still had a creamy quality. Sticky on the lips, pretty full body.
OVERALL: First BBA stout for me, won't be my last. This was a nice treat.

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Photo of jaypaul522
4.91/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Real fresh from 4/1 beer hunt. Poured deep black with nice thick head. Smell is strong bourbon, coffee and chocolate. First taste hits hard with the bourbon, but from then on it is smooth with the coffee and chocolate coming through very nicely. The feel of this was medium - not as full as some others. Overall, this is as great a beer as everyone had told me, and I loved the aroma and taste.

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Photo of CoreyC
4.58/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh as possible - 4/1 release, purchase and consumption
A - Super black with a tremendous tan/brown head
S - Very strong and pleasing coffee and chocolate
T - Delicious with coffee flavor dominance, very slight bitterness at the finish
F - Thick and oily
O - Fantastic coffee stout - results meet the hype. Lucky enough to have landed 11 more that I'll consume over time (up to one year unless it starts lose too much coffee).

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Photo of Tsharma
4.94/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The alcohol is surprisingly well hidden on this, considering the 2016 release is 12.4%. The aroma is mostly coffee and bourbon. It tastes of coffee, chocolate and bourbon and the bourbon lingers. Has a thick oily mouthfeel.

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Photo of MusicBeer_1961
4.9/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This 2016 release is a fantastic brew. It's superbly blended. 12.4% ABV? It's so smooth, it won't slow you down..but you'll want to take your time with this one. Like all fine imperial/double stouts, the flavors of KBS get more complex as it warms. On the taste, you get coffee, chocolate, bourbon and the oak flavor from the barrel.. But one does not dominate over the other. All flavors coexist in perfect harmony. The smell is as good as the taste. It's just slightly on the thin side as it relates to mouthfeel, so that's the only area I would downgrade it a bit.. I'm glad I was able to score a 4 pack of this yesterday. I'll drink 3 fresh and save one for age.. I have a few Bottles of 2016 SMS left and plan to do a 2016 KBS vs SMS side by side. I can't wait for that as I really like both brews.. Cheers!...

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Photo of ZebulonXZogg
4.15/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a thick black with a surprising caramel colored head. Bourbon aroma dominates the nose with bitter coffee and chocolate flavors and big boozy finish. Overall, I was a bit disappointed in this. I'm hoping a few months in the back of the fridge helps

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Photo of BiaSongThan
4.74/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rating based on the fresh 2016
bottled 2-11-16 enjoyed 4-1-16. Comes in a beautiful black/ deep brown with a half finger of coffee colored head. Aroma is coffee, chocolate, bourbon, oak, and alcohol. Taste, this one is HOT! the booziness hits up front and comes back in the finish. There is great coffee, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, oak, dark fruits, etc, but that booze really detracts and disappoints. Also a bit more thin than I prefer my stouts, but if the booziness hadnt been there I probably wouldnt have noticed. I had a bottle of '15 in January and enjoyed it much more, less hot and more of the bourbon and base stout flavors came through. Glad to try it fresh, so happy I have 3 more and I will definitely be aging them in hopes that the heat subsided and the mouthfeel thickens up. In the meantime, I have plenty of FIS to enjoy :)

Had a second bottle of 16. Still not as chewy as I like, but it's not hot. That's just bourbon flavor. It tastes a lot like bourbon, and tonight I'm digging it!

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Photo of Gambyt20
4.56/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Great nose on this beer. Bourbon and coffee dominate the smell in a very good way. Taste follows the nose and the chocolate comes thru at the end. Very well balanced and great sipper. This was from bottle dated 2/16/16 and would love to try this on tap. Stocked up to age some but since I love coffee stouts, might be drinking these sooner than later. Great stuff.

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Photo of ocelot2500
5/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep ebony color with a tight, mocha head that leaves chunks of lacing.

Smells of bourbon, espresso, and chocolate notes.

Tastes of deep roasted notes layered with vanilla and bourbon. Roasted notes lead off with cocoa, brown sugar, and espresso with moderate sweetness. This gives way to some baker's chocolate along with some vanilla. Oaked bourbon notes come next. Finishes with a lingering, roasted and vanilla sweetness.

Mouthfeel is full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is an incredibly tasty stout that hits all the right notes. Almost like an adult chocolate milk, plus the alcohol is hidden really well, dangerously so.

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Photo of Umdrunner
4.43/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured black with 1 finger mocha head that dissapeared quickly and lightly laced. Scent was rich chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, and light bourbon. Scent was very strong right after pour, then faded quickly. Flavor was roasted malt, coffee, dark chocolate, burnt oak and bourbon. There is a definite, though satisfying, bourbon heat that lingers. Mouthfeel is moderate with lively carbonation. As the beer warms it seems to soften. The dark chocolate flavors blend to milk chocolate and I begin to taste light brown sugar.

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

Sublime - One of the best beers there is. Strong roast and bourbon aroma and flavor, with chocolate and coffee in the background. Thick mouthfeel coating the tongue and letting the taste linger. Warming alcohol evident, but doesn't effect the tast.

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

One of the best Stouts I have ever had! A perfect blend of chocolate and coffee with a subtle bourbon undertone, simply perfection!! Thanks Founders, so glad I live in Michigan, you gotta try this one!

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Photo of luisitoelmatador88
4.56/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Very dark, black with a brownish hue and outline. small tan head that goes like the wind.

Aroma: quite possibly the best characteristic of the beer. You get a fudgey chocolate enveloped in coffee action. Very little alcohol presence to be spoken for. You don't get the bourbon at first, more at the end.
side note: as it warms you get a bit more of the bourbon presence naturally. Also smells like chocolate / vanilla cake to be honest.

Taste: very nice. you get the coffee and chocolate notes up front. Then you get a roasted bourbon type character followed but a decent linger of bitterness. I guess there is a bit a vanilla somewhere in here.

Mouthfeel: pretty satisfactory. Its about a medium, maybe a medium plus at most for the style and strength. carbonation is still well and alive after over a year of aging.

Overall: It's good and I am glad I got to try it.

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Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) from Founders Brewing Company
4.56 out of 5 based on 11,946 ratings.
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