KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)
Founders Brewing Company

KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)
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American Imperial Stout
Ranked #11
Ranked #27
4.65 | pDev: 8.6%
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)
Notes: What we’ve got here is an imperial stout brewed with a massive amount of coffee and chocolates, then cave-aged in oak bourbon barrels for an entire year to make sure wonderful bourbon undertones come through in the finish. Makes your taste buds squeal with delight.

Now labeled as "KBS."

ABV varies by batch.
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Reviews: 3,474 | Ratings: 13,681
Photo of mcallister
4.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is my second review of this monster. I've let this one decant for 1 hour before trying. The nose is now going to a more pronounced fresh ground coffe, cappacino, with a choclate oat vanilla linger. The nose on this brew is really something else, hard to keep my face out of the glass.

I hate to give a beer a perfect score but I just did. My first review of this brew it scored pretty high but wasn't perfect. After decanting for an hour this beer has opened up tremendously.

The mouth feel is like velvet gliding across the palate. The same gargantuan fresh coffee taste dominates the coffee, vanilla, and choclatey oat. The bourbon taste somewhat subdued adds a real genuine complexity helping the finish linger for over 40 seconds.

Luckily I have 5 more bottles of this gem I will be cellaring for the next year or two. Can't wait to reivew it again in about 6 months.

If you can find this beer snag it up; well worth the $17.99 price tag for the four pack. If you're looking for it I may trade a bottle to a fellow BA'er for something I can't get around here. All I can do say share the wealth and hope someone does the same.


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Photo of unclederby
4.63/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

So i just paid $4.99 for this 12 oz. bottle. But hey, i priced it myself, and that's probably pretty cheap. Dissapointed by the regular B-fast Stout - i hope this is worth it...

Opaque ebony, this thing poured out with just a whisp of a tan head, and that didn't stay around long. Smells of chocolate, french roast, dark malts and bourbon... taste is the same, and pretty well balanced really: not too sweet and just a touch of bitterness. Alcohol is apparent but not harsh in the least. All of the ingredients are very well integrated and represented here, and this is a nice, rich stout that goes down smoothly.

Thick, creamy and resinous; the mouthfeel is superb.

I'm finding this highly drinkable, and only it's richness and pricetag would keep me from putting down more than two of these in a sitting.

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Photo of guinness9880
4.82/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-This beer pours like pure engine oil absolutely no head to speak (I'm giddy already) thick as molassas.

S-The smell of bourbon, chocolate, coffee and wood chips is amazingly complex.

T-This hits the palate with the a sweet smokey bourbon splash and rounds out with dark bitter chocolate,cocoa and espresso. The balance between the alcohol of the bourbon and the sweetness of the chocolate and coffee is perfect.

The ability of founders to bring out such a wonderful oaked bourbon flavor without having the alcohol overpower the rich sweetness of the chocolate etc is remarkable. Founders has set the standard for barrel aged stouts. Period.

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.84/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was brought back from MI by my roommate. Hell of a haul, and this is probably the crown jewel.

The beer pours with no head, but once the beer stops pouring a thin little tan head rises and falls in the same amount of time. Still looks good. Very dark and completely opaque. Lacing is very minimal.

The smell is awesome. Vanilla bean, bourbon, wood, cocoa, bold black coffee, hops, and ethanol. Awesome stuff.

The taste is just as exceptional. Not too sweet, not too bitter or roasty, not too boozy, not too coffee flavored. Just a perfect balance.

The body is thick and chewey. Also very creamy with the lack of carbonation. Very good. Very drinkable despite the bold flavors and high alcohol. Even though I got a hell of a good buzz off of one, I want another. But alas I must refrain.

I love it, and I'm so glad that my roommate timed his trip to MI when he did.

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Photo of granger10
4.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I think this actually did live up to my expectations. Pours a jet black color with a nice initial cappucino like head. Small traces of lacing and the head dwindles to a skim layer atop the liquid.

Aroma is quite roasty with bitter chocolate notes and woody underlyings. It doesn't come out and grab you like some other beers but it is quite intense. Maybe my nose is a little stuffed. Only hints of the bourbon and vanilla come out during the smell.

Taste begins with a rich dark chocolate flavor wrapped in some fine roasted espresso. Reminiscent of chocolate covered espresso beans. The coffee is not quite as strong as in the Breakfast Stout but the chocolate/coffe interplay might be better, if that was possible. A milk chocolate creaminess comes forth after the dark chocolate dissolves. Slight traces of oak and vanilla lie underneath the whole way. Them along with the bourbon come out quite strongly in the finish cutting out the espresso sensations. Its all much more flavorful than burning though. The finish has almost a candybar (the good ones, not the cheap crap) flavor with the slightest warming effect going down my tummy. Quite amazing.

Somehow this beer, with all the intense flavors and rich complexities, was quite smooth. The flavors had this connection which created a great interplay all around. The moderate carbonation worked beautifully and the body was nice and thick. This might not have been the most complex beer in the world but I think it was just right and stayed concentrated on the flavors in wanted.

This was also quite drinkable. The alcohol was noticeable but did not detract at all from my enjoyment. Much more of a flavor element than a burning one. 3 bottles were consumed over the course of the night with relative ease. I restrained myself from finishing off my 4 pack. I must go get more.

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Photo of Sephiroth
4.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just released in IN today. I bought as much as I could. Pours pitch black with a nice initial head, and a solid wall of lacing. Smells of dark roasted coffee and vanilla bean, slight bourbon, alcohol is apparent.

Holy fu#kin shit! This lives up to all the hype, and is worth every penny I paid for it. Coffee and deeply roasted malt, with vanilla and bourbon, oak in the finish. Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, foamy too. This is what they serve for breakfast in heaven.

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Photo of Skidz
4.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours out deep, light-absorbing brownish-black and sits dead black in the glass with a good sized deep brown head, fading to a faint skim with tiny lacings forming around the glass.

Smells industriously roasted with scads of charred coffee and deep dark chocolate. Dry wooden tones resonate throughout with tinges of bourbon. Alcohol plumes out like it were an Irish coffee.

Flavor is deafeningly roasty, major clots of dark cocoa flakes and the blackest roast of coffee imaginable. Bourbon takes the lead and dishes out burnt caramel and strong wooden tones matched with bits of smokiness. Finishes mild-moderately bitter with clear and distinct charred malt flavors and the ever-present notes of bourbon.

Get past the romantic allures of the aroma and flavor and you'll find yourself in a near-wonderland of thick and smooth motions of this wet and soppy alternative to motor oil. Fine and mild carbonation, big bold body.

A barrel aged improvement of an already outstanding beer. If you thought red wine drinkers have it bad off after a good session with wine stained teeth and tounges, you will have your own problems when you look in the mirror and have a nice black coating over your lips and tongue Can't get rid of the flavor coming from this beer with a front-end loader.

Caution: it may actually take two to tango.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.79/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz single, Riley's, $4.99

This one obviously comes with a tremendous amount of hype and once again Riley's comes through

appearance: generic bourbon bottle label, pours thick and syrupy into a snifter, has that motor oil characteristic to it...rich and dark chocolately brown, bordering on night black. only a small chocolate head that dissipates rather quickly

smell: rich and bold, dark roast comes out in a powerful way! huge roasted malt, charred wood, rich dark chocolate, delicate bourbon aromas, earthy hop presence...pretty damn solid all around

taste: jesus, what a stout! It's thick, it's rich, it's explosive, it's bourbon aged. This is a full flavour stout, no doubt about it. Heavy roastiness felt immediately, rich dark roast beans, defined woodyness definitely felt...bourbon flavours are delicate (not overpowering like some) and very complimentary to the other flavours. the end result is a sweet, alcohol infused kick. sweet and smooth dark chocolate...delicious!

mouthfeel: thick, syrupy, full bodied, smooth, roasted, abv well hidden, bourbon touch on the tongue, slight bitterness

drinkability: so good, so easy

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.87/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours from the bottle like old motor oil; black, high viscosity, low carbonation. Small head of brown foam was only present for a minute before fading away. Strong aromas of roasted dark chocolate, malts, coffee, whisky. Great. Taste is full bodied and powerful; flavors of coffee, malt, unsweetened dark chocolate, a touch of hops, warming alcohol notes likely from the bourbon ageing. Nice. Mouthfeel was thick and dense; liquid flavor-brick as I like to call it. The finish was warm, and the alcohol had the ever-so-light bite. Not wonderful drinkability, but darn good. Another winner from Founders, even if I do prefer the original Breakfast stout. Recommended nonetheless.

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Photo of Px2GrafX
4.82/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a deep dark black with a 1 inch dark tan head in a snifter glass. poured vigourously to get 1 inch. head drops to a ring quickly, (typical of founders stouts) but it still laces well, and you just don't need it to keep the aroma lingering 'til the end. aroma is very pungent from the snifter with huge roasted malt, wood, coffee, chocolate and alcohol. oh, and yes, strong bourbon aromas. wonderful nose. something different dominates with each sniff. first sip goes through a wide array of flavors. burnt malt with earthy hops, coffee and chocolate. sweet tails off to a strong woody oak and bourbon flavored warming alcohol. this is the only way i can enjoy the flavor of bourbon. :) quite nice. dark chocolate tickles the sides of your tongue while a sweet vanilla lingers on the tip. back of the sip is woody like the lingering effects of having a toothpick in your mouth all night. aftertaste is bitter roasted coffee and a cashew-like bourbon alcohol. delish. mouthfeel is a nice medium-heavy body with light carbonation and a tongue tingling alcohol effect. rolls super smoothly and swallows just as smoothly. drinkability is quite good considering the abv. bourbon by itself makes me wrinkle my nose, but there's no stopping me here. easy drinking, but stop and savor this one. overall, this is a very delicious ADS. i've had several founders breakfast stouts, and maybe i had a bad batch, because this is soooo much better. i can taste resemblences, but this is in a league of it's own. it renews my faith in founders' stouts.

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Photo of jj21
4.97/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hate to give a beer all 5's so I'll nit-pick.

Everything about this beer is dark. Pours syrupy black with dark tan head. Head doesn't last too long but aroma is strong enough to hold. Smells very close to regular Breakfast Stout. Side by side I don't think I could tell the two apart. Taste is also similar, but as it lingers in your mouth and warms, the Bourbon flavor comes out. Not overpowering at all but very smooth. Exceptional beer. Worth the hefty pricetag in my opinion.

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Photo of ypsifly
4.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Undated 12oz twist top stubby with a really cool "snake oil" looking label. Purchased at Bello Vino in Ann Arbor and poured into a snifter.

Black with a finger of cocoa that slowly falls and leaves fat rings of lace.

The nose is mostly coffee with a little bit of bourbon, roasted nuts, oak, and chocolate. Very nice.

The mouth is as full as it gets without needing a knife and fork, yet it does not stick or get oily in any way. This is one of if not the thickest beers I've ever had, yet its so damn smooth. The perfect mouth.

The taste has a lot of what the nose promises. Tons of malt with roasted coffee splashed with chocolate syrup and a sweet warming bourbon flavor that brings the barrel it was aged in. My tongue also picks up enough bitterness from the hops to add another layer of complexity. Chocolate powder and malt in the finish that stays on the tongue a long time but never wearing out their welcome.

Solid drinkability until that 10% gets on top of you.

The price for a four pack is a bit steep, but if you can get a single for under $5, go for it.

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Photo of BigDaddyWil
4.79/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My vote for most anticipated beer of the year. After having a sample at the MIchigan Winter Beer Fest, I just couldn't wait to get my hands on it. First time bottled and a limited number of cases, less than 250. I sure hope Founder's will produce more in the future, so everyone has the opportunity to try this beer. And at $18.00 a four pack, make it more affordable. Enough griping, on to the review.
Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a snifter glass.
Kick ass label, no freshness or batch date.

Inky black in color, with a half inch dark tan head. Fades quickly leaving some spotty lacing, and a oily like residue clinging to the glass. Beautiful aromas of coffee, chocolate, bourbon, wood, and vanilla. Every whiff just seems to get better. The taste mimics the smell, very complex, but oh so yummy. The boubon seems to tame some of chocolate and coffee flavors. Perfectly balanced and not heavy at all. Creamy smooth, and just a suttle hint of 10% abv. Very easy too drink, maybe two or three in one sitting. Worth the wait!!! If you like the Breakfast Stout, your gonna love this!!! Fantastic job!!!! Already looking foward to next years batch!!! Consider yourself lucky, if you can find it.

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Photo of plaztikjezuz
4/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

tasted this at the michigan brewers guild winter beer fest.
from my notes i wa served a jet black sample with a nice brown head
the aroma was rich with coffee, vanillia, and malt
the flavor had a great vanillia, good coffee undertone, malt, with a wounderful chocolate in the finish.
the mouthfeel is very full.
beer is very drinkable.

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Photo of tbone69
4.77/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Founder's Kentucky Breakfast Stout is an excellent mix of coffee, beer, and bourbon. The initial aroma is reminiscent of the regular Founder's Breakfast Stout, but there is something more to this beer. It pours into the glass in a thick, viscous motion, yet it lacks the overwhelming syrup-like quality that many strong stouts possess. At first taste there are strong hints of coffee which is then complimented by a smooth bourbon aftertaste. This is certainly one of the better coffee stouts that I have sampled, well worth the price per bottle. Founder's has produced yet another exceptional brew.

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Photo of sopor
4.72/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Deep crude oil black with golden tan edges supports a small mocha head. A very small slick of film spans the interior of the dark brown ring of foam. Smells of whiskey and chocolate with hints of coffee. Flavor start sweet, almost cloyingly so, of molasses with brandy soaked chocolate covered cherries. Falvors of oak and bourbon accompany the malty chocolatey goodness and compliment it very well! Roast malt and coffee comes on after the bourbon leaving an aftertaste of bitter coffee. Awesomely complex. Body is full and oilly, but not too heavy and thick to have a large impact on drinkability. Carbonation is delicate, and almost "green". Wow, good uber-stout. If you like the bourbon-barell aging fad, GET SOME! Very very tasty, so I could drink the hell out of it, right up until that 10% abv knocked me on my ass. Strong both in flavor and alcohol, so it can't score pefectly on drinkability.

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Photo of murrayswine
5/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I just got comped this from my distributor.
I know thats annoying and cliche, but damn, this is the best damn beer I've had that I can remember.
On the pour it's all motor oil, with a limp head that dies early. I figure Whiskey doesnt have a head when you pour it, so this wont have much either.
The smell is huge: coffee, whiskey, dark chocalate, english toffee, and sweet molassis. I'm sure I'm missing something but it's just too big.
The taste is strong as hell at first. Like a meaner Breakfast stout, but it mellows and molds to a subtle and complex beer (is beer the right word?). It's got a lot of a whiskey/cognac taste in it, but that serves to temper and smooth out the coffee roast. Without becoming repetitive and long winded...this beer is f-in amazing.

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Photo of Wildman
4.2/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured pitch black with no light getting through the dark mass. It formed a small dark tan bubbly head that faded fast and left only trace lace. The aroma was of malt, coffee/mocha and anise. The flavor was of malt, coffee, chocolate with a definate hint of burbon in the background. The body is rather light for the style and the finish is slightly dry with a warming affect of the alcohol. Another good beer from Founders.

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Photo of nlmartin
4.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer was served slightly chilled in a wide mouthed wine goblet.

Appearance: The beer is blacker than black. The head was at least an inch thick creamed coffee coloration. There was a sheet of thick lacing remaining behind on the glass. Once the glass was empty it had a dark brown black stain on it.

Smell: This beer has a great smell consisting of dark roasted espresso Bourbon combined with chocolate and a hint of woodyness. (This beer is dam near a 5 on smell.)

Taste: This beer has a great multi-layered taste. The beer has a definate irish cream bourbon laced coffee mocha taste. The is fantastically malty and sweet. There is a bit of spicyness that could be from the hops but seems to come from straight up bourbon. The alcohol is loud and boisterous in the taste and adds to the beer.

Mouthfeel: The body of the beer is super plus size. There is even an alcohol type burn like from bourbon. The beer is thick and chewy.

Drinkability: This beer is Founders master piece. This is a very drinkable beer bordering on perfection. I drank one then ran out and bought somemore for later.

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Photo of Derek
4.42/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this at the Michigan Brewers Guild Winter Beer Fest, back-to-back with their usual Breakfast stout!

A: Dark black with a tan head (doesn't really look any different, but you can't really get darker than dark black!)

S: Awesome aroma. In addition to the dark roasted notes, this one has a ton of boozy bourbon!

T: Now that's a full flavoured stout! The bourbon actually helps to balance the roasted assault on your tastebuds. The alcohol is assertive, but not overwhelming. Awesome (pushing a '5').

M: I didn't like the mouthfeel as much as the regular breakfast. This one was a little acidic. The carbonation was a little higher as well.

D: Big, bold & beautiful. Obviously not a session brew.

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Photo of Smittysguinness
4.79/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


I just left the Michigant Winter Beer Festival...5 straight hours of consumption...hammered...

Anyway, this beer is incredible. My wife and I showed up about 12:30...a half hour after it started. Poured deep black with a dark brown head. Lacing was light, bu t stuck around.

Smelled of rich dark chocolate with malty sweetness. My wife even commented that that the malt sweetness was all she smelled.

Tastes of massive burbon...vanilla and oaky sweetness mixed with a normal Founders-style stout, replete with vanilla and harsh dark chocolate. The malt sweetness and hop bitterness is expertly mellowed by the year-long burbon aging. This is a beer for the ages.

Thanks again to the MI Brewers Guild for the massive beer offering. Only in MI will you drink beer with a thousand other people at below-freezing and love it. It snowed, it hailed, it blew cold wind, and we drank on.

I love this beer. They said they'd brew another batch starting now, and it'll be ready this time next year. Get this when you can!

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Photo of clvand0
4.5/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the EBF 2006. I'd been waiting a long time to try this one. Pours a very dark color with a brown head that falls fast and doesn't leave too much lacing on the glass. The aroma smacked me with bourbon and chocolate at first, then as it warmed, the bourbon aroma mellowed. Lots of maltiness and alcohol. The flavor was great. Lots of thick dark malts - chocolate with coffee up front then a bourbon character that sticks to the palate. The body is very thick and the drinkability is pretty good. Try this one if you have the chance.

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Photo of yoko
4.8/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is clearly the most amazing Stout I have ever had. Sampled at the January 2005 EBF, it remains in memory with clarity. Wow! The visual, smell and taste were of extraordinary synergy. A short tan head accented the rich, deep blackness. Superb coffee and chocolate malts warmed and woven with Burbon tempered by oak cask character. Smooth, thick, big, present. The texture, dimension were divine. The burbon drip was endless and with comfort as it warmed ceaslessly. It remains on my palate to this day!

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Photo of ahking
4.52/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Possibly one of the best stouts I have ever had. I first tried this beer at the Michigan Beer Festival in 2003. This is a strong stout aged in oak casks that were once used to age bourbon. The result is a unique, complex beer that is black as night with a slight tan head. It pours quite thick as you might imagine and in addition to the smoky, chocolate flavors of the malt, you get a hint of a vanilla-oak that comes from aging in the barrels. At around 10 percent ABV, you have to wonder if some bourbon is still remaining in the casks used since you can immediately taste and sense the alcohol. The bourbon flavor is quite evident. A great masterpiece in my opinion, though this is clearly a slow sipping beer not meant for mass consumption.

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KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) from Founders Brewing Company
Beer rating: 100 out of 100 with 13681 ratings