Founders Imperial Stout | Founders Brewing Company

BA SCORE
96
world-class
7,848 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Founders Imperial StoutFounders Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
foundersbrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
75 IBU

Added by mjohn27603 on 01-13-2003

BEER STATS
Ratings:
7,848
Reviews:
1,896
Avg:
4.34
pDev:
8.53%
 
 
Wants:
748
Gots:
2,453
For Trade:
144
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 7,848 |  Reviews: 1,896
Photo of Chackman151
4.62/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of jwalters
3.9/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Jonathan-Morgan
4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of VictorsValiant
4.46/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of AuntBea
4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.78/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I had this last night at the Bacon and Beer Fest in Davenport Iowa
I have had it before but didnt rate. Simply put, this is one of the best I stouts out there. Wonderful chocolate, coffee, licorice and hop bitterness! AS SMOOTH AS they come!

 246 characters

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

Photo of HipCzech
4.32/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Serving: 12 oz bottle poured into a 9 oz Libbey Embassy snifter.

Appearance: Inky black with dark brown fringes, capped with a frothy head of medium brown foam and whispy lace.

Smell: Dark roasted grains and coffee beans, burnt wood and some savory notes (soy?).

Taste: Deep, roasted malt with espresso, burnt chocolate and subtle licorice and savory notes. Nice balancing bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Sticky, full body with moderate body and carbonation.

Overall: Deeply roasted, rich and intense stout.

 503 characters

Photo of americancontrarian
4.7/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of chladun
4.52/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of MNAle
4.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black appearance, dark brown tall head. Dark fruit, smoaky, coffee, chocolate, Thick mouth feel. Roasty, bitter taste. Other flavors noted in the aroma are muted, but present: dark fruit, coffee, chocolate. Strong bittering remains from the beginning, middle, and finish. This is an excellent Imperial stout in the American style: multifacted aroma and flavor, but the bittering hops are the primary story.

 406 characters

Photo of Jackgonzo
3.84/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of snohojimbo
4.84/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Photo of Radcpa
3.95/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great dark appearance. Aroma is not that impressive a very mild. Bitter taste is surprising and not a high feel factor. I was disappointed in founders for a product that I expected to be much better

 201 characters

Photo of DenisKolkin
4.54/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle served cold-ish into a chalice.

Appearance - A menacing and ominous jet black beer is poured. Capped with a finger of a coffee with only one cream colored head. Retention is pretty decent given the high ABV. This beer means business.

Smell - Plenty of chocolate (baker's and dark), flashes of espresso, and hints of smoke, tobacco, molasses and licorice.

Taste - Rich flavors. Dark chocolate, black coffee-esque bitterness, smoke, molasses and a touch of licorice. Finishes bitter with some woody and earthy hop bitterness. Just a bit of vanilla sweetness after the initial chocolate rush. Booze in there too. Not a beer to be trifled with. Damn this is good. Complex as hell too.

Mouthfeel - Heavy, chewy, a meal in a glass. Carbonation is fine, body is dense and slick, engine oil like. An astringency in there that prickles the tongue.

Overall - While many imperial stouts are great, this might be the more intense ones out there. Massive bitter flavors, hints of smoke and ash, big league bitterness and the appearance to back it up. What's not to like here. World class all the way. Counting myself lucky right now, enjoying this alongside Smuttynose Baltic Porter, Oskar Blues Ten Fidy and Ballast Point Victory at Sea all for the first time in the past 10 days. To my tastes that's 4 of the very best in the high ABV, stout /porter / flavored stout class. Founders Imperial Stout might be the best of the bunch.

 1,438 characters

Photo of JimboLahey
5/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of craigbelly
4.46/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great aroma. Almost black head and lacing. It's a warmer for sure but the alcohol is barely evident. Nice chewy feel and a very pleasant after taste that lingers.

 162 characters

Photo of godawgs
4.33/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of PJCarnell
4.19/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of gruves33
3.79/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Red5StandingBy
4.11/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into standard pint glass. Bottled on November 30th 2016.

L: Opaque black, with chocolate milk colored 3 finger head that stays around for a long time.

S: Coffee, Dark Chocolate that makes your mouth water, dark roasted malts, leafy hops, molasses, vanilla.

T: Rich cocoa/chocolate and coffee, smoke, vanilla, char, leafy hop bitterness with the dark roasted malts adding a touch of bitterness as well. Pretty complex and tasty but doesn't match the flavors of their Breakfast Stout.

F: Full body. Thick, creamy and dry finish.

O: A great "winter warmer" a bit lacking in carbonation IMO but another great beer from Founder's who continues to impress.

 693 characters

Photo of Everydayoff
4.48/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

355ml bottle poured into an imperial pint glass, served chill not cold.

Pitch black in color, the pour forms up majestic creamy dark tan head that stands proud with remarkable strength of retention before slowly subsiding to a forever effervesce layer on the surface and leaving numerous of sticky lacing web all around. I can even see the cascade effect of the head sip by sip, so gorgeous showcase.

The aroma is dominated all over by roasted malt, chocolate, coffee (just slight sour), and cocoa. There are also other varieties of scent as a complement ranging from creamy, charred nut, dark bread, vanilla, caramel, toffee, butter, licorice, and mild leafty hop.

So intense wave of chocolate, cocoa, and coffee sweeps throughout the taste buds and coats the palate for quite some time before roasted, charred nut, some smoke, vanilla, caramel, toffee, butter, licorice, and dark bread following closely together with a bitter kick from both hop and roasted malt to add more depths. It is sweet overall but not cloying being leverage by the greatness of chocolate, coffee, and roasted profile.

The body and palate sensation in term of feeling is nearly flawless, high viscosity, sticky, very full, slick and super velvety smooth through the mouthfeel. Carbonation is pretty low but still has some crisp that is enough to carry all the things well. Finish is pleasantly dry.

This Imperial Stout is a beast. It is tasty as hell and perfectly concealed its alcohol. My recommendation is to enjoy it slowly and only chill not too cold in order to let all the characters disclosing in full scale.

 1,598 characters

Photo of Mongrel
4.24/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is possibly the best looking beer I've ever seen. It's what all other imperial stouts strive to be. Clearly very thick as it pours from the bottle, with an inky body and a very dark brown, creamy head. The head hangs around forever and coats the glass gloriously as you drink it down.

Smells like roasted malt, light coffee and chocolate. Not the hugest nose.

Flavor-wise, this beer is ready to go. Inky, concentrated notes of coffee, chocolate and licorice. Ample, but not harsh bitterness. Wood on the finish. No great need to age this one.

Mouthfeel picks up where this beer left off visually. Decadently thick and creamy. Finishes pretty dry despite its gravity and allows some roasty coffee bitterness to linger.

 725 characters

Photo of PA-Michigander
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BeerGuy8315
4.46/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a snifter. Vintage bottled on 12/27/13.

A: Pours jet black in color. No head or lacing.

S: Aromas of coffee, vanilla, toffee, toasted malts, dark chocolate, caramel, raisins, and other dark fruits.

T: Taste matches aromas very well. Starts with dark chocolate and coffee followed by cream and vanilla, and then finishes with toasted malts, raisins, and dark fruits.

F: Full bodied. Thick, smooth, and creamy. Very small amount of carbonation.

O: Overall, this is a really great imperial stout. Nice that it's readily available. This was my first time trying this one and I really enjoyed it. Wish I would've tried a fresh one prior to the vintage to see how the flavor profile had changed, but I couldn't resist. Will definitely try this one again.

 779 characters

Founders Imperial Stout from Founders Brewing Company
4.34 out of 5 based on 7,848 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe