KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - Espresso
Founders Brewing Company

KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - EspressoKBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - Espresso
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Style:
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #113
ABV:
12%
Score:
97
Ranked #472
Avg:
4.42 | pDev: 5.88%
Reviews:
89
Ratings:
284
From:
Founders Brewing Company
 
Michigan, United States
Avail:
One-off
Wants
  16
Gots
  36
SCORE
97
World-Class
KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - EspressoKBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - Espresso
Notes:
Reviews: 89 | Ratings: 284 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by jws7968:
Photo of jws7968
4.74/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Nice new offering from Founders. Big coffee aroma and taste. The chocolate is present but not overwhelming. It doesn't have the boozy taste of a 12% beer. Great job.

 166 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of lemmy187
4.31/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Notninja
4.77/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Tastes of a good espresso and a dam good stout. The chocolate and oak takes a back seat but this time that's a good thing. I will definitely buy this again.

 156 characters

Photo of GetTheYayo
4.39/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of buschbeer
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a snifter

This beer pours black and is topped with less than an inch of mocha head that leaves spotty lacing.

The smell is coffee forward. I get some anise. There are hints of chocolate and roasted malt.

The taste is smoother than the smell. It starts out with espresso and chocolate. The espresso lingers throughout. There is some black coffee in the finish.

Full bodied with a thick, chewy mouthfeel

This is another excellent beer from San Miguel. I don't think it a whole lot different than regular KBS though. I will follow up with one to confirm/deny my statement.

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Photo of West_Chester_Ale_Tester
3.89/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of swierczt
4.4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kjkinsey
4.4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of csmrx7
4.23/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Prost76
4.33/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ajm5108
4.03/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bit boozey, but espresso is rich and full-bodied, nice chocolate undernote

76 characters

Photo of jtransel
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of nodder
4.33/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of TP2MSU
4.46/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of johnnnniee
4.09/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle from Harvest Market
Solid black with a thin tan head that shows light retention. Huge coffee aroma and flavor with the same chocolate sugary sweetness and oaky alcohol as the original. The Espresso is strong but seems to tame the alcohol notes I usually get from this brew. Nice brew.

 292 characters

Photo of smutty33
4.65/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of jera1350
4.37/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MusicBeer_1961
4.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of bbtkd
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Founders KBS Espresso, 12% ABV. Pours thick and black with a 2+ finger brown head that left ample lacing. Nose is all espresso, flavor follows, with moderate bitterness. Excellent mouthfeel, overall world-class. I like this better than regular KBS, though I wonder how they will be when the coffee falls off.

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Photo of TargaFlorio
4.36/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MeLoynes
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of HungarianCount
4.76/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Photo of jakecattleco
4.69/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Nose that's mostly chocolate had me worried, but the taste brings FAR more dimension. The coffee is so well done, not overly roasted and bitter. Would be improved with a bit more barrel character, but its tasty AF for my palate and preferences.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.65/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

BOTTLE initial impression:

B+ / VERY GOOD

***
01/01/20:

Thought I'd bring in the new year with this one. Currently ranked #139 in the Top American Imperial Stouts list.

BOTTLE: Bottled 11/14/19. "1730 6."

12.0% ABV. "aged on espresso beans after being removed from [bourbon] barrels." "Ale brewed with chocolate and coffee aged in oak bourbon barrels." No word on which bourbon, how long it spent in barrels, or which coffee varietal/roaster the espresso beans were from.

Served chilled into an Avery snifter.

HEAD: Creamy rich tan colour. ~8cm in height in my snifter. Retention is rather impressive considering the high ABV - ~8 minutes.

BODY: Opaque ink black. I see no yeast/lees within.

Appears aptly carbonated. Looks good for the style. To nitpick the head lacks that gilded sheen you'd find in the creme da la creme of the style.

AROMA: Coffee, certainly. Earthy with hints of roast and some espresso bitterness. Not an aggressive coffee, to be fair. Chocolate. Chocolate malts, dark malts. Hershey's syrup.

The bourbon barrel character seems to get a bit drowned out by the coffee and chocolate judging by the aroma. I get some gooey marshmallowy bourbon warmth but no rich white oak, toasted coconut, refined barrel sugars, etc.

Aromatic intensity is average for the style/ABV. Suggests a coffee-forward imperial stout whose bourbon barrel character has receded behind its additives. Frankly, I find the coffee aroma of Founders' Breakfast Stout to be superior, and I'd reckon plain KBS' as well.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Coffee creamsicle. Earthy (I'd guess Indonesian) Arabica coffee melds with more aggressive/bitter espresso roast to good effect. Dark malts. Chocolate malts. I don't know that I'd know this was brewed with actual chocolate as indicated on the label if I tried it blind...to me it's just a chocolate malt sweetness.

The bourbon character in this doesn't rival that found in Backwoods Bastard, Underground Mountain Brown, CBS, or even standard KBS...the coffee seems to conceal it more than is desirable. I get some gooey bourbon hinting at marshmallow but no rich white oak (indeed, no woodsy oak at all), toasted coconut, rich barrel sugars, or the like. Founders is in my view probably the best at executing bourbon barrel aged dark ales (barring comparisons to, say, Narke's) but this really doesn't deliver.

Nougat. Caramel. Hazelnut. Dessert-like ice cream sweetness. Canned java energy drink.

More roasted barley would help combat the dessert stout sweetness; I'm not sure why I view this as less balanced than O.G. KBS but the espresso bitterness doesn't seem to be suppressing the chocolatey malty sweetness as much as I expected it would.

OVERALL: The added diversity of coffee flavour and the added coffee pungency this gains from the espresso bean aging doesn't compensate for its loss of the majestic bourbon barrel character that o.g. KBS offers. It remains an impressive imperial stout that conceals its high ABV well and I do dig its commitment to the coffee, but the careful balance O.G. KBS nailed is absent here...I can't help but surmise that the espresso aging was a fix for a beer none of us found broken.

B / GOOD

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4.52/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a snifter glass from the bottle.

Appearance: send me thick but send me thin black body coming off with a dark tan head rising roughly almost one fingers left off the body.

Smell: ridiculously heavy expresso but I sincerely do not mind and an additional dose of malts.

Taste: complex but simple straight espresso with doses & doses & doses of a pure espresso bean infused with chocolate and it deep malty bitterness.

Mouth: sticky with a super full body Panda medium 2 full carbonation.

Overall: ridiculously good beer and insanely tweet the version of the original KBS. Would buy it again over and over. Salud!

PS. This might be the most coffee inspired beer I have ever taste. It's lime chewing espresso beans and sipping whiskey.

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KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout) - Espresso from Founders Brewing Company
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 284 ratings