Founders Breakfast Stout
I read this morning that today is “International Stout Day”, news to me although I am starting to see a trend after celebrating IPA day a couple of months back. I just happen to have a highly regarded stout in my refrigerator, so I figure I may as well review it to be festive. The Stout, as you can tell by the title of this post, is Founders Breakfast Stout which is a seasonal (Sep-Feb) Imperial Stout out of Grand Rapids, Michigan. This beer weighs in with an ABV of 8.3% and 60 IBUs and the bottle lists it as a Double Chocolate Coffee Oatmeal Stout. Founders’ website lists imported and bitter chocolates along with Kona and Sumatra coffees as key ingredients. Based on the description, naming the beer “Breakfast Stout” makes a lot of sense. As mentioned, this is a highly regarded stout to include a 99/100 rating by Beer Advocate and 100/100 on RateBeer. Based on the excitement from beer lovers and these ratings I decided I need to see what an almost perfect stout tastes like.
The appearance is a black body with minimal tan head which receded very quickly (I barely had time to take the picture before it was gone). The aromas are what you would expect based on my above description. There is a whole lot of fresh coffee with a dash of chocolate. Right in line with the description and aromas, the taste is a shot of espresso, chocolate, another shot of espresso, and then a dash more chocolate, There is definitely a bitter finish partly as a result of using bitter chocolates and coffees. The mouth feel is fairly chewy and I pick up minimal carbonation, but any more would be weird (imagine an ice coffee with carbonation, ick), so it comes together very well.
Overall, this is a beer for coffee lovers and if you also like chocolate you may be in heaven. At this point of my beer tasting career, I find the excessive coffee taste interesting but I really don’t feel like I am drinking a beer. I would think it would go very well as a post dinner drink with some ice cream or other dessert. Despite my slight issues with coffee in beer, Founders definitely hit the nail on the head with what you would want in a Coffee “Breakfast” Stout. I can’t go perfect, but I would have to give Founders Breakfast Stout 4 mugs out of 5 on the Draft Notes scale.
You can read more about Founders and their beers at http://foundersbrewing.com. Now I need to work out if caffeine stays in the beer through the brewing process and whether I will be able to get to sleep tonight. Cheers!