Beer Name: KBS (2017 Release)
Brewery: Founders Brewing Co. (Grand Rapids, MI)
How sold: 12 oz bottles; 22 oz bottles; on draft
Where bought: Grapes 'n Growlers (Vancouver, WA); Bevmo! (Vancouver, WA)
Price: $11.25(!) for 12 oz. glass; $7 per 12 oz bottle; $20.99 for 22 oz bottle
Date Purchased/Drank: April 5, 2017
When brewed? Seasonal beer. Released in April (but Grand Rapids has KBS week in March).
What's on the Bottle/Website: "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." Read more here!
Where distributed: Founders Brewing distributes to most U.S. states. Founders started distribution to Washington and Oregon in February 2017. Find out if Founders ships to your area!
REVIEW:Appearance (5%): Poured black into a tulip glass, some tan head. Looks amazing. 4.75/5
Smell (25%): Amazing coffee and chocolate. Ideal bourbon barrel-aging here. 5/5
Taste (40%): Just as advertised, lots of coffee and chocolate. Bourbon-barrel aging is totally there and complements everything. The octane is ridiculously well-controlled; it probably drinks more like 9% for me but you'll eventually feel it. Extremely dangerous, tasty stout. As my friends will tell you, I don't drink a lot of stouts, but this is one of them. 5/5
Mouthfeel (10%): Full-bodied, some carbonation. Creamy on the tongue. 4.75/5
Overall (20%): A world-class Imperial Stout. I first had this beer at a Founders Brewing tap takeover two years ago, when Craft Brewers Conference Week was in Portland. At the time, Founders was nowhere to be found in the Pacific NW, making that event even more of a crazy madhouse. Not surprisingly, with 6-7 Founders beers on tap that night, KBS was the first to kick, probably no more than 45 minutes after I got my glass (and maybe a couple hours after the keg got tapped). Now with Founders beer routinely coming to the Pacific NW, Founders events still remain a popular event. In a way, I'm glad KBS is just an annual thing, because the price tag, while justified, is way too much for me to be getting every single time. Also, perhaps the novelty or the prestige probably wears off much faster if it was always available. Bottom line: if you're an Imperial Stout lover, KBS must be at or near the top of your list. Yes, even with the steep price tag, I bought several bottles home to enjoy with friends. The panda regrets nothing. 4.75/5
Final Weighted Rating: 4.913/5