My hopes were that we, the beer lovers of the area, would be lucky enough to get some in the Houma Thibodaux area, but I had some doubt due to the fact that we were just bringing Founders in to Louisiana the month of the year, April that KBS is released. KBS is a highly sort after beer with limited production that is only released once a year. KBS is currently rated #5 of the Top 250 beers on Beer Advocate.
So as luck has it the Houma/Thibodaux area was able to get there hands on one keg of KBS. It was tapped on 4-17-14 at Whch Craft? in Houma. An old high school friend of mine sent me a message and out the door I went. Both to my happiness and disappointment there was a good crowd of men and women sampling KBS, happy because it is great to see the passion for good beer grow in this area, but disappointed that it meant the KBS would not last as long on tap :)
So after the many year wait I finally get my first pour of KBS... As some of my readers may know I am a fan of Imperial Stouts, but sometimes worry that the wait and the hype creates a certain picture and flavor in ones mind that can be hard for the beer to live up to the expectations. But in this case I was not disappointed at all!
Kentucky Breakfast Stout (KBS) is brewed once a year by Founders Brewing out of Grand Rapids, MI. It is an imperial stout that is aged in bourbon barrels for over 1 year in a cave at 55 degrees. Each April the relativity small amount of beer is released across the country.
KBS poured from the tap a nice dark black color with some hints of dark brown highlights . The head was a small bubble, tight tan color. The aroma was roasted, coffee, chocolate with hints of the bourbon. As the beer warmed I felt the roasted notes were accentuated and the bourbon tones faded a little. The mouth feel was full and smooth with a bit of creaminess. The carbonation was mild. The taste.....now that is where it gets really special....was very good, multi levels of flavors that compliment well. Bold roasted coffee, chocolate , and vanilla flavors were present. The bourbon notes and flavor compliment well but not as bold and up front as some barrel aged beers I have had in the past. There was mild bitterness that seem to be more from the coffee and chocolate aspect as opposed to in your face hops. The alcohol content was not present when the beer was first poured. It left a great lace along the glass. But be careful at 11.2%ABV it is a "big boy" beer, it will sneak up on you. (to prove that taste is a subjective thing my wife drank a KBS and said it was ok, she was not overly impressed with it. she said there was "some" aftertaste that she picked up...but she did finish it)
Is this the #5 best beer in the world....well that is hard to decide, as taste is so subjective. But I can tell you this is one very good beer. So good the I returned to Which Craft the following day to have another before the tap runs dry. I think the limited release of this beer adds to the desire of KBS, but again I do feel the hype is justified. If you get a chance to try some KBS this year, do not pass up the opportunity. So Far I have been impress with he Founders' Beers that have been released in Louisiana, also give their other beers a try. I got a feeling you will enjoy them.