Founders Brewing Co.
“A Flavored Stout” the packaging says modestly. “Highly Acclaimed KBS A Flavored Stout” it says somewhat less modestly. In limited release and hard to find, limited partly because it is “cave-aged in oak bourbon barrels for an entire year.” This pours opaque brown with a brief brown head. It has a fairly mild nose of bourbon and malt, with dark chocolate emerging and a roasty note. On the palate there’s a rush of coffee and chocolate and molasses and malt, followed by a gentle wave of bourbon. It’s immensely rich and complicated! Chocolate builds sip to sip, and so does bourbon. This just gets deeper on a very long finish, gently fading but not going away. KBS: Three letters, great beer. 11.2% ABV, 70 IBU
What can follow that? Obviously more of that, but let’s switch up with:
A beautiful glass of ruby tinged amber building with big tight nitro head. Leads with a great citrus hop nose, perhaps muffled by the head. The creamy nitro mouthfeel is followed by a wave of hops, citrus & spice, with malt way underneath. The finish is nicely bitter–lemon peel bitter–with lots of ongoing flavor. More malt emerges from the hops and a toffee brittle dark sweetness brings balance on the end. This is not for the hop shy. It’s pretty intense. 7.2% ABV, 65 IBU