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And the Valley Drinks: Founders Breakfast Stout

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Look, it's the season of five-stars.

God love the Founders Brewery out of Michigan. I've yet to try any of their brews that I have not thoroughly enjoyed, but this one is probably the best yet.

Founders Breakfast Stout is pretty well-known nationally as one of the top stouts in the country. An American Imperial Double Stout, it's probably mostly known for the Kentucky and Canadian varieties, aged in bourbon and whiskey barrels respectively. I attempted to procure some of the Canadian stout a few weeks back from The Chimes, but found they had drained their one keg in all of 47 minutes, per a bartender. KBS is pretty good, but a tad bit on the sweet side -- something you always run the risk of with barrel-aged stuff.

As for the original Breakfast Stout, it's pretty damn tough to beat.

The coffee lover's consummate beer. Brewed with an abundance of flaked oats, bitter and imported chocolates, and two types of coffee, this stout has an intense fresh-roasted java nose topped with a frothy, cinnamon-colored head that goes forever.

I've never been able to find it in bottles anywhere in Baton Rouge but I do know that they exist. The Chimes, Pelican House, Corporate Brew & Draft all have it on draught, and I'm sure some other places as well. It is, however, only available in cold-weather months. At 8.3 percent alcohol-by-volume, it's a bit on the strong side, if you're so easily weakened.

Review

Rich, black in color with a light tan head, but with a bouquet that isn't super heavy. You mostly smell the kind of neutral sweetness of the malts. Not so much the roasted flavor yet though. The opening is just lightly sweet, almost with a hint of maple syrup, but not overly so. It phases well through the malts into that dark, rich, roasted coffee flavor. Enough of a coffee taste that I can totally see where the breakfast moniker comes from. It's almost like a slightly thicker, strong coffee. But it's not so overly heavy that you can't session it. Or at least I could. Gets a full five out of five stars. Can't recommend enough. Seriously, the picture on the label enough...