Now the weather is getting cold, I’m going to be posting about a few darker beers as well as others. Winter always seems to be the longest season in the UK. I decided to start this off with a Legendary Beer from Founders Brewing Co – Breakfast Stout. This is a big stout brewed with both bitter and sweet chocolate, Sumatra and Kona coffee and a tonne of specialty malt. It really is one of those legendary beers in my opinion.
Let’s start with Founders description of the beer:
The coffee lover’s consummate beer. Brewed with an abundance of flaked oats, bitter and imported chocolates, and Sumatra and Kona coffee, this stout has an intense fresh-roasted java nose topped with a frothy, cinnamon-colored head that goes forever.
A nice short but sweet, modest description of the beer from the brewers. Founders have never been known to be braggers. Even from the description though, you can almost imagine drinking this beer. Stouts are usually rich and some people even consider them a meal, but this particular stout takes it even further.
After doing quite a bit of research and drinking the beer myself, I believe Founders Breakfast Stout uses 2-Row, Crisp Chocolate, Briess Roast Barley, Debittered Black and Crystal malts. As this starts life in the mash as an Oatmeal Stout, Flaked Oats make up a good deal of the fermentables too. As for the hops, which aren’t usually a focus point in a Stout and are primarily used for bittering. Nugget and Willamette Hops are used in this beer to bitter the beer and let the malt, oats, coffee and chocolate to shine through. The coffee and chocolate are added during the boil and also during fermentation.
When you first pour this beer, it pours black and opaque. People often joke that light cannot penetrate Guinness, but this is something else. Light really can’t penetrate this brew! After you finish the pour you end up with a off red/pink head, almost cinnamon coloured as described. The head stays for a minute or two and then dissipates quickly leaving a ring around the edges of the glass. This really is a pretty looking beer. Big hits of the Kona Coffee on the nose, strong Chocolate and Oatmeal aromas tailing off to a nice sweet and milky smell. This is one of those beers that are so inviting, with Stouts, Oatmeal ones especially once they’re poured I always want to dive in straight away. Once you taste this beer, you will realise what you’ve got yourself into: big Coffee hits, subtly sweet Chocolate and a little bit of Oatmeal. After this some Espresso coffee notes, lots of Dark Fruits, Sugar and a touch of Vanilla. The 8.3% alcohol is well masked by the complex flavours, it’s so smooth and the only hint at the alcohol is the slight warming you feel when you drink it. Perfect for this colder weather! Lots of sweetness and only a touch of bitterness and incredibly easy to drink and enjoy, this is definitely one I recommend sitting next to the fire with on a cold night sipping away. Who needs hot chocolate anyway?
You can purchase Founders Breakfast Stout in the UK at:
A few places are currently out of stock, but Breakfast Stout is a seasonal release from Founders and begins in October. Although, a bottle from last year would be just fine!
For any bars, shops etc that are interested, Founders products are distributed by James Clay in the UK. Breakfast Stout only comes in Bottles at the time of writing.