The conversation regarding Founders Brewing’s popular KBS, has been volatile in the past few years. I’ve read much from folks who say the beer had grown inconsistent, with some calling awful to game-changing.
So, no matter where you stand on this particular beer, it is news that this week Founders has announced that the bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout brewed with coffee and chocolate, will have year-round availability beginning in March 2020.
KBS made its debut in the Grand Rapids taproom in 2003 and developed a cult-following over the years within the craft beer community. As the brewery continued to grow, so did the demand for KBS. Founders has expanded its barrel-aging program to accommodate that demand.
“There are a lot of variables when barrel-aging and moving a beer like KBS from a seasonal release to year-round really makes having a solid blending plan even more important,” said Brewmaster Jeremy Kosmicki.
“KBS has been a large volume brand for a while now, so the days of making the entire batch exactly 12 months before the release date are far behind us. We’ve gotten pretty good at finding the right blend of nine-month-old barrels and 15-month-old barrels to hit the desired profile. We were able to pull off the transition when we moved Backwoods Bastard to a year-round release and we’re confident we can achieve the same consistency and quality with KBS.”
KBS (12% ABV) is an imperial stout brewed with massive amounts of coffee and chocolate before aging in oak bourbon barrels in caves beneath Grand Rapids and at an offsite barrel-aging facility, the Barrel House. 2020 KBS will be available in 4-packs of 12oz bottles and on draft beginning on February 28 in the Grand Rapids and Detroit taprooms. It will ship out to the brewery’s entire distribution network in early March 2020 and will be available year-round. Please note that KBS will not be available on draft in Utah or in any format in Mississippi.
“It’s humbling to look back at what started as a couple of experimental barrels of beer has evolved into such an amazing phenomenon,” said Co-Founder and President Dave Engbers. “To be able to make KBS available year-round, not to mention in all 50 states, so all of our fans can find and enjoy this beer marks a significant step in growth of the brewery. It’s truly a labor of love as our team can attest, but it’s all worth it in the end. Cheers to everyone on our team who makes it a reality.”