Bourbon County Brand Barleywine Ale - Goose Island Beer Co.
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Ratings: 2,832 | Reviews: 321 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by LambicPentameter:
4.68/5 rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
After missing the boat on getting my hands on a bottle of this, I stumbled upon it on tap at Bier Station in Kansas City. Happy (late) Thanksgiving to me! Enjoyed out of a small Belgian-style tulip glass.
Appearance - So, I wasn't aware of the third-use bourbon barrels, so when it came out almost black, I was surprised. For a second, I wondered if they had just labeled the tap incorrectly. At any rate, it was a dark rum and walnut black with the slightest dark brown hints at the very edges of the glass. Head is minimal--a three-quarters finger of creamy tan head that dissipates quickly, leaving nothing but a thin rim of fine foam around the edge.
Smell - Quickly erases any doubt (from the color) that this is a barleywine. An intoxicating blend of molasses, fresh barley and rye, vanilla and a maple woodiness and bourbon underlying all of it.
Taste - Again, the barleywine aspect comes through strong, maple syrup, malty sweetness, brown sugar and molasses, bourbon glaze, and some esters and tannins to cut the thickness More bitter elements like roasted malt, faint baker's chocolate, burnt caramel also cut the sweetness and even some dark fruit elements figs and dates provide yet more complexity. It's tasty at the chilled temperature they served it at, but only gets more enticing and deep as it warms. I know it's a little bit out there for the style, but this might be the best barleywine I've ever had.
Mouthfeel - It's cloying and clings to the inside of the mouth like cough syrup, but with 12% alcohol, you're better off sipping one of these over a few minutes anyway. As long as you come in expecting a night cap or dessert style beer, it's not a problem. However, I certainly wouldn't be drinking this chewy masterpiece out by the pool or on a float trip.
Overall, I'm just blown away by this beer. I've had the standard BCBS before, but never any of the variants. The third-use bourbon barrels impart some characteristics of the stout and really bring a fascinating and wonderful dimension to this beer. It's one of those that you try and are so blown away by the experience that can't wait to share the details. Would be ecstatic to somehow get my hands on a bottle of this.
Serving type: on-tap
12-12-2013 03:05:12 | More by LambicPentameter
More User Reviews:
4.29/5 rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Pours rich mahogany with a minimal cream colored head that dissipates quickly. Thick and unfiltered look. Sep 24 2013 bottling date. Nose is malt, caramel, whiskey and cigar with background notes of brown sugary sweetness. Taste follows the nose..slow and sweet with just a little heat. Flavor is buttery and rich. Mouthfeel thick and gratifying. Overall, an outstanding barleywine with a lot to offer for the style.
Serving type: bottle
07-31-2014 02:41:28 | More by fgmiele
4.64/5 rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
Served as the start to the goose island themed tasting (we did start with Fred from Hair of the Dog). Short notes from 7/27/14. Bottled 9/17/13. Served in a snifter.
A&S: The beer is a murky brown color. Pieces of unfiltered specks float around the bottom of this beer. No head present when poured. The aroma was amazing, it was the kind of smell you wish could be stuck in your nose all day. Caramel tones blended with raisins, sugary belgian candy sweetness, and boozy bourbon tones. Really about as good as I have seen it.
T&M: This beer was extremely complex, transforming and opening up continuously as it sat in the glass. It started with a characteristic that most decent barleywines share dark fruit tones. The dark fruits were primarily raisins but later on I think I got some plums. Towards the end I was odd enough picking up on some dark chocolate flavors. No real hop presence. The carbonation quantity was excellent, just right to make it not completely dead, but not too much to make it any bit sharp. Body wasn't as thick as it could have been, but I was for sure more than just a medium thickness.
Overall: The was the opener for the afternoon and I have to say I like it the best! All three (this one, the cherry rye, and the coffee) of the goose island specialties were spectacular, but for me, this one took the cake. I would be interested to see how this beer develops, however it would be a tough task considering it was so epic at this stage. One of my favorite beers I have had the pleasure to try this year.
Serving type: bottle
07-31-2014 01:38:35 | More by minterro
4.49/5 rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
Surprisingly on tap at San Diego Brewing Co, poured into an 8 oz goblet
A: Cola-like color, no head and viscous.
S: Booze and toffee are the prominent aromas. Notes of coconut, nutmeg, oak and cherry as we'll. Strong bouquet carried by ample alcohol volatiles.
T: Flavors follow but notes of vanilla are right at the front. Also picking up notes of tobacco and ripe fruit. Finishes long and sweet with lots residue between sips...in a good way.
M: chewy, sticky, yummy
Serving type: on-tap
07-27-2014 06:49:11 | More by rand
Bourbon County Brand Barleywine Ale from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 2,832 ratings.