Bourbon County Brand Barleywine Ale - Goose Island Beer Co.
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Ratings: 2,796 | Reviews: 318 | 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:
3.93/5 rDev -13.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Another outstanding brew from Goose Island. What it lacks in appearance it makes up for in taste, twofold. Barleywines, nowadays, seem to lack that barley presence in favor of the coffee/chocolate tastes. This is not one of those. The head lacing are virtually nonexistent. So what? If you have no fear of the dark you will feel right at home here.
Serving type: on-tap
07-23-2014 22:35:33 | More by seedyone
Bourbon County Brand Barleywine Ale from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 2,796 ratings.