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Bourbon County Brand Stout - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Bourbon County Brand StoutBourbon County Brand Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,621 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,621
Hads: 10,776
Avg: 4.49
pDev: 19.82%
Wants: 2,587
Gots: 5,946 | FT: 618
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  13.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: drewbage on 06-26-2003

60 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bourbon County Brand Stout Alström Bros
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Reviews: 2,621 | Hads: 10,776
Photo of GrumpyGas
4.14/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

10 oz snifter drawn from the tap. It's black, but I swear there are brown colors in there beneath the disapearing tan head.
Smells of chocolate and yep, booze.
Deep deep chocolate, vanilla and caramel flavors mask most upfront alcohol, but the burn warms the heart.
It feels silky and smooth and overall just a really good beer with high alcohol.

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Photo of tcoz86
4.24/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Second time trying it and it was even better then the first. Very intense kick of your bourbon/Alcohol taste then the after taste is what gets you. The Vanilla/Caramel/Nutty flavor that coats your mouth and lingers is what keeps you wanting more.

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Photo of Nic1985Ace
4.99/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz 2013 BCBS

L: Pours jet black with small amount of tan head.

S: Nose is bourbon, vanilla, and chocolate.

T: I have to say I was a skeptic bc of the high alcohol %, bet it is hidden well behind a delicious blend of vanilla, chocolate, and cherries, truly unique and balanced, with just the right amount of bourbon and alcohol coming through.

F: This beer is thick, creamy, syrupy, and sticky, amazing going down.

O: Easily one of the best beers I've ever had, truly fantastic. Now I just need to get more. Outstanding!

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Photo of PhillyJ
4.97/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

It's few and far between that beer lives up to its own hype the limited release and the craft beer culture buildup . Goose island delivers. Bourbon County Stout is the best barrel aged stout I've had thus far I'm not going to name drop but I've had its competitors and bcbs has a smoothness that I haven't found in any other stout ,the mouthfeel really knocks this out of the park it's velvety and creamy without being overly sticky. Perfectly balanced and flavorful. I will gladly wait in a black Friday line for this offering. Cheers to the Goose for smashing my expectations and owning the hype.

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Photo of LADaveBN
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2015. 17oz bottle. First time trying the regular BCBS. Didn't have to look too hard to find it on Black Friday. Lives up to the hype. An outstanding BA stout. Would like to try some variants.

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Photo of Barracudas
4/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer is very smooth with a complex aroma. The aroma has an overpowering bourbon slant, with hints of charred oak, vanilla, caramel and smoke. The beer has an overpowering bourbon taste and packs a strong punch!

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Photo of Rob23
3.5/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2015 pint poured half into snifter.Zero lacing or head.Smell is overpowering with bourbon.Taste is overpowering with bourbon.Melty bourbon mouth feel.this one does pack a punch but I feel it is a bit over rated due to not being able to enjoy other aspects of a stout....hyped and way overpriced.

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Photo of Umdrunner
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

First timer with BCBS... Definitely lived up to the hype!
poured rich dark black, 1" tan head poured aggressively into snifter. Aroma of chocolate, vanilla, and bourbon. Initial flavors are smooth chocolate, vanilla, caramel. The flavors slowly develop with oak and bourbon heat that lingers for minutes. This beer is so complex that I wish I knew more about beer flavors so I could accurately articulate what I am tasting!

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Photo of TBoneJones
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Very rich black body as poured into snifter. Barely a head at all. Sparse rust-colored lacing.
Nose is chocolate licorice, some maple-like syrup with some burn. But I can't seem to stop smelling it. My first go at this legendary stout is this 2015 bottle I stumbled upon this Black Friday. Never could catch it in the past, but the one year I wasn't looking for it I find a whole display of them lines up on a barrel AND in boxes. Sign says limit 2 per person so I grab 3.
Taste is much like the nose, but the with a terrific maple-like french toast flavor that's sweet and has cocoa, yet ends bourbon-woody, toasted and dry.
Feels medium thick, slightly oily, smooth sipping. Low carbonation.
Drinkability is high.
This is certainly top-notch among the style.

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Photo of teromous
4.07/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a review of the 2015 vintage. The bottle says "21OCT15 1704 14.3 ALC/VOL"

Appearance: No real head. It starts to form a very thin dark brown cap and it instantly fades to a hair-thin ring around the glass with what looks like an oil-slick of miniature bits of foam on the surface. No head means no retention and no lacing. The body of the beer is pitch black.

Aroma: Not much aroma here...there is a very faint sweet bourbon scent but I nearly have to submerge my nose to pick it up. Alcohol is apparent on the nose but this is negligible given that this is a 14.3% beer. Overall the aroma is much weaker than the majority of Imperial Stouts that I've had.

Taste: The beer is full of strong dark chocolate flavor that has a nice rich wonderful presence. The bourbon is there as well which really rounds out the overall profile of the beer and complements the chocolate character. It has a light toast at the end but it is very well balanced...not acrid at all. While the bourbon is present the beer doesn't come across as boozy.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is very thick, rich, and smooth. That smoothness is cut a bit by alcohol burn but at 14.3% that really can be expected. It's a slow drinking sipping beer. Carbonation does feel low as the beer is still and brings no life across the palate. The beer is slightly sticky and lingers on the palate long after drinking

Overall: It is a very nice Imperial stout. Although the beer is already aged I noticed most people waited a year to review the previous batches. I wanted to see how it stacked up fresh. The appearance and aroma were sub-par or average at best but where this beer really shines is in the flavor...which is where it counts the most. The overall drinking experience was enjoyable. While I couldn't call this a perfect Imperial Stout overall, it is one that I would recommend.

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Photo of Pizza-Steve
2.72/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

My first impression - Love the 2015 bottles! 14.3%ABV!!!

No head on my pour, so no lacing, just a film of alcohol on the glass, but still nice aroma and BOOZY (not a bad thing)!

However, the sweetness intensity is more than I can handle! Way too heavy on the maple syrup/cherries/molasses, dominate the flavor profile for me, with maybe a hint of vanilla. Not getting any other notes?

Not nearly as balanced as I would have expected from BCBS.

Blood glucose approaching fatal level at 111.1 mmol/L ( 2,000 mg/dl ). Hope I pass out from the booze before I go into a sugar coma!

Take a glass of bourbon, dump in a box of maraschino cherries.
With one hand pour in some Aunt Jemima's and a bottle of molasses with the other.
Dump in a 5lb. bag of Dominos sugar and there you have it - 2015 Bourbon County Brand Stout :(

Mad love for the guys at Goose Island for kinda getting the whole Bourbon Barrel thing started, but sorry BCBS freaks... major dissapointment for me!

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Photo of Stolenface1
4.66/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 - 14.2%
Pours deep black on tap @ The Answer Brewpub. Next to no head. Aroma of bourbon, oak, roasted malt. chocolate, coffee, dark fruit, caramel, toffee and vanilla. Flavor is identical. VERY drinkable. Almost scary @ 14.2%ABV. Excellent BBA Stout. Its a shame they sold out to AB-InBev. My rating does not show it though. Ultra smooth flavor bomb here. ALMOST lives up to the hype.

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Photo of Cthulhusquid
4.52/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Look : No head, pitch black.

Smell : Lots and lots of bourbon. A bit of sweet chocolate and molasses as well.

Taste : Bourbon, a hint of vanilla, chocolate, and wood.

Feel : Medium carbonation, thick sticky body, extremely smooth. Has a warming boozy quality at the end.

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Photo of rjd722
4.95/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

On tap at the Pour House in North Wales, lives up to the hype for sure. Deep jet black appearance, tiny foam head with no lacing. Huge and complex vanilla/bourbon notes on the aroma, pleasant dark chocolate mixed in as well. The flavor profile matches the aroma perfectly, extremely smooth with loads of vanilla, bourbon, and dark chocolate. Not hot at all, creamy and thick, dangerously drinkable. Having never tried the BCBS before I decided not to camp out in line to grab it but was lucky enough to find somewhere with it on tap. Next year though, I'll be there!

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Photo of thebeers
4.16/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Plum black with an impressive thick chocolate head. Sweet bourbon aroma with cherry, oak and chocolate. Creamy mouthfeel, slightly oily. Same flavors as nose with a little coffee and vanilla as well. Smooth, not at all hot, even fresh on tap.

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Photo of zizouandyuki
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on draft. This was BCBS 2014 aged for 1 year in cellar and put on draft to commemorate the 2015 release.

L: Dark like oil with a dark tan head
S: Warm and sweet, with distinct notes of bourbon and vanilla
T: Awesome! Complexity of sweetness from the bourbon and vanilla notes, combined with slight bitterness from roasted malts and taste of dark chocolate
F: Thick and rich. Very low carbonation.

I can't definitively say that this was the best beer I've had this fall, but certainly a contender!

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Photo of mobrado
4.84/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

2015 edition. This drinks absolutely wonderfully right now. Not boozy at all, a miraculous feat at 14.3%. There is literally only a single thing I don't like about it--the hassle to get more. *sigh*

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Photo of SquallLionhart
4.9/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Vanilla. Molasses. Bourbon. Coffee. Chocolate. Retrieved from the cave (aka basement), 2014 release, 12oz bottle.

L: Black, thick black motor-oil, with a thin almost-orange brown head that bubbles lightly to the surface shortly after pouring.
S: Coffee and chocolate. And vanilla. And more (dark fruit even?). Almost reminds me of the smell of a good pipe tobacco from many years ago. Sweet, complex... It's intoxicating, really.
T: So much going on here. The vanilla/molasses is right up front. Coffee less prominent than it was in the smell. The bourbon-barrel flavor comes through later for me... less chocolate than some of the similar ones. The aftertaste is amazing. Leaves you wanting more. This one is good from start to finish.
F: Thick and sticky. Light on carbonation (I honestly could have had a little more carbonation on this one). High on alcohol. Warms you up as it goes down, but not so hot that it burns.
O: Admittedly, I didn't like this one as much as my cohorts when it first came out. First time I had it was release-day 2014.... in-your-face vanilla and bourbon, with a firey-hot alcohol finish. This one has definitely benefited from having a little 'alone time' downstairs. It's far better now than it was a year ago (IMO of course).

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Photo of MarioM
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 16oz bottle pured into a snifter

A: Dark but not opaque like other stouts. Tan head that quickly dissipates with no lacing. Not an appetizing brew

S: Aroma is interesting. Full of vanilla and smooth chocolate with some booze.

T: Very smooth and amazing. I get lots of vanilla. Very smooth and dangerously drinkable. Nice smooth chocolate and mild bourbon. Not overpowering at all and very tasty!

F: Carbonation is perfect. Light alcohol in the after taste but no where near what I would expect from a 13.7% abv beer... Very nice...

O: A very well made brew that is worth the search/hunt. Incredibly smooth. Very good, can't wait to taste with some age.

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Photo of dertyd
4.69/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Amazing!!!!!!! The pour was as black as dirty motor oil. The smell was of chocolate,raisins,dark fruit and smoke
smoke. The taste was smooth with chocolate,raisins,raisinets,brownies and a slight soy sauce flavor what an amazing brew

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Photo of BranfordBound
4.52/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Drinking the 2013 batch on tap at Craft 260 in Fairfield today. Pours super black with a small brown head of about one finger, leaves spotty lacing. Smell is instant bourbon, tons of barrel, hints of booze, malts, smoke. Taste is superb, if you want a bourbon bomb, this is it. Never too sweet, but backbone of tons of malt, molasses, chocolate, segues into the notes of bourbon, lots of wood, smoke, barrel, char. Finish lingers for days, never seems to escape your mouth. Some carbonation to break up the fan fare, definitely heavy body and very sticky in the mouth. Bourbon bomb, period, very well crafted. A sipping beer for when the snow flakes fall.

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Photo of Myotus
4.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle ( bottled on 15Oct14) into a snifter.
LOOK: Pours with a half finger's worth of cinnamon colored foam that shrivels down into a khaki line after 10 seconds. Black in color with an orange tint. Rising bubbles are small in size and subtle in quantity. Lacing is thin and very subtle.
SMELL: Very strong aromas of molasses, plums, raisins, and figs entangle with mild aromas of vanilla, bourbon, and sweet chocolate. Subtle aromas of sweet coffee, oak, and hints of bitter roasted malts support the obvious sweet goodness.
TASTE: Initial taste is of very strong flavors of molasses, plums, raisins, and figs along with strong sweet chocolate flavors that are immediately followed by mild borubon and vanilla flavors. Mild flavors of sweet coffee and subtle flavors of oak step onto the palate right after. Hints of bitter roasted malts enter lastly as all previous flavors persist, except for bourbon flavors, which grow slightly stronger.
FEEL: Medium-bodied and subtly carbonated. Goes down smooth and creamy. Finishes with a slight dryness.
NOTE: Why have I waited so long to try this??? I know. It's because I don't like bourbon. But this was EXTREMELYsweet (I do have a gargantuan sweet tooth) instead of being extremely bourbony like I thought it was going to be.

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Photo of GregA135
4.82/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

2014 Bottle - Got this baby in a trade!

This was my first time ever trying BCBS and it definitely did not disappoint.
Poured into a snifter - a nice black color, with a tan head.
Instantly my smelling senses were hit with bourbon, vanilla and coffee.
Sipping the beer my palate was excited by the coffee, bourbon, molasses, vanilla, and chocolate. You can taste the booziness of the beer and the bourbon gave a slight burn after sipping. One word for this beer, DELICIOUS!
Medium body, light carbonation
This beer was so smooth! Can't wait to open the 2012 BCBS!

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Photo of ClavisAurea
4.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2014 bottle served in a snifter.

Dark black with a rich brown head. Smelled of bourbon, boozy, roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, toffee, burnt sugars, tons of barrel character, oaky, coconut, vanilla, marshmallow. Taste followed the nose to a tee with the exception of sweetness: this beer was over the top sweet for me and had a strong of fusel alcohols left in there even after a year in the cellar. It needs more time to mellow out. The taste was a bit too sweet for me on this one but it certainly has enough residual sugars to last for many years to come in a cellar under proper conditions. The rating is high because it was an excellent brew but I believe it can get better.

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Photo of FriedSlug
4.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Jet black with a nice tan head. Almost no lacing. Bourbon, chocolate, molasses and a wee bit of coffee. The taste is the same but with a licorice note. Nice medium body. Superb beer.

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Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
99 out of 100 based on 2,621 ratings.