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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.

9,926 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,926
Reviews: 2,604
rAvg: 4.6
pDev: 9.57%
Wants: 2,215
Gots: 5,037 | FT: 525
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
View: Beers (204) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bourbon County Brand Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 9,926 | Reviews: 2,604 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of leedorham
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of slim2043
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of Goldndomer
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of kylemckinnis
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Caudalie
3.5/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of Brewski
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of webmanspidey
4.42/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a large snifter. This is pitch black with only a small amount of head that quickly subsides. Smells intensely sweet with a mix of bourbon, raisins, cherries, and caramel. Alcohol is very noticeable in the smell.

Taste is extremely sweet. Bourbon is the dominant flavor, with some other hints of vanilla, raisin, and cherry. Alcohol blends into the flavor very well.

This is delicious and very drinkable. Met and exceeded my expectations.

Photo of minterro
4.62/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wow I've been looking forward to trying one of these bourbon county stout... well for as long as I could remember. Never actively tracked one down, but luckily Spartan Spirits in East Lansing had a couple of them singled out so I snagged one.

Cracked it open tonight celebrate completing my last undergraduate science lecture. It is weird to say the least and I look forward to learning much more about this wonderful field as a graduate student next fall.

A&S: upon opening the bottle the bourbon hits you immediately, but is soon counter-balanced by some rich chocolate sweetness and roasty tones. It also contains some slight marshmallowy tones. The aroma is very powerful and is not subdued as time passes. when it is poured the becomes even more fragrant but with more of a bourbon and dark fruit side to it. The liquid is dark black and very think as it is poured out. Even when poured with vigor, there is no head to be found.

T&M: Right away I would probably have to say this is absolutely my favorite bourbon stout I've every tried and probably top 5 beers ever! Maybe for people who like super bourboney stout this one might not be as perfect, but to me its a slice of heaven. I haven't had a more balanced stout in my life. The rich dark chocolate, dark fruits, and bourbon are perfectly blended to create this craft brew masterpiece. Upfront you get more the the dark chocolate and fruits. Alcohol makes it self present but doesn't overpower (I wouldn't ever think this was 15%). The finish leans more on the bourboney side but is well mixed with some sweetness to balance, goes down very smooth, and leads to a mellow version bourbon warming feeling. Extremely rich and filling. The mouthfeel is out of this world so elegantly smooth and thick it has a consistency of real maple syrup.

Overall: This beer is amazing. Absolutely a champion of not only its style, but as far as craft beer go. I had high expectations for this beer and its still was better then I thought it could ever be. At the price of about $6.50 a bottle, its going to cost you a pretty penny. But as a one in a while special occasion thing, this is going to be my new go to.

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2013: bottled 11/7/13 and rated 12/18/13
Bought from Little's Wine and Liquor for 5 bucks, compared to 6.50 this is a steal. No special occasions this time, just flying out to MI for christmas break and figured its the right time. Drank while watching moonrise kingdom.

A&S: Jet black and the pour seems very thick. Head is mocha and last a very short amount of time. Lots of bourbon upfront, way more than I remembered or noted from the 2012 rating. Also some interesting and uncharacteristic banana bread tones. The banana tones are at times even more powerful than chocolate. As it warms dark fruits come into play, plums is what I'm smelling the most.

T&M: I was again expecting this beer without aging to be very hot, but its really tasty/enjoyable without the alcohol completely overpowering the taste. The spot the alcohol content does make it self known is the very pleasant warming it leaves behind. The bourbon for sure comes on hotter as it warms (more than I expected). Again very smooth, but not as much body as I recall. More carbonation too.

Overall: Was interested to see how it compared to the 2012 versions. I bought two so I could do a 6 month or year cellared rating as well. I would say I liked the 2012 version a tad bit more, but this years beer is still top notch.

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2013 version bottled 11/7/13 consumed 06/17/14. Moving tomorrow.

Not a ton of differences. The biggest thing that stood out to me is the intensity of the dark fruits and the bourbon aroma. Warmed more than I remember going down. Also sweeter than I recall.

Photo of dbc5
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of Sonofalime
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of mjw1200
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Jonada
4.59/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12 bottle. 2012 vintage. Bottled on 9/20/2012. Served in a snifter

Appearance: Pours pitch black with less than a finger of a tan head that dissipates quickly to a thin collar. Body is completely opaque. Lots of alcohol legs sticking to the glass.

Smell: Bourbon, caramel, vanilla, chocolate, coconut, wood, and some dark fruit. Smells amazing.

Taste: Chocolate, roasted malt, bourbon, butterscotch, caramel, toffee, vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, viscous mouthfeel. Carbonation on the lower end of medium. Noticeable alcohol warmth after the finish, but goes down stupidly smooth for 15%.

Overall: World class stuff. I love this beer

Photo of Jho3325
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of kbnooshay
4.4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured super black with super dark frothy brown head that is almost as impressive as the head of a ten fidy! Aroma is of strong bourbon whiskey and sweet butterscotch. The taste is very whiskey heavy with a nice hint of vanilla and oats. This is one smooth brew. Super drinkable.

Photo of kjrod20
5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Googs
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of OUJayhawk1799
4/5  rDev -13%

Photo of WTKeene
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

A 2013 bottle poured into a Trillium tasting tulip.

Appearance: Jet black motor oil. Hints of coffee brown around the edges. No head, but a tiny eggshell crown.

Smell: Boozy, nutty. Hints of coffee and hazelnuts, lots of sweet dark chocolate.

Taste: Dark chocolate and hints of coffee. Thick and dark, roasty. When I opened this the day of release I remembered a decent amount of orange. Don't get any of that right now. Sweet but with a few hints of bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Thick and sticky. Lower carbonation. Perfect for the style.

Overall: There isn't a whole lot to say about this beer that hasn't already been said. It's a fantastic barrel aged stout.

Photo of ToddGingerich
4.75/5  rDev +3.3%

Photo of Backer2004
4.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Found in Louisville for $5.95 a twelve ounce beer. Great for those pairing with chocolate - nice for bourbon lovers. Very thick, little head, nice complexity. Chocolate and raisin notes. Not too much lacing. This was bottled only 6 months ago so could age a bit. Worth trying-but not as good as the KBS .

Photo of cavedave
3.85/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Pours a deepest brown/black, thickly filling my snifter with a petroleum look-a-like, topped by a brown head of fine foam, which quickly fades to floating skim.

The nose is a very full aroma of molasses, licorice, alcohol, bourbon, gentle yeast, a bready toastiness, with an edge of ripe plum and hints of bitter. More sweet and less burnt smell than many of this style, very pungent and tempting, very complex.

Not as strong flavored as the aroma predicted, but brightly full of all the complex flavors, moreso the molasses, less so the dark fruit. The bourbon sort of ties the taste together, and notes of oak and vanilla I didn't smell now mix in to make a fine taste. The alcohol is not hot, more of a warm spicy flavor. It tastes very well blended, I can only guess how much better this could improve with age. It is sweeter than I like (though well within the style's range) but the end of the sip features an earthy bitterness that is a good counterpoint.

Mouthfeel is thick bodied, very viscous, clinging, low carb., in short just right for the style. However, it rates lower in all of these categories than many others in this style, and it is neither as thick, viscous, nor clinging as I like an impy stout.

Drinkability is above average, it is tasty, but no where near as sippable as others in this style.

Impression: A good stout, full of flavor, but too sweet, and not as interesting as others. I will not get it again, though if you like a sweet big stout you ought to try this.

Photo of rvdoorn
4/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jeff and Erik for sharing this one during the BA tasting in Utrecht. Had this one side-to-side with the Rare, Vanilla and the Coffee Stout.
Look: the beer pours a dark black color with a very small brown head.
Smell: Chocolate, malts, coffee and some bourbon.
Taste: Sweet chocolate, coffee, bourbon with a nice bitter aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Medium-low carbonation, medium bodied.
Overall: Nice beer, just not as good as the rare and the coffee.

Photo of tewaris
4.36/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

60 IBUs
2008 vintage 12 oz. twist off bottle, bottled on October 28, 2008, poured into a 25 oz snifter on October 20, 2010. Almost 2 years! Apparently the best barrel aged stouts used to come in twist off bottles a while back ;)

Appearance 5/5
Most vigorous of pours cannot force a persistent head out of this beer. The initial froth that would subside soon into a thin collar is the darkest of browns, with some foam wandering on the surface of the beer in mocha like spirals. The beer itself is dark as night, although much later when the collar dies, deep brown highlights can be seen.

Aroma 4/5
Sweet oak and bourbon, sharp alcohol, hot chocolate, and coffee dominate the nose in the order mentioned, with *perhaps* some leather, tobacco, and vanilla. However, alcohol becomes dominant and everything else gets pushed to the background when the beer warms up, which is a not a good thing.

Taste 4.5/5
Creamy sweet hot chocolate and bourbon, with a massive chocolate and coffee aftertaste when the beer is colder. When it's warmer, a dark, unsweetened chocolate and bitter coffee taste also kicks in before finish, and coffee like acidity is also felt. In fact, the slight bitterness helps the finish too, which is medium, and therefore surprisingly clean for a beer of this magnitude. However, booze affects the taste too at higher temperatures.

Mouthfeel 5/5
Thick, creamy, and luxurious mouthfeel with very low carbonation; this is a beer with a truly big body that coats the mouth and seems to stay on the palate forever.

Drinkability 4/5
This is a sipper, but the problem with sipping it is that it's going to get warm, and messy. The usual serving temperature for big stouts is 55°F, but this one must be served at Goose Island's recommended 40°F, and the bulk of this beer must be enjoyed before it warms up to room temperature. Too much alcohol is a flaw in this beer, that becomes glaringly obvious at room temperature.

This is my earlier review of BCBS (from January 27, 2010):

look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | drink: 4
Looks absolutely beautiful in a worthy glass and the smell is one of the best among all stouts I have had: wood is certainly dominating to me and a faint smell of tobacco works magic. Of course there's more to the smell, like dark fruit. Overall very complex. Also, the alcohol is evident.

Taste is rich and complex and could be described as bitter-sweet in one word. Mouthfeel is silky and luxurious but a little cloying for my taste. If drinkability means what BudLight advertises, this beer would score a 0.0 but that's what one would expect from this strong a stout.

Alcohol/bourbon becomes overpowering as the beer warms up.

Overall a great beer, to be savored over an hour, or more.

Serving type: 2009 Vintage (12 oz bottle) with less than 4 months on it.

Photo of jnardone235
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of mmilyko
4.25/5  rDev -7.6%

Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 9,926 ratings.