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Bourbon County Brand Stout - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Bourbon County Brand StoutBourbon County Brand Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

7,766 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 7,766
Reviews: 2,332
rAvg: 4.58
pDev: 9.61%
Wants: 1,734
Gots: 3,314 | FT: 364
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  14.20% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
60 IBU

(Beer added by: drewbage on 06-26-2003)
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Ratings: 7,766 | Reviews: 2,332 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DavidEddie


4.88/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 10 12 07

Poured pitch black. No head. Minimal lacing lingers around the sides of my Goose Island reserve glass. What a tuff looking barrel aged brew. The first initial smell is bourbon. Followed by dark chocolate, black coffee, sweet malts, and a hint of smoke. Tastes like it smells but more powerful. Rich bourbon, mix of dark and milk chocolates, coconut, burnt toast, sweet malt, vanilla, oak, smokey campfire and tons of warming booze. Very complex, a lot going on in flavor. Mouth feel is thick, but creamy and some stickiness as well. Some carbonation, but not much. Overall drinkability is exceptional. Deliciously bold and extreme. A real sipper, perfect for cold Chicagoland winter nights. Truly Outstanding. A must try for all you barrel aged fans. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2007 05:05:02 | More by DavidEddie
Photo of jcompton


4.38/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a sniffter.

Strong smell of bourbon. Taste had a strong bourbon kick followed with a mild chocolate finish. Definitely one of the most complex, fullest beers to ever hit my palate. As a person who enjoys a glass of Jim Beam or Knob Creek on occasion, I will certainly try this beer again. If one wants a beer to pour and enjoy on a snowy winter day, this is it.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2007 03:28:06 | More by jcompton
Photo of jtrockchalk


4.35/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First BC of the year...13% this year and WOW!!! can you ever taste the bourbon...

12 oz bottle poured into a Chimay goblet.

A - Deep, deep caramel brown with a small rich brown head that dissipated quickly to nothing.

S - The easy answer here is bourbon, but believe it or not my first reaction was German Chocolate Cake...The combo of bourbon, caramel and chocolate gave off that aroma including the coconut.

T - Strong stuff. Definitley a sipper...so strong that at first I wasn't sure if this was the beer for me tonight, but after 10 or 15 min the rich, thick bourbony taste won me over. Not much in the hop areana, but there are just enough to balance out the malt and molasses taste and keep it from being 2oz. and done.

M - Almost no carbonation, which makes it all that much richer on the tounge with nothing to cut it.

D - I was going to rate it lower because you really can't drink more than one, but that's not what this beer is about. You know what your getting into with this (or at least you should now) and I 'd rather sip on one of these than any cognac or whiskey of comparable price.

Next one is waiting for a cigar and I'll be ready.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2007 02:37:28 | More by jtrockchalk
Photo of BradLikesBrew


4.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"bottled on 071406"

a: Pours a dark, deep black with a small amount of dark head.

s: Incredible. The smell is bourbon, molasses, espresso, vanilla, and dark chocolate, very rich smell.

t: malt, tons of roasted malt, which makes it sweet. Vanilla and chocolate are noticeable, as is bourbon. The aroma and flavor are virtually identical. A slight bite at the end, possibly from the bourbon (or the fact that its 11% abv).

m: Thick, like drinking motor oil. Virtually no carbonation. Chewy, sticky, coats the tongue in sweet maltiness. Absolutely full bodied.

d: Somehow, despite all the malt they crammed into this thing, the heaviness of its texture, its still silky smooth. That being said, I can't imagine having more than 12 ounces at a time, in fact their are times when I've had to split a bottle of this stuff. Its just so rich, you have no choice but to slowly sip or suffer its wrath, but hey, its an imperial stout, that's what you're supposed to do.

This beer is excellent, but be warned: its richness makes it a challenge to consume. Are you prepared?

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2007 00:50:36 | More by BradLikesBrew
Photo of ncvbc

North Carolina

4.6/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this beside a Kentucky Breakfast the other night. Two distinctly different beers, both of which are very good. This was bottled on 7/03/06 so its got some age under its belt.

The pour was basically pitch black with a thin tan head. I actually had my friend pour half of each in four different glasses.

It was pretty tough to tell the two apart based on appearance but the smell made it crystal clear. This one isn't quite so bold, though its subtleties are what make it great. Chocolate, vanilla, coffee, light bourbon, and other scents rise up and beg for attention. The only thing is none really step forward and take the lead, which is actually pretty impressive. You have to take your time with this one.

Taste is about as complex as the smell. I noticed everything I did in the nose but also a light oak and caramel presence. Again, this beer isn't bold, it's subtle and pretty tamed. The flavors mesh together to perfection and I honestly can't get enough.

Mouthfeel is rich and velvety. Near full with the only thing keeping it from a 5 being a slight burn in the middle.

This is very different from the Kentucky Breakfast. Where KBS flaunts its coffee and other flavors, making it a more bold brew, Bourbon County is calm and collected. I can tell the two apart with ease but don't favor one more than the other. Two classics!

Big thanks to Phil7568 for the chance to try this!

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2007 19:01:20 | More by ncvbc
Photo of BeerBelcher


3.4/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I am not a huge fan of bourbon-y beers (yet I love bourbon), but this one appealed to me. Its flavor is bourbon-y but also smokey and roasty and definitely complicated. Mouthfeel was about right...what I expected from this. The beer was viscous, but not over-the-top the way I found Sam Adams Triple Bock to be. I have a friend who's a huge fan of beer, and while I find hoppy and sour to be more appealing beer flavors, I can certainly understand the appeal of this beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2007 22:02:26 | More by BeerBelcher
Photo of balconybrew


3.78/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes...

Poured into a snifter. Pours a dark brown, almost opaque. A significant head that was espresso colored. The aroma is slightly coffee, mostly malt and a hint of bourbon. The taste was similar to the smell but I got more bourbon. The body was big. It's a smooth beer that I could only have one of.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2007 00:56:27 | More by balconybrew
Photo of bassmantin


3.98/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark black with a small tan head. Thin lacing quickly dissipates. I smell coffee and bourbon. Very thick, creamy mouthfeel. Strong alcohol taste at the finish. Bourbon and chocolate flavors linger throughout. Cask aging adds to the cost, but definitely makes this a unique brew. This is a real stout. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2007 02:02:20 | More by bassmantin
Photo of franksnbeans


4.08/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours opaque black with very minimal chocolate milk head that only shows cause of an extremely aggressive pour. Mild in the nose, chocolate, oak, a little bourbon. Taste is as it smells with a little smokey flavor and a little more bourbon but not boozey. Full in the mouth and only to be sipped slowly.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2007 03:56:32 | More by franksnbeans
Photo of genog


4.25/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque black color with a slim dark brown colored head that virtually disappears. Smell is of a toasted malt with some dark chocolate. Taste is somewhat woody, and smoky with some definite bourbon flavor. No alcohol taste on this one and the mouthfeeling is lively, and syrupy.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2007 01:08:43 | More by genog
Photo of wcudwight

North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 12/03
Received in a trade a long time ago. Sorry but I can't remember from whom.
Pitch black, thin lasting tan head. More carbonation than I expected.
Whoa this one punches you right in the nose. Bourbon(duh), burnt wood, chocolate.
Tons of bourbon in the flavor. If you don't like beers with a lot of alcohol flavor in them then this isn't for you. Chocolate. Heavy roasted flavors.
Thick, syrupy, viscous in the mouth.
It's a sipper and a damn fine beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2007 02:50:33 | More by wcudwight
Photo of ThirdCoast


4.85/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

ST: 12 oz bottle poured into a glass goblet. 2006

A: Black, zero head, poured like hot oil....nice.

S: Roasted nuts, sweet, vanilla, wood. A very nice aroma.

T: Warming bourbon, wood, oak, candied nuts, vanilla. A wonderful complex brew,

M: Smooth, yet warming, creamy, flows down the throat with a slight sting aftertaste.

D: Not one for the person who is new to beers, but one I will have over and over.

This is by far the best bourbon beer I have ever had, a wonderful complex brew that I will order/buy again.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2007 23:44:55 | More by ThirdCoast
Photo of beeragent


4.25/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was my first experience with a bourbon stout, and definitely not my last. I have to thank Quaffer for giving me one out of his personal stash. Thanks bro! Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass. The beer poured an opaque black, with no head. The aroma was an intensely strong bourbon along with a slight hint of chocolate. Complex, but hard to define due to the high alcohol aroma. The taste is extremely complex. The taste starts off with the strong flavor of bourbon, and then gives way to a smooth chocolate flavor accompanied by hints of vanilla and wood. Highly complex. The mouthfeel is just like a stout should be, very thick and smooth. This is what I consider to be a sipping beer, and not exactly a sessionable ale. The high abv. keeps this from being sessionable. Overall, I have to say I was really impressed. Very unique flavor. I wish we got this in Texas, but that makes it even more special when I can get it. Thanks again Quaffer!

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2007 21:22:06 | More by beeragent
Photo of illidurit


4.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. As close to black as it can be without actually being black. 1 finger of espresso head.

Extremely aromatic. The roasted malts are huge here, evoking coffee, chocolate, and a slight nuttiness.

One of the most intensely chocolatey beers I've ever had, or that I could even imagine. Fierce dark chocolate and bourbon, coffee and maybe vanilla.

Really smooth despite the slight booziness. Great carbonation and full body.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2007 10:59:25 | More by illidurit
Photo of rmcandre


4.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark, opaque, and intimidating, with a head the color of milk chocolate.

S: Sweet, with coffee and bourbon overtones.

T: Bourbon, coffee, and chocolate. Complex.

M: Thick. Almost syrupy.

D: Despite the strong flavors, this beer goes down smooth. However, I could probably only have one a night.

Overall: I loved it. I would definately try it again inspite of the high price.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2007 21:16:37 | More by rmcandre
Photo of barleywinebrewer

New Hampshire

4.38/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

best of BA list, limited in distribution / release, 225 reviews as of this writing - am I missing any other highlights? This is one beer that lives up to it's billing. I am going to skip the normal review and basically say that this one shows just how superbly bourbon and stouts belong together. Wonderfully balanced and a delight to the tastebuds.

I would buy a case if I could get my hands on one!

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2007 13:52:43 | More by barleywinebrewer
Photo of russpowell


4.93/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This 2006 bottle is courtesy of BARLEYWINEO

Pours (into a snifter) pitch black with one finger of mocha colored head that rapidly drops away. Some lacing & zero head retention

S: Bourbon, raisins vanilla & dark chocolate

T: Rich chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, raisins & a little booze up front. Dryness, molasses & charred oak show themselves as this warms up. Finishes oaky, with loads of chocolate, a whisper of booze, vanilla, raisins & molasses

MF: Rich, sticky, oily, chewy & slick with almost no carbonation

Drinks great for the abv, but more than 2 & I think I'd need a nap. One of the better double stouts out there IMO

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2007 03:23:43 | More by russpowell
Photo of mizzoueng


3.88/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pitch black, viscous, like old motor oil. Little head and what head i had had no retention. The head that was present was thin, less than 1/8", tan/brown with some purple in it.

S - Dark Malts, some chocolate hints, and bourbon. Bottle said it was bottled in 2006, no date though. Bottle aging helped as the bourbon smoothed out and was not ovepowering.

T - Bourbon, dark black malt, chocolate malt. That was about it. Some oak in there as well but very very subtle.

M - Thick, heavy, hard hitting. Not thinned by the bourbon, its like the stout was made extra heavy and then added into bourbon barrells and then thinned to the proper consistency of a stout.

D - Drinkable, but at 11% kind of a night killer. Hard for me to drink it as the alcohol really starts imparing the senses about halfway through. Nice to try a different brew from Goose Island, but not something I would buy again.

Overall, not a bad beer, not an excellent beer either. The label had this long drawn out retort saying this was a "special" beer and it was considered a "cigar beer". It seemed Goose Island was trying to replace a bourbon or scotch with this for the cigar smokers in the bar. Not sure if that would work.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2007 14:22:03 | More by mizzoueng
Photo of Monsone


4.72/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours pitch black from a 12oz bottle. Thick like motor oil with a brown head that quickly dissapates.

S - Sweet caramel malt with coffee and oaky bourbon aromas are present

T - Coffee with dark choco and sweet malt. Bourboun flavors are very evident. Very complex flavorful stout.

M - Full bodied and silky smooth.

D - Pretty drikable but big alcohol and dominant flavors mean you probably can have only one of these at a time.

Very good bourbon stout. This version was much more balanced than when I had it on draft this winter. The aging improved it greatly. I will definately seek this out again.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2007 18:41:45 | More by Monsone
Photo of BeerTruth


4.43/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Monsone for this one!

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic.

Pours a jet black with a dark brown colored head of two fingers that quickly dies down to a thin lacing. Stickiness is hardly there, but shows up a bit here and there. Smell is of big sweet molasses with some swet caramel notes. I sense a bit of kahlua in the nose as well, yummy. Taste is rich! Starts of with the sweet molasses mixed with a gooey chocolate brownie. Bourbon taste definitely comes through midway and warms as it goes down. The taste gets more and more complex as it warms. More of a dark chocolate flavor emerges with hints of espresso. Mouthfeel is full bodied with minimal carbonation. Silky smooth, wow. I'll definitely look for this one again. Pick it up, trade for it, give up one of your kidneys for it...do what you have to, pick it up.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2007 01:24:15 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of Flyer


4.38/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is a great example of what I call "purposeful excess." Anyone can overload a batch of beer with malt or hops, but the challenge is to make it a great beer in the process, and Goose Island has succeeded with this one. There are red highlights as you pour it, but it sits instensely black in the glass, with a thin, mocha-colored head. The aroma is all bourbon. The flavor is amazing, coffee-and-chocolate-noted malt intensity with loads of bourbony earthiness. Unlike many bourbon barrel-aged beers, the liquor flavors don't come through in any way as brandy -- it's much more of a true bourbon flavor. The malty whallop is great, and yet there's a back-taste that's almost reminiscent of port wine. The mouthfeel is wonderfully smooth, but aromatic – yes, like bourbon. So, so satisfying. But here's the nit -- twelve ounces is too much, and it's hard for me to find someone to share this with. The second six ounces aren't quite as enjoyable as the first six. If Goose Island would put this in a smaller bottle, I'd buy it a lot more.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2007 01:40:49 | More by Flyer
Photo of bjohnson


4.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 version. Poured at just above cellar temp.

Pours an opaque black as if someone turned the lights out in the cellar while you were looking for a beer. Making your way out you see a thin one finger caramel colored head that dissipates rather quickly leaving small island like forming foam in the middle of the glass. Chocolate notes are the first aromas to hit the nostrils. Theres a smoothness to the chocolate notes, which can be attributed to vanilla bean notes. Woody oak notes also contribute to the smoothness in the nose. Hot licorice and dark fruit notes are also present, but play a nice secondary role to the oak and vanilla bean notes.

Oak laced chocolate flavors hit the taste buds like a wave. Chocolate flavors give way to vanilla bean notes that give a subtle smoothness to the overall flavor. Licorice notes blend well with a touch of dark fruits, which contribute to a nice sweetness that comes through in the aftertaste. Thick and juicy mouthfeel comes through pretty hard with a hotness. Bourbon booze is hefty but not over abundant. A nice brew this one is with a ton of flavor and excellent smooth mouthfeel. One to sip and enjoy if you get the chance. I bet this also cellars well.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2007 02:31:35 | More by bjohnson
Photo of Wasatch


4.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Fuckn' Asshole website deleted my 2006 review.

Thanks to beerwolf77 for this brew.

2009 Vintage
Bottled On: 11/12/09

Poured into a chalice a very nice black color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tannish head, oil slicks and minimal sticky lacing around the edges. The nose is sweet/roasted/malts, slight alcohol, nice bourbon/oak note, toffee/chocolate/coffee. The taste is absolutely delicious, slightly sweet, roasted malts, vanilla, nice oaky taste, tons of toffee/chocolate/coffee, a slight dry finish. Alcohol gives a great warming feeling. Full/Medium body, a very nice smooth/silky brew, ABV hidden very well, for a brew this high in ABV. Very drinkable, an awesome Imperial Stout from GI, highly recommended. Thanks Todd for the new version.

Thanks to msubulldog25 for this brew.

2006 Vintage

Poured into a chalice a very nice black color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tannish head, oil slicks and minimal sticky lacing around the edges. The nose is sweet/roasted/malts, slight alcohol, nice bourbon/oak note, toffee/chocolate/coffee. The taste is absolutely delicious, slightly sweet, roasted malts, vanilla, nice oaky taste, tons of toffee/chocolate/coffee, a slight dry finish. Alcohol gives a great warming feeling. Medium body, a very nice smooth/silky brew, ABV hidden very well. Very drinkable, an awesome ADS from GI, highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2007 00:33:19 | More by Wasatch
Photo of icefisherman


4.45/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

first thoughts man this had better be worth the money not an easy beer to get hands on also not a inexpencive beer at leat around here all that aside. . . . WOW is about all i need to sum up this beer looks black no other colors suround it its just black. from the time the bottle is cracked to well after the time its all gone all one could smell in the house was burbon and malt and a little bit more burbon tasty tasty stuff mmm.... burbon and beer my 2 favorite adult beverages all in one wonderfully delicious burbony chockatly coffeey almost chew beverage makes me want to drink the rest of them all richt now just thinking about it but i know that that would leave me very disapointed a very good beer

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2007 15:58:54 | More by icefisherman
Photo of bort11


4.75/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

For a very special 200th review.

12 oz bottle with a bottled on date of 070306. Poured into a broad mouth goblet as recommended. Dark tan head only climbs to about a quarter inch and quickly recedes to a ring. But that ring has legs, and it's not going anywhere. Color is a smooth brown/black. Reminds me of crushed velvet.

Smell is an eye opener. Really. When I stick my nose into the glass it's like I can taste it in my eyes. It is a wonderful mix of charred oak, vanilla, chocolate malts, brown sugar, and of course, bourbon.

Taste is a bit more muted than what I would expect, but that's OK. It makes me want to savor it more to get the full effect. Taste follows smell, but finishes with a warm whisky spiciness.

Mouthfeel is thick and smooth. It slides across the tongue, creating a warm coating.

It is kind of scary how drinkable this is.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2007 03:09:46 | More by bort11
Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 7,766 ratings.