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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.

2,775 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,775
Hads: 11,372
Avg: 4.5
pDev: 19.78%
Wants: 2,639
Gots: 6,771 | FT: 685
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States | website

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
Reviews: 2,775 | Hads: 11,372
Photo of JAck199
5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Outvof a 17 oz bottle. Heavenly beer! So well balanced, subtle burbon/ run flavor with a nice middle of vanilla and chocolale. By far one of the best beers I have had. Worthy of the search.

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Photo of OrangeMen
4.82/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2015 vintage, 2 months from bottling

Apearance- Pours black color, opaque, silky and viscous in glass. Razor thin layer of cinnamon colored head. Alcohol legs coat glass with a thick layer of film.

Aroma- Chocolates, toffee candies, and caramel. Charred oak, roasted / burnt malts, smoky undertones. Toasty coconut and vanilla, oaky spice, almonds, and dark fruits. Intense sweet bourbon and boozy notes.

Taste- Milk chocolate sweetness, caramel, toffee, and creamy vanilla. Sweet bourbon, charred barrel, roasty malts, spicy oak, toasted coconut. Smooth sweet finish.

Feel- Full bodied, creamy, smooth, and silky. Coats the mouth, thick and oily. Lower carbonation.

Overall- Depth of flavors is what makes this beer one of the best in its style. Barrel characteristics are so strong and forward, but just compliment and don’t overpower the base beer flavors. Everything is in wonderful balance. So enjoyable to just sit and sip, let the flavors unfold, and reach for every little subtlety.

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Photo of Martinnewman48
4.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Absolutely wonderful this is the definition that you would find next to bourbon barrel stout!
L: pitch dark as in blackhole dark with almost zero head
S: quality rich Bourbon smell with hints oif caramel
T: sweet heavenly bourbon and smokey vanilla all infused into an amazing single taste
F: I can't say enough about how smooth and easy drinking this beer is
The first thought that I had was you can take me now my life is complete

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Photo of SHDoyle
4.73/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Description: Darth Vader dressed in a ninja suit dark black appearance. Looks silky as it pours and with absolutely no head. Smell is bourbon foremost (shocker) followed by wood/oak and some sort of a dark fruit (grape, raisin, maybe even a hint of raspberry) and a touch of vanilla. Taste is similar to the smell, as bourbon takes center stage with some dark fruit acidity behind it. It's a roasty flavor without any discernible sweetness aside from the bourbon. The finish leaves a noticeable smoky, woody flavor as it goes down. The feel is rich and velvety and this one coats the mouth without being syrupy.

Suggested food pairing: Bacon wrapped shrimp or a juicy beef brisket

If you like this beer then you should also try: Ten FIDY

Overall: 4.75 (This beer is excellent and I would definitely drink it again) This was my first foray into the Bourbon County lineup and it didn't disappoint. It wasn't quite as bourbony as I expected which I actually think was a good thing as it should some more flavor complexity and wasn't one-note. Hides the alcohol well for as high an ABV beer as this is. In short, a great beer that lived up to expectations. All the hubbub is justified and this is one to seek out.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.87/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

-2015. Enjoyed in a snifter. Bot. 21oct15. Consumed 12.25.15. Warmed to recommended drinking temp by style.

A: A dark viscose pour produces a darken cherry-mocha capping of 0.5inches with a very audible sense, fizzling to a rather quick demise and patchy covering.

S: Boozy bourbon and chocolate mingle in harmony with a soothing sense of campfire minerality and charred woodiness. Fresh coffee roast is abundant, fresh, wet, silky dark aroma, with some dark fruit of plums and black cherries about. The strength and retention rate is is very nice and lingering.

T: Thick chocolate slurry, with a big bourbon flair and campfire minerality. The coffee roast is oily, wet, and fresh and of the darkest level of intensity, just the way a real coffee drinker likes it. Spicy dark fruit and liquor, roasted barley with hints of burnt brown sugar, caramel-vanilla and scorched barrel woodiness. Roasted pine and spicy hops close things out.

M: The mouthful is creamy and viscose, thick chocolate-barley, that sits heavily on the tongue with a roasted bitterness that glows on the inner cheeks. Heavenly coffee roast feel that lingers on long after the swallow.

O: After several fruitless years of searching i was able to secure a bottle and received one for x-mas. The price tag ($20) and wait was well worth it in the end. A lot of hype surrounds this beer and rightfully so. I rarely give out 5's, but in the end the flavor, intensity, coffee aspect, bourbon flair, and thick viscose mouthful and nature was so overwhelming and perfect in execution, i do not think the human tongue could detect any minor improvements if they could possibly be made. Just like you can't make a beer any hoppier then the tongue can distinguish or beyond the means of alpha acid saturation, i believe you can't make a bourbon barrel aged stout any more bigger, bolder with such a refined drinkability nature as this one. As everyone has their own individual tastes, this is just my personal opinion. This was highly polished with the 14.3% feeling perfect here adding dark and beautiful alcohol tones to the mix. I thought about aging one, but think the late fresh coffee additions after barrel aging would mellow, and this is what makes this beer such a standout, not the base beer, but the barrel aging technique and cold coffee infusion and care that goes into this production and aging that makes it worthy of seeking out and waiting in lines.

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Photo of NoZeFace
4.46/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm at a lost on what to say. Do I comment on how sweet it smells out of the bottle? Or how smooth it is despite the 13.7% abv? Or maybe how it 's straight up darkness in a bottle? Whichever route, it is pretty damn solid. I got lucky to find a few bottles in the wild and glad I snapped them up. I an only imagine the potential of how they will be like when they age a bit. If you can find one, worth the plunge if nothing else, just to see what everyone is raving about.

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Photo of jooler
4.33/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks like motor oil but tastes like figs. There is a great noticeable bourbon taste. It all just blends really well. I got two more for aging and we will see how that goes.

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Photo of righthereisay
4.44/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is the 2015 version which is 14.3%. Throwing it down New Years Eve 2015.....

Pours black with minimal head, which lasts about 15 seconds. Lacing is very minimal, sticks around.

Smells of bourbon first....bourbon 2nd, with some chocolate and malt... - Bourbon, chocolate, roasted malts, licorice, and booze

Taste - This is where the bourbon might take 2nd to the chocolate. A real nice flavor.

Definitely feel and taste the bourbon. It goes down pretty easy, which is impressive considering the 14.3%. Medium Body AT BEST.

Overall: I'm glad I got it. It was $9.29 for 22 ounces. Probably won't get it again but only because there are tons of other Bourbon stouts waiting to be had...

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Photo of mtvolkens
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought my first bottle of 2015 BCBS and couldn't help but drink it rather than age it. It smells nice of roasted malt and vanilla bean. Taste was boozy, malty, tasted notes of raisin, coffee, and chocolate. Super syrupy which fits the style but is not my favorite mouthfeel. I'm glad I tried it, wouldn't go out of my way for it most likely, but would buy again if convenient (which is not common for this I understand).

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Photo of vileplume
5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

vileplume's "cut the shit" review on bcbs.

this is how a bourbon barrel aged imperial stout should taste.

bourbon. stout. thick. alcohol. sweet. balance.

waited out in the cold every year for this beer, will continue to do so as there's nothing like it in the world. many imitations, none quite make the grade.

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Photo of PLDamico
4.97/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L - Jet black

S - Amazing. Smells like bourbon and chocolate.

T - Solid bourbon and tons of chocolate. Alcohol is present but enjoyable. What you would expect from BCBS.

F - Coats the pallet nicely.

O - It's Bourbon County. Find it. Drink it. Enjoy it.

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Photo of dgmirelli
4.16/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

the 2015 edition in a 16.9 bottle and poured into a white wine glass at family house, look was a dark dark pure black smells of bourbon cocoa and lots of vanilla very little head, tastes of cocoa an vanilla brown sugar and chocolate, the 14% abv is prominent. Great taste but is something the average beer drinker will need to work towards.

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Photo of Kgoldsbe
4.43/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Before it opens up the overwhelming taste is chocolate after some time in the glass the taste is much more complex with many aspects of the bourbon barrels. There is a maple roasted nut aspect to this stout as well. The feel is thick, rich and chewy. This beer is very hedonistic!

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Photo of Pantalones
4.81/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Written from notes when I had this on Christmas. My first time ever drinking this beer; 16.9 ounce bottle from the 2015 release, with bottling date of October 1st, 2015. Pours with much glug-glug-glugging noise into my tulip-type glass.

The appearance of this beer is... black. Like not just really dark brown, but pitch black. Even the foam on top (which fizzes loudly at first before shrinking to a ring around the outside and a few traces) is pretty dark brown. My little LED flashlight can't penetrate this beer's darkness at all. The foam fizzing away to almost nothing so fast is a bit odd, but otherwise this looks really nice.

Smells sweet, a bit vanilla-ish, and sometimes I pick up on something a bit nutty or woody? Certainly smells different from other stouts I've had, but smells very good. After drinking a bit, I'm picking up a bit more stouty roastiness in the smell. And as a random side-note, apparently bugs LOVE the smell of Bourbon County Stout -- I had to swat three little fruit flies that I wasn't aware were in the room shortly after I started drinking it, as they had started to hover around the glass (and still-partially-full bottle) and I really didn't want to end up drinking some bugs if they decided to dive-bomb it.

Taste... wow! Just a little sip and I got some definite woody/nutty, sweetness, a bit of vanilla, and then a really nice roasty/chocolate/coffee blending together at the end. Burps are like a chocolate milkshake almost immediately after drinking any of this. There's so much going on that I'm having a hard time describing it all -- something about my second sip really reminded me of pecan pie, for example, and I got just a hint of alcohol in there, too. Something reminds me of maple syrup, too. This is by far the sweetest, chocolatiest stout I've ever had! Actually, this is at least as good as the image of "what a big barrel-aged stout will taste like" I had in my mind before drinking one, probably better actually. For literally being better than I could even imagine, the taste of this beer earns my first-ever 5/5 score on here.

Definitely feels thicker than most beers I've had. Okay, probably thicker than *all* beers I've had! Even a little sip feels pretty substantial, yet it tastes so good that more than a little sip works too. The alcohol is more noticeable in the mouthfeel than anywhere else, with a bit of warmth the first couple times the beer touches your lips and some definite stomach-warming going on, but for a whopping 13.7% ABV it's almost completely hidden -- I've had 7-8% ABV beers that had more perceived alcohol.

I was actually afraid I'd not like this beer, if you can believe that; I'd never had bourbon or any bourbon-barrel-aged stouts before, and I wasn't sure if any beer could ever live up to the reputation that a beer like this one has (even for someone who doesn't really buy into "hype.") Now I'm glad I grabbed three bottles when I had the chance -- though two will be shared with family or friends (good Christmas present, huh?), I'll still get to have some of this beer again without having to wait until next Thanksgiving!!

Absolute DOES live up to its reputation. This is really, really good stuff.

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Photo of RJB66
4.66/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now I know what the fuss is all about. Goose Island has done a great job with this beer. All I've heard is that this brew sets the standard for BA beers. It is the best BA I've had. I'm glad I have more. Super easy drinking, a little boozy but it should be expected. I highly recommend trying one or two of these. I have a 2014 and 3 more 2015's . I'm looking forward to trying each of them.

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Photo of hardysf
4.65/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

what can i say that somebody else hasnt. This is a wonderful beer. I don't care who owns or produces it; the more that is available the better for everybody else.

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Photo of Trevor11
5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As the originator of barrel aged stouts, BCBS continues to remain supreme among the strong cohort of russian imperial stouts. 2015 is just as superb as past years. I am thinking about experimenting an cold pressing coffee to make BCBCS with 10% coffee and 90% original stout

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Photo of mdgogiants
4.52/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Let this beer warm a bit (50F). Gets a more full taste. Very boozy with definite Bourbon notes. Smoky and deep sweetness that will keep you sipping this fine crafted brew!

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Photo of BrownAleBollocks
4.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a jet black motor oil consistency that shows almost no head, but what is there is a dark brown sugar color. Aroma is amazing with bourbon, vanilla, smoke, bittersweet chocolate, and dark fruits. Taste follows with chocolate, bittersweet chocolate, vanilla, oak, dark fruit, smoke, and barrel character, just an amazing melange of harmonious flavors. Mouthfeel is oily, silky, and so super smooth and creamy. Overall, an excellent beer and one I'm glad I got to try, because it is one of the best I've had.

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Photo of Vogie
4/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 9/24/14. Served in a tulip glass.

Pours a jet black silky motor oil that leaves virtually no head. Aromas of cherries, alcohol, vanilla, wood, syrup, and dark chocolate. Taste is complex with a real thick chocolate upfront that transitions into a woody alcohol burn finish. Mouthfeel is heavy and chewy.

True to its name Bourbon County takes its cues from the barrel. You definitely get more of the bourbon than stout flavor. At 13.8% abv it packs a punch. A great brew to share with friends and family around the holidays. Perhaps a bit too much hype surrounding this series but this one is the more easily found beer in the Bourbon County line up so if you see it pick one up. That is if you can afford it.


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Photo of 20holmbrew
4.61/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2015 bottle (14.3 abv) poured into a snifter.

A: pitch black with very thin tan head

S: straight bourbon, raisin, oak

T: smokey malts, delicious bourbon

M: very thick and creamy. Pretty chewy

O: this was my first time trying and was blown away. I have never tasted such a thick and creamy stout. Picked up 2 bottles. I will save one for next year to compare to next year's batch.

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Photo of ABhatia
1.78/5  rDev -60.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Probably the most overrated beer I've ever had. Pour is heavy with no head. Taste like stale bourbon and stale beer mixed together and aged in a rotting wooden barrel. It leaves you with a disgusting aftertaste that stays in the throat forever.

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Photo of CO-Bloom
4.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Strong Bourbon, vanilla oak, raisins, semi sharp booze that is cut by sweetness. I do love this stout but the bourbon booziness does overshadow most of the flavor profile and I am left missing some of my favorite coffee and dark chocolate notes that are more present in the style. For those of you new to the style, try letting it warm so more of the complexity comes through. Great beer to share with my wife on Christmas Day (her gift to me!). Lives up to its hype but I would prefer more dark roasted malt to shine to balance out the sweet vanilla caramel of the bourbon.

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Photo of Brysky
4.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours dark with very little head. First dip takes in the entire flavor with a beautifully aroma.

Just finished Christmas dinner with my folks and split a 750ml of brooklyn black ops with my father so I had a stout in my mind. Drove back to tampa from Sarasota and stopped at the copper top pub and noticed they have a shelf full of these... So glad I got to try.

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Photo of Czequershuus
3.92/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This beer pours black with a medium sized head. The nose offers up a huge dose of booziness, followed by walnut, vanilla, and cinnamon. The flavor is fairly sweet, with strong vanilla, oak, baking spice, and bourbon flavors. The mouthfeel is rich and filling. Overall this is a very good beer for showcasing what bourbon barrel aging can do, but not as complex or nuanced as others I have had.

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Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 2,775 ratings.