Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Bourbon County Brand Coffee StoutBourbon County Brand Coffee Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,058 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,058
Hads: 6,336
Avg: 4.6
pDev: 18.48%
Wants: 4,060
Gots: 2,628 | FT: 210
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  13.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BEERchitect on 04-22-2010

2014 Release - Intelligentsia Zirikana Coffee Beans
2013 Release - Intelligentsia ‘Los Inmortales’
2012 Release - Intelligentsia La Tortuga Beans
2011 Release - Intelligentsia Anjilanaka Beans
2010 Release - Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso Beans
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 1,058 | Hads: 6,336
Photo of Hazelchips
1.84/5  rDev -60%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

I have had this the past two years and still don't understand the rave about it. It's to maltie! Maybe I need to let it sit longer. Don't know but for the price I can name two dozen beers I would rather have.

 208 characters

Photo of TrueRates
2.37/5  rDev -48.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I truly was excited to try this beer. Anything that reaches the top 10 on BA is a must try. But this really is a massive disappointment. Choke the hype. This beer is almost more overly hyped than Patrick Rue's 18% bourbon RIS. The pour was expected. Gorgeous dark stout with tight mocha carbonation that disspated quickly. Best part about this beer for sure, however everything on was total crap. Aroma is straight bourbon. Nothing complex what so ever. At least bring some complexity into this. I thought this beer was brewed with top notch Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso. Taste is of more bourbon with slight creme'd sugar and lactose. Can I get some toasty malt or some hops in this, please? Taking another whiff of this, I get cheap vanilla extract with more milk chocolate (hence the lactoce again). The body is rich and full without any stickyness. Finish is one dimensional with bourbon straight through. I hardly want another sip. Luckily I'm splitting this beer with a friend or else I'd drain pour at least half the bottle. I'd say if one is looking for a coffee infused RIS done the right way, search out the Mikkeller Beer Geek Weasel (BA'ed one if you can find it).

 1,181 characters

Photo of jacksippinstout
2.54/5  rDev -44.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

I experienced this brew back in the winter of 2012. I was at a nice restaurant at Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut. This beer has very high ABV and I don't mind that, but my thoughts they didn't do a very good job hiding the alcohol. Much too strong for my liking as the alcohol takes away the flavors of the beer.

 312 characters

Photo of beerindex
2.63/5  rDev -42.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Chuck D once told us not to believe the hype. I ought to have listened. This is a good beer, but it isn't the world class brew various members here would seem to suggest it is.

Appearance - Pitch black, with an adequate oatmeal head that dissipates a bit too quickly, leaving a relatively thick lacing.

Smell - Ground coffee dominates here, with mild hints of chocolate and bourbon.

Taste - Strongly alcoholic, in fact dominantly so. That it is bourbon-related is less than fully apparent, especially as compared to regular BCS. Coffee is noticeable, but weaker than it ought to be. A bit of molasses I think. Unspecifically sweet, in a cloying sort of way.

Mouthfeel - Thick, sticky, and extremely hot. Quite unpleasant in its extremity.

Drinkability - This is a one and done. And I don't just mean on a session basis. It was interesting to try, not something that I'd re-buy. It is just hard to drink something this hot, thick, and and sweet.

 953 characters

Photo of tr4nc3d
2.87/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22oz bomber poured into my snifter

The appearance was opaque black with no light able to penetrate through this black beast of a stout. The pour produced a mere half inch head that was of a slightly light brown color. Poor head retention that was below average with no lacing either.

The aroma was strong in the bourbon department which almost overpowered the other aromas to shine through. Besides the bourbon being the dominate smell I got a decent amount of oak, molasses, tobacco, roasted malts on the charred side, black leather, and surprisingly the espresso is hardly noticeable.

The taste upfront was that of bourbon which pretty much hits your palette with a bang. Coming in is a sweetness with hints of black licorice, sugar, and dark chocolate. In the finish is where the espresso finally comes into play with a pretty intense alcohol heat and slight burn in the back.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with average carbonation. Alcohol burn lingers way beyond you have taken your sip.

Overall I was HUGELY disappointed with this beer. This beer is basically a Bourbon County Stout with added sweetness to it. The espresso in this beer hardly came through and needed to play a more dominate role, instead what you got was another bourbon bomb. If you truly want to try a good espresso based beer, I would rather recommend Great Divide-Espresso Oak Aged Yeti.

 1,366 characters

Photo of urwithdave
2.94/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured into my Cigar City Snifter.

A- Pours solid black. No light passes through at all. A fingers worth of a tannish head. Excellent retention and a solid amount of lacing.

S- Str8 up, in your grill, BOURBON. The charred malts and dark chocolate are present, but are supressed mainly by booze. I didn't pick up on any coffee at all.

T- Wow....I hate to say it, but I'm really disapointed. The bourbon is way to overpowering for me. Once again though the bourbon is just to hot. Weird because if I'm drinking liquor, I'm drinking Makers Mark, Gentleman Jack, or crown. Perhaps I should have chilled this brew a little longer before cracking it. I typicaly enjoy my stouts close to room temperature, so I had this just around room temp. The booze were just to much and it killed the other flavors in the beer. The only other thing I picked up on was the charred malts. No vanilla, no coffee, no chocolate. I really prefer regular BCS over this. I have one more bottle that I'm gonna let mellow out and I'll see what happens after some time has been put on this. I enjoy most BA stouts....I think this one just needs a little time.

M- Nice and creamy, but the heat from the booze killed it for me once again.

D- If you have read my review up to this point, you probably are going to guess what I'm going to say here...Yup u guessed it, just to boozey and hot. I'm anxious to revisit this brew in a year or so.

 1,412 characters

Photo of mulder1010
2.99/5  rDev -35%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bomber poured into a snifter
Thanks to the following...Readbaron for the bottle, Spicelab for bring it back and supplying the bottle.

A-- Poured dark cola and settled black. A few gurgles of head here and there but otherwise just some ordinary bubbles that made up a thin collar.

S-- Oak, vanilla, bourbon and soft coffee. Not as big as CBS had. Very sweet nose. Alcohol very present.

T-- Devoured by sweetness and barrel. Waves of sugar just eat this up. More like diabetes on a barrel.

M-- Full, rich and low carbonation. Where is my insulin shot?? Just way above the top in sugar. Coffee is secondary as the sugar just attacks this beer and makes it overly sweet. Alcohol is quite obvious.

O-- Tough to drink and enjoy unless have had several beers already. Just a task to drink and overly massive for the sake of being massive. Will avoid the base beer when possible as too sweet for me.

 900 characters

Photo of Jonoesh5
3/5  rDev -34.8%

A dark brown/black body, 1 finger Carmel head that left half way through

S dark roast coffee, bourbon heat

T sweet bourbon, dark chocolate, coffee syrup

M creamy, lots of alcoholic warmth, syrupy

O A kick in the pants for tastebuds. So much happening in this beer that impresses at first, but then becomes gimmicky. Bourbon, coffee, and chocolate were all present but without any balance.

 397 characters

Photo of Jakey2005
3.14/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Got this anticipating another great one like the bcbs but it was a disappointment. Very little coffee aroma or taste. I'm getting some raisin and molasses flavor. Great dark black color and tight carbonation formation that dissipated quickly. Not bad, but for $20 I just cant see it being worth the price. I liked Big John better. Smaller beer but for the price I thought it was a better value and had more coffee flavor, aroma, and not as hot. Too much hype over this beer.

 474 characters

Photo of craytonic
3.16/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark black mahogany with a very small head

Smell: Bitter coffee dominates with a touch of chocolate, vanilla and bourbon

Taste: Bitter roasted coffee up front with touches of vanilla, oak, bourbon and chocolate. Not particularly impressive

Mouthfeel: Full and think, low carbonation

Overall: I didn't particularly enjoy this one, rare is great and vanilla is decent. This one fell flat.

 402 characters

Photo of WreckedPalate
3.25/5  rDev -29.3%

Don't understand the hype. Good coffee flavor, pleasesant mouthfeel, aroma is very nice, but I don't get anything else other than coffee. No bourbon anywhere. By far my least favorite variant.

 192 characters

Photo of kingcrowing
3.27/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

Pours a very oily dark black with a very fine dark brown rim of head. Nose is booze, booze, booze - it smells like it came out of the barrel with a ton of bourbon still in it, there is some coffee but you've got to look for it - it's not upfront.

Taste is very hot, it's 13% and it lets you know right off the bat. Like the nose it's a bit hard to find the coffee, but it does come through. Mouthfeel is light and sharp, there isn't much carbonation but that's ok because it's so hot you don't want much.

Honestly, I haven't been very impressed with any of the BCB series, too much alcohol and not enough flavor to mask it. This may be better with a few years on it, but by then the coffee will have dropped out.

 754 characters

Photo of harrymel
3.28/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


pours ink black, some mocha foam and no lace. typical BCBS styling. Smells like BCBS and coffee, maybe some dark prunes and vanilla. It's nice. Flavor follows suit with a good bourbon and vanilla kick followed through with a solid mocha tone. Thick bodied with subdued carb as the beer warmed. I like this one, I like it quite a bit, but not on the seek out level in comparison to the regular BCBS. 3/4.5/4.5/4/4 - 4.28

Same look as before. Smells strongly of coffee, too much for me. Below, when I seek it out, the bourbon and stout characters come through, but it's too much work. Flavor is richly coffee'd and with a solid sweet stout accented with bourbon. Full bodied and fleeting carb similar to the '10. I'm not a big fan of this one, although my drinking buddies dig it quite a bit. 3/2.5/3.5/4/3.5 - 3.33 (this is the grade that is recorded)

 862 characters

Photo of FosterJM
3.33/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

490th review on BA
Bottle to taster
@Lost Abbey

Jason, my tattooed beer friend. Thank you so very much for all the beer love.

App- Into the glass was a good stout colored beer with a nice 1/2 in head and some cling down the sides. Was a pretty standard looking stout.

Smell- Im not sure if the coffee faded so much to only leave a small bitter smell with some malt and a little chocolate.

Taste- I had such high hopes for this one after the Vanilla being my favorite beer of all time. The fade on this amazing so much flavor I fear was lost on this beer. It wasn't anything like I hoped, thin, small, no coffee, no dark roast. Like a small foreign export stout

Mouth- Medium bodied and low carbed, just left a pretty bland stout after taste.

Drink- Its still a pretty tasty stout but some flavors just left me a bit put off with the fade. Glad I got to try it though. Wouldnt mind a fresh bottle at next release.

 918 characters

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.34/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Reviewing 2014 vintage in early 2015. Tasted alongside 2010-2013 for a full vertical.

Appearance: pours a deep walnut color. small tan head with weak retention and no lacing. small brown viscosity as it swirls around the glass. dark and completely opaque.

Smell: coffee, slightly towards the stale end of the spectrum. chocolate, dark fruits and bourbon.

Taste: opens up with coffee, has a hint of fresh coffee to it before become stale and old. bourbon and a bit of booze come in. the back end is weak but has notes of dark fruits and chocolate.

Mouthfeel: heavy and viscous. some alcohol warmth. some coffee bitterness.

Overall: the freshest one is easily the best of the bunch as I expected. that said I'm not to impressed with it. the coffee already tastes slightly stale and only gets worse with ages. the coffee takes away the complexity of dark fruits and sweet malts that stand out in the standard version.

 920 characters

Photo of n2185
3.36/5  rDev -27%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours thick black with only a centimeter or so of chocolate-colored head even with a rough pour. Within a minute, the head has completely vanished leaving no lacing or even a thin ring to indicate the beer is even carbonated. Even with a vigorous swirl, the beer stays as flat-looking as coffee.

S: Some semi-sweet chocolate followed by lots of vanilla, oak, and bourbon. The bourbon almost burns the nose it's so strong.

T: A little roasted malt with light chocolate flavors at first followed by the overwhelming bourbon flavors with vanilla and oak. The finish has a strong alcohol burn along with some toffee flavors and just a faint hint of coffee.

M: Very thick body with almost no carbonation, this beer is very sweet and coats my mouth.

O: Overall, the best of the Bourbon County series that I've had (better than regular or vanilla versions). The coffee is unfortunately undetectable and I probably would not have even picked up on it at all had I not expected to find it somewhere. Really the only way I can tell that this beer has coffee in it is the fact that it's not quite as sweet as its non-coffee counterparts. I know the coffee may have faded some, but I've had other bbal coffee stouts with a year of age and could still detect the coffee. The bourbon again dominates the flavor and the nose like it does in the other Bourbon County series. Not a bad beer, but I would need much more balance in it to call it good.

 1,441 characters

Photo of MisterClean
3.38/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Abel, great share brother.

A - Pours jet black, with a half finger of mocha colored head. Dissipates fast and leaves no lacing.

S - Wow, I can smell the alcohol right off. Other flavors coming out are espresso, some oak, and vanilla. The coffee and heat has obliterated the hops that were once present in the regular bourbon county stout.

T - Bourbon, espresso, vanilla, and oak. There is a bit of alcohol warmth, would suggest aging. Hops are minimal or not present.

M - Medium bodied and malt/bourbon dominated. Creamy with no carbonation, but moderate amount of lingering warmth. Surprising that the coffee does not lend astringency to this beer.

D - I actually think the BCS is a better beer. Not saying I wouldn't try this again, but it really needs to age in order to reduce the warmt.

 807 characters

Photo of bennetj17
3.43/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours semi-thick with light foam only. Dark brown color, you can almost see through it as it is mostly clear, it also has a bit of reddish hue along the edges. Aroma has a moderate intensity, only faint coffee smell with bourbon dominating.

Taste is again heavy on the bourbon with a good deal of sweetness. Where is the coffee accent? It's quite one dimensional with only a slightly bitter balance at the back. The nice thing here is that the alcohol seems pretty mellow for 13%. Mouthfeel is a bit thin for stout, but with barrel aging and high ABV it's appropriate. Carbonation was average.

Overall I was not impressed. I was expecting more of a coffee flavor like an Abyss or Breakfast Stout but it was just not there. This thing is pure bourbon, and the only saving grace was that the alcohol was kept in check and didn't also affect the drinkability. It was just too sweet without enough complexity. I believe aging would help this beer some, but overall I don't think it will ever live up to the hype.

 1,012 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.45/5  rDev -25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark coloured body, with a little head. Looks thick. Aromas of coffee up front, only fainter bourbon. The taste was cold coffee with tons of milk and sugar up front. Something I do not drink. As I kept drinking samples, and with food, the coconut taste (and the lactic acid) more than the bourbon accumulated.I finished 300 ml. but 750 ml. was just too much.

 366 characters

Photo of Original_Gravity
3.5/5  rDev -23.9%

Had a chance to try the 2014 vintage at the West Coast Barrel Aged Beerfest this past weekend. I've never had any other vintage. This beer has a certain spiciness to it (cayenne?). The spiciness isn't overwhelming, but it is enough to distract from both the coffee and bourbon that I was looking forward to. The 2012 vintage of the normal BCBS was being poured as well, which was phenomenal.

 391 characters

Photo of jdense
3.53/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted at Bailey's Taproom compliments of the awesome John Michaelson, bottling date 3.26.2010.

Dark brown/nearly black opaque body, no visible carbonation due to hue. Minimal tan head, medium dissipation with minimal lacing. The nose is very, very boozy, coffee buried by the alcohol, does get a bit sweeter as the beer warmed. Taste is too boozy, alcohol subsumes the coffee, bourbon barrel notes come through, a bit sweet, not picking up too much hops. Mouthfeel is pretty hot, a bit astringent and filling. If you can cut through the booziness this taste pretty good, but too young and hot, needs another six months to smooth out the alcohol heat, I'm sure this will be better down the road, but it was too boozy right now. Needs some time, check bottling date before consuming.

 784 characters

Photo of Phigg1102
3.54/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

2013 "Los Inmortales" coffee beans.
This is the only BCBCS I've had to date. Pours thick black with only the slightest bit of deep brown around the edges when held in the light. Thick and a touch oily for sure. Slight brown head with very little retention. Intense coffee in the aroma. You can easily pickup the strength of the alcohol in the aroma, strong bourbon, hints of vanilla, and tobacco. The coffee is up front as I was hoping for. Still very sweet but a bit toned down from BCBS, which is a huge positive for my taste, just the right amount to round out the flavors of anise, vanilla, oak, and raisin that dance and marry very poignantly. Serious viscosity here with very little carbonation, you can almost chew on this beer.

2014 - much more watered down than lasts years version. Some good flavors going on here, but I think I'm done supporting AB.

 863 characters

Photo of tpd975
3.6/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to Degarth for opening this one.

A: Pours deep dark black with an average mocha colored head. Lite retention and no lace.

S: Boooozy aroma, hints of acrid coffee, and deep roasted malt.

T: Booze right from the start in the flavor as well. The coffee is there in a big way with mild vanilla and coconut flavors. Mild chocolate notes with a touch of dark fruit.

M: On the fuller side of medium, rich, boozy.

D: Not real drinkable. This one needs to be laid down for a bit. My only fear is that the coffee will fall out a bit. I will take my chances though as this one is way too boozy as is.

 601 characters

Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.64/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottled on date of 3/25/2010.

Pours a dark black color with hardly any head and no lacing, appears slightly thick but doesn't leave any legs on the glass, can see some reddish/brown tints along the edges when held up to the light.

Smell is overwhelmingly bourbon with a good strong coffee presence, slight chocolate presence but certainly not a key player in the aroma.

Taste is quite hot, not surprising considering it's from Goose Island, their regular BCS even after a few years of age tends to still be hot, the dark roasted malt comes through in the taste more than it did in the aroma, the bourbon is rather strong but the coffee helps to soothe it a bit by adding some bitterness on the tongue.

Says on the bottle that it will continue to develop for 5 years, I'd recommend sticking to that advise because in 5 years it will be much better. I'd say it took me about 4 hours to drink the entire bottle because this beer is such a sipper, probably broke my previous record from Darkness.

 996 characters

Photo of alpinebryant
3.67/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a thick oily black with a large tan cream head.

Smell of strong booziness of whiskey and dark malt, tobacco and roasted malts mixed with sugar.

Taste of coffee, boozy whiskey of course (thats why they put it in there right?) vanilla, roasted caramel, thick syrupy sugar and malt flavors intermix to create a thick viscous flavored RIS. All said, this is what RIS's are supposed to be built like, I just prefer a slightly less boozy presentation. At 13%, the booze is going to rear its head, unfortunately its just not my style.

Drinkability went down greatly in my book due to the booze flavor factor and I found the carbonation slightly disappointing in that it was relatively flat. Luckily, I do not think that I need to try the vanilla BCS , the Coffee BCS, and whatever other BCS comes out after I post this. Its not a bad beer at all, just not my favorite RIS.

I would recommend only opening one of these when another person is around.

 955 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 1,058 ratings.