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Ghost Pepper Bourbon County Brand Stout | Goose Island Beer Co.

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Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial Stout aged in 10-16 year old Heaven Hill bourbon barrels with an infusion of ghost and ancho chile peppers.

Added by AgentZero on 10-16-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews
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Reviews: 8 | Ratings: 41
Photo of yourefragile
4.42/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sample from 750 mL growler at 50/50 Eclipse release party.

Looks like any other BCS variant; oil like dark chocolate brown with a retentive tan head. Balanced aroma of typical BCS with bourbon, milk chocolate, oak, vanilla, brown sugar with the bonus of potent, yet smooth chili spice and heat. The peppers play a more prominent role in the flavor than the nose and turn this into something more unique than a minor tweak on BCS. After a sip or two, the hallmark BCS flavors (bourbon, molasses, chocolate, vanilla, etc) give way to a strong pepper spice on the palate and heat in the finish. Full bodied, viscous, low carbonation, etc. Surprisingly, really enjoyed this and found it to be nothing like the novelty I expected it to be.

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Photo of Siggy125
4.32/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried this from a growler at the 50/50 Eclipse release gig. I didnt get the name of the young guy sharing it. Whoever you were, thanks dude!

Very dark blackish brown with red tinges in the glass. Very light carbonation, maybe from the time spent in the growler.

The typical bourbon bite found in most Bourbon County brews was a bit subdued and blended with the tastes of burnt baking chocolates and roasted peppers. Being that ghost peppers are so damn hot, I cringed a little as I swallowed but the flaming sting that I expected was actually quite pleasant. Dont get me wrong, there was plenty of eye watering peppery goodness but balanced very nice with the roasted anchos.

Not usually a big fan of peppered porters or stouts, but I quite enjoyed this one. Wish it was bottled so I could pursue some of it.

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Photo of PaulStoneAnchor
4.42/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tried from a Growler at the Eclipse Party, Dec. 8th, 2011.

I thought this beer was fantastic! I was lucky enough to try this at the Eclipse Party recently. It has a very dark chocolate nose, that also comes with a bit of smokiness. When tasting this I was blown away. The peppers take a lot of the cloying sweetness Bourbon County usually has, and then imparts a really nice smokiness. The beer also had a nice dark chocolate and roasted components. The Ghost Pepper also adds a nice spicy component as well. For the mouthfeel, it was thick with some medium-low carbonation. Overall, from what I remember, this beer was almost like having a rich, dark mexican hot chocolate. This Bourbon County was definitely fantastic, this is something I would love to emulate. I also must add that when the beer hits the back of the throat you do get a nice spicy burn sensation.

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Photo of largadeer
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Michael/Sean.

Pretty typical BCS appearance, pouring a viscous dark brown with little head. The nose is crazy, with a huge ghost pepper character that singes the nostrils and nearly drowns out the normally intense bourbon aroma of BCS. It's a bit chocolatey, and decidedly rich, but ghost pepper really steals the show here. The palate displays a bit more balance, though the intense pepper flavor is still fairly dominant. The heat, interestingly, is pretty heavy up front but doesn't linger too much, which is nice. The pepper comes off as spicy, smoky, slightly vegetal but thankfully not overly grassy and green as some chili beers do. The BCS foundation does a decent job of supporting the huge ghost pepper flavor, though again, the bourbon seems quite toned down here, with big chocolate and molasses flavors providing most of the foundation. Really a nice beer, not one I'd ever want to drink a ton of, but more than just a novelty drink.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.65/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at FoBAB.

A: appearance is identical to the rest of the BCS family, pitch black, thick, brown head, decent retention

S: mellow vanilla, oak and bourbon come through, the peppers are very prominent in the nose which is new for me in regards to pepper beers, some smokey quality as well

T: front is all chocolate and vanilla, by the middle, you get stiff pepper heat, reminds me of cayenne and ancho (I have never actually tasted a Ghost Pepper) , the heat balances the boozieness and sweetness of BCS beautifully. Delicious! This one is quite a bit spicier than the Ancho Chili variation of BCS.

MF: again-- identical to the BCS family, thick, mellow carbonation

O: this is probably my favorite variant of BCS so far behind rare, the balance is incredible and the pepper is well integrate

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Photo of Sean9689
4.29/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Oh John Laffler, you are the man. On-tap at the WLV Pig Roast into my Narke tulip.

A - Pours like BCBS pours, black, low carbonation, chocolate syrup.

S - Nice mix of chocolate, bourbon, burnt sugars, oak, and light chili peppers. None of the aforementioned notes interfere with one another and work well together. Really well-done.

T - Up front BCBS flavor with a huge Ghost pepper kick on the end. Really nice how the chocolate, bourbon, and oak are all up front and right when you think this one is done, here comes the chilies! Light booze that is really overtaken by the spices.

M - Full body, rich and smooth, little to no carbonation.

O - Damn, this one was great. The Ghose Peppers work so well in this beer...they added the perfect amount to it doesn't destroy you in other ways. Nice level of sweetness, booze, and peppers. Hard to find much bad about this one besides the fact that it's hard to drink more the 1-2 pours without feeling some "effects".

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Photo of MasterSki
4.24/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at West Lakeview Liquors pig roast. Thanks John!

A - Pours out with almost no perceptible carbonation - maybe a few stray bubbles. The beer is black with brownish notes at the fringes of the glass.

S - It smells like Bourbon County Stout - vanilla, coconut, chocolate, caramel, molasses, oak, bourbon, etc., but with some pepper and chili notes. Not a pepper bomb like some other chili beers I've had - the base beer is up to the challenge here.

T - Initially I was a bit disappointed by the chili heat, however a few ounces later it kicks in. That being said, there's only moderate burn, and it's hard to tell what's from the peppers and what is from the alcohol. More chili flavor than the aroma, but still plenty of all the flavors you know and love from BCS - chocolate fudge, caramel, vanilla. Not as much bourbon as the regular version.

M - Very low carbonation, full-bodied, sticky and viscous, and some mild esophageal burn on the initial few sips. After a few ounces the heat grows in intensity, but it never becomes unbearable or excessive.

D - Flavor-wise this is a huge improvement on Ancho BCS. I greatly enjoyed how the chili pepper flavors integrated with the base beer, and I think this is one of the few beers out there that is big enough to successfully harness the intensity of the ghost chili (Abstrakt AB:04 being one of the others). I had multiple pours of this one, and would have had more if the keg hadn't kicked.

On the other hand, I was dying from horrendous heartburn a mere eight hours later. Tread carefully my friends, especially if this shows up at FoBAB.

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Photo of AgentZero
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Special brew brought to West Lakeview Liquors by John Laffler complete with John Laffler crazy pepper drawing. 2010 BCS aged with 1 ghost pepper per 5 gallons. I was quite skeptical, as the Ancho BCS I had was nothing I cared for.

A - Bourbon county always has a pretty distinct and uniform look. Black beer, brown head, some minor spots left on the side.

S - Smells great. Unlike a lot of the BCS series, the bourbon takes a bit of a back seat to some other flavors on this one. Pepper is sharp, and blends with the chocolate to give almost a peppermint smell on the end.

T - Amazing. BCS is there, but it's a very different beer than a lot of the variants. The Ghost pepper adds a lot of kick on the end, making this one a sipper. Nice heat and flavor, but it's still a sweet beer, with the bourbon once again being less prominent than other variants. Sweet, sharp, almost peppermint taste on the end. I am shocked at how good this is. The heat also makes this one less boozy than BCS can be.

M - Smooth, full bodied, great BCS feel.

O - This beer is shockinly good. Definitely the best Ghost Pepper beer I've ever drank. Mr. Laffler said he tasted this beer and immediately decided it was going to festivals. If you get a chance to try this, you really shoud.

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Ghost Pepper Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
- out of 100 based on 8 ratings.