Bramble Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout - Goose Island Beer Co.
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Ratings: 796 | Reviews: 166 | Display Reviews Only:
4.13/5 rDev -4.4%
A- pours a half inch dark mocha head on a black body. Average head retention, minimal lacing.
S- May be the star of the show. Your regulat Bourbon County but with raspberries!
T- Very smooth. Raspberries shows up at the tail end of each sip. Extremely well hidden alcohol.
M- Thicker mouthfeel, good low carbonation.
D/O- Good beer, not my favorite BCBS varient though. Great drinkabilty for 12.7%abv...I've had 9% beers that have been boozier than this. Worth a try for any BCBS or raspberry beer fan.
02-08-2012 01:47:16 | More by Duff27
3.98/5 rDev -7.9%
Lucky enough to have been able to crack open 3 bottles of this already. Served cold (why, Goose Island, why?) at Goose Island Wrigley in a snifter, served warmer than cellar temp in a snifter (thanks Dunt), and served at cellar temp in a snifter.
At this stage the appearance of a Bourbon County Stout or variation is as familiar as the back of my hand. The thick, viscous black liquid that seeps out of the bottle before settling into a pool of thick, black tar. A small mocha froth rests on top before fading to a creamy ring around the edges. This head is best created and maintained with a pour at a warmer temperature.
The aroma is lighter on the additional treatment (Bramble fruit addition) than some of the other Bourbon County variants. The extra barrel aging really smooths out the nose, blending roast malt, dark chocolate, coffee, and vanilla very nicely. The rye whiskey character does not depart much from the original barrel, at least not that I can detect. The blackberry and raspberry fruit flavors come through so lightly. There is also a slightly off aroma that attaches itself to the fruit. The berry aroma is fuller at warmer temperatures, but so are the off notes.
At first the bourbon county comes through with strong intensity. Dark roasted malt, molasses, vanilla, bitter chocolate, some coffee, and a hint of smoke are wrapped up in a spicy rye whiskey flavor. The whiskey is lighter and less boozy and harsh than in the fresh base beer. The blackberry and raspberry flavor comes in slowly, unleashing a slightly tart berry flavor in the middle. This tartness combines with the bitter coffee and chocolate in a mildly unpleasant way. Some additional vanilla sweetness would actually reduce this conflict of flavors in my mind.
The body is typically full and mouth-coating. The carbonation is creamy, the body is chewy, smooth, and full-bodied, and overall I get a full, intense experience. Only a little bit of noticeable booze, although it does warm the stomach.
The rye whiskey barrels did not seem to have much impact on my enjoyment of this variant compared to others, but the fruit and associated off notes drop it a little bit below the regular version for me.
02-07-2012 16:55:31 | More by KickInTheChalice
2.65/5 rDev -38.7%
Served in a Rogue shaker pint glass.
Big thanks to TheStretch for sharing this bottle!
Why stop now? Bring on more all-star beers! It's the Super Bowl, for Pete's Wicked sake! This one pours a staunch black-brown (razor-close to onyx) topped by over a finger of brown foam. The nose comprises blackberry jam, dark cocoa, roasted malts, whiskey, oak, light raspberry, light plum, light vanilla, and a touch of straight booze. I actually think the combination of barrel-aged stout and berries works decently well here. Unfortunately, things go awry when the tongue gets involved: The strong, boozy, whiskey-dipped stout clashes with the jammy berries. Nothing but discord for the tastebuds, a riot of muddled, alcohol-induced mania. Even with a bit of warming, this stuff just doesn't taste very good at all. The body is a light heavy, with a light moderate carbonation and a lightly chewy feel. Overall, a seemingly nice idea, but decidedly poor execution.
02-06-2012 23:24:04 | More by TMoney2591
4.65/5 rDev +7.6%
Poured from 22oz bottle into snifter
A- Dark dark black straight from the bottle. Tiny dark brown head that evaporates quickly leaving no lacing. Motor Oil
S- Sweet fresh raspberries hit you right away followed by vanilla bourbon and the background BCBS scents
T- WOW!! Just like the nose, fresh raspberries smack you in the mouth and leave you begging for more. Then comes the bourbon, oh the bourbon. Dear god please let me swim in this beer if/when I get into heaven.
M- Just like every other BCBS it's thick, coating and amazing.
O- Like those dumb commercials I wish I could get paid in BCBS Bramble. I value this more than I value money and behind CBS this is the best liquid ever to grace my lips. I'm jealous for everyone who will drink this in the future
02-05-2012 05:38:48 | More by pschul4
3.63/5 rDev -16%
Dark brown with a tinge of purple when held up to the light. No head at all.
It smells like blackberry jam and chocolate. It has a heavy sweet presence like dessert in a glass.
It's overly sweet and, when combined with the booze, tastes like childrens' cough syrup. The berries overwhelm the beauty of bcbs and almost take the bourbon out of the equation.
Mouthfeel is thick, astringent, and syrupy. Again, cough syrup.
This was disappointing and a mediocre version of a great beer. Unfortunately, only a shell of that beer remains in this version.
02-05-2012 03:48:45 | More by Vonerichs
2.98/5 rDev -31%
Aroma- Dominated by berries with some bourbon in the background. Smells like Fanta grape soda.
Appearance- Pours a very dark brown color. Soft carbonation with little to no head.
Taste- Imagine blending a grape soda that had little carbonation with some grape flavored cough syrup. The berry flavor is very forward and dominant. The sourness from the fruit and the berry flavors drown the base beer. Hard to tell this is bourbon county. Has a dry finish at the end with a hint of barrel.
Palate- medium bodied, soft carbonation, slick, and dry.
Overall- If you love fruit beers and fresh Bourbon County is too strong for you, then you will enjoy this. The base beer is hidden here by the domination of the berries. If you love regular Bourbon County and all the other flavors, you will not find them in this variant.
02-04-2012 17:28:43 | More by StoutFest
4.13/5 rDev -4.4%
Went to GI Wrigley to have a bottle.
A - Color is a deep black / purple with no head. The beer has a reddish tint to it as you swirl it around. The color reminds me of raspberries. Very clean and thick.
S - Smells of raspberries and blackberries with hints of bourbon, oak and vanilla. Definitely has a big boozy and fragrant nose
T - Raspberries and caramel sweetness are the first notes that come through definitely sweeter and tamer than normal BCBS. On the back end, there is vanilla and a hint of oak spiciness. The fruit, especially the raspberries is what stands out on this one as you don't get much of the barrel until the end when a slight spiciness lingers on the tongue. There are only hints of the bourbon compared to normal BCBS
MF - Surprisingly a good amount of carbonation up front that helps add a snap to the fruit. Once that fades the beer has a thick and sticky mouthfeel that goes with the sweeter flavors
O - A delicious and interesting take on BCCS. The fruit flavors add an interesting layer of complexity and make this one stand out in it uniqueness amongst the BCBS family. It's also the most approachable of BCBS family and would be the one that the non-bourbon lovers would like the best. However, I didn't find its flavors to standout and blend as well as they do in Normal and Coffee BCBS.
02-04-2012 16:23:20 | More by jeonseh
4.4/5 rDev +1.9%
This beer pours with no head. It is dark and viscous, but even a big beer like this in expect a little bit of evidence of carbonation. But who really cares how this beer looks. The aroma is outstanding. A bit of oak, chocolate, and lots of raspberry. The blackberry is not as pronounced, and manifests mostly as a more dried or syrupy fruit. Flavor reminds me of those candies that come in those hearts that are chocolate covered and filled with raspberry jam. Except much much better. Barrel character is more dry oak than full vanilla and coconut bourbon. Lots of raspberry, lots of chocolate, blackberry is nice, but again, a bit harder to pick out. Mouthfeel is thick and full and viscous with a bit of carbonation, but definitely not as full as the coffee we had right after. What an exceptional beer.
02-04-2012 00:56:22 | More by Agold
4.18/5 rDev -3.2%
22oz bomber, bottled December 10th, 2011 - Poured into a Goose Island mini-imperial pint glass...
Like the rest of the Bourbon County Stout lineup, this beer looks wonderful being poured and sitting in the glass. Thick and black with a dense, dark tan head that builds slowly and recedes the same way. After a few minutes however, I can't remember if I'm looking at a glass of beer or the well overused sludge that I just drained from my oil-pan yesterday...
...smells like no other BCBS has smelled before...My aunt drinks this cheap, but oh so good, blackberry brandy crap, stuff that will clear ya up when you're feeling clogged, Bramble Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout is that stuffs older, wiser and more worldly brother. Blackberries hit the nose in a sort of "real fruit and nut bar" kind of way. Fresh and slightly tart with just a hint of alcohol heat. Nuts and dark chocolate are also present, but subtle, as is a roasted scent. The bourbon-y and barrel-y base BCBS scents are there as well but very faint behind the fruit character. Lots of depth in the aroma but thoroughly dominated by the dark berries.
No surprise here that the dark fruits are first and foremost on the palette. The bitter, roasted aspect of the beer comes out after a few sips and nicely offsets the sweet fruit character. Call me crazy, but this somewhat reminds me of a Flanders Oud Bruin, one that has lost most of its sour character and instead resorted to the flavors of dark fruit, roasted malt and oak from the barrel aging. Like an old Goudenband or De Dolle Oerbier Reserva, I don't know...anyway, I detect no trace of booze heat, which is the first time I have ever consumed a BCBS without some burn. This BCBS variation also has lost some of that typical, strong bourbon barrel character I've come to know and love from Bourbon County Stout, but possibly with some time the fruit will fade a bit and the barrel aging will come forward.
Full bodied, but doesn't feel as thick or viscous as other BCBS varieties, weird. Low carbonation, slick and oily, no heat and finishes with just a bit of sweet fruit flavor and roast...
Pretty good, but definitely my least favorite of the Bourbon County family. Time should hopefully even out a few rough edges, but I'm slightly disappointed in my inability to detect any nuances of the Rye Whiskey...
02-04-2012 00:32:55 | More by hawks10
4.78/5 rDev +10.6%
Super stoked to pop a fresh bottle of this brew.
Bottled on 12/10/11
Pours a viscous, evil, depth-filled black that chug-a-lugs out the bottle. A bit of tan head sits at first and quickly disappears, leaving oily lacing.
The nose is extremely boozy, moreso than the other variants. Underneath the heat lies some oak, tannin, some vanilla and a bit of tart berry.
The taste brings less heat to the table than the nose. Strong dark fruits, cocoa, vanilla, bourbon smack, and just enough sweet and tart berries. Once again, as with all of the Bourbon County variations, this has balance. Not one flavor supercedes the next. The berries are used so nicely here to complement those BCBS flavors we all love.
The mouthfeel is thick, viscous, and thicker than the drool that forms when thinking about this brew. Love the low carbonation levels that work so well for these beers.
Overall, great variation here. The addition of berries adds just enough sweetness with a tad of tartness. The balance of the BCBS brews also impresses me, time and time again. Love it. Hunt it down!
02-03-2012 21:55:28 | More by ChugginOil
4.53/5 rDev +4.9%
A- Easy generating thick milk chocolate head. You know you have a solid Goose product just on the appearance. They make the stouts perfect in appearance. I have thick full lacing, I have long lasting head, I have inky body, and I don't have sneaky cola problems... Sure at the edges I see a bit of crimson, but I like it!
S- Uh oh... Uh oh! This ain't no perfect beer no more....Boozy. Holy shit this 12.7% beer is stronger than some 18% I've come across. We got an astringent and sharp ethanolic character without the tremendous burn of pure alcohol... only because an immensely fruity flavor jumps out and licks your nose hairs. Its clinging on for the ride like I'm a Russian Czar who needs hanger ons. NO! Step off for a while, brambles! Its raspberry, its strawberry, and its grape all smashed into one. Like a jelly in the nature of its strength. Not bad, just needs to tone down a tad to reach perfection.
T- That heat translates right with that sweetness. Its instantly fruity, like a juice. I taste grape and raspberry all rolled into one. Its like a Lindeman's lambic... Yes. THAT sweet. How they got the bourbon county to get that sweet and lose all that stout character.
Right after that sweetness I get the chocolate and roast of the stout. The sweetness burns out really fast despite the relatively immense strength of it. You think as the stout characters start ramping up, you are in the clear... But NOPE! Chuck Testa and all his pals come to slap you in the throat. It has a specifically sweet raspberry syrup lingering flavor along with a dry woody nature. The barrel finally comes through. Its grainy, its sweet, and its relatively clean. You'd think with all the strong-arming I'm receiving it would be around forever.. but again Mr. Testa would like to speak to me.
If you take too many sips too quickly one after another the finish has this oddly juniper like flavor that combines with the grain allowing the sweet raspberry to linger. I can only assume this is a Rye Whiskey characteristic.
M- Thick, chewy, full body, sweet, syrupy, clingy on the lips. Carbonation is very well placed giving it a crisp middle to open. The alcohol is strong. I'm talking flip you over a table because you looked at it funny strong. It isn't negative, but if you aren't accustomed to big beers this will not be a happy experience for you. It isn't strong lived, but it will make the weaker individuals hate allowing this beer to linger in their oral orifices.
EDIT: A nice chocolate nature can be detected here or there on the finish, really bringing up the game of this beer.
02-03-2012 00:57:05 | More by Khazadum
Bramble Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
96 out of 100 based on 796 ratings.