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Cherry Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Cherry Rye Bourbon County Brand StoutCherry Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

194 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 194
Hads: 1,348
Avg: 4.46
pDev: 25.56%
Wants: 988
Gots: 432 | FT: 29
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  13.70% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ChugginOil on 11-22-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
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Reviews: 194 | Hads: 1,348
Photo of PHBoiler
4.44/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at Goose Island Rare Day. Very interesting version of BCBS. The cherries cut right through the middle of the flavor profile with a rounded tartness and sweetness. Like a chocolate covered cherry. Still some bourbon notes and hints of rye spice. Very complex BCBS.

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Photo of FFreak
4.84/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Thanks to BoldRulerVT again for pulling this one out of his cellar after aging it for 3 years. Shared around a campfire on Halloween night. Poured into teku and tulip glasses.

Pours a thick, oily black with a reddish edge showing when lifted up to the light. Has a very slight tan head, that dissipates leaving almost nothing.

The smell is amazing - cherries right off the bat followed by whiskey and chocolate.

Taste is sweet whiskey-laden cherries buried in chocolate and brown sugar. Just a tinge sweet, but not cloying. Super tasty sipper.

Mouth feel is perfect for a huge, high-ABV stout. Full bodied, silky, chewy, with lingering booziness.

Overall, a fantastic beer and quite a treat, which apparently will never be enjoyed again.

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
4.88/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This beer was enjoyed with family and friends outside around a campfire in Vermont on Halloween.
Poured from the 22oz bottle into a snifter.
Pours a thick jet black with barely any head. What head there is a deep caramel color.
Aromas are deep dark roasted malt, whiskey and zing of cherries.
Taste is huge and incredible. Chocolate, whiskey, cherries and deep roasted malts abound. Incredible cherry flavor without being cloying.
Mouthfeel is perfect as with all BCBS. Silky and thick. Just right.
Overall this bee is incredible. Perfectly crafted with complex, deep flavors.
Only thing that could have helped with rating would be more head and maybe a touch more intense aromas.
It's damn near a perfect beer.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.94/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Curran the other night, thanks man.

This one pours a dark, oily looking black, with a very small head, and no lacing.

Smells like fudgy chocolate, sweet rye whiskey, a bit of sweet cherry, and some caramel.

The cherry is way more subtle than I would've expected, but I guess that's the age on this, 2012. There's the typical fudge, vanilla, and caramel that you expect from Bourbon County, with a lighter amount of rye whiskey also than I'd expect. Don't get me wrong, this tastes really nice, it was enjoyable, but it's not up to the usual standard that you expect from Bourbon County. Probably one of the lesser variants.

This is pretty thick bodied, a bit oily and syrupy, with a lower level of carbonation.

Definitely tasty, but a little bit disappointing.

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Photo of deadsincebirth
4.34/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Looks black with red tinge. Smells of cherries and rye. Rye spiciness up front with some cherry on the backend. Feel is of big spiciness mellowed by chocolate and cherry. Overall needs more cherry to balance out.

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Photo of Marguerite
4.99/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the best beer that I have ever had. Everything about it is spot on. It's still got the bourbon taste but the cherry flavor adds just the right amount of sweetness. If you ever see this bottle available for trade do it.

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Photo of StinkyFishBoys
4.06/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Cough syrup-esque. What has me truly curious are the reviews that claim there wasn't enough cherry flavor. I used to work at Culver's and this beer reminded me of the time I put a 2 quart container of Michigan sour cherry mash into the soup heater for 30 minutes and then dumped it on my head in the walk-in freezer. I liked it.

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Photo of Domvan
4.79/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Tastes like a delicious cherry chocolate boozy cake, this beer is fantastic and I would of definitely snagged a bunch of these when it came out. This aged amazing too

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Photo of KaeF
4.52/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer, but the cherry isn't that outspoken as I would've expected. There is a slight hint of it in the beer, but I would have liked it to be more present. Nevertheless is this still an awesome beer.

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Photo of mctizzz
4.07/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Great stout that was made not so great with the infusion of some off-brand cherry cough syrup. I was given fair warning, but I could not resist my compulsion to try every BCBS variant. Not worth the cost of admission, worst variant to date. Still scored above a 4 because the rating system is silly, if I was to give it a raw, 1 number score it would be 3.75ish.

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Photo of stakem
4.33/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into a matching BCBS snifter. The brew appears black in color with a dark brown head that is quick to fade.

The nose is filled with cherry and chocolate. Subtle whiskey accent along with vanilla and caramel. A strong cherry character is present smelling natural and pitted, bordering on over-ripe juiciness.

The taste includes a lot of over-ripe pitted cherries. Somewhat earthen with chocolate, roast, vanilla and caramel. It gets boozy and nearly medicinal as it warms up.

This is medium to full bodied with modest carbonation. A surprising amount of tart cherry quality that is mildly medicinal at times but well blended and enjoyable. Would not mind having this again but doubt id be willing to give up what it would take.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a dark walnut color. some reddish hues and brightness around the edges. small tan head forms but has a weak retention. dark and opaque.

Smell: cherry pie, whisky, chocolate and brown sugar.

Taste: opens with cherry and strong booze. chocolate and brown sugar round out the opening flavor. dark fruits come in along with a strong whisky. Booziness comes out throughout the taste

Mouthfeel: alcohol burn. thick and viscous. quite a bit of sweetness.

Overall: out of the bourbon county tasting night (all bottles from 08-14) the year one off is always the highlight. the berry ryes are all killer and this in no exception. the berries all hold up much better than the other flavored ones.

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Photo of HartsyThaiFood
4.83/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap at the Hopleaf.

Look is black as night, but also transparent and red when looked at on certain angles.

Smell filled with strong black cherry and chocolate notes.

The taste of this thing is fantastic. Chocolate covered cherries with no boozy burn. Extremely drinkable for a 13% beer.

Feel is very smooth. Not complaints on that end.

All in all, it lived up to the hype and then some. Glad I finally go to check this off my list of wants. Would obviously drink again if it somehow fell in to my lap.

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Photo of KVNBGRY
4.4/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Phenomenal beer! But side by side with CCB's life is like, this is just a good beer. More cherry, and equal to less mouthfeel. I wish I was able to try it fresh. Before ABInBev....

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Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
5/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Perfect across the board, just like every Bourbon County stout I've had the pleasure of trying. This one was aged for a little over two years, only adding to the excellence.

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Photo of aleigator
4.39/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Greg, thank you very much!

Pours a viscous black color, which turns mahogany at the edge of the glass. In an unusual manner for Bourbon County, this variant produces actually a small, dark brown head immediately after pouring.

Has Amarena like cherry aromas, which blend well into the Bourbon qualities, with vanilla, oak, more molasses than cocoa nibs and calming, earthy, toasted malts. I am not yet entirely sure, if the sherries push it a little to far, or if it just adds character to the beer. It certainly confirms the sweet, desert like character of the beer, while at the same time it distracts from the fantastic chocolate and malt qualities of the regular Bourbon County. It certainly goes well with the intriguing rye barrel, while reminding me of a fruit liqueur, which got a decent amount of heat to it, among wooden vanilla notes.

First of all, the mouthfeel of this is incredibly smooth, while it ends a bit hotter than expected. The beer leaves the palate with a warming alcohol glow on its way down to the belly.

The cherries are noteable from the very beginning, they form an elementary part of the foundation of the brew, instead of acting as a gimmick. They do come along with a ripe, slightly fermented, sticky Amarena sweetness, blending a little bumpy into the chocolate qualities of the beer, as the cherries seem to be a bit too present on the tongue, due to their slightly tart fruit sugar sweetness, which is a bit too much to handle for the malts. The barrel though comes out very well, while its appearance changes into a liqueur, sweeter direction, with vanilla and a gentle amount of wood to it. Bakers chocolate, as well as scorched, earthy malts no longer act actively on their own, but do play the counterpart to the cherries, and are bound to balance the brew. During the finish, due to the enhancing barrel character, the cherries reach their peak. An almost sour, burning hot, fermented fruitiness sets itself above all other flavors, while earthy malts tend to shine still through. This leads to a long, fruity Amarena finish, ending with slightly delayed, earthy cherry-stone hints among creamy bakers chocolate.

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Photo of Chris-1911
4.77/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a bomber on 12/31/14

A&S: Pours with a very small (almost nonexistent) mocha head, as is pretty usual for these beers. Fresh cherry and rye dominate the nose, followed by some chocolate and a little vanilla.

T&M: Amazing! The cherry flavor has held up very well two years in and is still quite strong. The cherry has a very natural flavor and wasn't artificial-tasting at all. It added significant sweetness to the beer and just a little tartness. The malt taste and rye spice balance perfectly with the sweet/tart cherry flavors to mask the high ABV, but there is a small amount of alcohol taste. And of course the usual BCBS flavors are there as well. Has a lot of complexity.

O: Unbelievably good, but definitely a cherry bomb. I could easily see where someone might prefer less cherry sweetness and a little more of the regular BCBS character, but I absolutely loved it. If you like the idea of this being on the sweet side and pretty cherry-forward, pull the trigger on that trade you've been putting off while you still can.

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Photo of breadwinner
3.98/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Well, it (mostly) accomplishes what it sets out to do -- cherry-laced BCS. I say mostly because I'm not sure I caught a ton of rye barrel influence. It might've been there, but it's hard to distinguish confirmation bias with actual rye barrel presence. Whatever the case, I just thought the cherry a little too forward/dominant, not to mention a little too tart (a note I don't tend to like in stouts). Mouthfeel was slick, if a bit scuffed up from the acidity of the cherries/tartness. Take it all with a grain of salt -- rare do I enjoy a fruited stout. So it was with this bad boy. Cool to try, though.

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Photo of alerivers
5/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow!! This is good! 8 oz draft pour into sniffer.

First in the nose is cherries, then some dark chocolate with vanilla, bourbon, & oak rounding it out. Almost no lacing but did coat glass. Appearance was dark, almost allowed no light to pass. Taste; Mmm! A little bitterness from chocolate mixed well with tart and sweetness of cherries. Oak and vanilla from bourbon with slight warming from bourbon also.

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Photo of mrn1ceguy
4.78/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

My favorite fruited BA stout, this one is smooth and tasty. The cherries are perfect, making for an explosion of taste and smell. Additionally, it has continued to hold with age, making it one of the premier BCBS variants.

Had again at Rare Day and despite 3 years of age, still as tasty, smooth, creamy as original. This beer is aging beautifully.

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Photo of TboneRN
4.69/5  rDev +5.2%

I was lucky enough to attend a Bourbon County bottle share last night where we had every variant present.
I rated this beer #4 last night with the top 4 going in this order Vanilla>Rare>Bramble>Cherry
Probably my favorite cherry beer to date. This beer more than any of the other rye barrel aged bourbon county stout (bramble, backyard, etc.) had that distinct spiciness from the rye barrel and it meshed perfectly. With every sip I took I kept thinking, cherry pie. The spiciness of the rye barrel helped simulate that oh so good pie crust taste. My only knock on this variant and its a small one is it is a little thin compared to the other variants...but still very good, seek this one out, well done bourbon county!

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5/5  rDev +12.1%

One of the best of the best.
From Tap. Poured into a Pint Glass (unfortunately was all we had).
The nose is sweet. Cherries.
Pours dark, almost black, well pretty much black. Lil to no head.
The flavors of the bourbon stout mixed with cherries creates a luscious dense sweetness. Chocolate and Cherries.

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Photo of emyers
4.43/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle poured into a Founders snifter. Bottled on 11/12/12.

Appearance: Pours jet black with a thin light brown head. Not much lacing.

Smell: Bourbon-soaked cherries, rich dark chocolate, oak, hints of coffee. Very complex with an impressive amount of depth, but stays quite balanced. Nowhere near the bourbon onslaught of original BCBS (granted this beer is almost 2 years old at this point).

Taste: Cherry hits first, followed by bourbon and chocolate. Hints of vanilla, followed by a lot more cherry on the finish. Gets fairly sweet, although there is a nice tartness from the cherry that comes in on the finish to barely keep the sweetness in check. Not much alcohol heat on the finish. Overall not quite as balanced as the aroma - the cherry takes over a bit too much for my liking. Still incredibly good.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with medium-to-low carbonation. I'm really liking that mild tartness from the cherry.

Overall: I would be shocked if I ever had a BCBS variant that wasn't excellent and this certainly doesn't break that mold. Still, when compared to its brethren I find this to be on the lower end of the spectrum due to a bit too much cherry/sweetness.

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Photo of minterro
4.49/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served as the start to the goose island themed tasting (we did start with Fred from Hair of the Dog). Short notes from 7/27/14. Bottled 11/12/12. Served in a snifter.

I initially got this beer set aside for me as when I worked at a liquor store. I found it in the dense clutter of bottles in one of the walk-ins and asked if I could buy it off the owner. He said yes, because it was around my birthday and every since I've been waiting to crack it. Almost two years later and I'm ready to see how this thing turned out.

A&S: Black colored beer, and maybe it is strictly out of suggestion, but there is a red hue to this brew. No head and no sign of carbonation bubbles. Initially the aroma was close to the smell of black forest cake. Other tones included vanilla, bourbon tones, sweet malts.

T&M: This beer probably did one of the more interesting things I have seen beer do. Most beers when they develop there is a frame shift in taste/smell or a blending of previous presences with new ones. This brew when from primarily cocoa to a nice mix of cocoa and cherries (the black forest) to mostly cherries, then back to chocolate like tones, THAN back to cherries! It was bizarre, and I wasn't just me who experienced these changes. At times the fruitiness was a little much but you only had to wait a couple of minutes and it was a good mix again. The other tones were similar to the aroma. Very thick, creamy, and smooth. Low carbonation.

Overall: Probably in the top 5 beers I have tried this year. Didn't exceed the hype I put on it, but most certainly meet it completely. If you are thinking of cracking this one soon, it was a good time for me.

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Photo of Gameover170
4.78/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Not my first time having this beer, but first time I'm writing a review for it.
Opening for my wife's birthday, bottled 11/12/12.

A: Typical BC mocha head, with a faint red hue when held in the right light.

S: I love this smell. If I could make this into an air freshener for my car, I would. Rye up front, still a faint smell of cherry, which is great considering this bottle is leaning towards two years old. Chocolate and rye really take over in the nose.

T: Wow, still packs a cherry punch that isn't overwhelming in most cherry-flavored beers. Not medicinal in the least bit. A perfect mix of an excellent base beer with a complementing cherry flavor. Cherry, chocolate, rye, so damn good.

M: One of my favor parts of BC and it's variants are the mouthfeel. Perfect thickness.

Overall, a great variant. I would love to see them make this again.

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Cherry Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
98 out of 100 based on 194 ratings.