Very Mad Cow - Revolution Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Very Mad CowVery Mad Cow

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

453 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 453
Reviews: 66
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 8.67%
Wants: 124
Gots: 143 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Revolution Brewing Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cadaugherty on 12-21-2010

Mad Cow Milk Stout aged in Woodford Reserve Barrels for 7 months.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 453 | Reviews: 66
Photo of inlimbo77
3.93/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz, Winter '13
The Bruery tulip

A: Pours a deep brown color. More like a brown ale on the initial pour. Reddish hues. Got a full finger of light tan on the start. Some alcohol feet.

S: Booze heat, just like some of the other Deep Woods brews. Milk sugar sweetness. Light milk chocolate. Slight roast.

T: Sweet milk sugar sweetness, right up front. The booze is really nicely incorporated. Milk chocolate. Smooth roasted coffee. Finish is long and creamy and rich.

M: Medium to full bodied.

Photo of Dope
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appears to be a date stamped on the label but half of it is missing. Looks like it starts with April, so I'm assuming this is around 2 months old. 9.7% ABV

A: Pours a very dark brown, not quite black. Big fluffy light brown head. Head fades slowly leaving pretty decent chunks of fluffy lacing. Good head retention.

S: Nice sharp bourbon aroma with a bunch of toffee and burnt sugars. Burnt sugar reminds me of toasted marshmallow in fact. Hints of caramel and some milk chocolate. Spicy alcohol hit, almost reminds me of peppermint. My brain might be making that one up.

T: Bourbon up front but a lot mellower than in the smell. Burnt sugars, hints of toffee and caramel. Chocolate is more prominent here, a creamy sweet milk chocolate mixing nicely with the bourbon. Bourbon fades into the back end, leaving pure decadent milk chocolate. Small bourbon resurgence in the finish with again that sort of minty flavor and a bit of oak. A little booze in the lingering aftertaste as well with some more mintyness.

M: Medium bodied, smooth and creamy.

O: Nice bourbon barrel milk stout. Don't get a lot of barrel-aged milk stouts. This one is nice, bourbon is quite prominent but very tasty (I believe Woodford Reserve? My favorite bourbon, so I'm biased). Interesting mint flavor, pretty mild but I'm curious where it comes from. It's similar to the mint chocolate flavor from the Stone Mint Chocolate Stout collaboration from last year. Tasty and enjoyable.

Photo of Etan
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from the first release (2012).

A: Pours a glassy black with a large light tan head.

S: Aromas of charred oak, molasses, coffee roast, dark chocolate and tannic egg cream waft up.

T: Taste brings soft vanilla and cocoa, some marshmallow-like sweetness, roasted grain, some smooth bourbon notes, caramel, drying oak, lactose, hint of raisin.

M: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: This was pretty nice. Might be a little sweet for some, but I like it.

Photo of ThickNStout
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from The Beer Temple (Chicago, IL). 17.99. No bottle date. Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Pours cola brown with three quarter finger pale tan head. The head fades quickly, lacking retention or lace.

Smells of sweet cream, sugar, vanilla and bourbon.

A complex sweet bomb. Lactose, Cadbury cream, bourbon, vanilla, sweet coffee creamer and a little oak. Very little alcohol presence. Nice sweet mixture.

Medium feel with moderate carbonation. The sweet lactose remains on the tongue for a long finish.

A damn fine barrel aged sweet stout that I would definately buy again at half the price. Quite enjoyable but the cost makes it a one time purchase.

Photo of AndyP612
4.41/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap into snifter at Revolution Brewpub Logan Square in Chicago.

A- Deep chocolate brown almost black with no light let through. A fingers worth of dark tan head dissipates quickly not as thick looking as expected from an ale aged for over six months.

S- Bourbon dominated nose with a slight sweet tease but bourbon is mostly present.

T- Taste follows the nose closely with bourbon whiskey attacking my tastebuds. Subtle toffee and chocolate flavors are present with a pleasant smokey finish.

M- Not nearly as big as I thought I would experience with this ale. I would call it a straight medium mouthfeel. Not watery yet not what I have become used to experiencing when drinking milk stouts, not too rich.

O- Very nice, lots of bourbon present but it doesn't come close to the full bodied stouts that I have come to expect when ordering barrel aged stouts. I would say this ale is comparable to New Holland's Dragon's Milk, which is in no way an insult. It's just not what I was hoping for.

Cheers.

Photo of jzeilinger
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark chocolate brown, leaves a thin toffee colored layer and a marginally thin and delicate toffee colored ring on the glass.

S - Light chocolate, cherries, light oak, light vanilla, bourbon, light chocolate.

T - Matches the nose: perfect balance between bourbon, oak, vanilla, light cherries, and has very light alcohol and pleasingly lingering aftertaste with caramel, oak, and bourbon vanilla that's not at all overpowering.

M - Velvet smooth on the palette.

O - Exceptional and underrated when considering the overall score. This beer is a real find.

Photo of stortore
4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bottle into a snifter. 2015 edition.

Pours dark, somewhat opaque. Not much head, with some clingy lacing. Smell is a good balance of bourbon aroma, roasted malts, chocolate. Taste mostly follows the nose with the malts leading the way, some chocolate, a little less bourbon than the smell, a hint of coffee. Pretty nicely balanced. Sweet, as expected. Very smooth, good mouthfeel. A touch thin, but not overly so.

Very enjoyable beer. Will likely be an annual purchase, although it's not as cost justifiable as some of the others in the Deep Wood series. Had the 2014 on tap and remember it seeming a little richer.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.66/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Bottle dated Nov 12/12. Thanks to Robbie for this one.
Poured in to tulip glass.

A - Poured dark brown and settled black with two fingers of light brown head.

S - Roast and sweet milk chocolate dominate with oak, vanilla and a touch of bourbon in the background.

T - A big hit of bourbon and charred oak up front followed by a huge sweetness. Milk chocolate, roast and molasses flavours are present. At first the flavours seem well integrated but after a while they start to seem disjointed and the sweetness becomes somewhat cloying.

M - Medium body but somewhat watery at times. Moderate carbonation.

Photo of timc100
3.6/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Very dark brown almost black with ruby/mahogany hues on the sides of the glass. The head looks of that of a smaller BA stout - medium sized bubbles, spotty lacing, big legs. Doesn't look like a huge beer in the color and body

S: Pretty subtle and mild. Boozy bourbon caramel and some coconut, vanilla, and oak sweetness. Is not the most complex and balanced - the base beer is lost in the bourbon a little bit - dark chocolate and coffee try to surface and come up muddled

T: Like the aroma a bit more vibrant. Raw caramel bourbon; bitter dark chocolate, subtle medium roast coffee, and vanilla and oak sweetness at the finish along with bourbon heat.

P: Thinner side of medium, especially considering the style

O: Much better on tap than in the bottle, but still a good beer. Not worth the price tag in my opinion - the bourbon and base beer don't tango well together and leave a kind of confused, mild product

Photo of bcm75
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased at the Revolution tap room, poured in a FFF teku. Aromas - very boozy with some vanilla and general sweetness. Body is thinner than I would like. Appearance not-quite-black. Sweetness - you'll know this is a milk stout. I found the carbonation level appropriate for the style.

Photo of Stevedore
4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 vintage 22 oz bomber shared with a friend; poured into my trusty Bell's tulip today 4/12/2013.

Aroma: Sweet milk chocolate, a good bourbon and oak presence. A little vanilla. Not super pungent but not weak either. Nice on the nose. (4)

Colour: Pretty average looking milk stout. Dark cola colour, very dark with 2cm beige head that disappears within the minute leaving a beige film but barely any collar. And the lacing is minimal. So pretty average for a BA milk stout. (3)

Flavour: Sweet as heck, bourbon presence throughout from the beginning. As it warms up, more bourbon comes out as well as the milk chocolate sweetness which is probably the lactose. There is a decent bit of vanilla which is really nice and is the cherry on top and comes out the most at room temperature. The oak comes out more at the end. Very nice combination of bourbon and milk stout, probably the best I've had. But then again there isn't a ton of BA milk stouts. (4.5)

Mouthfeel: Thinner medium body, tastes quite creamy but not particularly thick. Aftertaste is a decent bit of bourbon and oak (or could it be just the bourbon? since the oak is part of the bourbon...) not particularly intense but comes with a pleasant dry finish and a little bit of heat at room temp. (4)

Overall: Very drinkable barrel-aged milk stout. The sweetness is really good at complementing the bourbon and malt flavors. It's a very enjoyable beer to drink after dinner and that's really its main role. I very much enjoyed the relative balance of sweetness and bourbon. (4)

Photo of bobhits
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 4.25

Rather tame in appearance, this one pours like a milk stout with light brown clarity from the bottle turning deep dark brown in the glass, a head forms but the alcohol is too strong for it. No real lacing left over.

A sinfully good bourbon nose with hints of lactose, milk chocolate, oak, vanilla, and light sugars.

A bourbon infused milk stout flavor...simply amazing. Milk stouts have a somewhat milk chocolate flavor unlike most stouts which take on a bakers dark chocolate. This beer takes on that same element of vanilla, lactose, and milk chocolate with just an astonishing amount of bourbon. Honestly if only woodford (a bourbon nearly as over rated and hyped as makers mark, without being terrible like markers is) tasted this good.

Sadly the body is rather watery and thing. The alcohol is very apparent and the carbonation is all but non existent.

A damn DAMN tasty beer that at 16 bucks a bottle is worthy of a try though splitting it might be a good idea as this isn't upper echelon.

Photo of Gosox8787
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Presentation: 22 oz. bottle chilled and poured into a Cigar City tulip. Big thanks to Beerlistman for the bottle. Bottled in November of 2012.

Appearance: Dark brown to black in color with a light, beige colored head. Really nice one finger, pillowy head with really impressive retention. Keeps a nice lacing throughout.

Aroma: Pretty strong bourbon character with some caramel and brown sugar notes. A touch of peat and smoke from the barrel as well. The barrel notes are definitely front and center. Some chocolate and fudge cake tones in the background as well. Really nice flavor profile but the raw bourbon character is a bit strong.

Taste: The barrel character is really strong and provides a huge raw bourbon character. Almost like sa shot of nice bourbon has been added to this beer. Caramel, molasses, and milk chocolate make up the rest of the beer. The booze character from the bourbon stands out a little, but this is still relativel easy to drink.

Mouthfeel: Perhaps a bit lighter body than the average bourbon barrel stout. Plenty of carbonation though.

Overall, a nice beer that suffers from a bourbon barrel character that isn't completely integrated into the base beer. I feel that a little more time in the barrels or in the bottle would have helped the beer come together better. The bourbon character is really nice though and the whole experience is a lot like sipping a bourbon. Very tasty but with some noticable flaws.

Photo of sweemzander
4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a near pitch black color. Produced some nice tan froth and some lacing as it dissipated.

(S)- A lovely combo of a creamy but chocolatey raisin and vanilla oakiness. Its not super complex but really quite sexy.

(T)- Very similar to the smell. It really does have a sexy profile overall. Quite creamy with underlying notes of vanilla, raisin, and gingerbread. Finishes almost dry with superb oak and bourbon notes.

(M)- A smooth carbonation level. A really nice balance to it. Such a nice smooth underlying creaminess to this (base beer), that it really mellows out.

(O)- Overall, a superb barrel aged stout. So smooth and creamy yet having great bourbon barrel notes. Sadly, this might get overlooked by all the other bigger barrel aged stout releases out there, but this is one great offering by Revolution!

Photo of emyers
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into a Founders snifter.

Appearance: Pours a murky dark brown with a very thin beige head dissipating almost immediately.

Smell: Bourbon and oak up front. Oak is quite strong relative to most BBA beers, which tend to just highlight the bourbon. Cocoa and roasted malt comes through afterwards, in a way that is reminiscent of chocolate covered malted milk balls. Some alcohol on the nose.

Taste: Lactose is apparent right away. Malty sweetness followed by oak and bourbon, once again with the oak being very strong. Cocoa and roasted malts finish off the flavor profile. The beer is very balanced, with the bourbon being fairly mild. It's a very well done BBA stout, but I'm waiting for some flavor to really take over and make an impression and I'm just not getting it.

Mouthfeel: Exceptionally smooth, with a silky feel as it goes down. However, not a whole lot of body - I prefer my stouts nice and thick and this one is fairly thin.

Overall: Clearly Revolution knows what they're doing when it comes to barrel aging. This is a very balanced, well done beer. Yet, it doesn't do enough to really stand out from other options.

Photo of dbc5
3.32/5  rDev -20%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

22 ounce bottle poured into 10 ounce Kentucky Bourbon Stout snifter.

A: Pitch black with a .5 finger off-white head following a moderate-to-aggressive pour. No light makes its way through this dark brew.

S: Intense bourbon. The bourbon presence on this one is unlike any other bourbon age stout I've had. Strangely, the aroma hits me as if the bourbon and stout are somehow completely separate elements. Has one of the more intense "raw" bourbon aromas. The bourbon does start to integrate with the chocolate and roast a bit more as it warms.

T: Hmm, this one is good, but feels like it isn't completely developed and integrated. Perhaps the milk/sweet stout isn't the perfect format for showcasing the bourbon barrel. I wish the chocolate, caramel, and roast melded with the bourbon a bit better.

M: A bit thin for a bourbon barrel stout. Moderate carbonation, slightly more lively than most in the style.

O: I was left hoping for a bit more refinement. Just didn't feel like it was completely integrated and developed. A bit raw on the bourbon barrel elements. Honestly, I was disappointed with the $16.99 price tag too, but I try not to factor that into my reviews.

Photo of tut2528
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

thanks to Lognar for opening this one at the tasting!

A: pours a deep maple brown, with no head formation. alcohol legs are present on this one. forcing head formation creates a khaki colored head, but it immediately dissipates.

S: whoaaa. immense bourbon wood/oak notes dominate the nose. theres an alcohol burn, leather, slight tobacco, with a big lactose base.

T: still big on the milk/lactose sweetness, big bourbon, slight vanilla, very sutle hint of tobacco.

M: this is my only complaint. its actually on the lighter of medium bodied. doesn't really coat the mouth as I was expecting. it does leave a milky/cream touch on the palate tough that is enjoyable

O: a nice brew for sure, but its shockingly light on the feel, which pushes this beer just slightly off. its complexity is lacking, but it definitely works for this beer. the bourbon and the barrel notes are truly the main players in this brew. If this was just a bit more viscous, it would definitely be an A+ in my books.

Photo of sleuthdog
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

Big thanks to lognar for opening this one!
Poured into Founders Bolt Cutter glass

Pour: A dark brown to black with no head formation. Swirling does create a khaki color foam. No lacing evident and almost looks oily on the beer surface.

Smell: Wow big barrel, oak and wood with a touch of booze. Smells sweet with vanilla and bourbon. Leather rounds out the smell. The lactose is very evident in this.

Taste: Sweet up front with vanilla and oak. Bourbon heat in this with some chocolate and a bit of bitterness too.

Mouthfeel: Actually this is where this disappoints a bit. More so on the side of light than medium feel. Would have liked a bit more thickness and chewiness.

Overall: Nice to try this one and actually enjoyed it quite a bit. The feel was the only real let down for me.

Photo of Knapp85
4.52/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This was sent time from mjmadsen21, major thanks on this one man! This beer poured out as a nice looking black color with a brown head on top. There is a moderate retention and lacing. The aroma on this beer is huge, it screams bourbon, it's sweet and boozy and strangely addictive. The taste of the beer follows the nose, lots of bourbon, chocolate and vanilla with a boozy wooden flavor in the finish. The mouthfeel is pretty slick, lightly carbonated and finishes with some ethanol heat. Overall I loved it, I think if anything there is maybe too much bourbon and it masks the a dual beer, but either way I thought it was great.

Photo of kawilliams81
3.56/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes on 12/23/12. Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a 8 oz snifter.

A- pours black with a 1 finger light tan head. Some small bubbles speckle the glass.

S- smells like straight bourbon with slight chocolate.

T- follows nose. Bourbon forward, with chocolate initially and the bourbon with some bitter roast.

M- medium body and finish. Somewhat smooth, alcohol is there but not hot.

O- too bourbon forward! Overpowers base beer.

Photo of vic21234
3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter. Bottled on date says 11/12/12.

A- Pours a dark brown color with a small amount of nearly white colored head that quickly fades. This beer is dark but a small amount of light can be seen along the top sides of the glass. Looks kind of thin.

S- This one smells primarily of sweet malts and bourbon. Some chocolate and vanilla notes are in there as well.

T- Starts off with nice flavors of roasted malts. I get hints of vanilla and maybe some coffee as well. The barrel aging shines through in the aftertaste. Nice hints of bourbon and oak.

M- Medium bodied, carbonated well for the style, a nice sipper. The alcohol/ heat is noticeable at 9.7% ABV but not overbearing.

I have been impressed with both BA offerings I have now had from Revolution. Milk stouts arent usually my style but this is a nice beer.

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into cascade hybrid tulip / snifter glass.

Appearance: light black bodied beer with a full finger of off white almost tan colored head. drops quickly to a thin cap.

Smell: really nice barrel notes pair with that trademark lactose sweetness of a milk stout. Lots of vanilla and oak. Sweet bourbon too.

Taste: bourbon forward stout. Sweet bourbon, vanilla, oak, milk chocolate, and totsie rolls. More bourbon in the aftertaste with a hint of tobacco and leather. The lactose sugar seems to linger even longer than the bourbon, tobacco, or leather notes do.

Mouthfeel: low end of a medium bodied beer with low end of moderate carbonation. Its nice and silky. The carbonation is appropriate just wish it was a little thicker mouthfeel. Just a hint of booze and no harsh burn at all; really easy drinking barrel aged stout.

Overall: This is a great BA stout by Revolution. I like Bean Gene much better though. My biggest hold up is the thin body. Other than that this was a great brewery only offering from the windy city!

Photo of TMoney2591
3.8/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a shaker pint glass.

Why would you wanna piss a cow off that much, anyway? Regardless, this stuff pours a deep black-brown topped by a finger of tan foam. The nose comprises chocolate cake, bourbon, and a twinge of coffee. The taste brings in more of the same, along with some light cardboard and some mild roasted malts. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a fluid-ish feel. Overall, a generally tasty and enjoyable beer. I wouldn't say that the barreling really injected the base with a significant amount of better-ness, but it certainly didn't hurt it.

Photo of yamar68
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for this one dsal!

Big black body with an edge of mahogany clarity, pale khaki head sinks down to thick collar that laces in a BIG way.

Creme brulee all day. Some light dessert candies... caramel, toffee, a bit of vanilla. Pretty one-dimensional in a way that doesn't detract from the beer. Creamy cocoa, but mostly those lighter sweets.

Fresh cream, soft bourbon notes, not nearly as sweet as I would have expected. Some cola flavors, no apparent booze character, a touch of vanilla, a surprisingly mild finish... good stuff.

Very glad to have had the chance to try this one - thanks dsal!

Photo of GbVDave
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into two Kentucky Breakfast snifters. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the asssist!

Bottled on: Nov 12 2012

A: Pours a coal black with only a slight reddening at the edges. A 1/2 finger of dark khaki colored foam sat on top before quietly melting down to a thin collar. Lace left behind was random and specky.

S: Fresh from the beer fridge, this was all bourbon. Delicious, delicious bourbon. I set it on the counter while cleaning up from Christmas and came back to it after about an hour. As it warmed up, this beer really opened up and let out aromas of fudge/dark chocolate, dark fruit, and the slightest hint of the base beer.

T: The taste pretty much follows the pattern of the smell but with the scales ultimately being tipped towards the bourbon side. The other things are in there, but we had to search a bit harder to find them.

M: Suprisingly thin when first poured. This score benifited greatly from warming up about 10 degrees. This beer obviously spent quality time in a bourbon barrel AND has a higher ABV than the base Mad Cow, but this does a fantastic job of hiding the alcohol content. We could smell and taste the bourbon, but the expected burn never arrived. Just a mild spiciness that blended well with the sweetness of the chocolate & dark fruit..

O: This was very enjoyable. We are fans of Mad Cow and had hoped that more of the characteristics of it would've shown through. We weren't disappointed (in the least)...more like we are intrigued as to what this will be like in a few years...and what the next batches of this will be like.

Very Mad Cow from Revolution Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 453 ratings.