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Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout) - Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

209 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 209
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 10.56%


Brewed by:
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
Milk / Sweet Stout |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
Hardywood Gingerbread Stout, described by BeerAdvocate as “freagin’ Christmas in a bottle,” is an imperial milk stout brewed with vanilla beans, cinnamon, fresh Casselmonte Farm baby ginger and Bearer Farms wildflower honey. Gingerbread Stout is then matured in Virginia bourbon barrels, where it adapts an incredibly mellow character with oak, caramel and bourbon undertones, and emerges 12 weeks later as Bourbon GBS. A festive blend of spice character laces this rich, chocolatey stout, which warms the palate and the soul.

55 IBU

(Beer added by: MasterSki on 12-10-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 209 | Reviews: 30 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of papat444
papat444

Quebec (Canada)

4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

MY 400th DIFFERENT BREWERY REVIEWED!

Enjoyed at EBF 2014.

Sugary, gooey goodness; real gingerbread in a glass all mixed in with bourbon and there's hints of vanilla sprinkled in there. Nice and sweet but never cloying. This one delivers on its promise. Very, very good stuff.

Serving type: on-tap

03-24-2014 20:28:32 | More by papat444
Photo of dar482
dar482

New York

4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The beer has a wonderful gingerbread and ginger spice aroma. Obviously follows with cinnamon, nutmeg, hints of vanilla, and roasted malt.

The flavor follows with that punch of ginger spice in the front, onto a combination of the Christmas spices. There is not much bourbon character, but it probably makes the beer smoother with vanilla character in there as well.

A great beer for spice lovers, though not much bourbon character comes through.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2014 03:53:31 | More by dar482
Photo of robwestcott
robwestcott

Indiana

4.36/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

poured cold from the bottle to a hunahpu's snifter cola black with a short lasting creamy tan head with nice retention and lace after each sip.

aroma of bourbon, vanilla and dark toffees

great big gingerbread up front, toothy, medium bodied, big carbonation, creamy smooth, bourbon comes through as it warms a bit.

really nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 20:46:54 | More by robwestcott
Photo of SpeedwayJim
SpeedwayJim

New York

4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Sam for this one. 750ml corked and caged bottle into a Founders snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Heavy pour yields a 2 finger frothy light mocha colored head with great retention. Beer is black but not particularly thick. Lacing is rich and layered with excellent stick. An awesome looking beer.

Nose is cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla, cream, lactose and just the slightest hint of bourbon. Moderately aromatic. The nose belies the flavor here... which is a bit of a shame.

Opens huge gingerbread and cinnamon notes. Molasses, brown sugar, sugar cookie, chocolate, and bourbon in the middle. Some oatmeal cookie overtones. Ends sweet and syrupy with a boozy finish and a bready, sweet aftertaste. Delicious!

Medium bodied with moderate to low carbonation. Lively but smooth in the mouth and goes clean with a messy finish and a sticky, lingering aftertaste. Hugely drinkable for 10.6% and the alcohol feels barely there!

What really gets me about this beer is how hugely drinkable it is. Very sweet with nice complexity but at 10.6%, this drinks like its about half of that. Feel is rich without being overwhelming and the thinner body actually works great here. A pretty under-the-radar stout... and definitely one to seek out!

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2013 00:02:40 | More by SpeedwayJim
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.91/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to AndresR for sharing this one at Wowcoolman's tasting.

2012 vintage.

Pours a clear super dark orange-brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, gingerbread, Christmas spice, bourbon, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with dark gingerbread and spice flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a great gingerbread and barrel aged presence that comes across much better in the smell to me.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2013 19:36:10 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

3.73/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black body that looks dark brown at the edges. Not much of a head. Thin off white collar.

Smell - Graham cracker and chocolate. Cinnamon. No real barrel. Slightest hint of bourbon among the booze.

Taste - Still no barrel, even less than the nose. Maybe some oak and vanilla. A really tasty graham cracker and cinnamon flavor. Some chocolate but it's mostly adjunct.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Kinda boozy. No real barrel.

Overall - The slighest of barrel characters. Wish there were more, but it's still very good.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2013 00:08:55 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of ehammond1
ehammond1


3.86/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle (2012)

Thanks for opening this with me, VaTechHopHead!

Dark brown body with a small light brown head. Leaves the glass slightly spotted and oily on the way down. Pretty enough and appropriate for the style. Doesn't look particularly thick, heavy, or viscous, however.

Very nice Christmas aroma. There is definite gingerbread house, Christmas spices, molasses, and brown sugar here. A tiny bit of alcohol emerges in the aroma, especially as the beer warms. Definite caramel and baked, crispy brownie crust as well. Everything comes together nicely. This is a great smelling beer.

The flavor is similar to the aroma. There is a wonderful combination of gingerbread cookies, molasses and slightly burnt brown sugar, bread crusts, and a little bit of chocolate. A little bit of oak, but very little, if any, bourbon character.

This would be where the beer disappoints, if it disappoint anywhere. A fairly thin mouthfeel, even for the style, with very low carbonation.

Very tasty, and a beer I never thought I'd get a chance to taste. Much appreciated, and quite tasty.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2013 15:13:56 | More by ehammond1
Photo of yamar68
yamar68

Minnesota

4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to scalzo for this one!

Great looking stout. Dark chocolate brown body with minimal clarity. A fat pillow of khaki head retains well, creating a fresh set of lace after each sip.

All types of inviting aromas coming off the glass... sweet bourbon layered with chocolate, fresh ginger, a touch of nutmeg/cinnamon spice, fudge... as was the case with regz GBS, I'm amazed by how non-Christmas-y this stuff smells... which is awesome. It's not dominated by spice of ginger root. Everything is thoughtfully integrated... brown sugar and vanilla, maple syrup... very dynamic but still approachable.

The taste delivers as well. Rich, bittersweet milk chocolate, coffee and a touch of ginger. The sweet, mellow bourbon character makes for a delicious addition. The finish is probably my favorite thing about the whole beer. It's dry with a subtle sweetness that allows each flavor to evolve and mingle with the rest of the beer.

This is absolutely fantastic. My favorite offering from Hardywood to date.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2013 19:58:50 | More by yamar68
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

4.09/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, thanks @blackie

Was quite dissapointed by the standard version - upon popping the cork, you can immediately tell that overcarbonation wont' be an issue here. Not a particularly robust aroma - hints of ginger cookie, bourbon, spice. The flavor profile opens up a bit with clear defined notes of ginger, molasses, chocolate, coconut, bourbon and the like. To me, the intended flavor profile works a lot better in this version. Not without its flaws though - a bit thin, and 12 weeks in a barrel seems a little rushed.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2013 23:43:17 | More by dirtylou
Photo of Beejay
Beejay

Virginia

4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

My 31st Birthday, birthday beer.

A: Deep brown as it pours, dark black in the glass. The head is rich, full and a beautiful medium tan in color.

S: Vanilla, oak and chocolate come out right away. The next bit smells like raisons that have been given a candy crust, with a hint of spice. Almost like the candy coated almonds. The second whiff and you get the ginger starting to come out, the 3rd smell and the ginger is in your face. It smells like chocolate, and ginger, and Christmas morning.

T: The bourbon and ginger fight each other in am epic battle, for what dominates the tongue.. followed closely by chocolate and dark malts. The ginger goes really well with the bourbon's vanilla and oak character.

M: Somewhat lighter than I would have expected, although certainly in the medium thick area.. Nice. Carbonation works for the brew.

O: Overall a damn fine brew.. I like the addition of the bourbon, and I like the subtlety of the bourbon as it plays with the ginger, and dances around the chocolate. Fine work.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2013 23:15:15 | More by Beejay
Photo of jmarsh123
jmarsh123

Indiana

4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ncaudle for the bottle hookup!

Pours deep brown with a small beige head fading quickly, but leaving some good lacing.

Smells like a gingerbread cookie dipped in bourbon. Ginger, brown sugar, vanilla and a light bourbon presence in the aroma.

This one is a great sipper. Still maintains a good dose of the spices and milk sweetness from the base beer, but is amped up with a hefty dose of vanilla and a little oak and bourbon. Bourbon is well integrated and doesn't overpower the base beer, but does provide a nice kick at the end.

Full bodied stout. Alcohol is hidden fairly well and the bourbon is well integrated. It's present, but doesn't overpower or create and overly boozy sensation. Carbonation level is spot on and much lower than the base which was my biggest complaint with the regular Gingerbread Stout.

A very delightful beer. I enjoyed the base, but felt it was overcarbonated. This one hits on all counts. I could drink plenty of this one without getting tired of it.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2013 12:31:39 | More by jmarsh123
Photo of CuriousMonk
CuriousMonk

Virginia

4.64/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber into snifter glass. Pours a dark brown along with a thin lacing head that lasts slightly throughout. Aromas are cocoa, toffee, gentle roast and toast. Mellow cinnamon, ginger, and spice. Touches of oak, vanilla, more gentle barrel experience, but it still covers up the spice a bit. Initial is sweeter, darker, cocoa and vanilla, gentle spirit. Ginger, cinnamon, some vanilla life. Middle is sweeter, cinnamon and ginger presence, some creamy vanilla and nice sweetness at times. Spirit, toast, toffee. A touch sweet. Cinnamon and spice assert into finish, nice flavors, gingerbread, some spirit, vanilla, gentle spiciness lingers with mellow heat, toffee, and creamy sweetness. Overall, a fine beer and cannot go wrong this one or the regular although I do prefer the latter.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2013 19:34:50 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of alpinebryant
alpinebryant

Connecticut

4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: dark chestnut with huge mocha head. No lacing

S: Aroma of vanilla oak, bourbon, medium spicing and cinnamon with white icing for cake. a bit of nutmeg

T: Similar flavors from the regular GBS, slightly sweet bourbon with ginger, roasted brown malts and wood. Cocoa powder and cinnamon mixing with ginger and brown rye bread. There is more of a sweet honey flavor than a bourbon flavor. I am reminded of Jack Daniels honey when sipping this. Slightly boozy. I love how the frosting flavors come out in here, slightly cooling and refreshing in contrast with the bourbon and ginger flavors.

M: light carbonation , I believe this is lighter in body than the regular variety of GBS.

O: Overall this is a good beer, slightly more complex than the standard GBS, but not notably better. Vanilla flavors by far poke out of this more than in the standard version and the nice heat from the bourbon gives a notably good addition to the total package here. Glad to have tried this.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2013 19:31:18 | More by alpinebryant
Photo of cw577enfield
cw577enfield

Virginia

4.74/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

This is, without a doubt, one of most amazing stouts I've ever tasted. It will leave you feeling in a state of utopia until you've crashed and yearning to have another taste. Let's see if Hardywood will do it better next time! Oh, yeah, the first line was nearly two hours before I got my limit of two bottles. Who knows what it'll be like next season?

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2013 01:47:03 | More by cw577enfield
Photo of jasoncheb
jasoncheb

Virginia

4.66/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into tulip

A - pours a very dark brown with very little transparency when held up to a light.

S - bourbon, ginger, honey, vanilla, and some oak barrel notes

T - So, with having tried this when I first grabbed my allotment at Hardywood, the bourbon barrel overpowered the ginger, vanilla, and honey. Now, with a few months on the bottle, the barrel has fallen off a bit, leaving the beer with more of the ginger, honey, and vanilla flavor that made the original GBS so popular.

M Full bodied stout that leaves a nice smooth finish. Very little heat from the BA on the bottle after sitting for a few months.

O - As this beer has aged, the overall flavor has really bumped up a notch. The complexity of the original GBS is starting to fill back in while the BA falls off, but is still present.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2013 19:13:49 | More by jasoncheb
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a very dark brown color with a medium size tan head slowly recedes to leave some decent lacing.

Aromas begin with bakers cocoa and ample gingerbread, toasted brown bread and some sweeter honey notes. There is some equally large vanilla and lesser cinnamon; much more barrel induced vanilla and maple sweetness with minimal oak.

The tastes begin with some brown bread and milk chocolate with a solid growing gingerbread and honey/maple sweetness. The ginger is much more mellow here compared to the original GBS; more vanilla, maple and baker's cocoa. Light oak but really a minimal bourbon barrel induced flavors besides the vanilla.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side of medium with moderate carbonation. The finish is fairly mellow and slightly sweet from the barrel aging.

Overall, I enjoyed this version much more than the original version which tasted way to ginger-forward and almost like a messy homebrew. The barrel aging has imparted very little bourbon flavors (which is good IMO for this style of beer) and adds a pleasant vanilla and maple sweetness with a light ginger spicing in the background. Glad I didn't dismiss this after not loving the original.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2013 14:51:35 | More by claspada
Photo of portia99
portia99

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into an Old Guardian glass. Having just had the regular version of this, I am excited to try the BA version.

A - pours a clear dark brown color with reddish mahogany tint around the edges and forming a short foamy tan collar

S - barrel, bourbon, heavy ginger, honey, cinnamon

T - massive ginger and honey, cinnamon. Light bourbon and vanilla come thru too but not as intense as I hoped.

M full body with a lower carbonation that only gives a little life. Mild bourbon...hardly any warmth at all. Heavily spiced and Christmasy

O - I enjoyed this, but expected more after having had the regular version recently. Barrel was very subtle and didn't add to the base the way that I hoped it would

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2013 01:54:21 | More by portia99
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

I was pretty let down by the regular version of this beer after falling for the hype, but fortunately, I enjoyed this one a bit more. I have a couple bottles of my own, but someone graciously shared a bottle at SS13, so thanks.

Mahogany brown pour, deep and slightly hazy, with a small tan head that receded to a ringlet, and left a little lacing on the glass. The bottle was open well before I got to it, and thus had a few moments to breathe. Sweet aroma, caramel, cinnamon, ginger, booze, more like flavored vodka than bourbon. As in the regular version, there was a definite cookie taste going on, like a Little Debbie Oatmeal Creme Pie, but it wasn't as pronounced as I would have hoped, and in this version it was also competing with the vanilla/bourbon/booze flavors. Regardless of that, I do think that this version tasted better, and the bourbon aging improved it, though there was still a bitter, woody unpleasant aspect to the beer. Again, like the original, my main beef with this beer was the body. It's quite thin for a stout, and leaning more towards an English stout or brown ale. It would be interesting to see if they tweak GBS and try to improve it in the future, but considering the hype over it, it's probably not going to change. I definitely wouldn't turn it down if someone offered it to me, but it's not worth standing in line for however many hours to get it.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2013 23:01:45 | More by Rifugium
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Gift from Lunch, thanks Paul! Beer served in a Hardywood glass (again Thanks Paul!). Beer is dark brown and hazy with a tan head of small bubbles.

Aroma is sweet with hints of ginger and spice.

Beer is medium in body and has this odd coconut flavor to it that grows with every sip until it is all I can taste. I heard this tasted different on draft and I would be interested in trying it but ultimately the beer was not ginger enough, too much coconut or whatever that was and too thin, not a repeat for me.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2013 18:42:24 | More by drabmuh
Photo of ThePorterSorter
ThePorterSorter

Missouri

4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Pete for sharing
The beer pours a dark brown with almost no head/lacing. The nose is a pungent nutmeg with none of the other spices or notes of bourbon that I'd expected. The taste brings a lot more ginger and spice forward, but the bourbon still doesn't make an appearance. As I'd expected from the beer's appearance, the mouthfeel is rather thin and mild-medium bodied, but does have a lot more spice, specifically ginger, that lingers in the aftertaste. This beer is quite tasty with great spice and the ginger I was hoping for, but the nose didn't pop with the Christmas season or bourbon as I'd hoped.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2013 01:26:53 | More by ThePorterSorter
Photo of dogfishandi
dogfishandi

New York

4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to Pdiddy3d for sharing this! You the man Pete!

750ml bottle poured into a taster.

Pours out nearly black, some reddish brown hues are defiantly visible. A nice light tan colored head with decent retention, minimal lacing.

I maybe expected a bit more from the aroma. Gingerbread cookie is defiantly there in full force, but lacking a little on the bourbon. A bit light.

Much better taste, gingerbread cookies are at the forefront, but melds with some nice milk chocolate, a bit of caramel and bourbon and hints of vanilla. I maybe expected more bourbon to show through, but still an amazing taste. A fair amount of sweetness.

Medium to heavy in body, adequate carbonation for the style.

Overall, this was about on par with the regular version, not really better or worse. The bourbon added a nice dimension to it, but I expected a lot more to come through. Also some of the flavors from the original beer were just a tad muted.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2013 05:26:29 | More by dogfishandi
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4DAloveofSTOUT

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Huge thanks to egrace84 for the share! Thanks elliot!

poured into snifter glass.

reviewed from notes taken 01/03/13.

Appearance: light to medium black bodied beer with a thin white cap of head.

Smell: Mellow barrel notes and huge gingerbread cookie and cinnamon. It smell just like GBS with a splash of bourbon.

Taste: This beer tastes just like GBS with a splash of bourbon! The barrel notes give this beer a touch of bourbon and vanilla. But the gingerbread flavor is fantastic and does not have an artificial flavor at all. Cinnamon and nutmeg also have a big prescence in this beer complimenting the gingerbread really well. This beer is sweet, but not even close to being cloyingly sweet, just the right amount of sweetness!

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with low end of moderate carbonation. This beer is so smooth. Its so balanced and just a little bit of creaminess! ABV is well hidden. No harsh booziness just a faint warming sensation.

Overall: Hardywood makes another crazy awesome beer. Honestly, I hope that GBS and BA GBS are going to be a Winter tradition for the brewers at Hardywood. GBS & BA GBS are the best christmas beers that I have ever had and no other beer even comes remotely close! The barrel really complements the beer; it still lets alot of the flavors of the base beer shine through and accent all of the regular GBS flavors!

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2013 19:11:52 | More by 4DAloveofSTOUT
Photo of Duff27
Duff27

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cap and collar, short lived head. Alcohol legs, sticky lacing.

Initial smell reveals a toned down cinnamon-esque spice. Ginger snaps. Nary a barrel note in the nose.

I like that ginger spiciness. "Doesn't taste phony or artificial." Do not get much barrelness until the tail end/aftertaste.

Medium mouthfeel. Low but biting carbonation.

Very unique, solid. Hard to describe better than that. Thanks for the share egrace84!

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2013 01:07:35 | More by Duff27
Photo of ThickNStout
ThickNStout

Georgia

4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle. Bottled 12/12. Served in a Terrapin snifter.

Pours near black with ruddy edges and a finger and a half mild tan head. No lace.

Smells exactly as the name implies- gingerbread cookies and bourbon! An excellent harmony.

Again, the taste is spot on. Really, every flavor that the name implies- a hearty gingerbread cookie served with bourbon. The booze is extremely well concealed considering the over 10% abv.

A creamy medium full feel with mild carbonation. Long smooth sweet bourbony spiced finish.

Truly outstanding. A great example of an already fantastic base stout being taken to new heights by bourbon barrel aging. If you can get this, DO!

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 04:26:44 | More by ThickNStout
Photo of TechTriumph
TechTriumph

Virginia

4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled: December 2012; Poured in a snifter.

A - One inch or a tad less of creamy tan head with respectable retention; Very dark brown in color with traces of light seeping through; Pretty good showing of lacing around the glass

S - Good depth here with no real component stepping forward; Notes of slightly boozy bourbon, earthy oak, vanilla, caramelized sugar, molasses, ginger, tobacco, and underlying roast and chocolate; Really surprised in how 12 weeks of bourbon barrel aging tones down the ginger spice; Bourbon and semi-sweet molasses notes seem to strengthen as beer warms

T - Again, it's very apparent and fascinating in how the bourbon barrel transforms this beer and the level of ginger spice; Up front, the ginger has it's biggest presence, though it's well balanced by bourbon, semi-sweet molasses, and somewhat subtle vanilla flavors; The second half of the taste takes a big turn - ginger, bourbon, and molasses all tone down quite a bit, while a fairly strong wave of warm oak and earthy tones (with a touch of tobacco) consume the mouth - a really pleasant experience; Alcohol is very well hidden throughout the taste

M - Carbonation is moderate or a touch under; Between medium and full bodied; Very smooth, creamy, and mellow mouthfeel; Finish brings a decent wave of warmth - pleasant and nowhere near close to hot

O - My anticipation was high for this beer as I was curious as to how the gingerbread flavor would react to the introduction of bourbon barrel character. I'm actually pretty floored in how well this turned out! Sure, the ginger flavor is no longer in the spotlight, but a good bit of complexity takes its place to take this beer to a completely new level. If sticking strickly to the holiday theme, the original GBS is probably the better choice. Overall though, I think the Bourbon GBS brings the best overall package/complexity, and is no doubt a fantastic bourbon barrel offering.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2012 14:08:38 | More by TechTriumph
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Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout) from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 209 ratings.