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Is Goose Island Night Stalker infected?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by geneseohawk, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. Horbar

    Horbar Advocate (530) Rhode Island Feb 24, 2012

    If there's smoke, there's probably fire.
    ChanChan likes this.
  2. or some people just don't like barbeque
  3. Had mine night before last. Date was 11/19/2012 1315. Since it was my first, I have nothing to compare it to except for other stouts. I was relieved that when I smelled it, then tasted it, it tasted fine.
    MarcatGSB likes this.
  4. Arenbeer

    Arenbeer Savant (285) Connecticut Apr 23, 2009

    Drinking a 11/19/12 bottle batch 1517. Nose is unpleasant, resembles sweet soy sauce and cat pissy hops kind of like Sam Adams Triple Bock. Taste follows with super dark fruits and umami soy that is quickly over taken by strong grassy and plastic like flavors from the hops. Definitely will not be finishing this glass nor the bottle. Do not recommend buying this batch, I had this beer for the first time a couple years ago and I remember absolutely loving it despite being against what I appreciate in Imperial Stouts. Very disappointed.
  5. rfbenavi80

    rfbenavi80 Savant (360) Missouri Mar 15, 2010

    Just drank a bottle of this from 11/19/12 with a 1324 time stamp. I have never had this before but if this is what it is supposed to taste like I find it hard to believe the score that it has. This was really a mess of a beer with very odd flavors. Look, I'm not looking to stir the pot or add fuel to a fire that is already raging. I'm just saying that this in no way resembles the base beer for Bourbon County Brand Stout. It just plain tastes awful.
  6. Opened up a Nightstalker bottle (11/19/12/ - 1410) a week ago at our Thirst Fursday beer & wine tasting at the Olympic Tavern in Rockfrod IL, and I'm getting the same off flavors reported above.

    There's very little perceptible hop aroma or bitterness compared to batches I remember from years ago (as I remember NS, it was a HUGE hop monster, kind of like fresh Bell's Expo). No question about it - there's a big soy sauce thing going on mid palate. And the body of the beer is a bit thin compared to BCS.

    I have had several customers already complain about the same off flavors -- I bought their beers back (when they'd allow it) and I'm sending the case back to our distributor for a refund.

    Soy/meaty flavors is usually due to dead yeast. Hopefully the problem is a bottling line/contamination issue, and is limited to the 22s, as I have a 1/6bbl in the basement that I'm really hoping tastes like it used to.

    Cheers --
    [email protected]
  7. marshmeli

    marshmeli Savant (425) New York Feb 14, 2012

    Had a bottle last, tasted great, huge hope aroma once I opened it...
  8. My bottle dated 11/19/12 1233 was god awful. Contacted GI about it. Easily the worst tasting beer I've ever had. Infected definitely.
    geneseohawk likes this.
  9. Drucifer

    Drucifer Savant (465) Illinois Apr 16, 2012

    Night Stalker is not the base beer for Bourbon County. It simply has the same malts with different amounts and a completely different hop schedule that drastically affects the taste. It is based off the recipe for Bourbon County's base beer (Cook County stout I think it's called? I may be wrong), but Night Stalker is not what goes into the barrels.

    My bottle was fine, but definitely had a piny aftertaste due to the late hop additions. It was very unique and to be honest, I wasn't a huge fan. That doesn't mean others were not infected or different. Are some of the bottles fine? Do some people expect Bourbon County's base and are disappointed? Are some actually "infected"? I would say yes to all of these questions.
    Errto and beerinmaine like this.
  10. I had this for the first time recently at Northside Lounge on tap. Tasted like pure soy sauce. I was tempted to return it as I was almost positive it was not supposed to taste like that. I've never had such a negative experience with what was supposed to be a very good stout. I usually love Goose Island products and most stouts
  11. mmikey8

    mmikey8 Savant (260) California Aug 2, 2012

    I guess that explains why I got 3 of these as extras (1 from each different person) in recent trades :(
  12. I had it on tap the other night at Maloney's in NJ. Absolutely disgusting. I couldn't finish the 6oz glass.
  13. Coirm

    Coirm Aficionado (160) Illinois Dec 12, 2012

    What did GI say? I have 3 more bottles, one I drank was, in a word, ungood.
  14. 1509 is drinking great. I mean, Night Stalker is weird! But not infected. At least not this bottle.
  15. By 1509 I mean 11/19 1509.
  16. had one tonight 11/19 1240 and it was great
    BrownAleMale likes this.
  17. djre4orm

    djre4orm Savant (345) Virginia Oct 21, 2011

    I had a 4oz draft pour from a local taphouse last night & was shocked. I thought I'd get some BCBS flavors; instead all plastic, soy, smoke, mealy. I actually thought it was a smoked beer until I confirmed the description online. Gotta check the bottle number in my cellar. Hopefully we can get to the bottom of what happened between batches
  18. Mine date 11/19/12 1314 was definitely infected. I opened it and the smell was "odd" but didn't give me an infected smell, but then I tasted it and I couldn't get down more than 2 sips. One to try it and the 2nd to confirm was my first taste was telling me. Unfortunately I had to drain pour it. I emailed Goose Island just letting them know. I really don't care if I get my money back or anything as compensation. I realize these things sometimes happen.
  19. what does "mealy" taste like? or are you describing texture/mouthfeel?
  20. djre4orm

    djre4orm Savant (345) Virginia Oct 21, 2011

    The mouthfeel was medium to thin. Taste: hearty / wood / smokey / meaty. I guess thats the savoriness of the soy / teriyaki hints.

    Wasn't as sour as some of the other infected beers ive had. *Some* sourness but nothing like a Cigar City infection
  21. I think there are a lot of people misinformed about the indications of an infected beer.

    It's possible there's some kind of defect going on, but none of the described flavors, aromas, etc. would indicate an infected bottle. Maybe some yeast autolysis at some point in the fermentation, maybe some rotten hops, but certainly no indication of a bacterial (or even brett) infection. Not from what I've read throughout this thread anyway.
    tai4ji2x and beerinmaine like this.
  22. I'm drinking 11/19 1649 and it's fine. Too fresh for my taste with the piney hops, but I'm not picking up any infected qualities.
  23. Definitely get some cherry notes, though not saying it is a bad beer. But, it does not taste like previous versions of nightstalker. It reminds me of '09 abyss.
  24. jjheinrichs

    jjheinrichs Savant (370) Wisconsin Apr 13, 2010

    Wasn't 09 abyss infected?
    ChanChan likes this.
  25. jplopez21

    jplopez21 Savant (470) Illinois Nov 14, 2012

    I thought this whole 'infected' thing was a joke. But I just opened up a madame rose a couple hours ago and it smelled like vinegar and tasted nasty. Granted I've never had it before, but I've had plenty of belgian ales and they def dont taste nowhere near this bad.
    notjustgc likes this.
  26. beerinmaine

    beerinmaine Aficionado (225) Maine Jun 20, 2009

    Madame Rose is a SOUR beer. It's not supposed to taste like most other "belgian ales". Do you have experience with sours?
    Jspriest likes this.
  27. jplopez21

    jplopez21 Savant (470) Illinois Nov 14, 2012

    I guess that makes sense then. Thanks for the heads up. It was definitely not my style of beer.
  28. beerinmaine

    beerinmaine Aficionado (225) Maine Jun 20, 2009

    Yes, what he said.

    Reading back through here, the only consistent complaints I see are cherry/fruity, thin mouthfeel, and soy. No sour funk, brett, graham cracker, gushing bottle signs of infection.

    I suspect there are some bottles that are off in some way -- but as I said earlier, I can't imagine how it could be an entire batch bad/infected/off, since we have bottles filled within moments of each other, some supposedly good and some bad.

    I think the rest is a combination of people not liking the style, not liking the beer, not liking GI/InBev, or not knowing what to expect.

    I've got a couple in the fridge for this weekend and we'll see how they turn out.
    notjustgc, tai4ji2x and forrestbetts like this.
  29. Why would it have any BCBS flavor? It is not barrel aged.
  30. beerinmaine

    beerinmaine Aficionado (225) Maine Jun 20, 2009

    What was the taste?
  31. beerinmaine

    beerinmaine Aficionado (225) Maine Jun 20, 2009

    It's not a batch thing. We've got people posting bottle numbers filled minutes apart, with some good and some bad.

    It's not the same beer as BCBS and it's not barrel aged, so I'd be pretty surprised if it had much in common with BCBS flavors. Night Stalker is overwhelmingly a hoppy beer; BCBS overwhelmingly a bourbon-soaked beer.
  32. poopinmybutt

    poopinmybutt Savant (255) Nebraska May 25, 2005

    for people who have had this and last years, what do you think the biggest difference is?

    i've had a couple of bottles from this year and i like it so much better than last years but i do agree it's much different. this years has this sweaty hop profile that i actually like a lot, i thought last years was overwhelmingly sweet
  33. ShemRahBoo

    ShemRahBoo Savant (495) New Jersey Jan 28, 2010

    what's with the soy/teriyaki aroma and flavor, I definitely picked this up and not as much hoppiness as others are saying. I don't think the beer was infected but it seemed off to me. I have another bottle for another time, but I wasn't impressed with this beer.
  34. a little disappointed that nobody has gotten a response from GI/ABI yet (or that nobody has bothered to report back on any responses). but only thing i'm currently pissed about GI/ABI right now is that they can't handle distribution for shit, especially for allocated releases, or even stuff like this which one would think aren't as limited as the BCBS variants. i want to be able to try for my damn self already! :mad:
  35. as only a few others have mentioned, soy/teriyaki is usually indicative of either oxidation or yeast autolysis. NOT infection.
    notjustgc likes this.
  36. amantini

    amantini Aficionado (115) Georgia Jul 7, 2009

    I had my 11/19/12 1550 bottle last Friday evening. This beer had the same defective tastes mentioned above. Big soy and salt flavors up front and then a heavy burnt sugar taste that lingered like a saccarin aftertaste. This in no way resembled a hoppy stout. I jumped on the chance to pick this up after visiting family in the Northeast for the holidays. I had never seen Nightstalker in stores and I was excited to try it. However, I was Lennay'd after I learned that the hoppy stout I had anticipated, simply didn't exist.

    In all seriousness though, I was pretty disappointed. I sent an email to GI and I have heard no response. Pretty sure their contact system says they will get back to you in 2 business days. 5 business days later, I am not anticipating a response. It seems like a brewery that is rapidly expanding distribution and is trying to combat the negative ABI association would be quick to rectify a problem like this. Sad beer day.
  37. TheBandit1

    TheBandit1 Initiate (0) Michigan Mar 19, 2011

    Drank one yesterday. Tasted great. Piney and hoppy. Really well done.
  38. MarcatGSB

    MarcatGSB Initiate (0) Michigan Jan 8, 2011

    Maybe resend it, it could have gotten eaten by their spam filter...I'm sure they get ALOT of emails.
  39. JaysusJr

    JaysusJr Aficionado (130) Illinois Nov 14, 2012

    I had one recently and it tasted good. Hopefully the one I have saved does also
  40. geneseohawk

    geneseohawk Savant (315) Illinois Nov 4, 2008


    This sir is B.S...... Plenty of knowledgeable BA's on here who have had the style, like the style, like GI/InBev, and knowing what they should expect from Nightstalker over the past several years. Not the same- no way- no how- not happening. Horrible beer that is infected or just made shitty this year..... Iwrote GI and am taking my bottle to them in person.
    JohnnyMc and Horbar like this.

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