Bourbon County Brand Stout
Goose Island Beer Co.

Bourbon County Brand StoutBourbon County Brand Stout
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Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #19
Ranked #54
4.6 | pDev: 9.35%
Aug 11, 2022
Jun 26, 2003
Bourbon County Brand StoutBourbon County Brand Stout
Notes: The Original Bourbon Barrel aged Imperial Stout. Our primary focus every year is to make this beer the best that it’s ever been, with the best ingredients, which includes the finest of bourbon whiskey barrels. This year’s Bourbon County Stout is aged in a mix of bourbon barrels from a variety of whiskey distilleries. Barrel-aged for a year to develop the complexity that only time can provide, Bourbon County Stout boasts a unique blend of flavors such as fudge, vanilla and caramel — topped off with a rich, complex mouthfeel.

IBU: 60
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of Mikecap42
Reviewed by Mikecap42 from Maine

5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
A: when pored the appearance is as black as can be. This beer is so dark, the foam appears to be a dark brown rather than the the typical white. This appearance is how you know this will be a serious stout.

S: There are definitely notes of bourbon in the aroma. You can also detect notes of roasted barley and oak.

T: The taste of this brew is suburb for an imperial stout. There is a rich blend of flavors from the oak, the bourbon and the malts. While there is also some hop presence, its really the bourbon that takes center stage here. This is definitely the gold standard for a barreled aged beer.

M: The mouth feel is very warming. That is to be expected at with a beer with a big abv like this one. This is definitely something you want to drink in the colder weather,

O: Overall Goose island nailed this style. I don't often give 5 star ratings but this brew earned it. It is such a rich imperial stout that drinks very smoothly. It is one of the best beers I have ever drank. Final rating 5/5.
Aug 11, 2022
Photo of adamette
Reviewed by adamette from Ohio

4.3/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
Goose Island Bourbon County Stout
Live review. Poured from the 1 pint, 0.9 ounce bottle that I found at a cool bottle shop in Mentor, Ohio about 18 months ago for, if I recall correctly, about $15. 2019 indicated on the neck label. Drink by: 25 AUG 24 08:33 14.7% ALC/VOL printed on the lower part of the label on the body of the bottle.
A: The look does not disappoint. The darkest body with a brief dark brown head which lasts about 10 seconds and I poured generously into a clean, clear snifter. Love this look, even if much of it is to style. 4.5
S: Dark fruits predominate without too much “heat” of alcohol which I expected somewhat due to the high ABV. I certainly pick up some deep, sweet bourbon notes but the dark fruits are front and center. Intriguing and I give it “extra credit” for not being too “hot.” 4.5
T: Wow. So much going on here. Early taste is a LOT of dark fruits, heat of alcohol bourbon notes dancing on my tongue and then dissipating into a long, slow, alcohol slide out to an amazing finish of smooth dark roast malt but that process takes about 2 minutes. 4.5
M: Mouthfeel is surprisingly thin for the style and the beer’s reputation. Mind you, this is NOT a thin beer, just that I had expected one of the fullest, thickest beers but it is not. 3.5
D: Drinkability/Overall: Overall a fantastic beer, one that everyone reading this should seek out. Drinkability is limited by your budget and your sobriety but this is a “night capper” kind of beer. Only a fool would drink several of these in one evening. Intention, in my opinion, is to enjoy one of these in an evening, and frankly share it with someone else. 4.0
Aug 07, 2022
Photo of cdinardo21
Reviewed by cdinardo21 from Pennsylvania

4.62/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
The grandaddy. I've had the 2012 variant most recently on a trip to Chicago. Held up surprisingly well. Still have a 2013 bottle hanging on in the cellar that I can't wait to open. Even "bad" variants of the original are so solid, reliable and respectable. Excellent experience every time. Very much looking forward to the 2022 lineup and the 2019 > 2022 vertical I plan on doing at New Year's.
Aug 04, 2022
Rated: 4.79 by JoeDKSki

Jul 21, 2022
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Reviewed by UWDAWG from Washington

4.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
2019 vintage:

Poured from a 16.9 ounce bottle into a snifter.

Look- Black, medium brown frothy head, visible particulate near the outside of the glass, average head retention and lacing.

Smell- Coffee, bourbon, chocolate, toffee.

Taste- Toffee, bourbon, coffee, vanilla, chocolate, semi sweet.

Feel- Full body, slightly below average carbonation, mouth coating, mouth warming, smooth, creamy.

Overall- Vibrant and well balanced flavors with a full body that coats and warms the mouth. This provided a brilliant drinking experience.
Jul 09, 2022
Photo of k_williams
Rated by k_williams from New York

4.9/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
I drank the 2017 bottling yesterday. It was amazing! The 5 years of aging smoothed out the taste perfectly.
Jun 28, 2022
Rated: 4.75 by bkwagie

Jun 28, 2022
Photo of DrOfGolf
Reviewed by DrOfGolf from Delaware

4.92/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
Very first time that I've ever had something like this. The bottle I have is from the 2019 stock.

Poured into a chalice-like glass. Color is a very dark blackish and brown mix. Thick and syrup-like with a noticeable alcohol aroma.

Smell is excellent and to me consists of chocolate, plum, coffee, caramel, vanilla, and of course, Bourbon.

The 14.7 ABV brings a nice, warm taste to the experience and I look forward to my next bottle.

Oh yeah, enjoy it with your friends or the family members and they will thank you for the chance to taste a great stout. I highly recommend this to everyone.
Jun 25, 2022
Rated: 4.82 by nung51

Jun 19, 2022
Rated: 4.53 by dionito from Washington

Jun 04, 2022
Rated: 4.87 by ahuey333 from Wisconsin

May 31, 2022
Photo of Bostonchap
Rated by Bostonchap from Massachusetts

4.82/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5
Bought a flight of years from craft cellar. Astounding!
May 27, 2022
Rated: 4.5 by Dovers from Wisconsin

May 21, 2022
Rated: 4.91 by cold_beer

May 20, 2022
Rated: 4.49 by eluvah from New York

May 20, 2022
Rated: 3.77 by sbradley41 from Pennsylvania

May 14, 2022
Photo of Elemental19xx
Reviewed by Elemental19xx from Illinois

4.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
This is a great beer and dont let anyone tell you otherwise. At 14.6% its very smooth and makes for a great special occasion beer. The only even slightly negative thing i could say about it is that it may be a slight bit too thick to drink at any time. If i was full i dont know that id enjoy one. In my opinion this beer is so good that i think people are now talking bad about it just to go against the grain and feel like they better than everyone else who likes it.
May 11, 2022
Photo of Iamaskier
Reviewed by Iamaskier from Idaho

4.38/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
Not much of a head. Very rich on the nose; bourbon, figs, cola, milk chocolate, and a hint of vanilla. Taste is heavy on the bourbon, with figs, honey, and chocolate, followed by roasted malt and coffee. Hints of vanilla and oak come and go. The bourbon really dominates, more than just about any other BA stout I’ve had. Feel is a bit oily, and the alcohol warmth approaches that of a wine.
I understand why it’s a classic. This beer has some kick, but does so without becoming cloying or unbalanced. Not my favorite, but great nonetheless.
May 07, 2022
Rated: 4 by Affinity from Missouri

May 01, 2022
Photo of Fedorable
Reviewed by Fedorable

2.22/5  rDev -51.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2
It's obviously a good stout, but it's just too much for me. Very syrupy, very sweet. You get vivid notes of chocolate and bourbon and toffee yet none of it is enjoyable. It simply has none of what I look for in a beer, or even a stout.
Apr 20, 2022
Photo of ryan_jayke
Reviewed by ryan_jayke

4.69/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
Awesome beer in every way. A true favorite.

L: Dark! Dark and thick as motor oil. Even the short head is caramel in color. It is beautiful!
S: Nice aroma akin to the bourbon barrels in which it was aged. The mixture of malty stout and bourbon is heavenly.
T: This isn't an overly complex stout, and it delivers very well on what it promises. Malt, bourbon, and stout. This isn't too say that nothing else is going on. There are underlying flavors that play well together, and the concert of all the flavors together are well-balanced.
F: Thick and smooth! Matches the look beautifully.
O: I love this beer. I scored it shy of perfect because I want there to be even more of everything I described. But maybe leaving me wanting more is what makes this beer so amazing.
Apr 15, 2022
Rated: 4.61 by TXRobbo from Texas

Apr 08, 2022
Rated: 4.68 by Red5StandingBy from Maryland

Apr 04, 2022
Rated: 4.66 by Curt3 from New Jersey

Mar 20, 2022
Photo of tradershmulie
Reviewed by tradershmulie from Connecticut

4.8/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Have had a few bottles, different vintages. Does not disappoint. Definitely a top beer for any special occasion.

The pour was ordinary, no great head.
Nice aroma.
Delicious to drink. Truly outstanding. Flavors come through, but not too much. Smooth and silky. It is on the sweet side, but not quite overbearing, which makes it stand out.

ABV truly hidden.

World Class.
Mar 02, 2022
Photo of Perioddicals
Reviewed by Perioddicals from Texas

4.63/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
L - 2021 vintage. Shared half of a 16.9 oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours opaque black with a 1 finger light tan head. Has significant lacing as well as alcohol legs from the 14% high ABV.

S - Sweet up front. Vanilla. Cola and chocolate. Alcohol. Dark fruit. Raisin or cherry. Some bread scents in the back.

T - Sweet taste as follows scent. Lots of dark fruit (prune, date, raisin) up front. Almost the taste of a port wine. Caramel and vanilla in there. A slight wood or oak. Chocolate notes as well. Love the complexity of each taste providing a little bit different each time. Not boozy even after is warms up some further along like other high ABV beers.

F - Really good medium body mouthfeel. Lower carbonation from and aged Beer. Very smooth and drinkable at high ABV

O - This is a great beer. I know there are a lot of "flavors" in this line now, but I tried the base beer of the 2021 batch, and it was World-Class. Well worth picking up and adding to the annual rotation.
Feb 26, 2022
Photo of Bill_Kay
Rated by Bill_Kay

4.84/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
2019 vintage, fantastic expression of the style. Smooth, nice punch of vanilla, with a cacao nibs forward finish.
Feb 25, 2022
Rated: 4.5 by ryand14 from Michigan

Feb 11, 2022
Photo of Gdabeast
Reviewed by Gdabeast from California

4.36/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Delicious stout filled with oak influenced flavors. The one had the pleasure of consuming was from 2015, and the bourbon flavors have softened a little, doesn't seem as forward with the alcohol, just well married into the vanilla and oak flavors. Very soft mouthfeel.
Feb 08, 2022
Photo of CastleBravo
Reviewed by CastleBravo

4.32/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
This is my first review on BeerAdvocate!

Pouring this from a 16.9 oz bottle, the pour produces a nice finger or so of tan head that dissipates after a few minutes. A bit of lace is left around the edge, with light head left bubbling in the middle. Overall a very dark, nearly black pour gives off a strong boozy scent not uncommon in barrel-aged stouts. The aroma is also quite sweet, which for me is always a good sign of a stout with a good body and careful construction. So far, so good.

The first taste is very, very heavy on the tongue. This is an Imperial Stout with a lot going on. It sticks to the inside of your mouth like a stout should and has a sweet-hot initial hit, likely thanks to the very high ABV of 14%. There is a certain candy flavor up front that I am not a huge fan of, but it doesn't stay around for long. Afterward the taste dissolves into almost a cola-like flavor that lingers for a long time. It feels like there are a ton of flavors, including coffee and dried fruit that almost overwhelm anything else.

This is a fine beer. It isn't my favorite stout of all time, but it is an American Imperial Stout, and is amongst the most well-crafted I have ever had. I can see this being someone's go-too Stout when it's in season, but the flavor profile is just a little too sweet for me.

Still, very good.
Feb 05, 2022
Rated: 5 by jtc1927 from New York

Jan 26, 2022
Rated: 4.41 by benjaminsa from Vermont

Jan 23, 2022
Rated: 4.71 by USAF-Mike from California

Jan 22, 2022
Rated: 4.52 by not2quick from Missouri

Jan 19, 2022
Rated: 3.2 by Larry20

Jan 19, 2022
Photo of NiceTaps
Reviewed by NiceTaps from New Jersey

4.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
16.9 ounce bottle, dated August 11, 2017. 14.1% abv.

Black in color with a cocoa tan cap, rather thin, ample lacing.

Aromas are beautiful; vanilla and caramel, bourbon, charred oak barrel, licorice.

Flavors come as vanilla, chocolate, and a touch of licorice. Smoked whiskey and dark fruits loiter in the background.

Smooth, rich, and strong sipping quality stout.

BCBS, as good as it gets.
Jan 18, 2022
Photo of jimmah120
Reviewed by jimmah120 from Minnesota

1.96/5  rDev -57.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2
I won't do a traditional review, except to say that this thing is incredibly overrated. Maybe it was better once, before A-B bought bought out Goose Island. I only tried this in the last couple years and it is like rubbing alcohol mixed with equal parts soy sauce, brown sugar, and burned chocolate syrup, all served in a rubber boot. Not great for almost $20 a bottle.

I'd rather have literally any cheap bourbon off the shelf drop shotted into the worst imperial stout available. The emperor wears no clothes
Jan 17, 2022
Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 100 out of 100 with 13332 ratings