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Bourbon County Brand Stout | Goose Island Beer Co.

2,852 Reviews
Bourbon County Brand StoutBourbon County Brand Stout

Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
60 IBU

Added by drewbage on 06-26-2003

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,852 | Ratings: 11,745
Photo of WilliamD
4.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass. Jet black with fizzy, tan head the quickly recedes.
Smells of roasted malts, vanilla, bourbon, alcohol, and chocolate, perhaps some oak- that's all my nose can identify. I wish I had a hound's nose. But it smells good, all the same.
Taste is outstanding. Strong bourbon notes, some coffee, malts. Nice mild bitterness. Booze is present but not offensive.
Nice mouthfeel- very smooth, in my opinion. Oily. Wonderful alcohol burn. I think someone turned the thermostat up in here.
I think I could drink a six-pack of these. Sure, I know I'd feel horrible the next day, but I think I could do it, and enjoy it. I'll let that remain a subject of speculation, however. I mean, I still don't really understand why Luke ate 50 eggs.
This beer is delectable. I have a handful of bourbon barrel-aged stouts in my "cellar", and am relishing the thought of tasting them. If they taste half as good as this one, I will be more than satisfied.
Looking forward to next year's edition. Hope I still have a job then so I can buy a bunch of bottles.

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Photo of JoeST
5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I don't know why I put off trying this beer for so long, I only wish I had bought the whole four pack.

Anyway I poured this into my duvel glass. Pours a impressive inky black & leaves a thin dark carmel head that goes away quickly. But giving it a light quick swirl brings a very fine thin head back.
The aroma is by far the best I have came across in a bourbon stout yet, I could have set with my nose in the glass all night. Very smooth bourbon, with subtle hints of vanilla, oak & well hidden alcohol.
This beer drinks dangerously easy, I could sip on these all night if it wasn't for the high ABV getting me first. The flavor is so silky smooth & creamy. It tastes much like it smells as others describe. Very smooth laid back bourbon with a nice roasted malt back. Subtle hint of vanilla & very well hidden alcohol to my taste. I know a few people still say this ones a bit hot yet, but I found it to be very drinkable.
My next beer run is definitely going to include a full pack of these guys to lay back for a while.

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Photo of rayjay
4.37/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

08 release purchased in CA.

Poured into my big Stone RIS goblet. Minimal head, oily slicks, coffee stained foam around the edges and no lace. Black like strong coffee. Carbonation looks low.

Great smooth and sweet bourbon nose. Bourbon just dominates. Like bourbon candy. Fumy higher alcohols, burnt fruit esters, fresh sweet vanilla creme, and carmel malt too.

Huge sticky chewy body. Sweet 120L carmel malt clings on forever, along with tons of bitter black malt and or barley and vanilla extract. Bourbon isn't quite as present as in the nose but still makes a strong impression. Some alcohol heat; relatively speaking at 13% abv the alcohol is well...not well hidden...well contrasted. Immensely complex, but not just a mere big extreme beer but also a very well made beer in general.

Carbonation is fairly low, probably 2.20. Works well with the beer. Good drinkability, but it's the kind of beer that yells at you to slow down and savor it.

Any fan of malts is certainly going to appreciate this sweet bourbon-laden sipper of a beer. Thanks for sending Goose Island to CA! Cheers!

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Photo of glid02
4.77/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this via route66pubs - thanks!

Pours completely black with about one-finger of light brown head. The head recedes fairly quickly into a wispy layer on top leaving very light lacing.

Smells glorious - equal parts bourbon and roasted malts with hints of woody vanilla.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though more complex. Roasted malts up front, followed shortly by bourbon and vanilla flavors. The ending brings a light smokiness and just enough alcohol burn to keep me honest.

Mouthfeel is great. A very nice thickness that's only shades away from being heavy, and soft carbonation that gently keeps things moving.

Drinkability is entirely too good for a beer with this high of an ABV - I could down a few of these without thinking twice.

Overall this beer did not disappoint - you probably won't enjoy this beer if you dislike bourbon, but even if you like bourbon the tiniest bit you will love this beer. I look forward to next year and seeing how this beer settles. Thanks again to route66pubs!

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Photo of OneDropSoup
4.64/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to tzanio for the trade!

Pours wicked dark with just a little brown around the meniscus. Just about no head at all.

I could smell this all day. Bourbon nicely balanced with delicious chocolate cake, molasses, vanilla aroma.

Taste is outta control -- I've heard that aging in barrels gives things a "ring" around the mouth, which is exactly what's happening for me. Center of molasses, caramel, & smoke goodness surrounded by that bourbon & alcohol kick. Almost out of balance but not, making it juuust right.

Mouthfeel is thick, viscous. Leaves a nice aftertaste. Not much "action", going along with the low low head. Not sure if there's something up, if it lost some bubbles in the trip or what. Not that I mind.

One's good for me, though I'll be looking forward to the next.

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Photo of squaremile
3.65/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Memorable Qualities: Have had this twice in bottles, the first time I enjoyed the oily sludge, and the second time I was completely overwhelmed with the bourbon and the thickness. I think there is a level with the bourbon barreling that can make for an incredible beer, others are overkill. File this in the latter.

'08 vintage poured at a recent BA tasting event. Pours a nearly flat motor oil black. The nose is all bourbon boozy with some vanilla notes. Taste is more of the same but adding in some espresso and bakers chocolate. Very smooth with a little bite of heat on the sides of the mouth. Looong finish. People who trash this beer just don't understand it.

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Photo of Gmann
4.24/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a thick black sludge into my imperial pint glass, no head to speak of. No seeing through this bad boy. The aroma is big time bourbon, oak, and vanilla extract. Nice smooth bourbon flavors, vanilla, and straight caramel, perhaps slightly burnt. Secondary flavors are roasted malt, booze soaked grapes and charred wood. The feel is thick, not much is thicker than this. Soft carbonation and the body make this almost syrupy. Finishes sweet, roasted bitterness, and quite sticky. Oh yeah, the booziness likes to pop in to say 'hi' now and again. A sipper for sure, a nice night cap. Look forward to aging a few, though the twist off cap seems odd.

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Photo of cdkrenz
4.43/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this beer cellared since July of 2008. The label reads that its from the 2007 batch. I figure since this review will give me my discipleship that now is the time to pop the top.

A - Dark brown, milky, thin, bubbly head. It fades fast to reveal a thick, black, and action packed surface. This is a sight.

S - Dark chocolate, coffee, clove.

T - Rich semi-sweet chocolate, very mild coffee flavor, noticeable hoppy clove.

M - The feel in my stomach is something to note. It offers a weight that's certainly recognizable. The mouthfeel is smooth and silky and creamy.

~ This is not a brew for the meager. If you're going to indulge in this top of the line brew... make sure you have the capacity and love to really enjoy it.

What's even better? While sampling this fine beer one of my favorite songs came on the radio. Peace Frog by The Doors.

Oh, and guess what else? I've just become a Disciple!

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Photo of PutsDeBnABV
4.02/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark with no head or lacing apparent

S - Chocolate, coffee, roasy flavors come out in the smell with some alocohol smell

T - Goood no great with a nice roasty finish

M - pretty thick full bodied with a dry finish

D - Almost too much alcohol. Can drink one bottle just fine, but not much more.

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Photo of marksto
4.82/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I first had this beer at the GABF in 2007 and couldn't get enough. Picked up a 4 pack in Indy later that Fall. This sample is poured into a snifter at around 50 degrees.

Jet black with a coffee brown head and good retention. Noticeble legs when swirled around the glass. Huge aroma with roast, coffee, vanilla, oak, slight whisky, and alcohol. Very nice. Flavor is oh so nice - roasty notes blend with alcohol, oak, and bourbon essences. Balanced exquisitely, with all the flavors there but none overwhelming. Not always easy to do with bourbon-barrel aging. The mouthfeel is also beautiful - like pure cream.

I believe this is the best barrel-aged imperial stout I've ever had. Wonderful, highly recommended, and worth the price.

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Photo of dougfir
4.6/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Completely black and opaque. Sweet, malty nose. No head...almost looked flat when pouring. Sweet, malty, bourbony initial flavor. Almost a scotch flavor. Slight hop finish. Strong alcoholic post-finish. HUGE stout...biggest I've ever had and certainly one of the best examples of this style. Would be good paired with strong food, cigar. Ridiculous.

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Photo of montageman
4.75/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip.

A near perfect imperial stout. Rich, complex, and delicious - this beer has very strong notes of vanilla, chocolate, licorice, and oak. Really smooth and warming. However, at 13% this is an easy one to get lost in. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Highest recommendation.

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
4.67/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 4 pack of this is kind of expensive but worth it.

Pours a motor-oil black. There is no light getting into this even when held to the light. Only a tan semilayer of head formed and no lacing down the glass.

Smell is strong on Burbon. Lots of chocolate coffee. Smells wonderful.

Taste is intense. You first taste the bitter chocolat and coffee hits you along with the carbonation then a wave of sweetness. Then you feel the alcohol burn followed by the bitterness of the hops and toasted malts. A very tasty brew.

Mouthfeel is viscous but I wist the carbonation was a little lower.

Drinkability is high only because this is so good. I wouldn't session this beer at all though.

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Photo of colts9016
4.22/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to kels for this bottle.

Poured into a pint glass at 52 degrees.

Appearance: A jet black color like burnt motor oil. There was a very dark tan head that was one finger thick. There is no clarity to the beer, this sucker is not going to allow any light through.

Nose: A rich roasted malt, charred wood, vanilla, coffee, smoke, caramel, and chocolate. The bourbon is subtle but very present in the beer. In the background of the beer is a burnt sugar character, raisins, and fruity esters.

Taste: A rich roasted malt complex, with smoke, charred wood, vanilla, coffee, chocolate, bourbon, raisins, and molasses. In the back ground of the beer is fruity esters, cream, and burnt sugar.

Overall: This beer is liquid syrup, you can cut this beer with a steak knife, chewy, creamy and slightly carbonated. The finish is full and slightly bitter. Okay, I was not expecting this type of beer from Goose Island. It is super rich, super thick, and it has a lot going on in the beer. I am surprised that the alcohol is buried deep and is inconspicuous. The first impression is this beer is a definite sipper, therefore making the drink ability a little bit lower. I rather like the fact that it is a bold in your face beer and very good stout.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.97/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle - 2007, very fresh.

Pours like used motor oil, thick and opaque black. Almost no head.

Nose is huge: massive bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, hints of coffee. Delicious. Little carbonation.

Flavor is just as big as the nose, and just as delicious: huge dark malt, massive bourbon, chocolate, some coffee. Undeniably smooth drinking. Palate is thick, coats the mouth. Finishes long and smooth. Beer is definitely a slow sipper, but even with the bourbon taste, it's smoother than any bourbon.

Mouthfeel is smooth, little carbonation, very oily and viscous.

As gargantuan as this beer is, it's hard to stop drinking. So delicious you have to pull yourself away from it. Fantastic.

Rerate - bottle, 2007, aged 3-4 months. A little age greatly reign in the vanilla and bourbon notes, and the alcohol to a lesser degree, bringing up the coffee and roast malt notes. I actually prefer the rawer, fresher version

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Photo of darklordlager
4.25/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pitch black, like pouring motor oil. Minimal head that dissipates immediately after the pour.

Smell is of intense dark fruits and figs. Sweet chocolate and caramel.

Taste is an intense blast of sweet fruitness, complex caramel, and a lingering fusel alcohol. Vanilla,

Mouthfeel is carbonated enough to keep it interesting.

Intense flavours

Pours a Midnight black with sparse light brown lacing lining the sides, struggling to keep from being swallowed up.

Smell- Bourbon, roasted malt, vanilla, chocolate, caramel. chocolate, woody.

Taste-Bourbon, caramel, and vanilla are all very upfront, boozy finish. Definitely a sipper.

Mouthfeel- velevety with a slight syrupy element to it. Slick, with a lingering boozy/roasty aftertaste.

Just how I remember it--big, boozy bourbon with nice vanilla and caramel notes.

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Photo of drnknmnky
4.37/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip

A- Dark brown , almost vlack, head that didn't last long and left a little collar.

S- BOURBON, strong bourbon, chocolate both sweet and dark a light smokiness to them

TM - chocolate, bourbon, hints of mocha. and more I couldn't finger right away. ripe dark fruit maybe. Currant. Smooth, like silk. not as hot a 13% would make it seem. When they talk about there being more flavor in one sip there not kidding.

D- Good, Loved it but writing about it now. I don't know if it's something I'd want more ofmore than 1 of. Plus @ 13% ABV kind hard to session.

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Photo of JoshuaCain
3.8/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

bottle dated 10/08/08
pours a very, very dark brown, nearly black. not much of a head at all.
aroma is very sweet malt, wood, moist earth and chocolate cake. a very prominent alcohol singe tingles the nose a bit on each whiff.
tastes of charred wood and bakers chocolate, with a bit of licorice, black coffee and a very boozy finish. definitely retains more of the stout flavor profile than taking on alot of bourbon taste, except in the finish and aftertaste.
mouthfeel is pretty full, but still a little thinner than it could be.
flavor is really good, but overall drinkability is just okay, this one is just too strong and boozy to drink more than one. will try one again next year.

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Photo of brokenleadedcask
4.6/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My first time reviewing so I thought I'd start with a doozy

A- Dark opaque brown with a hint of copper around the top poured with very little head that disappeared after a few minutes.

S- The first smell before the glass got close was dark chocolate. Then the bourbon smacked me in the face when I got closer, with hits of campfire

T- Roasted espresso beans soaked in bourbon for twelve days in a smokey bar. Definitely a 13 percenter.

M- Maybe I'm used to the BBA style but it was smooth as velvet, I was expecting a lingering sticky-ness

D- A sipper or for desert would be fine. I could not drink 2 of these but glad I bought a four pack to have again

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Photo of tmoneyba
4.33/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured black color with medium brown rocky head that lasted with good lacing. Aroma was long complex roasted coffee and chocolate and wood. The flavor was rich of bourban, oak, malt and alcohol. Finish was long and had a good bite.

Good stout and well worth the hunt to find.

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Photo of pdxwhisky
4.23/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow - black as oil coming out of the bottle. Heavy duty aromas of tobacco, licorice, malts, and bourbon. Nice first sip, but the flavor grows a bit out of sequence as too much might be going on at once. Overall drinkability is a bit hard, as this is a beer that requires a big meal prior in able to cut through the viscousness. A great beer, though, but not for the unexpected drinker.

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Photo of soccerman7
4.2/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

On draft at Holy Smoke. Served in a goblet

A - 2 shades to pitch black with a dark tan, thin head.

S - Fantastic nose of bourbon, alcohol, smoke, maple, and malts.

T - Extremely complex, with the sweetness of the malt and bourbon very pleasant against the oak and smoke. A lot of maple notes with the hops cleaning it out. Excellent

M- This was my only knock against this beer. It was a bit high on the alcohol taste which did burn a bit and the sweetness really coated the mouth by the 3rd or fourth sip. Started eating food half way through the goblet and it was difficult to really taste.

D - overall an excellent version of oaked imperial stout. very interesting and certainly worth trying.

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Photo of cameraman
4.64/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a black opaque color, looks thick and syrupy as it is being poured. Very little evidence of a head, a beige feint line forms around the glass. The bourbon fragrance is strong, so strong I am giessing which distilleries barrels were used. There are touches of chocolate and dark roasted malt scents. The taste is strong, rich and robust, with chocolate, malty sweetness, with touches coffee and dried fruit. Then the bourbon comes in to compliment it all together, it finishes with a bit of a boozy flavor at the end. The feel is thick, rich and oily, as it slides across the palate. The surprise is I am expecting a little touch of a burn from alchol, but there is none. Everything about this beer is strong, though the look is little weak, but the aroma, taste, and feel are top notch. This is a great night cap beer or excellent with a cigar.

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Photo of TheDoorman
4.87/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black appearance with a coffee brown head. Aroma alone will knock your socks off. Just completely filled with bourbon and rich roasted malt flavors. Taste follows the nose. Bourbon, bourbon and more bourbon. Roasted malt and chocolate and coffee notes are abundant as well. I nice melding of many very strong characteristics, each of which assert themselves nicely. Full bodied, thick, creamy and luxurious mouthfeel. Beautiful. Alcohol is present, and noticeable, as it should be for a bourbon-barrel stout. It doesn't get better than this.

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Photo of joerodiii
4.59/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008 bottle in a Duvel tulip.

This is an amazing beer. The appearance is an opaque black, thick but not syrupy. The aroma is strongly bourbon, but it is nicely balanced with chocolate, roasted barley, sweetness, and alcohol.

In spite of it's richness and strength, this beer's taste makes it the most drinkable RIS I've ever had. The bourbon is definitely up front, but it does not overpower the rest of the beer. There is a fairly strong chocolate taste that increases as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel is almost perfect, just thick enough.

If it wasn't so expensive, I could drink this beer all the time.

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Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
100 out of 100 based on 2,852 ratings.
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