Bourbon County Brand Stout | Goose Island Beer Co.

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
2,860 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,860 | Ratings: 11,791
Photo of Antg8989
4.7/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Besides a foamy head, (which one would not expect, especially at ABV 13.8) there is nothing lacking in this stout. Rich and complex all around, there's a reason beeradvocate has this rated so high. Definitely a beer to sip on. Don't pass this one up.

 250 characters

Photo of solefly23
4.81/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer is my new favorite. The smell and taste have strong notes of molasses and dates. The high ABV is actually matched with the light carbonation. Great beer

 162 characters

Photo of Dols401
4.37/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark black with almost no head. Very boubony aroma, with a roasted malt sweetness. An almost chocolate milk texture but in a good way. Slight carbonation. You can really taste the alcohol and the bourbon after the initial rich roasted flavor and creaminess and syrupiness. Very good beer. Not the best stout I have ever had but in the top 2.

 341 characters

Photo of Jkolls
4.69/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2014 version had on 3/5/16. RATING : 4.6

First time I ever had BCBS, rated at 4.6 had at 1.5 years old
I was impressed, but even at a year old was still a bit to sweet, and not as full tasting as I was anticipating. Could have had my standards too high though.

2015 version had on 4/13/16 RATING 4.85
Now THIS is what I was expecting/wanted out of the legendary BCBS. This was amazing. And at only 5 months old. Dark fruit, roast, cocoa, some coffee. Wow.

 457 characters

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

Probably one of the best beers I've had this year. It simply delivered. The vanilla and caramel blend with the bourbon to create an amazing experience. I enjoy drinking it cold and letting it warm up for a different experience - less booze and more sweetness.

 259 characters

Photo of MaillardRx
4.58/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: dark as sin, pours like motor oil sludge, leaves a decent head when you give it turbidity, not much head, transient lacing
S: molasses, brown sugar, malt on malt, cocoa, bourbon whiskey, oak, caramel, black licorice maybe, honey
T: chocolate, bourbon, malt, !, hides the alcohol very well, some oak, some smoke at the end, perfectly-toasted bread, figs, Caramelized sugar that's on the verge of burning the stove down, honey, bourbon with sugar is aftertaste, taste of bourbon is inversely proportional to temperature which is fun
M: fairly chewy with a slightly oily residue, leaves the lips sticky afterwards
O: lives up to the hype, this is really delicious, feel great afterwards too

 690 characters

Photo of The_Snow_Bird
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a perfect black like used motor oil with no light passing through. Hardly had a head to it. Can smell bourbon and dark fruit. Can taste roasted barley and fruit. One of the best tasting stouts.

 199 characters

Photo of jaypaul522
4.79/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Got bottles of 2015 release. This is a strong, full bodied stout. Poured dark black with little head. The aroma is strong - vanilla & bourbon. The taste is intensely vanilla and bourbon, with the alcohol dominating the after-taste. The body is very full, and pleasant. This is the most pleasant tasting Imperial Stout I have had.

 330 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
4.44/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottling date of 10/20/15

Appearance - Pours black with a brown, quarter finger width head that dissipates quickly to reveal a mostly barren surface.

Smell - An array of strong chocolate character with healthy bourbon backing it up. Vanilla and dark fruit. Caramel. Oak.

Taste - Follows the nose. A mix of dark and milk chocolate and cocoa, beset by a prominent but not overbearing bourbon character. Notes of vanilla and oak. Molasses. Faint coffee roast hits mid-taste. Coconut hits near the finish, catching the wave of chocolate and boozy bourbon warmth that rides well into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied with low carbonation. Thick, near syrupy texture, but it goes down stupid smooth for a 14.3% BA stout this early into its development.

Overall - A classic and perhaps the Standard bearer for the style. Much respect. Excellent balance between the stout aspect and the heat from the bourbon barrel aging, resulting in a brew that's ready to drink right off the assembly line. I can't believe I put off buying it for this long!

 1,049 characters

Photo of acelin
3.55/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I could have sworn I had posted this before, but here's my review from 2012 of a three year vertical:

2012: Dark tar with a small brown head that lingers. Smells of bourbon, dark bitter chocolate, coffee, and faint generic bitterness. Lots of soy in the mouth, combined with hot alcohol booziness. Not my cup of tea. I bought a 4 pack of this at the time, the others here were done at a tasting along with the coffee version from 2011? I think, Yeti in a 3 year, and Mephistophiles in a 3 year.

2011: Same look as 2012, less head however. Lower carbonation, but not much different. Somehow a bit thicker in body. Less alcohol heat, less bourbon flavors, but still soy saucey.

2010: Much improved over the other two - almost no carb, very thick mouthfeel . Still soy sauce, but the malt is coming through more here. Less hop and chocolate flavors.

Overall not my thing.

 875 characters

Photo of fitzy84
4.47/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Had a glass at the Hangar in Westfield. The beer is jet black with no head or lacing on the sides. Aromas are very powerful and complex: bourbon alcohol, vanilla, coffee, dark fruit, and several earthy-grain tones. Taste follows the nose and it quite a punch. Definitely potent alcohol taste mixed with a vanilla richness. The body to this drink really helped with its taste; very silky and creamy. Overall, this is a fantastic stout with powerful flavors, both in smell and taste.

 481 characters

Photo of golf_sierra
3.59/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I don't normally find big stouts to be my favorite.
Black as death, no real head forms or lasts.
Strong bourbon on the smell, a very good thing.
Taste is dark fruit and bourbon. Figs, raisins. Sweet.
Alcohol is prominent with some burn.
Probably a seriously fine example, but not what I look for to enjoy a beer.

 312 characters

Photo of freneticamnesic
4.84/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2014 vintage; drank to the 10th Valentine's day of Hedwig and me.

A - pours dolid blacl with nearly no head, just some thin brown lacing
S - espresso with soft vanilla and alcohol
T - coffee, caramel, light oakiness, vanilla, toasted nuts, smooth boozey finish
M - thick and oily with no carbonation
O - perfectly balanced BA stout. Not wildly complex but just a perfect balance in everything. Delicious.

 409 characters

Photo of NatoMasochism
4.93/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2-7-2016 Growler fill poured into LeftHand stout glass. Thanks to the great people at Providence Wine and Spirits for setting aside a keg of this for a pre-SuperBowl tapping!

The look and smell of this are great, but the taste and mouthfeel are where I think it really excels. Very creamy with a surprisingly sweet finish. The bourbon notes are perfectly balanced while deceptively masking the high abv. Well done.

 420 characters

Photo of rorykanderson
4.51/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Goddamn - first time BCBS drinker. Picked up a couple bottles to enjoy and finally cracked one open. Barely any head and almost a non-existent aroma, certainly nothing that stands out. BUT HOLY SHIT THE TASTE. Smoothest beer I've ever had. Silky mouthfeel with a balanced vanilla, oak, bitter, caramel and roasted malt flavor. The bourbon and slight alcohol heat is there but this is all Baby's Ass.

 399 characters

Photo of Drogon
4.93/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is by far the smoothest best tasting Stout I have ever had. Tastes like a rich chocolaty/coffee desert but not too sweet. This is one that everyone has to try before they die!

 182 characters

Photo of Cboom12
3.2/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I don't even want to rate it because clearly my palette is not sophisticated enough for a beer of this "caliber". I actually hated this beer. Neither I nor my brother even finished it. I have to think its an acquired taste I haven't developed yet by the looks of every other review. I mean I'm not a huge stout drinker but it's hardly my first.

 344 characters

Photo of Nachojon
4.44/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is an old review I found from 2010 BCBS.

One of my first big barrel aged stouts and honestly it's a bit intimidating watching this thing pour like motor oil. But it's delicious looking motor oil and delicious smelling. First it's all vanilla and as it moves closer to the nose all bourbon.

Real bourbon oak on the tongue. Vanilla, coffee and dark bitter chocolate.

Great stuff.

 385 characters

Photo of THSmusicman
4.92/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2014 vintage poured into a tulip.

Look: This is the least interesting part of the beer. Looks black, as a imperial stout should be. There was no head on this one and no lacing on the glass. Meh

Smell: Smells fantastic! Tons of oak, vanilla, buttery caramel, a touch of smoke and coffee, an almost chestnut like smell and a bit of dark fruit.

Taste: Vanilla and oak upfront with a touch of bourbon. Smoke and chocolate make a slight appearance mid-sip and it finishes with caramel and chestnut.

Feel: Fells super thick for a barrel-aged stout. It's chewy and as thick as I would imagine oil being. It really coats the mouth well!

Overall: Anyone who has ever had this beer knows that this beer lives up to and possibly even exceeds the hype surrounding it! This is the beer that started the barrel aging craze and still is a top player in the category! Just wish this wasn't as hard to get and limited as it is....I enjoyed this 2014 (aged for 1+ year) as much, if not more than the fresh 2015 I had.

 1,007 characters

Photo of THSdrummer
4.81/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours black with a thin, quickly disappearing dark creme/motor oil head. No lacing. Roasted malt notes lay the background for a boozy, bourbon aroma. A little bit of an alcohol tinge in the nose. A sip provides a robust dynamic between a smooth, roasted malt opening, to a bold, boozy, bourbon taste. All the while remaining somewhat sweet. The bourbon burn is held well within check. Mouth feel is exceptional. It feels bold and robust, creamy and smooth, thick and filling. It's a pleasure to drink for mouth feel alone. Overall, it's exceptional. It is well rounded, with plenty of complexities. It's also dangerously smooth for a 13%+ ABV beer.

Review for an aged bottle from 2014. Drank in late January, 2016.

Served in a 12oz snifter.

 743 characters

Photo of PDXAmbassador
4.58/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

An old favorite.
Perfect low carb, superb dark color.
Taste is absolutely awesome. Lots of dark flavors - roast, surprising amount of black liquorice, almost umami but not a hint of soy sauce. Still, it was fresh, and had too much whiskey burn for my taste.
Mouthfeel was about what I expected - thick, but thinner due to barrel aging than the base beer would've been.
Overall a wonderful, beverage experience.

 412 characters

Photo of thepenguin
4.38/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours pitch black with a minimal creamy dark tan head.

S: Highly concentrated aromas of vanilla and caramel. Some chalk and toasted oak, soft bourbon, figs and milk chocolate.

T: Rich bourbon and caramel with charred oak. Extremely sweet and pretty damn boozy, verging on cloying at times. Very restrained roast with dark chocolate notes, bread and toffee. Sweet boozy chocolaty finish.

F: Body verging on full with a chewy feel, medium-low carbonation, leaving a bit of mild warmth and a slick mouthfeel in between sips.

Overall: It’ll take me an hour or two to finish an 8oz pour of this beer, but it’s well worth it if you’re in the mood. As delicious as it is iconic.

 685 characters

Photo of alarmclock314
4.77/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2015 version, bottled on 11/11/15, 14.3% ABV, 16.9oz bottle. Seemed to have a lot more tart cherry and raw cocoa powder this year. Possibly the beginnings of a bad bottle, but it was fresh enough and the flavors were acceptable.

2014 version, bottled on 9/16/14, 14.4% ABV. This bottle was not as sweet as the 2013 version. Also had a bottle dated 10/24/14, 13.8% ABV. This one seemed a bit more carbonated and had more of a bourbon bite.

2013 version, bottled on 8/29/13, 14.9% ABV. Pours opaque black with a small-sized brown head. Smells of strong cocoa and bourbon. The taste follows very closely, but starts with cocoa, some vanilla and molasses, then ends with oak and bourbon... amazing. Thick and luscious mouthfeel with lower carbonation. Pleasant alcohol warming, well masked in the bold flavor. Like a bourbon chocolate dessert.

 849 characters

Photo of BuzzedMedStudent
4.61/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75


Appearance: An almost black pour with reddish tint. Dark khaki, half finger width head.

Aroma: Vanilla, cherry, bourbon and oaky

Taste: Heavy bourbon, rich cherry, chocolate, oak

Mouthfeel: Thick, rich, syrupy, minimal carbonation.

Overall: Best imperial stout that I have ever had, in fact, best beer that I have ever had. An amazing experience. I can't get enough. The more I have, the more flavors I discover. This is an extremely complex flavor composition.

*I still love the 2012 BCBS the most.

 510 characters

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

I loved this beer more than I have loved any woman. More than the fat kid loves cake. More than I love cake. I am the fat kid.
I love this beer so much that I married it. It was rich, it was amazing, I had to change my undies after this beer. Even the dos Equis guy prefers this beer.

 284 characters

Bourbon County Brand Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
4.5 out of 5 based on 11,791 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!