Candy Cane Cthulhu
Goose Island Beer Co.

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Stout - American Imperial
4.55 | pDev: 8.35%
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Reviews: 8 | Ratings: 28 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of eppie82
eppie82 from Illinois

3.79/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On draft at Goose Island - Clybourne.

No semblance of foam whatsoever. Extremely dark black liquid. The aroma is huge amount of peppermint and candy cane. The flavor of peppermint really overpowers any semblance of a Bourbon County beer or barrel, really. The feel is sticky but medium thickness.

If you're a peppermint fan, you will like this undoubtedly but it certainly wasn't one of my favorite beers while there that day.

Dec 24, 2018
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Kurmaraja from California

4.49/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Better than base Cthulhu imho. The 5 oz pour they serve it in is about perfect. Creamy and rich without being overly sweet. Mint balances the roast, chocolate and alcohol notes well.

Dec 22, 2015
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Yarni28 from Wisconsin

4.74/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Far better than the original Cthulhu IMO. Where the original is very sweet, the candy cane version is pulled back a bit with the addition of the candy canes with a subtle bitterness from the mint. This basically tastes like Thin Mint Cookies.

Dec 23, 2014
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stouts4me from Illinois

4.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Black as expected, first smell is huge peppermint candy cane blast , the taste is equally impressive, great base beer with infusion of the Christmas candy delight. Your mouthfeel is a littlebit chewy , good coat-ability, gotta put this top 5 of all time tastings.

Dec 21, 2014
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atomic from Illinois

5/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was skeptical about this, but decided I'd give this guy a whirl during my lunch break. Split the 5oz snifter with my girlfriend.

First reaction, WOAH tons of peppermint. Then it sort of dissolves in your mouth into rich oatmeal bourboney goodness.

Not sure how this could be improved in any way.

Dec 24, 2013
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SeanBond from Illinois

4.91/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pretty excited to taste this one--It's the perfect combination of the original Cthulhu with hints of peppermint on the nose and in the aftertaste. Not quite as thick as BCBS (for reference), and there's a little more taste of alcohol as the beer heats up. Either way, an awesome beer, perfect for Christmas, and one I wish they'd brew more often...Can we please have a yearly release of this?

4.8 Overall

Re-review: Moreso even than last year's version, the '14 CC Cthulhu has an incredible candy cane presence. Both the nose and the actual taste are incredibly minty, and play perfectly off the base beer. Last year this was one of my favorite beers, and not only has that not changed, but this beer has improved. Incredible.

Dec 24, 2013
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agwalters from Illinois

4.76/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

So lucky to have been there to enjoy this holiday treat. I love Cthulhu but yet I was skeptical of what peppermint would do to the base beer. I was stunned to find that it absolutely crushed. A bourbony and mint-forward treat. An absolutely delicious Christmas present. Wow.

Dec 23, 2013
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jegross2 from Illinois

4.66/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Reviewing the Candy Cane Cthulhu from the Goose Island Beer Company out of Chicago, Illinois.

Score: 97

Tap pour served in a snifter glass and enjoyed on 12/23/13. Review is from iPhone notes.

Appearance: Dark soda color, with a tiny ring around the glass of head. Nice oily lacing, but no head. The oily lacing tints the side of the glass a slight brownish hue, but less so than Bourbon County Brand Stout does. 4.25/5

Smell: Smells a lot like regular Cthulhu, with less vanilla plus a peppermint aroma that is not "smack you in the face intense" like many other mint-infused stouts are. Particularly as it warms up, this beer smells like thin mint Girl Scout cookies laced with caramel-forward bourbon. The peppermint character grows as the beer warms up, but it never overwhelms. A little oak is present too. Really nice nose here. 4.5/5

Taste: The caramel-forward bourbon flavor hits first, followed by fudgey chocolate, a little bit of vanilla and a hint of oak towards the finish. The peppermint acts a nice backbone, adding a light coolness to the flavor profile. The mint character of the Candy Cane Cthulhu is different from past years' releases of a bourbon barrel aged peppermint stout by the Goose Island Clybourn brewpub in that the peppermint presence here is more consistent on the palate. In previous releases it was more "popping" on the tongue like brief pop rock explosions of peppermint flavor with no lasting power. Even though this beer is infused with candy canes (i.e. pure sugar), it comes off less sweet than regular Cthulhu for whatever reason. The minty flavor lingers nicely, along with notes of caramel and a hint of chocolate too. All of the complexities here are masterfully integrated. What a tasty holiday treat! 4.75/5

Mouthfeel: Just shy of full bodied, spot on carbonation. Very sticky mouthfeel with a sweet leaning profile that does not cloy. Has a lovely slightly cooling mouthfeel from the mint. 4.75/5

Overall: Another home run bourbon barrel aged candy cane-infused stout from the Goose Island Clybourn brewpub (they do one annually as part of a Christmas time toy drive), and an interesting twist for the better on a beer I love. The mint character on this brew is not overpowering, a flaw that many "mint stouts" suffer from. This beer was well worth the toy donations it took to help get it tapped, and I wish that this was something the brewpub would do more than once a year. Maybe next year they will finally do Candy Cane Bourbon County Brand Stout?

Cost: $7 for a 5 oz pour.

Dec 23, 2013
Candy Cane Cthulhu from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 28 ratings