Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2017)
Goose Island Beer Co.

Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2017)Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2017)
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American Imperial Stout
4.55 | pDev: 6.15%
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2017)Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2017)
Notes: Stout aged in bourbon barrels with bananas, roasted almonds, and cassia bark added.
Reviews: 37 | Ratings: 184 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of TheGent
4.28/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Opaque and black. Not very thick or viscous appearing as it pours from the bottle. A loosely packed, brown, head forms with an aggressive pour, settling to an island of foam in the middle, and a thin ring around the edge of the glass. No visible carbonation.

Nose: Everything comes through with the cassia bark shining, followed by the banana, and last, the roasted almonds. Has a cinnamon/nutmeg banana bread thing going on. Vanilla and toasted coconut bourbon barrel notes.

Taste: Once again everything comes through in the flavor as well. This beer is far from overly sweet. The cassia bark is prominent, but not dominant as in other beers I’ve had with this ingredient, including Bamburana and the more recent BCBS Cafe de Olla. I’ve never had this beer fresh, so I cannot comment on how it’s changed, but if you don’t like cassia bark you may not like this beer. The banana comes through as ripe / green banana. On the tip of tongue it starts sweet with raisins and brown sugar. After that not overly sweet or pushing dessert/pastry as with some other banana stouts I’ve had. Mid palate dark, dried fruit including fig and date. I get a lot of cocoa and dark chocolate. Some dark chocolate covered raspberry jelly rings. The beer finishes long, bitter and slightly toasty with toasted bread and burnt sugar.

Feel: Nice BCBS level of medium carbonation. Seems to have held up nicely. The feel is medium bodied. Not too thick, not too thin. Not too warming on the palate, but I feel it in the pipes a little as I drink the beer. Some sticky sweetness on the lips.

Overall: Excellent. I see a lot of comments about “banana bread” looking back at reviews from friends. I can see it, but it’s not liquid banana bread. It’s dryer and more bitter. It’s quite complex in the flavor. I think cassia bark, while I like it, can make a beer less “drinkable” because it is such an intense flavor. Fortunately, I don’t find it takes away from the drinkability of this beer.

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Photo of 5toutman75
4.66/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

NYE beer 2019. Won this bottle at Prop day last year from the wall pull and stored in my cool basement. The bananas were still very prominent on the nose and pallet. I forgot how much I loved this beer! It’s a very sweet beer but normal for a pastry stout. If you can get a properly stored bottle, don’t pass it up.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.43/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of rich sweet chocolate notes with some vanilla and bourbon notes with light bananas notes also perceptible. Taste is also a mix of sweet chocolates notes, some bourbon and vanilla notes with light woody notes with some perceptible but subtle notes of bananas. Body is full with nice creamy texture with good carbonation. Another solid pastry-like stout from Goose Island.

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Photo of kevanb
4.67/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle, 2017 release, poured into a 2017 Goose Island BCBS snifter glass. Enjoyed on 11.24.18, reviewed from Tasting Journal.

The beer pours a nice jet black color, thick, oily, viscous and very opaque with a tan head that lacks any retention and yields no lacing. The aroma is great, brûléed bananas, lots of dark rich chocolate, cinnamon, marzipan, charred oak, spicy bourbon that does offer a bit of heat with a bit of lingering vanilla. The flavors are great, excellent balance of cinnamon, marzipan and banana, much like bananas foster with some nice vanilla and a pleasant charred character brings out the oak barrel, soft bourbon and rich dark chocolate. The mouthfeel is great, coating, thick and heavy with a luscious texture that finishes easily but warmly.

Verdict: A very good rendition of BCBS from Goose Island. I was quite skeptical going in but the cinnamon character is really enjoyable and the rich chocolate flavors pair nicely with the banana and the bourbon barrel just adds more and more depth of flavor. World class beer.

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Photo of michaelsmith11
4.7/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Drank this after aging it for a year. Poured black with a thin tan head. Thick. The smell was cinnamon and banana, with the cinnamon coming on strong. Not much nutty smell. The taste was chocolate and banana and then the sweetness of the cinnamon came through. The more it warmed the more prevalent the cinnamon and bourbon became. For being a 14% stout it hide the alcohol very well. Excellent beer.

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Photo of rudzud
4.3/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Received in a trade and cracked on Black Friday 2018.

A - Poured into my Duvel tulip a nice darker black with a thin fizzy mocha head that fades quick quickly to leave just a barely there halo. Nice legs for the ABV.

S - Aromas of some nice bourbon aged stout, chocolate, flashes of cinnamon. Not much nuttiness. Don't really get any big banana notes, just super super subtle which I don't understand at all. When it warms, and I mean really warms to almost room temp, I get a little it of banana bread aroma.

T - Taste is thankfully a nice rebound from the nose. Some nice nuttiness along with a good bright cinnamon flavour. The banana brings some pleasant sweetness. Little bit of caramel, like over sauteed bananas foster. Alcohol hidden very, very nicely, though the finish is a bit syrupy.

M - Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, though borders on being a crisp initially. Alcohol is hidden nicely, only knock is that it's a bit syrupy.

O - Overall this had all sorts of potential but until it becomes almost room temp I get practically no banana. A solid stout for sure but this absolutely pales in comparison to previous Props.

Serving Type: Bottle

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Photo of Blackop555
4.65/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black. Short, thick, brown medium head Fades slowly.

Smells liquid banana bread, banana, cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla and bourbon.

Taste sweet chocolate, Roast malt, banana, bready, caramel, vanilla and bourbon. Finish is semi-sweet with a bourbon and chocolate linger. Medium body and creamy medium carbonation.

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Photo of Phineasco
4.64/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours Pitch Black with a thin khaki head. It has low carbonation. The beer smells of banana bread, sweet almonds, charcoal, smoke, and bourbon barrel. It tastes of banana bread, sweet almonds, charcoal, smoke, and bourbon barrels. The feel is on the thinner side, but good complexity. Another killer variant from Goose Island.

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Photo of Furlinator
4.29/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Consumed on 09/28/18 so, the adjuncts may have faded.
The smell is mostly of unripe, green bananas and chocolate. The taste follows with equal parts chocolate and banana with cinnamon accents and subtle hints of bourbon. The almond presence is minimal. It tastes like a bourbon, banana, chocolate milkshake.

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Photo of floyd_pugman
4.21/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Goose Island glass. Pours a rich espresso color; an aggressive pour yields only a thin layer of mocha foam. Nose is mostly dark fruits, with some chocolate and cinnamon spice; only mild wafts of banana and almond that I probably couldn’t have placed if tasting blind. Palate is very plum heavy (as the regular BCBS was); ripe banana is there but mostly on the back end; finishes with a touch of cinnamon. Almonds are only there when you search for them. I was glad to have this but it wasn’t worth what I traded for it. Adjuncts might be fading at this point in light of other reviews.

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Photo of WickedBeer
4.72/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Barring Prop 14, this is my favorite Prop beer. Notes below. Bottled 01SEP17 16:56. 14.0% ABV.

Choco chip banana bread nose. Creamy medium carb body. So smooth. Nice boozy warmth. Flavors are more banana, cinnamon, chocolate, and lingering roasty coffee. Fire.

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Photo of jlindros
4.45/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed at David's party

Nice fizzy dark head fades quickly, dark mahogany color little light, good legs

Nose big mix, tons of banana, nutty almond, toasted cinnamon bark like thing, vanilla and little barrel, little cocoa and caramel

Taste big bananas foster, caramelized banana, sweet, hint cocoa, cinnamon bark and toasted nutty almond, touch caramel syrup, little spicy and tingling alcohol, thick syrupy

Mouth is heavier bod, syrupy, little boozy, decent but lighter carb

Overall great but not incredible

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.64/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Huge cinnamon. Almost bordering on red hots. You get a lot of spice from this cinnamon. Banana on the nose and on the finish. Smell is great. Bananas Foster. Fun to try. An interesting and enjoyable experiment.

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Photo of Sabtos
4.09/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Shiny black, with an almost red hue at an angle, and a minimal fuzzy tan head that quickly dies to a thin ring.

Smell is banana nut bread, dark roast coffee, cola and cinnamon bark.

Taste really hits a home run on the inspiration, somehow eschewing both the expected cheap banana candy and also the estery banana flavor often found in certain beer styles, instead bringing an actual caramelized softened banana expression to the slightly bitter woodiness present in this nuttier version of BCBS.

Slick and a bit thinner than regular BCBS, similarly to how I found Northwoods to be, this one has a sticky dry swallow to it.

All of these odd attributes play well together, bringing a true Bananas Foster spirit to this still luscious and beloved classic BA Stout.

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Photo of stakem
4.22/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into a snifter appears black in color with a khaki thin head that fades leaving spotty lace.

This smells like banana runts, vanilla and chocolate with plenty of booze.

The taste is also somewhat artificial tasting banana runts, vanilla, raison, chocolate and booze with a touch of lingering bitterness.

This is medium in body with modest carbonation. It is uniquely bitter with barrel character and the advertised adjuncts being noticeable. Admittedly, on paper this sounded terrible but ended up not being bad at all.

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Photo of grover37
4.06/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle at home with Jordan and Lisa. Different than on tap - much less banana and more cinnamon. Actually not too bad. (4.06)


Gross at Huna Day 2018 (3.48)

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.8/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This worked so well- it's best variant since Backyard Rye for me.

This one pours a fairly dark and inky looking black, with a small head, and not much lacing.

This smells like roasted malt, bourbon, charred oak, caramelized banana, smoke, spice, and almonds.

Why does this work so well? I don't even like bananas all that much. The banana flavor is mildly sweet, with a smoky caramel feel. There's the big barrel character you would expect from any beer in this series- marshmallow and vanilla from the barrel, charred oak, and big silky bourbon. There's lots of chocolate, a bit of nutty almond, and just a hint of cinnamon spice from the cassia bark. This is so inventive and it works so well.

This is pretty thick and chewy- it feels fudgy. There's a lower level of carbonation and a very creamy mouthfeel.

It's nice to see that Goose Island can still hit gold here- this is absolutely stunning. Inspired work here.

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Photo of aleigator
4.07/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a small, dark brown head, which immediately dissipates entirely.

Smells of wooden, earth and toffee accompanied cinnamon with a flowery vanilla peak to it, resulting from the pleasant barrel presence. Atop of this a layer of banana is building up, carefully adding a unique richness to the cinnamon, chocolate foundation. This gets even more intensified by the spicy coconut bark and foremost toasty bourbon barrel.

Has a smooth, fuller mouthfeel, with only a hint of carbonation during its finish, emphasizing the beers heavy body very well.

The banana is well entangled into the flavors of the beer, just as well as it is on the nose. Dark, boozy chocolate establishes a well rounded depth of flavors, topped off by a strong, well working cinnamon component. Almonds join in after the swallow, complimenting to the barrel appearance by adding a toasty, buttery nut impression. Finishes with soft whipped cream, scorched malts, bakers chocolate, boozy pralines and an interesting, prevailing note of banana with a nice, warming aftertaste.

A little sweeter than regular bcbs, this is a well working variant. It drinks smooth, relying heavily on the cinnamon with an astonishing well nuanced banana impact and subdued almonds. Alltogether this makes up for a unique flavor composition with a prominent barrel backbone, providing a little heat and a spicy depth.

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Photo of yesterdayfaraway
4.56/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: big dried / dehydrated banana with slight cinnamon on the back end
T: sweet banana and cinnamon. This is very good, but lack barrel.
F: sticky and coating, medium thickness.

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Photo of REVZEB
4.7/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap. Amazing! Truly bananas foster in the amazing BCBS body. I could sit and sip and smell it all day. Body little thinner with these flavors, but I don't even care, it is amazing. Sweet, malty, roasty, and deeply rich, a perfect dessert variant.

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Photo of Jangoon24
4.99/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L - Pours exactly how you'd expect whenever a BCBS is opened. Pitch black, thick, with a thin, tan head that is bursting with incredible smells.

S - Chocolate, bourbon barrel, and cinnamon dominate the nose of this beer, quickly followed by a very subtle hint of banana. It smells like dessert after a big meal.

T - I got a lot of the normal BCBS notes (dark chocolate, bourbon barrel, toffee), with a nice kicker of adjucts. The cinnamon, almond, and banana work so well together when added to this already world-class stout. Unreal.

F - It's BCBS, so as expected: a thick, chewy, sticky stout. There is a minor stickiness left on your lips with every sip, it's dessert in a bottle for sure!

O - Definitely the best Prop I've had in years, probably since 2013. This is a world-class beer, and any chance to get your hands on a bottle of this should NOT be passed up.

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Photo of Radcpa
4.48/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Very dark appearance with slight tan head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is a bourbon and banana. Taste is a very smooth bourbon and banana that is a little thin.

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Photo of krh
4.4/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

NYE tasting. Really liked this one, but wasn't blown away. Smell and feel are best part. A bit too sweet? 14% alcohol is well hidden. Banana, chocolate, cinnamon all there, but sweetness is too much for me.

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Photo of OrionsHunt
4/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

November 24, 2017 - on tap at Clybourn. Black pour with limited head as expected. Aroma was like taking a big ole sniff of my mother-in-law's banana bread. Taste was a bit heavy-handed with the cinnamon, there was some sweetness and banana as well, but too much cinnamon. Hoping the cinnamon mellows with age like 2014 and becomes even better.

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

500ml bottle, 2017 vintage. Served in a Bourbon County snifter glass. Pours a dark black body, one finger offwhite head, good retention (for BCBS), bits of small lacing. Smell is mostly the base Bourbon County, with cinnamon and a slight banana presence. It wasn't as massively bananas foster as I was expecting, but it is on the other hand not too sweet, not cloying, with the banana and cassia bark being more subtle. As it warms, a bit of nuttiness shows up, presumably the almonds. I'm happy with how balanced it is, and the flavour bears this out as well with a touch of banana, cinnamon spice, vanilla, chocolate fudge, a bit of milk chocolate, oak and bourbon, but without any sort of heat in the background. Very nice combination that plays really well with each other, although with the caveat it wasn't an insanely mindblowing rendition of Bourbon County; I refer to Backyard Rye or Prop 13 as better examples of that. The "wow" quotient isn't here, though this is an excellent beer. Mouthfeel is full-medium bodied, good carbonation, smooth and creamy, no heat on the finish. Tasty beer, perhaps not worth what is being asked for it currently as it seems to lack that oomph of a more pedigreed stout, but it was a nice drinking experience just the same.

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Proprietor's Bourbon County Brand Stout (2017) from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 99 out of 100 with 184 ratings