Bourbon County Brand Wheatwine
Goose Island Beer Co.

Bourbon County Brand WheatwineBourbon County Brand Wheatwine
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Style:
American Wheatwine Ale
Ranked #1
ABV:
15.3%
Score:
94
Ranked #1,229
Avg:
4.27 | pDev: 6.79%
Reviews:
125
Ratings:
387
From:
Goose Island Beer Co.
 
Illinois, United States
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  12
Gots
  71
SCORE
94
Outstanding
Bourbon County Brand WheatwineBourbon County Brand Wheatwine
Notes: Made from two-row and malted wheat, Bourbon County Brand Wheatwine is making its debut this year (2018). As the first recipe to veer from the original Imperial Stout since Barleywine in 2013, Wheatwine is a deep amber color, lighter than it’s BCBS counterparts and a true medium to convey the characteristics of 4+ year old Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels. Wheatwine is full of high caramel, vanilla, butterscotch, and toffee flavors.

Batch 1 (2018): Aged in 4+ year old Heaven Hill bourbon barrels.
Batch 2 (2019): Aged 100% in Larceny wheated bourbon barrels.
Reviews: 125 | Ratings: 387 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Jeffo
3.64/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Doopie shared this one a while back. Cheers, man!

From a 500ml bottle into tasting glasses
Vintage: 2019
Aged in Larceny Bourbon Barrels

APPEARANCE: Pours a looser, one finger, off-white head with lousy retention. Burnt umber in color, hazy, with no carbonation evident. Head fades to a faint wisp and ring, looking basically flat by the end.

SMELL: Bourbon, wheat malts, wood, coconut and vanilla cream, notes of caramel and toffee sweetness on the nose. Bold.

TASTE: Bourbon, oak, wheat malt, caramel and toffee sweetness, and some vanilla flavors up front. Some alcohol at the swallow, then a big finish of bourbon, wheat, toffee and caramel sweetness, some vanilla cream and coconut flavors. A decent bed of alcohol as well.

PALATE: Thinner body with higher levels of carbonation. Prickly on the palate, goes down prickly with a bit of a burn and finishes sticky. Some solid heat lingers. Typical harsh bourbon county feel.

OVERALL: Solid stuff. Sweet and boozy, mostly. It’s flavorful and enjoyable and will certainly fit the bill if you’re a fan of big, sweet, boozy brews. Good stuff and super glad to have tried this one out. I think I prefer the adjunct stout concoctions, but this is a solid barrel aged barley/wheatwine. Cheers, doops!

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Jeffo from Netherlands, Saturday at 07:40 PM
Photo of Scotchboy
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2019 bottling split into glasses.

Clear, dark coppery golden pour with a foamy off-white head. HUGE bourbony sweet nose of toffee and loads of malt, with notes of toasted caramel. Surprisingly not overly boozy, but the body of the beer is rich and sweet. Full, sticky-viscous body. Very sweet and malty and bourbon-forward (not sure how much the wheat is pushing to the front, hard to tell with the full-on assault from the barrels) but even with the sugary sweetness this is a delightful sipper.

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Photo of Franziskaner
4.29/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark amber in color with a fingernail of brown around most of the rim and covering a third of the top. The aroma is of pale wheat, bourbon, and vanilla. I’m tasting vanilla, pale wheat, and oak. The mouth is dry and a touch warm with booze.

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Franziskaner from Missouri, May 10, 2020
Photo of mschrei
4.54/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2018 edition. Ruby color, almost non-existent head and lacing. Very clear until I poured the last part of the bottle, when it becomes tannish and cloudy with a sea of particulates. Smell is malt, bourbon, dark fruit, and caramel. Taste starts with a bourbony buzz and a tangy dark fruit/cherry, and then it’s backed with a sweet blend of caramel, honey, and vanilla. Feel is medium bodied, big boozy presence. It starts with a quick clean crisp mouth watering feel that transitions into a bit of sticky thickness leading to a dry finish. It’s a complex beer that develops during tasting, which is interesting. I really like this.

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mschrei from Illinois, Apr 17, 2020
Photo of LifesAnesthesia
4.43/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2019 Bottle:
L - Butterscotch in appearance - light amber/copper with a light tan head that dissipates quickly leaving behind a thin cap
S - Sweet bourbon, butterscotch, and caramel as well as a slight hint of alcohol
T - Follows the nose: lots of butterscotch up front and throughout along with notes of sweet, rich bourbon, some oak, caramel, vanilla, and a hint of alcohol the backend. Some honey as well.
F - Medium to full bodied with a light amount of carbonation. Soft.
O - A very well crafted wheatwine with some complex flavors

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.23/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

16.9 oz bottle sent by Hinda65. 2018 vintage. North Coast tulip glass.
According to release date, (I'm not sure of time in bottle), it's approximately 1.5 years of age.

Pours a darker than expected dark caramel color with a fleeting head of 1/2 finger, receding to a fingernail.

Aroma of wet bourbon barrel, some light caramel, some light flecks of vanilla, and slight alcohol sting. Slight caramel apple phenolics.

Flavor brings dark fruits (plum and raisin) with slight pineapple bite, some caramel wax paper, some honey, slight vanilla, and wet bourbon barrel. Some slight caramel (golden delicious) apple.

Feel is definitely Bourbon County all the way to the bank. Signature burn and acidity with a nice oakiness and firm carbonation with a pleasant yet fierce heat.

Overall this one wasn't as impressive as even their regular BCBS, I mean honestly this is only about 3/4 as good - and for a variant being more expensive is a bit of a let down. I have a 2019 yet (paid $17.99) but unless that one impresses me quite a bit (though it just might with all the butterscotch adjectives floating around) I probably won't be going back for a 2020. It's a very good beer yes, but I'd sooner pay $7 less for a regular BCBS and have more enjoyment out of it.

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The-Adjunct-Hippie from South Dakota, Apr 05, 2020
Photo of Ego
4.67/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2019 vintage

eyes...
2 full fingers of off white head, quick crackle and fade, nothing but an o-ring in a wink, a quick roll of the glass reveals legs from the beefed up ABV, striking ruby/amber tone surely from the aging, consistent carbonation floats on up the way

nose...
boozy bourbon up the front, and I do mean up the front, in a blind whiff you might actually mistake this for bourbon, although on further inspection it is not quite as hot alcohol wise as the previous occupant of the barrel, buttery toffee laced with caramel, a tinge of tart cherries, slight whiff of wet wood, I think I hear a siren's song calling me to sail my ship gladly into a rocky death... inviting... intoxicating... seduction.

taste etc...
velvety slide right down the mouth, and warming on the way down after that, you sense the booze but do not taste it whatsoever, this is almost like drinking tamed bourbon, the sweetness, the vanilla note, all huge, but the ABV is sitting in the back just reminding you it is there only in the warming effect on the ole gullet, this drinks light (weight wise) which makes it all the more like bourbon, it is almost like lightly carbonated bourbon in that sense, the tart notes sit in the mouth for some time really make this a nice after dinner drink to share with friends, if they are deserving of such a libation that is, now with the rest of the bottle poured in there is some debris floating around, the vanilla is more pronounced in both the nose and flavor

verdict?
this is beer? wow. This is beer for bourbon lovers, this feels more like bourbon than stouts do, I was just having a glass of Basil's last night out on my deck and now tonight this, I have to tell you the experience is quite similar, the bourbon of course is way boozier, but the gamut of flavors and savory offering is a near experience, this beer is near transcendent, I'm floored, which is a rarity.

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Ego from New Jersey, Apr 05, 2020
Photo of jzeilinger
4.16/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2019 Vintage.

A - Pours a clear amber garnet color with minimal lacing and nice steady carbonation.

S - Sweet toffee and caramel aroma with some vanilla and pronounced sweet candy booziness.

T - Butterscotch, vanilla, caramel, and pronounced booziness and warming on the way down.

M - Thick, viscous, sugary on the lips, and lip smacking sticky.

O - Big, boozy, and sweet...a definite sipper.

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jzeilinger from Pennsylvania, Apr 02, 2020
Photo of Jacobier10
4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2018 vintage, 500 mL bottle, 15.4% ABV, bottled on Aug 13, 2018.

Deep amber color, almost zero head to speak of. A light swirl revives the head a bit.

Tons of butterscotch in the aroma. Toffee, vanilla, caramel and alcohol round it out. Hops are non-existent.

Rich and heavy malt flavor. Oaky bourbon as well from the barrel aging. Definitely a slow sipper, but at 15+% ABV you didn't need me to tell you that.

Full-bodied and sweet with very soft carbonation. Almost drinks like a butterscotch liqueur.

Overall, it's good, not outstanding. Probably my least favorite that I've ever had from the Bourbon County line. In all fairness though, Goose Island has set the bar pretty high with these in the past.

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Jacobier10 from New Jersey, Apr 01, 2020
Photo of firesidewithphil
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The 2019 version of this variant is spectacular. The beer has a soft ale consistency which is a nice change of pace from their heavy stouts. It does have a very full body though. I would describe this as a caramel slice of bread. The barley and wheat sweetness carry the beer's flavor.

WW Ale has a bit of funk to it but not too much. Quite a bit of yeast sediment on the final pour.

@firesidewithphil

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Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.54/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a deep, Carmel with decent carbonation. Does have sediments and a very thin, off – white head.
An incredible smell of caramel malt, toasted bread, dark fruit and definite bourbon.
Taste follows nose. Carmel and toffee taste upfront. Some dates or other dark fruit. Malt gives smooth transition to the nice Larceny barrels. Also detecting vanilla and almond.
Very smooth operator and a variety worthy of the lineup.

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Photo of zac16125
4.58/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Bourbon County Brand Wheatwine
500mL bottle into a wine glass
vintage 2018
Review written live, several months after release.

A: Dark caramely, hazy to the point of being opaque, even a moderately aggressive pour only yields a few soda-esque bubbles of fizz. 3.5

S: Aroma is very malty, quite sweet, significant vanilla, subtle cake batter. Bourbon notes fairly subtle other than the vanilla. Candied sugar. It’s a sweetness bomb on the nose. 4.25

T: Taste is amazing. Its incredibly sweet up front, with booze notes on the backend and bitterness to finish. Candied sugar, brown sugar, decent amount of oaky notes, huge malt sweetness, maple syrup. As sweet as it is it’s not cloying as the ethanol boozy notes, bitterness and subtle barrel notes balance it greatly. Just fantastic. 4.75

M/D: Mouthfeel is medium body, alcohol noticeable but in a good way, it’s surprisingly very drinkable, dangerously so. Carbonation appropriate, velvety smooth. No way i would have guessed this was 15.4% ABV. 5

O: Not much of a looker, and aroma is good but nothing special, but then you dive in to drinking it and wow! Ive had 4 of the 2018 variants to date and I’d rate them: Vanilla, Wheatwine, regular BCBS, then Midnight Orange. Loved this. 4.75

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zac16125 from South Carolina, Mar 23, 2020
Photo of stortore
4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

500 ml bottle into a snifter. Bottled 8/15/18, had 6/1/19.

Pours a medium amber, mostly clear, with a brief, short head and light foamy cling. Aromas of caramel, figs, toffee, dates, vanilla, butterscotch, some bourbon- more as it warms, light raisins. Flavors of bourbon, caramel, figs, dates, malt, vanilla, butterscotch, some raisins. Incredibly smooth for the ABV and style, a solid medium body, well carbonated.

Love this style and this is a really good example of it. It’s fairly straightforward for a Bourbon County release, but delicious. Lots of caramel and toffee and the barrels show at a level that supports the flavors. Really enjoyable.

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stortore from Illinois, Mar 23, 2020
Photo of Wolvmar
4.11/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Mar 2020 Review
2018 vintage poured into a tulip glass.

Very similar to the Nov 2019, 2019 vintage review but more distinct apple, or Apple brandy/port nose and taste. Toffee/caramel still there and booze maybe a bit more mellow but still pretty upfront.
Pour: still unspectacular. 3.5
Nose: maybe bump a bit as the apple/brandy/port seemed more pronounced and enticing. 4.25
Taste: similar thought as with the nose. Really liked it. 4.25
Mouthfeel: about the same. 3.75
Overall: would definitely buy again but aging seems to have helped or 2018 was just more to my liking. 4.0

Nov 2019: 2019 vintage poured into pint tumbler. Siesta Key FL.

Pour: yellow amber, thin one finger white foam head that dissipated quickly leaving a thin ring. 3.5

Nose: sweet caramel, bourbon, toffee. 4.0

Taste: caramel, toffee, bourbon, hint of dark fruit, leather, some oak. Plenty of rich malt to hold it together. It’s sweet and boozy but balanced enough. 4.0

Mouthfeel: syrupy, sticky but surprisingly clean finish. Moderate to high carbonation. 3.75

Overall: reminds me of a barleywine but even sweeter and more syrupy. Flavors are very pronounced but work well together. Absolutely worth trying and seems like a good representation of the style. Not an ATF for me but would probably buy another bottle if I saw it. 4.0

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Wolvmar from Michigan, Mar 08, 2020
Photo of npolachek
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Wasn't a fan of this. Aged a 2018 bottle, and just wasn't close to as good as the original. Smell was the usual really good, as was the look, but the taste didnt do it.

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npolachek from New York, Mar 08, 2020
Photo of rudzud
4.41/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to JLindros for sharing this bottle. 2019 vintage.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a nice dark honey hue, however, there is a TON os particulate going on. Loads of suspended protiens with a thin thin head that fades to leave light wisps.

S - Aromas of toasted oak, LOADS of bourbon aroma and sweetness. Flashes of sweeter malts and maybe a little bit of wheat. This straight up smells like straight up bourbon as well as flashes of dark fruits, raisins, figs.

T - Taste is similar to the nose with loads of creamy, vanilla forward bourbon and flashes of sweeter malts as well as some toasted grains. Rather fruity as well with nicer dark fruits and some easters. There is a slight alcohol flash on the finish as well. The lingering taste is slightly sticky though.

M - Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, little creamy, little sticky. Decent amount of alcohol though.

O - Overall this was a solid enough wheatwine but the main thing here is that Larceny bourbon barrel. Front and center throughout.

Serving Type: Bottle

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rudzud from Massachusetts, Feb 28, 2020
Photo of jlindros
4.43/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Shared with rudzud, 2019
Pours a light fizzy head, lower retention, light lacing, semi clear auburn brown with loads of suspended protein particulate

Nose brings loads of bourbon, sweet bourbon juice and barrel, light toasted oak with vanilla, sweet caramel and toffee, some nutty notes and dark fruits, brandy raisin like, big sweet candy malts, juicy reddish malt and bourbon candy

Taste brings rich malt, toffee, caramel, butterscotch, into rich candied raisin and dark fruits, little almond and nutty, fair alcohol but not a ton, med bitterness, big bourbon again, juicy barrel juice and vanilla buttery toasted oak, rich candy, candy malt, sticky sweet finish lingering, mild bitterness, alcohol, and sweet malt with bourbon

Mouth is fuller bod, rich, fair warming slight tingly alcohol, med low carb

Overall very nice, so much bourbon, barrel, sweet candy malt, caramel, toffee, dark fruits etc, just a bit boozy

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jlindros from Massachusetts, Feb 28, 2020
Photo of Harrison8
4.24/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a toffee brown with a murky consistency. Head is a finger at max of khaki foam. Aroma is toffee, raisins, caramel, molasses, honey and toasty, caramely, bready malts. It's thick and hearty with a chewy bourbon alcohol note. Flavor profile is toffee, molasses, caramel, raisins, fig, chocolate and roasty, toasty and caramely malts. Thick bourbon adds texture and heat to the back. Mouth feel is thick with a full, dense, silky texture. Overall, thick and chewy with some dense sugary qualities present. Despite the alcohol heat, it retains a sugary quality.

Served in a 15.5oz Spiegalau tulip from a 16.9oz bottle.

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Harrison8 from Missouri, Feb 23, 2020
Photo of DoctorZombies
3.57/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep amber, newish penny copper color; tons of floaties in an otherwise clear liquid; fast fizzy incomplete beige head that is gone in seconds leaving the thinnest of rings, no cap retention and no lace; heavy legs on swirl; bigger, chunkier debris on second pour. Nose is medicinal, fruity and boozy; whiskey retro nasal; hot exhale. Sweet malt, sugary plums, bitter herbal hops, boozy whiskey, fruity overripe pears, butterscotch and black licorice; second pour at 60 degrees is more of the same, yet mostly whiskey lite. Thin, slick feel; burn from alcohol on tip of tongue; light carbonation; lots of heat in the mouth; dry, oaky barrel finish. Overall, I thought this beer was a hot mess (I’m still drinking as I write this review); the floaties are a huge turn-off visually for me; the beverage is face flushingly phenolic; it’s like drinking sweetened, watered down Armanac; I like boozy, but this was not my cup of Wheatwine.

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Photo of smbslt
4.54/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2018 edition
Mahogany with no head after thirty seconds. A countable number of tiny carbonation bubbles methodically released from the bottom of the snifter lazily rise though the red highlights.
Smell cherries and alcohol
Taste candied fruit, licorice
Feel - the alcohol burn inside but also an herbal coolness on the tongue
Overall - Wish I had bought more than two bottles

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smbslt from Illinois, Feb 09, 2020
Photo of stevoj
4.11/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle from Hops & Bottles. Medium clear amber pour, almost flat. Aroma is boozy, bourbon, woody. Taste leads with some heat followed by heavy duty malt sweetness. Brown sugar and whiskey notes on the back end.

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stevoj from Idaho, Feb 05, 2020
Photo of vette2006c5r
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wheatwine pours a hazy, reddish color, with not much head. Rich aroma, lots of oak, clove, banana, chard malts, and hints of earth. Flavor is rich, sweet, boozy, filled with oak, clove, banana. Great feel. Overall, a very rich beer, nice to sip, great flavors, WOW.

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vette2006c5r from Minnesota, Feb 04, 2020
Photo of cardfan212
4.04/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

2019 bottle poured lightly chilled into my Schlitz goblet.

Look - Surprisingly lively for such a high percentage. Rich garnet body that's decently clear, and a bone white head that barely shows up long enough to register its existence. Leaves behind some powerful lacing though.

Smell - Vanilla, rich chocolate, earthy oaky tones. Like the Bourbon County Stout minus the coffee.

Taste - Incredibly sweet, almost like some kind of indescribable candy. Something about the taste makes me think "round," but I'm not sure what that means. A slight bit of soy sauce on the back end.

Feel - A very appealing thick creamy chewy body with very little carbonation. Not at all aggressive for a 15% beer.

Overall - It's ok, good even, but maybe the prestige of the brand and the large price tag led me to expect the best beer ever. I'd rather have the stout than this.

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cardfan212 from Minnesota, Jan 26, 2020
Photo of Wattie83
4.13/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber as advertised with a small ring around the top that falls off quickly. Smell is bourbon, caramel, vanilla, a bit of dark fruit, almost fruit cake-like. Taste is toffee, caramel, light bourbon, almost a bit of fig taste. It's sweet. It's full bodied, but smooth and creamy. Very light carbonation. Overall, it's a unique beer and quite tasty. I like sweet beers, but this is really sweet.

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Wattie83 from Pennsylvania, Jan 25, 2020
Photo of Flickib41
4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a toffee color, minimal head that quickly dissipates. Sweetness and toffee, some butterscotch and strong banana on the nose. Wow is this sweet. Butterscotch and banana taste. Definitely different than my normal go to beer. 5 minutes after my first sip still have that gritty sweetness in my mouth. Almost like a sweet dessert wine.

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Flickib41 from Indiana, Jan 08, 2020
Bourbon County Brand Wheatwine from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 387 ratings