Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout | Goose Island Beer Co.

1,182 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Bourbon County Brand Coffee StoutBourbon County Brand Coffee Stout

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

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2016 Release - Intelligentsia Fletcha Roja
2015 Release - Intelligentsia Los Delirios
2014 Release - Intelligentsia Zirikana Coffee Beans
2013 Release - Intelligentsia ‘Los Inmortales’
2012 Release - Intelligentsia La Tortuga Beans
2011 Release - Intelligentsia Anjilanaka Beans
2010 Release - Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso Beans

Added by BEERchitect on 04-22-2010

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 1,182 | Ratings: 6,982
Photo of Sammy
3.45/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark coloured body, with a little head. Looks thick. Aromas of coffee up front, only fainter bourbon. The taste was cold coffee with tons of milk and sugar up front. Something I do not drink. As I kept drinking samples, and with food, the coconut taste (and the lactic acid) more than the bourbon accumulated.I finished 300 ml. but 750 ml. was just too much.

 366 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
4.66/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

No head on a jet black body. Very simple appearance, not much to it. Aroma is dominated by coffee but like the base beer its a bit mild for what I want. Aroma has coffee, dark fruits, Smoked malts and little else. This basically smells like a freshly opened bag of dark roast. Flavor is much better and much more dynamic than the aroma. I am getting vanilla, lots of dark roast coffee of course, some milk chocolate, little booze for ABV and peat/roasted malts. The coffee competes with the bourbon making it slightly less apparent than the base beer which is too bad. The body seems lighter than the base beer to me having had them back to back but still full with light to moderate carbonation. Still though the feel can't get better. excellent combo of stout, coffee and bourbon. Doesn't get much better.

 807 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.31/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pour sampled at mrbubbler's tasting.

2011 vintage. Bottled 1/11/12.

Pours an opaque black/brown with a dark khaki head that fades to nothing. No lacing on this one. Smell is of dark roasted malt, coffee beans, cocoa, roasted peanuts, and bourbon. Taste is the same with an alcohol kick on the finish with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good barrel aged stout but I think regular BCBS is better.

 482 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

been waiting to crack this for awhile now and finally the time was right. the pour was lacking much carbonation, but thats to be expected from the barrel aging process. dark dark brown murky liquid, not as thick or syrupy as i was anticipating, and just a thin rim of moca lacing. the nose is wonderful, this beers best feature i thought. lots and lots of fresh coffee flavors, like just used espresso grounds, minus the acid. i really dont smell too much alcohol either surprisingly, just a lot of roasty malt with the coffee. the flavor isnt as coffee heavy as it smells, and i thought that was a bit of a let down, i was kind of hoping for a coffee bomb, and this is a lot more refined than that, well done. no acid at all, and plenty of vanilla and charcoal rubbed off from the barrel, it all really comes together. again, the alcohol is amazingly well hidden for such a big beer, even when its warm i dont feel too bad a burn for 14% abv. the coffee has no acidity at all, which is a delight as well. mouthfeel is a little thick without much carbonation at all. i dont remember the regular bourbon county being so flat, but that was from a tap and this was bottles, so who knows. still velvet mousse texture, really lovely and artfully done. this was a gem, equally delicious as the standard edition, but in a lot of ways i liked this better. worth every bit of the hype in my opinion!

 1,390 characters

Photo of Knapp85
4.76/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Reviewing this one again, It's fantastic. Having this in 2010 at a festival didn't go it the justice it needed. This is damn near flawless for an imperial coffee stout. It's awesome!

Got to try this beer at the ACBF 2010 and all I could say is holy crap! This beer is wonderful, it was just overly flavorful. The color was black with a pretty good head for something so strong. The beer was thick and complex as hell. The bourbon screams out in this brew, there are flavors of coffee, vanilla, and lots of booze. This beer reminded me a little bit of Sam Adams Triple Bock but much better. This beer deserves another try, if I ever see it again I'll surely pick up some.

 671 characters

Photo of metter98
4.49/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a thin mocha head that instantly faded away and left a thin ring of bubbles around the collar of the glass. As the beer warms up, it pours with a much larger head that also dissipates.
S: There is an intense aroma of bourbon and alcohol in the nose along with some hints of espresso beans.
T: Like the smell, the bourbon flavors really stand out in the overall taste, although unlike the regular Bourbon County Brand Stout these are balanced to some degree by the coffee and roasted malts. There are also some hints of oak.
M: It feels full-bodied and very viscous on the palate with a low amount of carbonation. There is warming from the alcohol in the finish.
D: This beer is definitely one that needs to be sipped given its strength; the intensity of the aromas and flavors will definitely wake you up. The addition of the coffee flavors makes the beer slightly more drinkable than Bourbon County Brand Stout.

 962 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
4.82/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2011 Release - Intelligentsia Anjilanaka Beans

In comparison to last year's version, the Anjilanaka provides a sweeter and nuttier component that takes off the more aggressive elements of roast and dryness. Succulent as ever and still with impressions of chocolate covered espresso beans, this world class beer follows up on the inaugural beer very well. Although I prefer the heightened sense of espresso roast and restrained sweetness of last year, this young follow-up represents the brand in regal fashion!

2010 Release - Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso Beans

With so much anticipation, and with the success of the standard Bourbon County Brand Stout, there is no let down from the hype. This coffee infused BCS reminds me of chocolate covered espresso beans and the bourbon ball candies that we love so much here in the Bluegrass. Imagine my favorite espresso and my favorite stout hooked up at a great beery coffee shop and conceived an angelic brew.

The beer opens with a dead-on motor oil viscosity and color. A delicate crème forms with a roast-stained hue. Where the retention eventually succumbes to the alcohol and weight, the legging became more apparent. The low carbonation and visual weight of the beer adds to the mystique of its appearance.

Extremely seductive aromas of decedent cocoa, deeply roasted espresso, and bourbon all stand out in obvious stature. Lighter notes of cherry esters, licorice, and actual molasses help to round out the background attributes. The beer's aroma isn't overly complex but they show so much power, boldness, and harmony- this is the chick in the bar that you will intently make a fool of yourself just to catch her eye.

Flavors build even more, springboarding off of the powerful cocoa, espresso, and bourbon. But the thickness of the beer along with the creamy maltytness give even greater smoothness and melded taste making this beer way more drinkable than it should be; kinda malty-sweet-chocolatey like Whoppers malted milk candies. As the beer warms and deep in the finish, the molasses, licorice, and cherry flavors become much more apparant. Where hops are restrained, bitterness is achieved with the smooth bitterness of the carefully brewed espresso beans.

As expected, the beer is as thick, chewy, heavy, full, and as round as any beer that has crept into my mouth. And with the ultimate velvety textures, it drank much like a thick chocolate milkshake. The beer remains so very deep, lasting well into the finish and aftertaste.

It's crazy to talk that the coffee bean aging could possibly improve the Bourbon County Stout. I'm not sure that the Coffee Release is better but it's certainly not any worse.

 2,681 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.34/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: I'm going to cut this some slack for the high ABV as it fails to produce much head atop the fudge brown liquid; what head is produced quickly fades to a ringlet and archipelago; legs but not much lace

Smell: More roasty chocolate than coffee, but the oaky bourbon and vanilla aromas dominate

Taste: Chocolate, bourbon, oak and vanilla dominate the tastebuds, up front and after the swallow, with only the vaguest hint of coffee in the finish; a lot of residual sugars in the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and viscous, with low carbonation

Drinkability: A good, make that very good, barrel-aged stout but to my palate, this beer has been over-hyped; perhaps it had more coffee character when first released but that has faded now; I love Intelligentsia's Black Cat roast and am disappointed that it has become lost in the shuffle with this beer

N.B. Checking this one out again in Nov 2015 (2014 bottling) and am finding a lot more coffee in the middle and through the finish; bumped up the scores considerably

Thanks, factory, for the chance to revisit

 1,070 characters

Photo of largadeer
4.55/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle, 2010 batch. Thanks for the bottles, Alex!

Viscous pitch black body, it looks almost oily when swirled, leaving caramel-colored legs clinging to the glass. It's topped by a small dark brown cap which quickly recedes to a thin collar.

The medley of coffee beans, chocolate malt and bourbon on the nose is incredible. There are undertones of vanilla, malt balls, milk chocolate and the faintest hint of teriyaki sauce.

Upon first sip the viscosity is immediately noticed, and then flavors of milk chocolate, coffee beans, and a perfectly balanced medley of vanilla, caramel and tannins from the bourbon barrel. The coffee character is restrained, plainly noticeable but at a moderate level that adds depth without overwhelming the base beer. Alcohol becomes apparent in the mid-palate, at a harmonious level with the rest of the flavors, lending a sharpness that balances the initial sweetness. Chewy, almost syrupy from front to back with a long finish of coffee, caramel and warming bourbon. This is outstanding, one of the most memorable beers I've had this year.

 1,080 characters

Photo of kojevergas
4.01/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Currently #2 in the Top 250 beer list. Expectations are accordant. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with classy red label and branded black pry-off pressure cap purchased at an Austin, TX bottle shop and side-poured into an Adelbert's stem-tulip at low altitude. Reviewed live alongside a 2013 BCBS. Reviewed as a "Stout Aged in Bourbon Barrels with Coffee Added." "13.4%" ABV - lower than 2013 BCBS, strangely. "Bottled 15BOV13."

Served at fridge temp and allowed to warm over the course of the review.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Half winger wide. Tan colour. Complexion isn't as shiny as regular BCBS. Recedes fully inside 15 seconds, leaving no lacing. Pretty disappointing, but excusable at this high an ABV.

BODY: Predictable opaque solid black. Not quite a jet black. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Appears aptly carbonated. I've seen far better appearances in beers of this style and this isn't unique or special looking, but I'm optimistic. There are no egregious flaws.

AROMA: The dominant rich coffee/java stands out - subtle roast, rich grounds, just a full lovely character with a kiss of bitter espresso.

The dark & chocolate malts are obscured by the bourbon tones; I get vanilla and oak, but unfortunately the oak isn't really toasty like in Backwoods Bastard. Not a wood-y beer either, which I like.

I crave roasted barley, but it's nowhere to be found. I'm also not getting much in the way of cream or caramel. The coconut featured so well in regular 2013 BCBS is also absent.

Molasses. Light faint char and burnt barrel. A hint of marshmallow.

It's a pleasant inviting aroma suggestive of a sticky and sweet flavour profile. Merely moderate in strength, it's not the overbearing booze-bomb you might expect at this high an ABV.

TEXTURE: Smooth and wet. I'd prefer more coarseness and dryness, which would be best accomplished with more roasted barley. It's a biteen syrupy and sticky, but is less so than regular 2013 BCBS. It has a kiss of harshness on the back end, which actually works well with the burnt roast of the coffee beans. Aptly carbonated for a cellar-worthy stout. Plenty of heft and weight here, which backs the diverse flavour profile well. Full-bodied and understandably thick. Fairly soft, actually. Approachable for a high-ABV sipper. Overall presence on the palate is very good. This texture complements the taste well.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, biting, or astringent.

TASTE: The coffee notes stand out at the expense of the coconut featured in regular 2013 BCBS. Not as roasty (in terms of both coffee and barley) as I'd hoped for, but the coffee does bring a nice full java character to the mix, with a kiss of bitter espresso in there too. Far from the best coffee character I've experienced in an imperial stout, but it's pretty well executed.

The core is what you'd expect if you've had 2013 BCBS - molasses, dark malts, chocolate malts, maybe some caramel. There's also a slight hint of anise/fennel, which works surprisingly well here, if only because it's reticent. Marshmallow, sure.

I can see where some might pick up on a narrow fruit profile - perhaps cherry or even grape - particularly in the late second act and on the finish, but it's pretty tame.

The coconut, char, and burnt character get buried here.

Then there's the bourbon barrel. Seamlessly integrated vanilla and oak tones really set off the notes of the base beer. It never veers into the spicy territory of regular whisky, and never comes off boozy or hot.

I've had richer imperial stouts, but ultimately the balance and subtlety here is damned impressive. It's not the most complex or intricate stout on the market, but boy does it layer its notes well. I'd almost say it's a gestalt flavour profile, but then I remember that it could use more roasted barley.

Flavour depth could definitely be better. This is a nitpick, but I feel like the 2013 vintages just don't have the depth or complexity of past vintages. Above average flavour duration and intensity.

Overall, I really like it.

FINAL THOUGHTS: It's not the best coffee imperial stout out there, nor is it the best barrel aged imperial stout out there, and I doubt the base is all that great. But all of the minor notes and little touches combine to create an incredibly satisfying beer that every discerning drinker should try. I'd absolutely pick it up again, and I can see why it has its #2 ranking, but it's far from amongst the best 10 beers I've ever had. Certainly better than regular 2013 BCBS, but not impeccable. This gets me extremely excited to try the other variants. This is the best work I've seen from Goose Island aside from 2009 and 2012 BCBS, and I'm glad I got my paws on 2 bottles this year. Not real drinkable; she's a sipper alright.


03.12.15: Brief notes for a bottle with a few months of age:

Heavy on coffee and roastiness. Dark malts. Chocolate malts. Great balance.

Highly drinkable and tasty even aged.


 4,974 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.74/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sipping this magical concoction tonight... Black Cat espresso is probably my all time favorite coffee, and BCS is one of my all-time favorite stouts. I approve of this marriage of two intense and fantastic beverages.

Initial pour into a couple Duvel tulips yields a finger of sturdy mocha foam, leaving random spotty lacing around the edges. Black with a mahogany ring at the edge when held up to the light. Foam breaks, leaving a bare skim, then a thin ring at the edge. Considering the high abv, this is expected.

Huge dark chocolate and espresso nose, with brown sugar and cinnamon trailing in the finish. Smoothed out with no sharpness from the bourbon, the oak and vanilla are there though.

Sticky on the lips, rich with deep flavors. Bittersweet chocolate, vanilla, coffee, coconut, smooth and sweet, luscious. Amazingly silky and rich. Again, the rough edges of fresh BCS have been sanded down, leaving a streamlined, supple, coffee-infused incarnation. Somewhat more approachable for that reason.

Overall a surprise hit variation of BCS, tailored for lovers of coffee, bourbon, and stouts....

2011: Anjilanaka... wow, they topped the subtlety of the first batch with a straight up toasted marshmallow/melted dark chocolate/deep roasty coffee BOMB. Rich as all hell, sticky and decadent. Awe inspiring...

 1,320 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.13/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a medium size dark brown foamy head with average retention and some lacing. Aroma of coffee, light vanilla notes from the bourbon and some peppery notes which don’t necessarily fit the style. Taste is mix between some astringent coffee notes with some vanilla and coffee a strange peppery feeling at the end. Body is quite full with nice creamy texture and good carbonation with no apparent alcohol. Good though definitely a notch below the other GI stout treatments.

 515 characters

Photo of oline73
4.72/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours jet black with a dark tan head that goes away completely almost as soon as it is poured.

Smell: Sweet and roasty with some coffee and hot bourbon.

Taste: Starts with a very mild sweetness which yields to coffee and smooth bourbon. The beer is a bit hot in the nose at the end from the bourbon and the coffee is a bit nutty.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and on the thicker side. The carbonation is very mild, which seems appropriate.

Drinkability: This one is very well balanced. The bourbon dominates, but the other flavors come out well. Love it!

 595 characters

Photo of zeff80
4.79/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a thin tan head of foam. The foam left behind intricate patches of lace down the glass.

S - It smelled of chocolate, oak, bourbon and vanilla. There are notes of rich, dark coffee but it not nearly as strong as I expected from a "coffee stout".

T - The roasty, espresso-like coffee flavor came through stronger than its aroma. Also, it had delicious chocolate and toffee flavors with a strong yet not overpowering bourbon presence.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A big beer with a medium body. The alcohol heat is present but not over the top.

D - Goose Island did a really amazing job on this one. The bourbon is not too much, nor is the coffee. It is just a really delicious imperial stout with crazy good flavors.

 772 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.4/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shared with bmanning, Azurelimits, amyliz4, and hhanson at a recent tasting.

A: Pours much like the regular Bourbon County Stout--rich black and quite oily with a nice, thick mocha head.

S: Intense chocolate mocha espresso with quite a bit of bourbon coming through as well. Pretty strong vanilla presence along with roasted malt, oak, and molasses.

T: The bourbon comes out a bit more, mixing with loads of dark chocolate and espresso. Some roasted malt and residual sweetness, but mostly the interplay between the bourbon, chocolate, and coffee.

M: Heavy and viscous. The initial sip is quite a bit of alcohol heat, but the other flavors begin to take over as it warms toward room temperature.

D: This is one heavy, intense brew. A bomber between 5 people was more than enough. Very tasty, although I imagine it'd be hard to finish even a 12oz. bottle alone.

 866 characters

Photo of mothman
4.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into over sized brandy snifter.

Pours a 1/2 finger of tan head. Fades to a thick ring. Leaves some splattered lace. Color is a pitch black. Pretty solid.

Aroma: Huge roasted malt and bourbon flavors up front. Sweet vanilla and caramel. Rich espresso and coffee flavors. Awesome oak flavors. Some chocolate as well. Reminds me a lot of KBS. This is amazing.

Taste: Sweet vanilla and bourbon up front. Nice oak flavors. Rich espresso and coffee. The caramel and chocolate flavors are more subtle but add a nice layer to this beer. This beer reminds me so much of kbs. I would like to do a side by side.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, warming, and a bit creamy. Pretty full bodied, but not that thick and chewy. Medium amount of carbonation. Ends warm, bourbony, and slightly dry.

Overall, this is a solid beer and I am glad I have access to it. It reminds me so much of kbs. Doing a side by side would be awesome. This beer is very drinkable and 11 oz is not enough for me. This beer is legit. A must try.

 1,004 characters

Photo of superspak
4.32/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2100th review! 12 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 11/15/2013. Pours dense pitch black color with a small fairly dense dark tan head with decent retention, that reduces to a ring of lace that lingers. Minimal lacing on the glass. Aromas of huge dark chocolate, roasted coffee, cocoa, roasted malt, caramel, toast, vanilla, toffee, bourbon, oak, clove, light char, and roast/oak earthiness. Incredible aromas with fantastic balance and complexity of dark/roasted malt, coffee, and bourbon barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of huge dark chocolate, roasted coffee, cocoa, toast, roasted malt, caramel, vanilla, toffee, oak, clove, bourbon, light char, and roast/oak earthiness. Lingering notes of dark chocolate, coffee, cocoa, toast, roasted malt, caramel, vanilla, toffee, oak, clove, bourbon, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity of dark/roasted malt, coffee, and bourbon barrel flavors; with a great malt/barrel flavor balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and full bodied; with a very creamy and slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic BA imperial coffee stout. All around awesome complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt, coffee, and bourbon barrel flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

 1,418 characters

Photo of oberon
4.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Great to get my paws on a few bottles of this gem.Poured into a nifet jet black with a minimal mocha colored head.A mix of vanilla,dark roast coffee,dark sweet choclate,and molasses,the mixing of the boubon barrel age and coffee are great together.Full oily mouthfeel,it coats and slides down way to easy.Flavors are sweetish upfront with vanilla,dark fruit,and dark chocolate flavors,the heavy roast coffee flavors and oak really balance this beer out alot and make it great.Its a sipper but its one to savor,this is an amazing beer worthy of its high status.

 560 characters

Photo of jlindros
4.67/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got to try this at ACBF and damn was it good! I finally got the nerve to crack one of my two bottles.

A pour as dark as the crude in the gulf comes sliding out of the mouth of the bottle. A slow pour as it comes out the consistency of molasses. A light fizzy dark head forms, but seems to get drunk before it can even enjoy the beer and fades away, but not before it creates some interesting swirls in the glass, like a drunk frat boy trying to walk home. Lacing?! No lacing necessary and the beer itself forms a thick syrupy layer on the glass, so thick that legs don't even form. It just sticks there and the entire round splash slowly recedes down the sides. It's so dark that when I splash it on the side to see the non-existent leg, it stains the glass a dark brown. I can still see the splashes a minute later. I still would have liked a bit more head and it would have put the appearance to a 4.5.

Ah the aromas coming from this make my nostrils dance in a whimsical fashion. First comes the roasted malts, lots of nice roasted aromas, fresh roasted coffee, earthy roasty coffee beans blended with a medium roast fruity coffee. The chocolate speaks notes of its own, with hints of dark chocolate, bakers chocolate, light cocoa nibs even. This is the kind of chocolate you would see in a swiss chocolate store on the top shelf that makes you blush as it dissolves in your mouth. Some light vanilla and caramel add a nice little touch to it, bringing more of that creamy delicious dark aromas out. Then of course there is the bourbon and oak. It's not too predominant, perhaps a little more in the background than KBS, but definitely making it's own story well known. A nice bourbony aroma with hints of charred oak, and caramelized barrel. I get a hint of a boozy aroma too, but nothing near the 13% it actually brings.

ANd of course, the taste. The thick wave gushes over my tongue, creating a barrier of thick luscious beer over the pours of my tongue. I won't be able to taste anything else for hours now as it fills every taste bud and pour in my mouth. Very thick and rich, again loaded with malts. Initially comes the coffee and roasted malts again. Some nice dark roasted barley, with fresh roasted coffee beans, and again blended with a medium fruity brewed coffee as well. Both lighter than I expected, but plenty to go around. Behind that comes plenty of chocolate as well. Again this comes right out with rich cocoa nibs, some baker's chocolate, a little bit of a dark chocolate with a smooth rich creamy center. It has a chocolate flavor that reminds me a lot of those Lindt Chocolate balls. Some sweet syrupy flavors reach the outer flavor eventually, bringing a little caramel, some molasses and even a little vanilla. WIth all the roasted malts and dark malts I was expecting a lot more minerality and salty flavors, but there are none to be found. This is as smooth as a baby nun's butt. There is a slight bitterness, a light earthy and mild hop with some from the bitterness coming from the roast, but not much bitterness at all. It also doesn't bring a lot of boozy taste either, it definitely has some, and while I'm leaving it to fester on my tongue for a few minutes writing this review, it starts to tingle some, but nothing like the 13% it actually packs. It also has a faint herbal and grassy hop flavor I believe, which also gives it a slight fluffy feel and taste. It finishes with a long lingering sticky taste, lots more syrupy flavors that never leave since they coated my mouth, and I'm sure stained it like it did to the glass. A long lingering chocolate too, which definitely takes the front ground now over the coffee and roast and other sweet things.

The mouth is nice and thick, super rich and syrupy, luscious, with a decent carbonation for the style. It makes me realize that that song "Chocolate Rain" was actually about.

The drinkability is surprisingly well for the what the beer actually is. It drinks more like a 9% beer not 13%, and despite that it coats the mouth it goes down smooth and only leaves very nice flavors in the mouth. The other thing that helped a lot was the minerality, or lack thereof. In a beer of this darkness and caliber I would have expected the minerality and salty briny flavors to run rampant, but this drinks so smooth without even a hint of that flavor.

Ah so delicious, def one of my fav beers now. Just wish I could have gotten more of it. I'll sit on my last bottle for a while now to let it develop for "up to 5 years" as the bottle even states. I'll also be enjoying this one all night, even after it takes me an hour to drink myself (not because of poor drinkability but because I'm just enjoying it too much and want to savor it), but also because it'll be attached to my tongue all night.

 4,783 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Twelve ounce capped bottle, dated November 15, 2013.

A: Pours black with faint reddish highlights in the edges of the glass. Half-inch thick dark mocha head which fades to the rim leaving spots of lace.

N: Immensely sweet creamed roasted coffee, bourbon bon bons, oaky wood, vanilla, marshmallow, dark chocolate, dark fruits, floral, molasses. Wow.

T: Complex and well balanced. Sweet roasted coffee, bourbon, vanilla, caramel, dark chocolate, boozy.

M: Full body and semi-moderate carbonation. Smooth, rich, creamy, thick, oily, syrupy. Finishes with a slightly astringent bitter boozy coffee. Nearly perfect.

O: Huge fan. Well done. Want more. #500.

 656 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.17/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 2012 bottle.

Wonderful aroma is both interesting and appealing.

Drinks like an imperial milk stout with coffee. A tad too sweet in the finish.

 160 characters

Photo of Kegatron
4.82/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle into a snifter. 2010 Edition.

Pours a dense black in the glass (but looks like a much murkier brown coming out of the bottle), topped with a thick finger of foamy burnt mocha colored head, which is rocking that angry reddish hue to it that you normally find in the most bad of the bad ass Stouts out there. This retains with some robust bunching around the edges, throwing a rich cascade of spotty froth and sticky brown oils all along the sides of the glass. The aroma is large and in CHARGE but still smooth as silk in the nose for the most part. The bourbon is strong, with a warming burnt mix of molasses and char character being present, but it is cut somewhat by the surprising aggressiveness (considering this has already been aged quite a bit) of that Black Cat Espresso. Vanilla and chocolate roast is sticky and thick behind the bourbon and coffee, adding some needed ease to this, as there is some sharp warmth from both the barrel and ABV but it fortunately never becomes overbearing at any point.

The taste is dark and rich on the palate, with a thick sweet base of chocolate, toffee, and vanilla, which is then punctuated by that lush roasted coffee character and some earthy and herbal feeling hops in the rear of the profile. The bourbon comes out across the back, with a flush of sticky and burnt warmth that has a touch of wood on the edges of it. The finish is fairly intense, with a good bit of boozy heat and parching tannic dryness making sure that you aren't going to forget each sip anytime soon. The mouthfeel feels just beyond full bodied at times, with a thick and chewy presence that blows up in the mouth after each sip. Fortunately, there's a certain amount of slickness and creaminess to the body that keeps this moving surprisingly well, despite the immense size and boozy feel from the barrel that is at work here. Much like the regular BCS, the bourbon adds most of the heat to the flavor and feel. Luckily, not so much from the ABV, which is pretty impressive for a beer of this magnitude.

Could this be the ultimate dessert beer? You've got yourself some chocolate soufflé, a shot of espresso, and a little nip of bourbon all rolled into one. The only thing missing is a fine Montecristo to puff on afterwards. My only issue with this, and it's the same one I have with the regular BCS, is that the bourbon is still a little to hot right now but put a little age on this sucker and it's going to be sublime in a couple of years. This is just the definition of a decadent beer.

 2,532 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.67/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

2013 release poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a very thin light brown head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains black coffee and roasted malts, which is all that’s needed for this beer.

T: The taste starts out with a huge black coffee flavor that is followed by a rich roasted malt character. There’s just enough sweetness and hops to create a very good balance for such a big stout. The after-taste is bitter-sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: Very tasty, goes down dangerously easy, not too filling, very strong kick, excellent representation of style, this is definitely one of the best coffee beers I’ve ever had.

 786 characters

Photo of Rifugium
4.27/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First had: bottle bought from some guy
2010 vintage consumed in March 2012.

Poured into a Trappistes Rochefort chalice (just happened to be my glass of choice for the evening). Oily dark brown-black, small mocha head that dissipated mostly and settled as a thin wispy layer of bubbles; no real lacing, but it did leave an oily film on the glass. I wanted to drink this beer as soon as I got it for fear that the coffee had faded since had mostly, but there were still some subtle remnants. Aroma was much like the regular BCBS, bourbon, rich dark malts, semi-sweet chocolate, coffee pretty much lost in the mix. Taste was bourbon heavy up front, alcohol-soaked oak, notes of vanilla, brown sugar, hazelnut, very light coffee roastiness detectable, but surely not as heavy as when the beer was first bottled, I'd imagine. I actually got more coffee in the regular BCBS. Smooth and silky mouthfeel, not quite full bodied, and actually seemed to thin out a bit when it warmed, but that might have just been me getting numb from the booze. Overall very good.

'12 vintage consumed fresh.
So now that I've had this fresh, I think the coffee is actually way too intense. If you REALLY like your coffee, then you'll like this. But for me, it's just too much. I'd like to drink it when it's at a delicate balance between fresh and 2 years old. In the end, I prefer regular BCBS: it's smoother and the bourbon is more dominant. But as this is specifically the coffee version, it obviously pulls off what it set out to accomplish.

For me, personally, I think this beer hits its sweet spot when it's about 5-7 months old (that is, after it has hit the shelves)...just enough time for the coffee to mellow out, but not fade away.

 1,730 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
4.61/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 11/12/12

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color with a viscosity like motor oil, very light amounts of visible carbonation, and some very dark brown highlights when held up to the light. The beer has a finger tall slightly fizzy mocha head that quickly reduces to a medium sized patch of very thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Strong aromas of bourbon and vanilla with some more moderate aromas of darkly roasted coffee bean and light aromas of roasted dark malts. Just a touch of chocolate and alcohol.

T: Light to moderate amounts of roasted dark malts with moderate to strong flavors of coffee and some fairly strong notes of bourbon + vanilla from the barrel-aging. Some very subtle notes of milk chocolate are also present. As the beer warms up, there are stronger amounts of coffee and some light notes of oak. Light amounts of bitterness which fade fairly quickly.

M: Full bodied with light amounts of carbonation. Slick with some light amounts of alcohol warming in the finish.

O: This beer is extremely enjoyable but should definitely be thought of as a big beer - intense flavors, aromas, and high ABV make this a beer best enjoyed by slowly sipping throughout the evening. The coffee addition really makes this beer great, even better than BCBS - which is quite an accomplishment.

 1,378 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
4.58 out of 5 based on 6,982 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.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.