Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout | Goose Island Beer Co.

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Bourbon County Brand Coffee StoutBourbon County Brand Coffee Stout
7,339 Ratings
Bourbon County Brand Coffee StoutBourbon County Brand Coffee Stout

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

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2017 Release - Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso Beans
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

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,339 |  Reviews: 1,224
Photo of feloniousmonk
3.97/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout.

At last you are mine, my pretty!

And you are pretty black! Deepest stygian hue, neath a crisp, cocoa head, starts slim, but stays.

Aromatics: amazing. Mix of whiskey and coffee flow freely from the glass, ....going in close, now...dark chocolate and molasses, dark rum, a bit of brandy, hint of vanilla, coated in bourbon, drizzled with espresso. Heaven.

Drinking it...warming, boozy, medium-bodied, rich and luxurious. Wonderful mix of flavors, dark and delicious, earthy, sweetness, rum and molasses, swirl of espresso, bourbon burbling beneath. Little bit of alcohol burn, in here, too.

Long finish, full flowering flavor, ...but not the end all/ be all it's been hyped as. Sorry. There's too much whiskey, not enough coffee, and not enough stout.
I like it, it's nice, but how did the hype machine go so crazy on this? I guess, I'm great, ooo, ooo-ooo...

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Photo of bbeane
4.12/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 edition... Aquirred in a trade from HoppyMcGee. Thanks Hoppy!!

A- Poured into a DFH snifter... pours black with absolutely no light coming through when held up to the ceiling. Weak almost non existent head, even after some swirls of the snifter

S- Huge bourbon aroma with some hints of sweet malt and earthy oak. Not getting much coffee smells out of it though

T- Again, huge presence of bourbon with some dark fruit afternotes. Still not much in the coffee department, pretty boozy but tasty for sure

D- An amazing beer, but honestly think there's a fair amount of others that rank up with this... Would definitely drink more if it was more readily available though. And be careful, this one will definitely catch up with you after a bottle...

M- Nice heavy body with very little carbonation

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Photo of MrMcGibblets
4.27/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: black, nice persistent light brown head and lacing.
S: big whisky/bourbon dominates. then coffee with some dark chocolate and fruit underneath.
T: medium to full dark malt sweetness washed out by bourbon. alcohol still really making it's presence felt, still quite hot. long complex finish.
M: well-carbonated, has a bit of frothiness to it rather than a big slickness i'd expect in a ba ris.
D: this seems like it will definitely improve with age, the bourbon and alcohol should subside allowing the other flavors to come through more.

had this again side by side with the regular, vanilla, and rare BCS, and this one stood out as the best. it had the most head, a more vanilla-ey and softer (less boozy) aroma, and best mouthfeel (more co2) of the bunch.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.47/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of hoppymcgee served in my Old Stock snifter. Pours one shade shy of black with no head, just a thin band and some small dollops of lacing dispersed across the surface. Some lacing, but weak legs. Nose reveals booze, molasses and brown sugar - it just smells like a sweet malt bomb. Taste expresses booze, bourbon, vanilla and coffee notes. As the brew warms, the coffee character becomes more suggestive of coffee grounds. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with a carbonation that starts out as being just short of lively, but dissipates nicely, resulting in a pleasant, silky mouthfeel. This is a truly exceptional beer. Tasty and quite drinkable with a well-hidden abv. The coffee element really lends itself nicely to this beer and has really piqued my interest about the other variations to the Bourbon County base.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.64/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottled on date of 3/25/2010.

Pours a dark black color with hardly any head and no lacing, appears slightly thick but doesn't leave any legs on the glass, can see some reddish/brown tints along the edges when held up to the light.

Smell is overwhelmingly bourbon with a good strong coffee presence, slight chocolate presence but certainly not a key player in the aroma.

Taste is quite hot, not surprising considering it's from Goose Island, their regular BCS even after a few years of age tends to still be hot, the dark roasted malt comes through in the taste more than it did in the aroma, the bourbon is rather strong but the coffee helps to soothe it a bit by adding some bitterness on the tongue.

Says on the bottle that it will continue to develop for 5 years, I'd recommend sticking to that advise because in 5 years it will be much better. I'd say it took me about 4 hours to drink the entire bottle because this beer is such a sipper, probably broke my previous record from Darkness.

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Photo of andrewinski1
4.05/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Bendurgin for providing this "tick!" Poured into my chalice. Pitch black, with a bit of tan head that all but disappears.

Smells like slightly chocolatey bourbon. A hint of bitter char flavor is detected from the coffee.

The taste is slightly sweet and boozy up front. The sweetness lasts until the finish as well. The coffee flavor is nicely balanced and complements the sweet malts nicely. A hint of vanilla is also noticed as I continue sipping.

This is a big, thick stout; making it nice for sipping. Not much carbonation and the mouthfeel isn't as creamy as I'd like. Still good body though.

Decent drinkability for this monster stout. Glad to have tried it.

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Photo of Bendurgin
4.24/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this in an EXTRA BOX thanks to the incredibly generous Translucent. Poured into a tulip. The beer is black, with very thin layer of head that dissipates into thin lacing. This however simply looks rich. Smell that bourbon! The nose is right up front with a big bourbon, hints of caramel and vanilla and a rich aroma of bitter espresso. The smell is very balanced, the bourbon and the coffee have really compliment one another, still not overpowering anything and letting other aromas shine through. The taste follows the smell wonderfully, starts nicely with bourbon and finishes with a nice bitter coffee flavor. Dark malts, caramel, oak and vanilla entwine themselves in the mix. The mouthfeel is heavy and chewy with a silky texture and subtle carbonation. A bit of a sipper, but certainly something I would enjoy again. I think I like this better than the regular version.

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Photo of joepais
4.87/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Grittymug for sharing this want with me.
We poured the bomber into large snifters and were greeted with a finger worth of tan head that settled down quickly to a wisp of film. However with a swirl of the glass it would easily come back. The body was a typical black stout but that was all that was typical of this stout.

The first think that was really pronounced to me was the great coffee aromas. It was better than any Starbucks coffee I had. We all know coffee is a dominate aroma to overcome especially this one but I did get a slight vanilla note there as well.

The flavors were out of this world, by far the best coffee stout I ever have experienced to date. I think this one will set the bar. I came of like a good French vanilla roast. With the hint of Madagascar vanilla to it. The alcohol was well hidden but felt after. The body of the brew was thick and full a very light carbonation so it even felt like a good coffee only colder than I drink.

This I a great brew the one snifter was plenty for me but I will say I wanted more. A great stout but I even enjoy the bourbon one Goose Island produces so it wasn't a hard sell for me.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.8/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks goes out to spycow for this brew.

22oz. Bomber

Poured into a chalice a very nice black color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tan head, which leaves some nice oil slicks and some minimal sticky lacing. The nose is malty, with lots of chocolate, toffee, coffee notes, vanilla, bourbon. The taste is awesome, malty, sweet, lot's of dark stuff, nice bourbon note. Full Body, a very complex brew. Very Drinkable, this is an exceptional brew, highly recommended.

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Photo of ptykozoon
4.4/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25 Shades of brown and red when sought out. Deep caramel head, decent lacing and retention.

Smells of rich chocolate syrup, molasses, coffee and a strong alcohol presence reminiscent of bourbon. Complex.

First sip, knew this was top tier. Luscious coffee! Rich, bitter coffee, vanilla and cocoa, bourbon galore. What Angel's Share Coffee would be. Highly delicious.

Viscous yet vicious. Strong alcohol presence, could use aging. Guessing around 13-14% and was right. Beer is hot. Finishing an entire bottle quite a manly task.

This is a highly delicious, deep and complex beer.

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Photo of hophead247
4.8/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This poured a Nice black velvet color with a tan head. Aroma was lots of espresso coffee beans, some light dark chocolate notes, some some bourbon and alcohol notes. Flavor was creamy espresso with some vanilla and dark chocolate mixed in. Mouthfeel was almost like a milk shake, very creamy but not too cloying either. Awesome experience....

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Photo of TCHopCraver
4.17/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes on 10/3/10. Thanks you, TCGoalie, for procuring this highly thought of beer for me.

A: I poured a little more than half of a bomber into my giant snifter, which results in a two finger, dark brown, mocha head. The body is black with a mocha twinge. The head sizzles off quickly and leaves a spotty haze on top with a dark khaki ring around the glass. It appears to be pretty heavily carbonated judging by the tumult of hazy bubbles on the top of the beer. A vigorous swirl of the glass leaves a viscous film on the the snifter, but no lacing.

S: A huge, heavy aroma of bourbon, dark chocolate, molasses, anise, hearty rye bread, and, yes, rather acidic coffee is alive within this beer. Some background smells of brown sugar, caraway, toffee, and charred marshmallow are also evident to my nose.

T: The sweeter edge of bourbon is the dominant taste on my palate at first and pairs with distinct molasses, brown sugar, and anise flavors. Gradually the more bitter flavors of dark chocolate and espresso wash away some of the sweetness, but in the end, I would say that the sweeter flavors (especially the anise and bourbon) win the day. I think I would prefer a little more impactful coffee flavor from a coffee stout. Perhaps that has worn off a bit with the 6 plus months of age that this bottle has on it.

M: The feel is very full bodied and coating on my palate. The bourbon presence really stings the sides of my mouth, while the bitter flavors sit on the flat of my tongue and percolate.

D: This is a big, bad mofo that I will certainly enjoy tasting again. However, I do think the sweeter flavors of the beer overpower the bitterness a bit too much. I will be quite interested to see how more age affects the taste.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.67/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a thick oily black with a large tan cream head.

Smell of strong booziness of whiskey and dark malt, tobacco and roasted malts mixed with sugar.

Taste of coffee, boozy whiskey of course (thats why they put it in there right?) vanilla, roasted caramel, thick syrupy sugar and malt flavors intermix to create a thick viscous flavored RIS. All said, this is what RIS's are supposed to be built like, I just prefer a slightly less boozy presentation. At 13%, the booze is going to rear its head, unfortunately its just not my style.

Drinkability went down greatly in my book due to the booze flavor factor and I found the carbonation slightly disappointing in that it was relatively flat. Luckily, I do not think that I need to try the vanilla BCS , the Coffee BCS, and whatever other BCS comes out after I post this. Its not a bad beer at all, just not my favorite RIS.

I would recommend only opening one of these when another person is around.

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Photo of Anthony1
4.87/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

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

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Photo of Bubba83
4.75/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Huge shoutout to Kegatron for graciously sending me a bottle. I decided to enjoy it tonight, on my Birthday, for a special treat.

Presented in a snifter at 50 degrees. Midnight black body topped by a one finger width dark tan creamy looking head. Dissipates down into a ring fairly quick, but that ring retains well. Some lacing here, but it's of the dissapearing variety, likely due to the strength of the beer. Looks thick and it's begging me to take a sip.

The smell is really good and reminds me very much of the original BCS. Pretty huge bourbon aroma here, massive amounts of vanilla, char, tobacco leaf, chocolate, yogurt covered raisins and alcoholic cherry. Slight hints of roast and coffee manage to squeak through, but ideally I'd like them to be a little more present for a perfect score. Still, quite huge and impressive.

First flavor is huge vanilla, of the creamy variety, sort of like rich vanilla ice cream. Beyond that, dark caramel hits hard and intermingles with chocolate covered raisins, tobacco, and cherries. Lingering in the pre-swallow phase is some definite coffee and roast. More of it than in the smell. A little bit of spice from the alcohol or maybe the hops rounds things off. What a beer.

Can't improve the mouthfeel. Perfect. Big and chewy, creamy, yet slick at the same time. Completely coats the mouth and persists long after a swallow. Perfect light carbonation that stimulates it just enough. Head texture is as fine as the creamy head of an espresso shot.

Drinkability... Well, this is about as subjective a category you can get when it comes to judging a beer like this. It's gigantic, ridiculously rich, has tons of bourbon flavor, high in alcohol, and you can taste the alcohol. In that regard, it can be somewhat of a challenge to drink quickly, but then that's not the point. The point is to enjoy this beer slowly over the course of an hour or two, lingering and appreciating every sip. In that regard, it makes perfect sense and has very good drinkability. Although, I would suggest finding a special friend when you crack yours. I have a feeling I am going to be quite inebriated by the time this bottle is empty.

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Photo of hoppymcgee
4/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's exactly 6 months after the bottling date of 3/26/10 so I thought it was a great time to review this beer. Poured from a 22oz. bomber into a Trois Pistoles goblet.

A: Dark brown/black with a nice swirly dark tan head that subsides into a ring on the side of the glass.

S: Bourbon (and lots of it), vanilla, smoke, oak, and swiss chocolate.

T: The coffee has worn off a little bit, but is still present and completely necessary as it provides the bitterness this beer needs. The flavors have nicely mingled together - bourbon, maple, chocolate - and in my opinion is much better tasting than when I had it fresh.

M: No problems with the carbonation holding up thus far. A nice creamy texture adds to the beer and, again, is completely necessary to offset the sweetness of this beer.

D: The sweetness gets at me more than the booziness does.

Overall, cool to have tried this a half year later to the day, and am excited to see how this beer develops (for 5 years in the bottle according to GI).

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.7/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick black with light brown, small head. Scent is very sweet chocolate and candy molasses. Also hints of bourbon, but not as much as regular BCBS. Bit of coffee as well too. Not as much as expected though. Taste is chocolate and sweet boubon followed by coffee. Very well balanced. Mouthfeel is nice and thick with good drinkability.

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Photo of bditty187
4.7/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours black; a deep rich color; it was impenetrable by light. The body alone looks the part; very menacing. Only a smallish beige head formed on a harder than normal pour but that should be expected considering the barrel aging and high ABV. No subsequent lacing at all (and my glass was clean), however a small ring of foam did last the entire consumption. The appearance is exactly what one would expect. It's eye-candy for beer geeks.

I am utterly amazed that so much coffee aroma shines through in the nose. BC Stout is a beast of a beer. I regularly tell customers that it is the most robust beer available in Nebraska (on a regular basis). I digress... once I start deconstructing the nose oak, bourbon, vanilla, cherries, chocolate, licorice and a note of brandy soaked raisins join the espresso party. I love the cherry aroma in the bouquet; it gives the nose some extra depth and complexity. Somehow, the bourbon is secondary to the coffee... if not secondary it is extremely well-balanced for a 13% ABV imperial stout (that is bourbon barrel aged with coffee). I am so impressed with the complexity of the nose. Robust but not hot, complex but every note sings clearly. It might not be the "best" smelling beer I have ever stuck under my beak but it sure was memorable.

The palate shows as much coffee as the nose did which is a fantastic accomplishment. Again, BC Stout is bourbon-flavor heavy, it is a very robust beer that can quickly overwhelm the palate... in a good way. The addition of coffee mellows the flavors, by comparison, and adds complexity and depth. Bourbon, coffee (espresso), chocolate and cherries provide the bulk of the characteristics. The palate is warm and boozy, clearly this beer is still young but I don't find it raw. The finish flashes "Imperial Stout" maltiness with a wonderful blast of espresso and cherry. I am so impressed with the absolute robustness of the flavors and yet I am not being overwhelmed. Not to overstate this beer but for what it is, for how strong it is, for how robust and raw it is... I must say, this beer is amazingly drinkable.

Slightly oily mouthfeel (which is typical of BC Stout); full in body, low carbonation; the mouthfeel is ideal for this beer. Sip & savor is the name of the game.

As the beer warms the nose livens up, gets boozier, hotter... rawer... more complex even (is that possible?). As does the palate... rich, raw but so damn fun to drink. This beer is great right now but it can only get better with age. Stored properly I am betting this beer has 5 or 7 years easy of maturity before it peaks. There were high expectations about this beer and they were met in spades. Goose Island tinkered with BC Stout and lived to tell about it. This beer is an absolute must try. Get a friend because it is 22 ounces of one BIG beer. Highly recommended.

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Photo of slayer3604
4.59/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours a dense two finger head thats brownish in hue, but dissipates quickly. Body is pitch back and only slightly transparent.

S-THIS is where BCBCS shines through. Waves of oak, booze, coffee and chocolate rip through your nose and keep coming even after you take your face away from this wonder of the world.

T-Creamy, slightly caramelly with a bunch of chocolate and a rich coffee tang in the finish.

M-Creamy, full bodied, and neutral in no way!

D-Way more so than its BCS counterpart. My friends and I were drinking this in a dark room so we didn't see its alcohol content until we checked it out under a light. 13%?!?!?! WOW!

It had a lot less soy sauce than BCS, was a little less cloying and definitely not HOT at all. Very smooth for its weight.

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Photo of BieresDesMoines
4.54/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a small head and some lace. The aroma couldn't be more striking, it's like the aroma you get when you walk into a coffee shop and they're roasting, the coffee is that fresh and vibrant. There is some dark chocolate and a mild sweet maltiness shows through as well, but this is really all about the coffee. The flavor is roasty and has a fair bit of dark chocolate, some maple syrup, some bourbon, and tons of coffee fruity earthy coffee, the booze is there but it's fairly well concealed. This is pretty damned remarkable, and considerably better than I thought it would be.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.11/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Got bottles of this in trades with thetomG and jojomdma. Thanks for the hook-up gents!

From a bomber into a snifter.
Vintage: 2010

Note: Tasted directly after Bourbon County Stout.

APPEARANCE: Pours out black, but not quite pitch black. The pour produces a cascading ½ finger mocha colored head that magically appears out of nowhere. Jet black body with no real noticeable carbonation. Head quickly fades to nothing and a ring around the edges of the glass. A slight ring remains until the end and leaves no lacing. Looks exactly the same as Bourbon County.

SMELL: Burnt coffee beans lead the way, then some roasted malts, lots of bourbon, vanilla and wood notes. Quite bold as well. Definitely the regular Bourbon County with added coffee beans.

TASTE: Same deal as the nose. Lots of bourbon again, vanilla and oak notes, as well as some roasted barley. The roasted coffee beans overlap everything and tie it all together nicely. Finishes with some bitter chocolate, vanilla and bourbon notes, as well as a long bourbon and bitter coffee led aftertaste. Very bold flavors here, and a bit of well-placed heat at the end. The coffee plays a nice role, meshing well with the regular Bourbon County.

PALATE: Like the regular Bourbon County, the body is too thin and light for the style. It's somewhat airy on the palate as well. Semi-creamy on the palate, goes down fine but has as delayed scratch and burn at the finish. Ends relatively mouth-coating. A little less abrasive than the normal version, but still too thin and light.

OVERALL: A nice variant of the Bourbon County Brand Stout. The coffee flavors mesh well with the regular base brew without dominating or overpowering in any way. Like the regular version, a heavier palate would perhaps help push things over the top, but that is a small critique on what is otherwise a fantastic beer. One worth checking out if you get the chance. Thanks again guys for sending me some of this brew!

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Photo of Magpie14
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: This beer boasts a deep and dark hue, looks massive. Heavy reds, burnt oranges, and oily browns meld elegantly into an ink-like liquid in my snifter. The head is mimicking a chocolate mousse in color a stature. Something special about this one

S: the nose is gargantuan. Intensely oiled coffee beans and roasted malts, loads of chocolate, and spicy bourbon. Even more impressive is the toasted sugary coconut whiff gracing every sniff. These smells are incredibly bold and remain rounded. Some soft oak/wood notes drifts in as well...amazing

T: murky coffee flavors, chocolate/dark cocoa, and bourbon hold strong. This beer is sheer wonder. As it warms the flavors are rowdy and richer. Malts are tougher and more complex on the tongue. They taste as if they are dusted with malt powder and drizzled with chocolate, very smooth and decadently rich. Bourbon unlocks spicy, cherry, smokey, and molasses. I am aghast at how good

M: dangerously creamy and feels nowhere near the power indicated on the label. Full and heavy with luxurious character

D: hands down one of the best

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Photo of midnite2sixman
4.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a massive snifter this has the look of motoroil that needs to be changed. Caramel brown sugar lacing is quite globby.

The nose sounds like a mocha factory. Holy smokes. I have mine in a snifter, and that may play a big factor but wow is this nose intense. Slight hoppiness is evident on the nose as well. Hot bourbon notes intermingle with all of the above.

First taste in the mouth is a blast of chocolate and coffee, perhaps some dark cherries...then the hops hit ya, then you swallow and this intense bitter/sweet coffee/cocoa thing slams you and you look at your friend who just took his first sip too and go: "WHOA!" Don't forget about the bourbon flavor. The oak is huge too.

Mouthfeel: I can't really describe it. Its a dash of everything good you'd ever want in a beer.

Drinkability: I defy you not to like this beer.

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Photo of jlindros
4.67/5  rDev 0%
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.

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Photo of COBeerBuff
4.51/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pulling one of the bottles out of the cellar to review following my birthday on Monday!

Appearance: Using my trusty Spiegelau tulip, this brew pours a jet black with about a half finger of mocha colored head that dissipates quickly leaving a light ring around the edge of the glass. The lacing down the sides of the glass is magnificent, and when you consider the way this beer appeared to seep slowly out of the bottle and the total opaqueness in the glass; well, it just adds to the illusion of this beer.

Smell: This beer still smells wonderful, even 5 months after its release. Definitely picking up the bourbon that is typical of the BCS franchise, rich with notes of mahogany, chocolate, and vanilla. Where the original BCS would have left off though, this hearty concoction continues with a huge note of that Intelligentsia coffee and some other maltish scents. These combine to create one of the most enticing noses on any -bal aged stout I've had in some time.

Taste: This is a very complex flavor created by this beer. The first taste yields hints of roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla, and a tiny bit of caramel. As the beer further reaches the palate, more of the bourbon flavors from the barrels make their presence known along with some of the bitterness of the espresso beans. The tail end is high in alcohol, and definitely conveys this is a sipper through and through.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is quite an adventure as well. Initially, this beer is a little bit crisper on the front of the tongue, but as the beer warms, the liquid becomes more of an ooze, coating the palate with the rich flavors imparted by the coffee and bourbon additions. The alcohol burn at the end is noticeable, but it is also kind of soothing. This isn't your typical stout, and the mouthfeel reminds you of this at every turn.

Drinkability: This beer is still drinking remarkably hot, and I'd tend to believe the label that it could develop well over the next 5 years. The coffee has faded somewhat, as others have noted, but it's still very prevalent, and it still helps make this beer of the most solid offerings from GI. All in all, I love the way this beer rolls off my tongue, and I'm excited I have several more bottles aging in the cellar. Can't wait to crack them open over the next few years!

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Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 4.67 out of 5 with 7,339 ratings