Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout | Goose Island Beer Co.

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Bourbon County Brand Coffee StoutBourbon County Brand Coffee Stout

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

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

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Reviews: 1,151 | Ratings: 6,828
Photo of JoePat
4.38/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pure a jet black with a thick dark tan head.

This beer has such a dark fruit aroma with notes of chocolate, bourbon, and coffee.

The flavor is great. It is like the coffee added the bitterness to start to balance out Bourbon County. Plums, raisons, bourbon, chocolate, and coffee.

The mouthfeel is thick and rich. The flavors coat your mouth and seem to never let go. While the coffee does start to balance out this beer it is still a sipper.

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

8 months old already. been meaning to have one of these the last couple months to see how its aging. served at cellar temp into kbs snifter.

a - black as hell. tan dissipates immediately.

s - molasses, coffee, chocolate, powdered cocoa, and bourbon.

t - coffee is still there for sure, but not the punch i remember when fresh. caramel, bourbon, chocolate fudge. amazing brew.

m - thick body with good carbonation for 13%

overall - holding up well, but coffee is for sure fading.

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

Review based on notes taken August 28, 2010

I managed to pick up the last bottle that a favorite local store had in stock and wanted to wait for a special occasion to drink it. I ended up drinking it the night I moved into my new apartment.

Poured into a pint glass this is dark and oily looking, very appealing. A finger and of light brown head which does not stick around. Smells dark and rich, sweet and roasted with a noticeable, but not defining aroma of coffee. I imaging that in the months since bottling the coffee has settled a bit. Taste is bourbon sweet, vanilla and espresso. Mouthfeel is smooth with a tingling booziness on the tongue. All things considered, I find this very drinkable for the style.

I would say that this is not better or worse than regular BCBS, but different.

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

Had it fresh and with about 7 months on it, this review is for the 7 month old version.

Appearence- Dark chocolate color with a rich dark chocolate head.

Smell- Bourbon and coffee, think Irish coffee. Not much else to say except thank god they used Intelligentsia beans.

Taste- The bourbon is rich in the flavor and smooths out the heaviness of the stout and coffee in an indulgent flavor assault on the palate. This is a beer that I think got better with some age and is excellent right around now-ish.

Mouth- Thick but not overbearing.

Drink- For a version of BCBS this is one of the most drinkable, excepting the vanilla.

Honestly this one is getting better and better, I don't know where the peak will be but I can't imagine it is too far away. Drink'em if you got 'em.

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 22 oz. bottle, one of 3 received at various times (not sure whom to give the credit, so...) over recent months. Poured to a snifter at a slightly cooler than cellar temp (30 minutes in the fridge). Consumed a few weeks back, in mid-October, so this is reviewed from notes.

Glowering vermillion label (2010 Edition) - Made with Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso. 'Develops for up to 5 years in the bottle'. Dated 03/26/10.

A: Absolutely black, light stand no chance of cutting through. A half-finger of cinnamon-colored cream crowns the pour, winnowing to a few smoky swirls and a slim ring. A few snaking carbonation streams wriggle up the sides. Slick, glistening lace in delicate bands.

S: Big aroma: a coffee roast laced with cream and sugar. Vanilla, dark fruit and a notable sweet bourbon. Chocolate represents with some earthy mustiness, kinda ashy.

T: It's the same sublime Bourbon County Stout I've loved over the years - filled with chocolate, pit/berry fruit and (of course) barrels of bourbon - but now with an extra rich darkness of roasted coffee beans. It's an explosion of flavors that work exceedingly well together - although I have to still favor the original, if just by THAT much [holds thumb and forefinger ever so slightly apart]. Lasting cocoa/java bitterness in the finish. Yum.

M: Thick and velvety, full-bodied but wonderfully smooth after an initial gurgle of carbonation. Sure there's fusel warmth, but nothing so blatant as to diminish the score more than a slight nick. A fine, fuzzy-feeling graininess holds on teeth and tongue.

D: What a terrific brew, very nice now and (I hope) able to mature over the years. I have a spot picked out in the cellar, no worries. Pretty boozy now, and at 13% I don't expect that to taper off all that much. If you like bourbon AND coffee in your Imperial Stout, seek this one out.

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Photo of bsp77
4.72/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bomber into Snifter.

Appearance: Almost black with thin brown head and light lacing.

Smell: Booze, bourbon, coffee, chocolate, licorice and molasses.

Taste: Tastes like chocolate covered espresso beans that have been soaked in bourbon. The chocolate and coffee are augmented by molasses, anise, roasted barley and a big blast of alcohol. Tastes like a less boozy and bourbony version of the standard Bourbon County, with just a dash more coffee.

Feel: Ridiculously smooth and creamy with low carbonation and a nice warming finish.

Drinlability: Somehow the addition of coffee tempered this beer and made it even better. Just a perfect way to end a night. Superb.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.59/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Test batch served at FoBAB. This used Bousque Lya coffee from El Salvador.

A - Pours with a finger of tan foam that settles to a thin ring, leaving behind no lace. Black body with a hint of brown at the fringes. Looks like BCS.

S - Utterly insane coffee and espresso flavor. There's a touch of vanilla, bourbon, and roasted malt in the periphery, but this is a total coffee bomb. The coffee aroma is delicious too, and pops without being overly astringent - you can tell this is good stuff.

T - The taste is quite similar but didn't quite live up to the aroma. Big coffee mixed with vanilla, roasted malts, some earthy barrel, and a bitter espresso finish.

M - Smooth, full body, lower carbonation, finishes a bit sticky. Surprisingly low tannic character for a BCS variant.

D - This was awesome. I just sat and smelled my glass in a daze until I realized I had to use the rest of my tickets. It was very easy to put down 4oz of this one. I think this test batch is an improvement on the bottled version and I hope this is what they use in 2011.

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

Thanks to goodstrongbeer for this one. The pour is jet black, and oily. The head is thin and tan, light lacing. The aroma is wonderful, lots of coffee, vanilla, and of course bourbon. The first couple of sips have lots of rich coffee flavors. Unfotunately the coffee fades, but there is still a ton of oak, vanilla, and bourbon. It has a lingering hot bourbon finish. The body is full, and chewey. The carbonation is light. A great beer, IMO better than the original.

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

This review is for the Bosque Lya Blend version: Still made with coffee from our neighbors at Intelligentsia, but this small batch blend is made with beans from the Bosque Lya farm in El Salvador rather than the Black Cat Espresso we used in our bottled version of this beer from early 2010.

Pours a pitch black, thick viscous liquid with a small tan ring. Head is very creamy and sits at the edge of the glass for the remainder of the beer. Smell is amazing - fresh roasted coffee, sweet bourbon and vanilla, some dark roasted malt undertones. Taste is earthy fresh coffee, coffee bitterness that balances the sweet vanilla and bourbon flavors that dominate the standard version of this beer. Milk chocolate, a hint of coconut, very light oak, and a touch of alcohol round this one out. Mouthfeel is spot on - thick and chewy, coating but not cloyingly sweet. Light carbonation. Drinkability on this beer is perfect for an imperial stout. The balance of coffee and bourbon makes me want to get as much of this as possible. Sadly, I am sure the coffee freshness wont last. I have always thought KBS was overrated due to its lack of body - this is what it should be. Best beer of the night for me.

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

Poured into a tulip.

A - black as night and a quarter-inch head.

S - bourbon, coffee and vanilla. Smells amazing!

T - just as the nose suggested - a ton of coffee, bourbon and vanilla. This beer is outstanding! It really reminds me of KBS, but on a whole new level.

M - good carbonation and a perfect balance of flavors coat the inside of my mouth in an incredible way.

D - I could drink a bomber on my own, easily. The alcohol is still a little present, so give this one a bit more time and it will be liquid gold.

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Photo of CooperEllis
4.51/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to afksports for opening at a tasting

Aroma is slight with the coffee and bourbon, good full roasted malt aroma with a slight inhale on the sip.

The taste is exceptional because the muted coffee flavors restricts the bourbon flavor, preventing it from overwhelming the other flavors. There isn't much by way of subtlty, each of the predominent flavors (coffee, bourbon, malt) is there and divides up the palate nicely.

Silky mouthfeel, not very sticky. Light on carbonation that doesn't prevent this from being a full mouthfeel.


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Photo of ratedz
4.35/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2010 bottle poured into a Darkness goblet. Pours a pitch black with a very thin chocolate brown colored head that fades very quickly.

Nose is heavy on the bourbon. As others have said, it seems that the coffee has faded. There are still minor hints of coffee, but they are very minimal for a stout with coffee in the name. There are also some notes of chocolate and roasted malts.

Just like the nose, the taste is heavy on the bourbon and light on the coffee. Some chocolate and dark fruits hit the tongue momentarily before it finishes warm and boozy.

Mouth feel is smooth and sexy. Medium-heavy body with average carbonation. An awesome tasting beer, but I regret not trying it when it was fresh to fully appreciate the coffee flavors, which have faded to just about nothing. Still a bit on the hot side...since the coffee is already gone, sitting on this for another few years would only allow the bourbon heat to blend a little better.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.97/5  rDev -13.3%
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 -10%
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 -6.8%
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 -2.4%
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 -20.5%
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 -11.6%
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 -7.4%
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 +6.3%
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 +4.8%
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 -3.9%
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 +4.8%
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 -9%
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 -19.9%
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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Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout from Goose Island Beer Co.
4.58 out of 5 based on 6,828 ratings.
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