Bourbon Barrel-Aged Wheatmiser
Goose Island Beer Co.

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Wheat Beer - Wheatwine
4.05 | pDev: 8.89%
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Notes: Imperial Wheat Ale aged in a bourbon barrel.
Reviews: 12 | Ratings: 19 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca from Canada

3.99/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft: Poured a clear dirty brown color ale with small foamy head. Aroma of dry wheat malt notes with some woody and vanilla notes is quite pleasant. Taste is dominated by dry wheat malt notes with some caramelized malt notes and a woody and vanilla finish with plenty of bourbon notes. Body is about average with good carbonation and light warming alcohol notes. Interesting beer thought I would not drink large quantities in one sitting.

May 18, 2016
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AgentZero from Illinois

4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this two times on-tap, review from notes.

A - Brownish/yellow colored beer with a very minimal head that didn't really leave anything on the sides.

S - Some fruity notes and some smooth and buttery bourbon. Nice oak, little spice, hint of citrus. I don't like wheatwines, but this smells nice.

T - Smooth bourbon with no heat, some oak, nice buttery and vanilla notes. It's sweet, with a little wheat and citrus coming through, but is incredibly smooth and easy to get down. Does not become cloying at all.

M - Smooth, creamy, moderate carbonation, medium bodied.

O - Shockingly good beer, might be my favorite wheatwine ever, which isn't saying much, but I like this beer a lot. Recommended.

Jul 21, 2011
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kzoobrew from Michigan

3.97/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap @ Goose Island Clybourn. Menu states aged in Elijah Craig barrels for 18 months.

Bronze to goldish brown color with no head to speak of. Being this was delivered to the table I cannot be certain of the head it may have had when freshly poured. The body is clear with no evidence of haze.

Bourbon is strong in the nose but gives off more of a caramelly aroma. Caramelized sugars, a bit of dark fruit and the grainy wheat aroma are also noted.

The flavor is quite similar to the nose. The bourbon is very smooth and unabrasive. The caramel flavors from the bourbon stand out much like the did in the nose. Overall a sweet aroma with a spiciness that compliments well. The malt is slightly bready but very subtle.

Just a hair under full bodied. The body is big but not too viscous. The carbonation is lower but appropriate. Finish is long, lingering and enjoyable.

Very good beer in which I am glad to have sampled. The flavors were interesting and well match without overwhelming. This beer paired surprisingly well with the Sweet Potato Fries with Curry Catsup.

Sep 15, 2010
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fastpass17 from New York

4.52/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one on draft at Goose Island Clybourn.

A: Dark gold in color, solid carbonation, 1 to 2 finger head that lasts through the drink.

S: Bourbon on the forefront, creamy malt, spice, and oak.

T: Starts off soft with a balanced sweetness, opens up with bourbon, mixed spices, vanilla, and oak, finishes with nice alcohol warmth.

M: Lingers in the palate slightly, the alcohol that is present is masked beautifully.

D: One could sit at the bar and drink two or three of these easily.

Aug 04, 2010
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mothman from Minnesota

4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at GI-Clybourn

Aged over 8 months in Elijah Craig barrels.

Pours 1/4 finger of white head. Color is a dark golden orange. Clear in color and lighter than I expected.

Aroma: Subtle bourbon flavors with oak and vanilla. Big spice notes. Lemon and orange peel. Floral hops with some citrus showing.

Taste: The bourbon starts out light but as it warms up it shows more. Very warming. Wheat flavors with lemon are heavily apparent. A bit of oak and some grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: Warming and smooth. Medium bodied with a low to medium amount of carbonation. Ends dry with bourbon and oak notes.

Overall, a very solid wheatwine. Even without the bourbon it has some solid flavors. Very to to have tried this one. Relatively drinkable as well.

Jul 31, 2010
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weeare138 from Pennsylvania

4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears an orange toned light amber with a small white head that quickly fades out into a gentle collar. Tiny speckles of lacing droop down into the glass.
Smell is of toffee, caramel, vanilla beans, brown sugar, bourbon, Poached pears, dates, prunes, and insane amounts of alcohol being whifted.
Taste is of the aromas with juicy ripe fruit, and touches of cocoa nibs. of bourbon can't be ignored in this one. My gums are numb!
Mouthfeel is full bodied, chewy, fruity, juicy, with a sugar filled whipped cream smack at the end. Abv is evident here. 8 months in one of my favorite bourbon barrels (Elijah Craig) is fitting as a sipper.

Jun 06, 2010
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wedgie9 from Tennessee

3.46/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasted on draft at Goose Island Clybourn. Pours a clear amber with almost no head. Aromas of caramel malt, sour fruit, and lots of oak. The flavors are slightly sweet up front with caramel malts, and it is very oaky. The bitter hops come through on the mid-palate and the back of the palate. The body is full with medium carbonation and a sweet and oaky finish. Overall, this is a very good beer that, I think, requires some more aging time for the oak and alcohol to integrate.

May 11, 2010
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robbyc1 from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"An Imperial Wheat Ale aged in Heaven Hill barrels for 23 weeks." as described in the Goose Island October 28, 2009 Beer Academy brochure.

Clear copper colored brew, minimal head. Looks viscous and heavy.

A fruity nose with notes of peach, almond, and pineapple. The pineapple comes through big in the flavor, packing a freshness that gives the wheat maltiness a zing. Hopped to a balanced finish, very refined.

Light on the palate, alcohol is evident preventing a higher drinkability score otherwise this is a must have any time it's available.

Nov 28, 2009
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GbVDave from Illinois

4.17/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter at Goose Island Clybourn 7/3/09. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Served a murky, dirty, dark-brown with a 1/2 finger of off-white head.

S: Heavenly aroma of bourbon, coupled with toasted wheat, burnt caramel, and some tart dark fruit.

T: Surprisingly tart and tangy fruit flavors. Of course, bourbon plays a major role as does caramel and dark fruit.

M: Big and sweet with tangy underpinnings that do an excellent job of hiding the alcohol.

D: I was feeling this by the end of the glass but this was a masterfull wheatwine!

Jul 04, 2009
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botham from New York

4.77/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap poured into a snifter at the Clybourn brewpub. Definitely looking foreword to this one! Pours a dark chestnut brown with no head and garnet highlights. A few large bubbles on the surface hold on for a minute or two, then there is nothing. Looks like a barley-wine in the glass.

Aroma is heavy on the malts with an earthy, bourbon base and thick bready malts. Caramel and toffee notes add a bit of sweetness, while a bit of wheat malt and a tinge of alcohol round out the profile. Quite rich in the nose without ending up overbearing.

Taste is packed with malts. Thick and bready up front, with an earthy base of bourbon and caramel provide stability. Mildly sweet with a rich profile and a finish of residual bready malt and sticky, earthy bourbon. For 9% APV, one would never guess it. Very well crafted, with a barley-wine-esque character overall. Excellent!

Mouthfeel is full bodied, sticky, and full of malt character. Reminiscent of an English barley wine in texture with all the malt and no alcoholic bite.

Drinkability is great. This is a hige beer, with only a touch of wheat malt character and a ton of malt complexity. The smoothness of the finish is probably the most lasting quality of this brew. Very well crafted and supremely drinkable, even for 9% APV. Cheers!

Jul 03, 2009
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DavoleBomb from Pennsylvania

3.97/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

~2 oz sample had at the Claybourn Brewpub.

3.5 A: Slightly hazy golden/straw color. Can't comment much on the head since it was a 2 oz sample.

4.0 S: Lots of alcohol in the nose. Also a very strong wheat component. Lastly, a strong oak and bourbon flair. The nose is just jam packed with strong aromas.

4.5 T: This is my first wheatwine and I must say that the "wine" part is very fitting. It tastes just like a light wine only with a strong wheat flavor. Not much hops going on. I like wine just fine, but I like beer more and this is somewhere inbetween. Well done. Alcohol is present in the taste like a wine.

3.0 M: Heavy medium body. Low on carbonation though. It might be perfect for the style, I don't really know, however, I would have liked a bit more carbonation. Not so smooth due to the tinge of alcohol.

3.5 D: Good tasty brew, but not all that drinkable due to the biting alcohol.

Jun 28, 2009
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kajerm from Illinois

4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark mocha and opaque with a finger and a half of thick creamy, self-supporting head. This looks just like the regular wheatmiser, but darker.

I didn't think a wheat wine/barleywine could smell much better than the wheatmiser, but dammit, Goose Island did it. The same blend of aromas from the original is present here-- toffee, caramel, malted wheat, spices, phenolics, fruit, and a whole lot of other stuff I couldn't tease apart-- but blended into barrel-aging that's more oak than bourbon. Vanilla and wood are strong, with molasses (and actual bourbon) as only a minor presence.

This beer kicks ass.

The flavor is very similar to the aroma, opening up with loads of sticky, toffeeish malts that swell into a hazy mixture of vanilla, oak, apples, caramel, and malted wheat and barley. The finish is defined more by malts and barrel-aging than by hops, although a little bit of balancing bitternedss is present. In all honesty, this beer is so complex I'm kind of tempted to just throw my hands up and enjoy the ride.

The mouthfeel is thick and substantial, well-suited to this behemoth Norse God of a beer. (And yes, it really does deserve that title as much if not more than the actual Scandinavian beers I've had so far.)

Drinkability is about what you'd expect-- it's hard to down a lot of this (it is 11% ABV after all), but it's so good you really don't want to stop either.

If they didn't make Bourbon County Stout too, this would easily be the best Goose Island beer I've ever had. As it stands, it's a tough call.

Oct 21, 2007
Bourbon Barrel-Aged Wheatmiser from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 19 ratings