Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)
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Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States
Stout - Sweet / Milk
Ranked #33
Ranked #925
4.34 | pDev: 8.99%
Apr 10, 2022
Dec 10, 2012
Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout)
Notes: Hardywood Gingerbread Stout, described by BeerAdvocate as “freagin’ Christmas in a bottle,” is an imperial milk stout brewed with vanilla beans, cinnamon, fresh Casselmonte Farm baby ginger and Bearer Farms wildflower honey. Gingerbread Stout is then matured in Virginia bourbon barrels, where it adapts an incredibly mellow character with oak, caramel and bourbon undertones, and emerges 12 weeks later as Bourbon GBS. A festive blend of spice character laces this rich, chocolatey stout, which warms the palate and the soul.

55 IBU
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of Zythophile
4.49/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by Zythophile from District of Columbia

Bottle Date: pretty sure it's 2019
Palate Contaminants: other beer

Lots of fine mousse-colored head, and it leaves a good bit of lacing. It lets absolutely no light through.

The nose has cinnamon and, yes, gingerbread out front. It's nice and sugary, too, and that's really pleasant. It even gives off a bit of brown sugar. There's even more ginger as it warms, bringing to mind what one gets from a sushi bar.

The ginger kick hits pretty hard up front, but at least it goes along with a lot of sugar. (I mean, it's opening up my nostrils.) And it's brown sugar, not anything cloying. I catch a little dried dark fruit, sweet prunes and dates, toward the middle. In another sip, I catch dried light fruit, apples and bananas. And the sweetness is so well balanced no matter which association is being tripped "on" in my brain. The heat of the ginger is less as I progress, but there's so much to get from this one.

Feel is slightly thin for the type, but I had to think about because there's so much flavor to distract. The lighter dried fruit is in the aftertaste, as well as molasses. Oh, and there's ginger. The alcohol is pretty well buried. Carbonation is right down the middle.

Apr 10, 2022
4 by JLK7299 from North Carolina on Mar 14, 2022
Photo of beerookie
4.52/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by beerookie from Ohio

The basis of the best line of beers on the planet, IMHO. The number of variations that Hardywood makes it impressive and I think it speak the home run they hit with this beer.

The Bourbon Barrel GBS is quite simply one of the best beers in the category of barrel aged stouts with flavor. Gingerbread compliments the barrel aged flavor so well, it's truly great!

Not boozy, not crazy heavy because it's milk stout, and the gingerbread is refreshing.

This beer has the look, smell, taste and feel, you hope for when you pour a stout.

Mar 12, 2022
4.32 by vabeerguy from Virginia on Feb 06, 2022
4.03 by bschmidt_37 from Illinois on Jan 31, 2022
Photo of hman43
3.72/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by hman43 from North Carolina

Look: It pours very dark brown with a brown head. Head retention is low.

Smell: It has aromas of ginger, bourbon, and roast. There are some notes of cinnamon and bread.

Taste: There are cinnamon flavors with graham crackers, bourbon, roast, and bread. There are supporting flavors of sugar, vanilla, and mint.

Feel: It has a full body with a semi sweet finish.

Overall, it has some nice spice flavors into a good base beer.

Jan 24, 2022
4.3 by EMH73 from New York on Jan 21, 2022
Photo of mschrei
4.64/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
by mschrei from Illinois

This is damn tasty, and I don’t think the second bottle I have will make it to next Christmas. Notes of gingerbread, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, bourbon, and oak all wash over a mild roasted malt base on the scent. Taste is spicy, sweet, and boozy. Plenty of cinnamon and nutmeg play well with the bourbon and gingerbread. Going to let it warm to see if it rounds out, but still big bodied, mouth watering, and strong while cold. Just an excellent beer, and all I was hoping it would be as a longtime want.

Jan 16, 2022
4.5 by drt72 from Virginia on Dec 29, 2021
4.1 by 0x4a64 from Minnesota on Dec 28, 2021
Photo of Antnego
4.52/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
by Antnego from North Carolina

Thin head, dark, opaque amber appearance. Nose of ginger, spices, vanilla, oak and booze. Flavors of vanilla, gingerbread, and bourbon on the palate. Slick, full, thick, clingy mouthfeel. Big, fiery finish. Overall, an masterpiece of a beer.

Dec 27, 2021
4 by parkwood from Pennsylvania on Dec 24, 2021
4.42 by Keith27614 from North Carolina on Dec 11, 2021
Photo of BrewMaven
4.59/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by BrewMaven from New York

Typical black with a thin head that said goodbye right away. Vanilla and bourbon gently arouse my olfactories...Barrel aged sweetness dominates the taste with a slightly bitter, semi dry finish. Medium thick mouthfeel and subtle bubbles. Good Stout.

Dec 11, 2021
4.27 by Dougwillhike from New Jersey on Nov 28, 2021
4 by jschott75 from Illinois on Nov 28, 2021
4.27 by MJSFS from Florida on Nov 26, 2021
4.21 by mdfb79 from New York on Nov 26, 2021
Photo of ScruffySouthpaw
4.13/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by ScruffySouthpaw from New York

Served in a ticket from the bottle.

Appearance: Thin body coming off a brown colored black body. Tab head which rose roughly half of one fingers length off the body.

Smell: nutmeg aroma with a hint of whiskey.

Taste: sweet complex raisins with whiskey, you have molasses which are light.

Mouth: Soft carbonation with a sticky body.

Overall: grab it it you want that Christmas infused imperial stout. One beer that spells it out. Salud!

Nov 25, 2021
Photo of hopsputin
4.11/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
by hopsputin from New Jersey

a: silky jet black color with some faint brown notes throughout. pretty solid, no light is penetrating. head pours nothing more than a thin film on top, like a soda

s: big deep notes of gingerbread, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg. sweet caramel, cola, roasted malts. chocolate powder, bourbon, and oak. slight leather and vanilla on the backend. quite a pleasant aroma, though you can tell this one packs a punch when you're smelling it

t: roasted malts, dark caramel, molasses, leather, clove and nutmeg all really big up front. oak, cola, and gingerbread behind that. sticky toffee, milk chocolate. slight alcohol tinge towards the backend, and some heat from the barrel. the bourbon is there more in the aftertaste, which is actually quite nice. it doesn't overpower it at all

m: lighter side of medium mouthfeel. quite sticky with medium carbonation - almost like a soda. definitely could use a heavier mouthfeel

o: pretty enjoyable holiday Stout to me. hits all the spice notes with a nice backbone. definitely on the sweeter side though, so be prepared for that. normally something of this ABV i'd consider a sipper, but the mouthfeel is a touch too light which almost makes it more drinkable. either way, not a bad nightcap beer in the cold winter months

Nov 24, 2021
4.69 by BadgerNCarolina from North Carolina on Nov 18, 2021
Photo of mushroomcloud
4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by mushroomcloud from Texas

25.4oz bottle (2020), opened 10-2-21.
1/4" sand colored head on a black stout. Retains as a thick collar with an island floating in the middle.
Sheets of lacing early, spotty lacing late.
Late aroma notes, ginger, chocolate, and bourbon.
Spicy ginger and bourbon vanilla, cinnamon, molasses, and sweet honey...all advertised flavors are perceived.
Full body, smooth mouthfeel and low carbonation. Some heat in a lengthy, sweet finish.
Very Good.

Oct 03, 2021
Photo of DarkLordScott
4.45/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
by DarkLordScott from Wisconsin

Poured into a stem glass. Pours deep black with a satisfying head that dissipates to glass-clinging lattice foam. I smell vanilla, bourbon and just a hint of chocolate. The taste is not what I was expecting -- a moderate body, smooth, deep vanilla/chocolate with a twinge of cinnamon at the end dances down your throat. Highly drinkable, spiced moderately with little bourbon that I can tell. An enjoyable brew.

May 10, 2021
Photo of HarlotBronte
3.92/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
by HarlotBronte from District of Columbia

Poured into a teku. 11.5% ABV in 2021. Opaque black with a 1/8th inch brown head. Tastes of gingerbread with a surprisingly thin mouthfeel. Nice for special occasions, but I wouldn’t want to drink this more than once a year.

Apr 17, 2021
4.46 by psweendogg from Connecticut on Mar 09, 2021
4.44 by WDJersey from Colorado on Feb 07, 2021
Photo of NotVeryCreative16
5/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by NotVeryCreative16 from South Carolina

One of the best beers I've ever had.

Jan 24, 2021
4.5 by eawolff99 from Minnesota on Jan 20, 2021
Photo of Tony210
4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Tony210 from New Jersey

Pours very dark with a small mocha head, nearly impervious to light. Hughe gingerbread aroma coupled with bba stout. Flavor is gingerbread out of the gate, nice bba imo stout flavor, pretty thick feel. Overall a very good beer.

4.25 rating

Jan 09, 2021
4 by archero from Texas on Dec 31, 2020
4.29 by socon67 from New York on Dec 24, 2020
4.3 by msscott1973 from North Carolina on Dec 24, 2020
Photo of officerbill
4.46/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by officerbill from New York

A mild bourbon aroma from the newly opened bottle and bourbon, vanilla, and coconut from the glass. The taste follows with the addition of coffee, cocoa, and ginger. Picture a cup of black coffee with a shot of bourbon in it, a dark chocolate mounds bar, and a gingerbread cookie. Take a swallow of the coffee, a bite of the mounds bar, then follow with a bite of the cookie. I don't usually drink BBA stouts so maybe I'm getting more of the barrel. I'm finding the bourbon and the (not unpleasant) coconut/vanilla prominent all on top of a solid coffee/cocoa backbone with the ginger showing up as a background spice and, most noticeably, a peppery zing at the end of the swallow.

I wouldn't care to have BB GBS on a weekly basis, but it is a very, very good holiday/winter beer.

Dec 20, 2020
Photo of zac16125
4.06/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by zac16125 from South Carolina

Pours opaque black with a small tan head with ok lacing. Aroma is def ginger heavy, but it’s a spicy ginger, almost like that served as a palette cleanser with sushi. The sweet gingerbread cookie like notes are actully very subtle. Honey is pretty prominent , moderate cinnamon. Not really any barrel characters to speak of on the nose. Taste is much better than the aroma, it emulates the gingerbread flavors much better. Huge cinnamon, moderate vanilla, and of course prominent ginger. Barrel characters are also more noticeable with oaky bourbon notes. Some bitterness and subtle ethanol to balance. Mouthfeel actually on the thinner side, but drinkability is good. Overall this is good but did not really live up to expectations, and certainly far from “freagin Christmas in a bottle”. Enjoyed but wouldn’t bother seeking out.


Dec 18, 2020
4.29 by Boone757 from Virginia on Dec 18, 2020
4.5 by redfox405 from California on Nov 12, 2020
4.3 by Avitra from Switzerland on Oct 18, 2020
Photo of DoctorZombies
4.45/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
by DoctorZombies from Florida

10/16/19 bottle. Dark brown with ruby see-through pour; fizzy tan head; excellent clarity; poor cap retention; incomplete, thin ring; micro dots of lace, and medium plus legs on swirl. Nose is cinnamon and gingerbread; bourbon and caramel malt; more spicy cinnamon and nutmeg as liquid warms. Taste is spicy gingerbread muffin with a creamy vanilla icing; semi sweet cookie dough; spicy finish. Medium carbonation, medium body; warmth from 11.5%; tingly, spicy tongue coating. Really enjoyable; cinnamon is upfront and ever present, but not ham handed; think Xocoveza with gingerbread instead of chocolate; great vanilla frosted gingerbread cookie finish and linger; I should get another to save for Christmas holidays.

Revisited: Bottled 10/15/21. Poured at 56°. Tan, somewhat fizzy mixed bubbles; some cap retention; solid ring; soapy lace, especially with agitation; thin legs. Honey and bourbon nose; ginger and molasses as it warms. Taste is honey, ginger, brown sugar sweetness; bourbon, cinnamon; chocolate as it warms up; molasses in the middle; honey, ginger, and bourbon on the backend. Medium body; a little warmth from 11.5% abv; light carbonation; dry barrel finish. Overall I like as much as the base GBS which I had on tap a few days ago; the bourbon flavor replaces the chocolate I tasted and n the base; it’s thin for abv; the honey and ginger dominate the linger; an excellent Christmas imperial stout with layers of “holiday” flavors.

May 07, 2020
Photo of jspaner
4.32/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25
by jspaner from Maryland

Looks like most bourbon barrel stouts, it's dark with little to no lacing or head. The smell is excellent, with ginger and cinnamon leading the way, but also vanilla, and bourbon. Taste is excellent. Smooth, sweet, ginger, cinnamon, vanilla, caramel, brown sugar, etc. For as big a beer as this is, the mouthfeel is a bit less than you'd expect, but not disappointing. The label says "Christmas in a bottle", and that's accurate. Highly recommended.

Mar 29, 2020
Bourbon GBS (Gingerbread Stout) from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 819 ratings