Bourbon Barrel Coffee Mint Stout | South Shore Brewery

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Bourbon Barrel Coffee Mint StoutBourbon Barrel Coffee Mint Stout

Brewed by:
South Shore Brewery
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by battlekow on 02-26-2006

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Reviews: 47 | Ratings: 78
Photo of Ri0
1.29/5  rDev -63.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.25

Free bottle. poured into snifter.

A - Coffee brown to black with a thin 1 finger head. I could tell it has a very thin body.

S - Ugh, Listerine and medicinal. Where the hell is the rest of the beer? No coffee or stout present in the aroma.

T - Goodbye, this stuff is a drainpour. May as well be Listerine with ground up peppermint candies (the circular red and white ones). No other flavors in this beer.

M - Thin, very thin and over carbonated.

O - What a mess of a beer. At least I didn't pay for it. No clue how this has a "good" rating on here.

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Photo of pjkelley82
1.46/5  rDev -58.6%

Infected.... my god such a good mint chocolate smell.. sout taste, slight mint and chocolate but clearly soured from infection. Thin. A few sips and down it went.

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Photo of warmstorage
1.85/5  rDev -47.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 1.5

22 ounce bottle from Discount Liquor in Milwaukee (separate review hopefully on its way), around $6.

I love stout. And bourbon barrel aging is my favorite thing you can do to beer. And I love coffee, including in beer. And I love mint, though I rarely have had it in beer. I grow both peppermint and spearmint, cook with mint, eat mint straight, make mojitos with mint. So the stars looked aligned here.

Unfortunately, this beer is like a cross between a dark ale mouthwash and a menthol cigarette.

Appearance: this is fine. Deep, opaque brown to black. Light, middle brown head, leaves a little lacing. Everything goes downhill from here.

Smell: sharp, harsh medicinal. That's the mint. Little to nothing else. No coffee evident.

Taste: phew, this stuff is almost a drainpour. Like I said, it's like drinking a menthol cigarette. Ummm, sharp, strong, astrigent.

Mouthfeel: the astringent, sharp, biting mint is so strong that it overwhelms the mouthfeel. Leaves a slightly slick coating in my mouth -- not sure what that's about.

Overall: I don't even know if I would cook with this stuff. I'm struggling right now with drainpouring it. And I hate drainpouring stuff.

I love experimental beers, and brewers that are willing to take a chance. Unfortunately this one just didn't pan out. I dunno: less mint? more coffee? A little more residual sweetness to balance the sharp astringency of the mint?

BTW, South Shore Brewery's website lists this beer as 6.1% ABV. I'll try to submit an update.

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Photo of mothman
2.3/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Thanks to kbutler1 for sharing this one.

Pours 1/2 finger of tan head. Fades to a thin layer. Color is a deep brown, basically black.

Aroma: Chocolate chip mint ice cream flavored. Some chocolate syrup flavors. I don't pick up the bourbon or barrel flavors.

Taste: Has a sour flavor to it, but that might just be the mint. The taste follows the nose nearly identically. Chocolate chip mint ice cream. Some roasted malts.

Mouthfeel: Sweet and sour. Very odd. Medium bodied with a bit higher amount of carbonation. Ends with a very roasted aftertaste.

Overall, I wasn't a big fan of this one. It was just roasted and tasted a bit sour (maybe it was the mint). No barrel aging flavors to it. I couldn't drink too much of this one.

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Photo of BeerNutz324
2.43/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Let me preface by saying I have been pleased with South Shore so far. Been on 2 brewery tours and all the beers I tasted were good if not on to the review of this beer. Bought in Duluth in the bomber format.

Ap- Looks yummy. Typical stout, deep brown color with a nice tan head that lingers for awhile. I can't wait to taste this baby.

Ar- Peppermint, chocolate, dark fruit and a hint of bourbon...looking forward to tasting this one.

T- Whoa, something is up here? I have never had an infected beer but this tastes wrong. Pretty sure this is my first experience with an infected batch. REALLY sour up front and not in a good way. I have had sours before and this just doesn't taste right. Pretty sure this beer got infected and I can't believe how bad this tastes. My wife and I split a bomber and she took 1 sip and left the rest. Just a bad initial taste. The finish was good though with chocolate, dark fruit and some mint, but the overall taste is just bad.

M- medium to thick with good carbonation

O- something went wrong with this one. Looked great, smelled great but the taste was terrible. I am chalking this up to an infection. This won't keep me from getting other South Shore offerings but I am left wondering WTF???? I would honestly rather drink a Bud Light Chelada than this thing...

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Photo of landhoney
2.74/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Well, you need to like mint to like this beer, and not just kind of like need to really like it. Overall a well made beer that just did not do it for me. I like mint in certain things, this beer was not one of them. All other taste/smell/mouth-feel characteristics were overwhelmed (to my palate) by the mint. The aroma is medicinal, not just "fresh mint", and so is the flavor although I imagine they actually used fresh mint in this. Anyway, did not even finish my small taste of this beer, tried a few sips and had enough. Just not my cuppa'

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Photo of d5001986
2.84/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

22oz bomber poured into Spiegelau tulip.

I haven't had a lot of success with S.S.B. in the past, but giving this a shot nonetheless.

Pours near black with a decent amount of tan colored head, which dissipates rather quickly. Chocolate mint on the nose (very Peppermint Patty-esque) with maybe a hint of bourbon, not bad here.

The taste on the other hand leaves much to be desired. Whatever stout lies at it's base is completely smothered by Crest. Honestly, I feel like I should be brushing my teeth with it rather than consuming. Equally disappointing is the feel. It's quite thin. Like thinner than CW thin.

In conclusion, life is full of disappointments and this was one of those occasions.

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Photo of maximum12
3/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up a bomber across the river in Wisconsin because, well, it said barrel on the label. And it sounds ginormously weird. Who could resist? Not I. Split with my wifey.

Pour is dark brown I suppose, there is light shining through, barely. Smell is certainly minty fresh, with a healthy shot of coffee. No hint of barrel or malts. Or beer.

South Shore's Bourbon Barrel Coffee Mint Stout, tired just from typing that out. Thousands of mint leaves crushed up & slipped into an indistinct base beer. Cheap coffee that leads into sharp bitterness. Bitterness & mint stick around like the drunk on the bar stool next to you. Barrel? None in evidence. Really limited in the drinkability category, not sure I'm willing to even finish half the bomber.

Points for originality, but the execution just isn't there. Subtlety & the presence of the barrel might have gone a long way to making this a winner. It certainly took the long way around to being mediocre, though.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.16/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Thanks, Jeff! The body is extremely black, pretty much no hint of color to be found anywhere along the way. A dark beige head, not quite dark enough to be tan, piles up good and then quickly shells away where it sits still at about three or four millimeters nearly the rest of the way. No lacing, really, though I can't say I'm surprised by that.

The heaviest aroma right out of the gate is definitely mint. Mint freshness, all up in this bitch. Mixed with a significant amount of cocoa malt, the nose brings about nice reminders of a York Peppermint Patty. There's a touch of coffee grounds buried in the background with an even milder hint of bourbon and oak. Is this 100% barrel-aged? Because it sure doesn't smell like it.

Just like the aroma, mint is the first thing to come piling onto my senses with the first sip, like licking the backside of a mint leaf with some wintergreen gum in my mouth. There's a moderate tobacco flavor backing up the mint that I'm not so sure I love just yet. Bourbon hits quick up front, slightly more potent than in the aroma, but fades quickly into an abyss before it even has time to be appreciated.

A touch of roasted malt here, a dash of coffee grounds there, and a mild plum sweetness that carries into the finish. A little warmth brings out heavier coffee grind flavors, as well as a raw whiskey tone that kind of makes this harder to drink. Thin bodied for what it is, though it's probably more like medium-heavy overall. Low-moderate carbonation with a wet, silky mouth feel.

Eh, this is one that sounds okay on paper, but was executed poorly. Not a good integration of bourbon or oak, really - too light at first, then when it comes alive, it's far too unabashed and not well meshed. Flavors present are alright, but this probably isn't something I'd consider purchasing again. With some adjustments, it could be alright, but it's a little too messy to be enjoyable now.

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Photo of mcallister
3.25/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Deep brown bordering on black with a tall light tan head that is whispy and foamy. Poured with excessive carbonation which hurts the overall look otherwise looks good.

Very reminiscent of a girl scout thin mint cookie. Mint and dark chocolate stand out at the forefront with light black fruits, hints of oak and vanilla, and the slightest hint of bourbon.

I like where they are trying to go with this but things are somewhat of a mess. Very minty all the way through with light chocolate in the middle and on the finish. Coffee is really nowhere to be found except for maybe in the way of tannins on the finish. More chocolate comes through with light oak and bourbon flavors. Some black currant and earth reside deep as well. Unfortunately the carbonation level on this is a bit whacked. Over carbonated and hurting everything from it.

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Photo of Chriscrundwell12
3.28/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into a Cigar City snifter.

A- Pours a dark black watery color, tan one finger frothy head dissipates slowly to nice frothy ring around the glass, really nice lacing and retention.
S- The bourbon is hidden, big chocolaty mint aroma, interesting makes me want to eat mint chocolate chip ice cream.
T- Interesting taste, oak is present; the bourbon is very hidden, mint, chocolate, the mint kind of takes over the beer, some roasted malt.
M- Medium mouth feel, under carbonated, smooth drinking, slight sour taste but I think that comes from the mint.
O- Decent beer, not my favorite, I enjoyed my 8 oz pour but would not drink this one again.

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Photo of seeswo
3.33/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a small tan head. Nose is big mint, roast, and a touch of bourbon. Hmmm...not sure what I would otherwise expect. Not awesome, but probably what it needs to be for this beer. The taste is really odd. Mint, bourbon, roast, hop? bitterness in the finish. Not much coffee. Almost from the moment I tasted it, I though, why put this in bourbon barrels? Make a super chocolatey, rich, roasty (imperial) stout and toss that mint in. Anyway, in no way is the taste offensive, it just doesn't come together like I would want. Mouthfeel is medium, decidedly not creamy with good carbonation. Overall, I give this a bump for the experiment and because it is cheap. I think it also would work better with a scoop of ice cream floated in it. This idea could be better executed with some more focus and less of a kitchen sink approach.

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Photo of GeezLynn
3.39/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: Black body shows hints of dark brown. Light tan head with decent retention.

S: Very heavy on the mint, with some alcohol and roasted malt. Smells like a peppermint patty.

T: Initial punch of mint followed by chocolate malt. Unlike the aroma, the flavor is more restrained and I’d describe it as a cocoa/mint leaf combination. Fruity bourbon jumps in midway and lingers through the finish, contributing a little tangyness. Coffee is wasn't all that apparent to me.

M: Medium bodied, with rough carbonation. Rather choppy for the style.

Overall, this isn’t bad, but I’d prefer it heavier with a bigger malt base. Also, the mint and bourbon didn’t really work well together in my opinion. Worth a try if you're looking for something unusual (especially at $5/22oz), but probably a one and done for me.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
3.44/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours from the bottle an opaque black with a tan head.
Aroma is roast coffee, mint, nutty and vanilla.
Taste is coffee and chocolate up front with mint at the end. A bit of char and a little dark fruit.
Mouthfeel is very thin.
Flavor is OK but that thin and watery feel kills it for me.

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Photo of benpopper
3.46/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Stolzle Beer Glass from a bottle. Couldn't pass this up regardless at 4.99! And even though not rated high, I would recommend anyone who sees a bottle get one to share at a tasting or something, just because of its originality.

Pours pretty black into the glass, a little brown in the light. Chocolate colored head that hangs out for a little while and slowly fades leaving behind a little lace. Not very oily like some bourbon beers.

The smell really kind of makes this something I don't want to revisit although it isn't bad... Very very minty followed by alcohol. The snifter styled glass might have been enhancing the smell a bit, but it really turned me off.

The taste upfront is all mint, but not as much as I expected from the smell. The the chocolate flavors start to pull through. The warmer it got the more chocolate there was. The bourbon is less prevalent, but there in the same way as the chocolate. More of a boozy backing though. Not a whole lot of coffee.

It doesn't feel as dark as it looks. Maybe a bit more bourbon barrel time would make it smoother as the carbonation is really there still...I did enjoy drinking it though.

Overall, it isn't a bad beer, but maybe a bit more malt or time in the barrel would even things out a bit. Not something I'd age as it seems like the stuff you really want to come out more would fade away.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

split with a friend; bomber poured into 2 pint glasses.

Appearance: Dark brown body with a dark tan brown head. Some lacing klings to glass.

Smell: Malts, coffee, chocolate, and boat loads of mint that has a nice spicy and peppery smell to it.

Taste: Coffee and Chocolate that is roasty and not overly sweet. Quickly interupted by a mint explosion that overpowers all other flavors initially. The mint tastes artificial and almost like an extract or a syrupy flavor. Mint flavor continues through to the aftertaste. Some hints of vanilla and oak try to cut through the mint, but don't ever really punch through the mint dominant flavor. I think if this beer was really bourbon forward it would be horrible, but the brewer barrel aged this one about right. The mint flavor also finishes with a very mild bitterness that i could not really place.

Mouthfeel: This was the dissapointment. I was thinking this beer would be thick and chewy and it is just plain.... thin.

Overall: Less mint flavor, more and a thick full body would make this beer amazing. It was still a tasty and rare treat. I happened to stumble on the bottle at a beer store i had never beer to before and wanted to give it a shot because it had a lot of potential.

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Photo of kbutler1
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle. Been sitting on this one for a while and finally cracked. Pours a dark brown color with a light tan head. The mint is very noticeable as soon as I poured the beer. Dark roast, chocolate, and mint all in the nose. Slight minty start that stays the whole time. Light chocolate and roast notes. Easy drinking and somewhat refreshing. The only let down is that the bourbon notes are pretty minimal. Medium bodied. Ever so slight lace. Overall, decent.

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Photo of afksports
3.49/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have a problem. These kids in Brooklyn in my neighborhood have established a style of wearing their pants so low that you see their boxers. Gym shorts, track pants, jeans, I've even seen it with khakis.

I do not want to see your dirty boxers.

This beef doesn't relate to this beer, but South Shore Coffee Mint Stout made me think about it. Maybe this beer is showing its boxers.

If so, they're weird looking black boxers with green polkadots, tan elastic, and they smell like burnt coffee, mint chocolate and cheap bourbon. The boxers have lace, too, and the mint overwhelms the smell, but not in a bad way.

Let's not extend that metaphor to the taste. South Shore's coffee mint stout is medicinal, unfortunately. An offputting minty start leads to a tart and bitter finish, and it's too much for the chocolate middle to overcome.

Medicine with mint, no barrel traces, a thinner body than ideal... This beer is a beer that's close to doing something amazing, but in truth far from it.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Schmittymack for sharing this one at a recent tasting. Poured a clear dark reddish brown with a lasting brown head. Aromas of bourbon, mint, milk chocolate, light roastiness and a hint of coffee. On the palate this one was light bodied and smooth, with flavors of mint, milk chocolate and coffee.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'd never heard of this one before Jason pulled it out of the fridge. Served in a tulip glass.

A - A finger of tan foam that has excellent retention settles to a thin partial cap but minimal lace. The body is dark brown in color without any obvious transparency.

S - Mint and dark chocolate. Some oak, but not much overt bourbon flavor. I didn't even realize there was coffee in this until I looked it up on Beer Advocate.

T - Roasted malts, dark chocolate, and mint. Again, minimal barrel and bourbon, and no coffee.

M - Somewhat gritty and grainy, with medium-high carbonation, and no obvious alcohol.

D - Not the most drinkable beer, although I'd imagine that if you really like thin mints this might be a big hit. Not much bourbon barrel or coffee makes me wonder how fresh this is, as well as the alcohol content and length of times in the barrels. I much preferred Goose Island's Derby.

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Photo of Florida9
3.53/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark brown, but light is still capable of showing through on the edges. Forms a nice sized tan head. Good retention.

S: At first this smells of mouthwash: basically a lot of mint with some alcohol. As it warms some coffee begins to show up in the background.

T: Coffee, chocolate, and mint. The mint hangs around with an unwanted persistentness.

M: On the thinner side for a stout. Decent carbonation.

O: I can't say I cared for this beer very much. Really too much mint for it to be enjoyable and with a thin body for such bold flavors. Barrel aging is virtually non-existent, though I'm not sure that is really a flaw with this beer.

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Photo of Chaz
3.55/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear (brilliant?) brown/black ("Burnt Sienna" for you Crayola fans) in color and topped with a medium-tan head. Head drops fairly quickly and there's minimal lacing throughout.

Edit: Due to the "unique" combination of distinct flavors, this one is a little difficult to pin on a scale of Poor to Excellent as far as the nose is concerned, so I'll pencil it in as "Average".

There's definitely mint on the nose (mint and bourbon to be more exact), but this is no Cool Colt! There's also a light note of espresso here, but it blends-in so well with the base, malty aspect of this stout that I almost can't notice it, especially with the other aromas going all over the place. Worth noting here is the fact that mint isn't something I actually -like- in beer, so I'm not expecting too much from this one...

On first sip it's lightly-sweet, with a rather gentle underlying bitterness, just to the point where I want to call it 'bittersweet' overall. The bourbon/barrel aspect kicks in mid-palate and holds on a bit, but mint is what carries through to the finish. Lighter bodied (medium body, but for a stout it seems thin) and really covers the palate in a sweetish, bitterish base stout profile -- or perhaps more of a brown ale? Come to think of it, I do get a little of the same basic malt profile that I do from South Shore's Nut Brown, but there's more booze-y heat here as well as good amount of bitterness, and some roast. Worth noting that there's a roasted malt aspect that's distinct from the lighter, coffee (espresso) character lingering just in the background, which disappoints me a little (as I love coffee).

More than anything I'm enjoying the effect of the bourbon barrel treatment here, and the subtle alcoholic kick with which it imbues this beer. It's both potent and present enough that the mint really doesn't bother me in the slightest. Still, I can see how this attempt at merging some very distinct flavors simply won't work for everyone.

While drinking (and particularly as it warms) I got to thinking of an "Andy's" or perhaps a "York's Peppermint Patty", and how they might pair with a stronger American stout. Mint and chocolate work together, and while there's hardly any chocolate notes in this beer, in this case the beer "works". The contribution of coffee is minimal at best, so I hope nobody goes to recommend it to friends who enjoy 'Coffee Stout' as a variation on the style.

Overall, there's an excellent balance of the individual flavors, and the bourbon is what ends up going the extra mile (for me) and brings this brand into the realm of repeat purchase.

[Edit: reviewed from notes -- sampled June, 2011]

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Photo of jera1350
3.57/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed this in Duluth as it was a mere $5 for a bomber. Sure sounded good.

Pours a thinner black body with a huge over-carbonated cap of cocoa colored foam. Leaves gobs of lace clinging to the glass though.

Mint and chocolate dominate the nose. Like an Andes mint or the brownies made with a layer of green mint in them.

Greeted by a slight sour taste up front. Slight infection maybe? Chocolate, coffee and huge mint extract flavor. Not all that sweet and no signs of bourbon anywhere. Warm mint lingers into the aftertaste. Really different and I can't decide if it's good or bad. Maybe somewhere in between.

Very thin and watery mouthfeel. This would benefit from a rich thick body so much.

An interesting beer for sure, but I can't decide if I really like it. Tantalizing mint, but the rest is not up to standard. If it had more sweetness and body with less mint, I think it could be a really strong beer. As it sits, it's definitely worth trying, but don't get hopes up too high.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.6/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is very unique, never had a mint infused stout...

The look is blackish with a bubbly tan head, ok lacing. The aroma is crazy,cut literally smells like a grasshopper pie or a candy cane covered in milk chocolate. Some very herbal notes in the nose as well.

The taste is sort of sour, what? An infection? Some more herbal mint with a little sweet too in the taste, bizarre. Tart candy cane, with a bit of mint m and m. Very strange. The feel is very weird for a stout, it's like a wild ale in the feel, not stout like in feel.

Overall this is quite unique, interesting.

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Photo of DaPeculierDane
3.62/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Too much mint for most folks but interesting enough to warrant a taste or two. This does not compare to South Shore’s chocolate mint stout but it’s not bad. The mint levels are intense. Bourbon flavors are mellow. Coffee and chocolate flavors are mild. Mint and menthol are the dominant attributes. Mouthfeel is silky smooth and oily with a burning mint finish. Worth a taste but not drinkable in any quantity and frequency. Many thanks to Maduro for tapping a barrel of this unique treat.

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Bourbon Barrel Coffee Mint Stout from South Shore Brewery
3.53 out of 5 based on 78 ratings.
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