Bourbon County Vanilla-now or later?

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by elliott1184, Jan 24, 2013.

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  1. elliott1184

    elliott1184 Devotee (420) Mar 31, 2011 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Any thoughts on how this is drinking presently? I have one bottle & seem to be waiting for the mythical special occasion to open it; if anyone has opened one recently, what did you think? I opened an 08 BCBS recently & was astounded by how good it was; balanced & mellow, great creamy mouthfeel, & I hope the BCBVS is aging as gracefully, but worry a little about things like the vanilla falling off...
  2. Psychmusic

    Psychmusic Disciple (366) Jun 22, 2012 Connecticut
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    all reports are vanilla is falling off. my totally unprofessional opinion is to open it at your next "special occasion" as odds are its going down hill from here on out (assuming hasn't been refrigerated).
  3. pmoney

    pmoney Crusader (717) Apr 15, 2011 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    What reports are you referring to?

    From everything that I've heard and personally experienced, BCBVS has only become better. I opened a bottle in October and had it at Black Friday in November and it was absolutely awesome. In both tastings, I personally liked it more than Rare and all other variants. The vanilla flavor is absolutely not fading.
  4. pmoney

    pmoney Crusader (717) Apr 15, 2011 Illinois
    Beer Trader

  5. Kmccabe33

    Kmccabe33 Aspirant (215) Nov 4, 2011 Georgia
    Beer Trader

    hellomisterp likes this.
  6. Bay01

    Bay01 Aspirant (278) Nov 19, 2008 Illinois

    Had a Vanilla a few months back with a few other guys and we all thought it was phenomenal, much improved since fresh. I would drink soon, not sure it could get any better.
  7. Number45forever

    Number45forever Initiate (0) Jan 6, 2012 Vermont
    Beer Trader

    I had one about the same time and thought exactly the same thing. It was a slightly sweeter version of similarly aged BCBS. But I got almost no vanilla. Considering the hype, I was "disappointed." Instead of it blowing me away it was just like another bottle of awesome BCBS. I'd have loved to try it fresh to see how much vanilla was there at that time.

    I wonder if there's some bottle variation, because so many people claim it's still a vanilla bomb and I didn't get that at all...
    CityofBals likes this.
  8. Auracom

    Auracom Zealot (577) Nov 5, 2010 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    It's been a year now since my last sampling, and while it was drinking great then you have no guarantee. This is true for anything BA. Sooner rather than later in nearly every situation.
    timc13 likes this.
  9. stxSS07

    stxSS07 Initiate (0) Nov 23, 2010 Illinois

    Drink up my man.

    Had it in...November(?) next to Bourbon/Brandy Vanilla DL. Vanilla was seriously lacking in the BCBVS.

    Like others have said it's still tasty, but the vanilla is more like Swayze in "Ghost"...invisibly kissing your neck while you sip.
  10. ant880

    ant880 Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2010 New York

    Never before has BCBVS been so poetically described... Somewhere "Ghost" Swayze is proud, but "Roadhouse" Swayze wants to rattle your jaw
    davey101, Gosox8787, smutty33 and 2 others like this.
  11. mocktm

    mocktm Devotee (437) Jan 3, 2011 Virginia
    Beer Trader

    Opened my bottle at a recent tasting. I really didn't detect too much vanilla in it which means its probably already faded considerably. Was essentially just a sweeter creamier version of BCBS. I'd open it now unless you're sitting on a couple and have an extra to play with.
  12. pmoney

    pmoney Crusader (717) Apr 15, 2011 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    There must be bottle variation because I'm in the same boat as Bay01. And I've consistently had a great experience with BCBVS, and I've thought it has improved every time I've had it (probably 8-10 times since 2010).
  13. mcaulifww

    mcaulifww Initiate (0) Aug 18, 2011 Virginia

    I had one next to a fresh bcbs and I thought the bcbs tsted better. There was no vanilla
  14. standardcherry

    standardcherry Initiate (0) Jan 17, 2011 Massachusetts

    I was really disappointed by vanilla, had it in December and vanilla was non-existent. To me it tasted like a really sweet BA stout. Not that great, in my humble opinion. Would have taken a BBPt5 any day over vanilla.

    I'd say drink it soon, it probably won't get any better with time.
  15. kscaldef

    kscaldef Initiate (0) Jun 11, 2010 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    I will take any Vanilla off the hands of anyone who feels it is "falling off".
    smutty33, Shmeal and MordorMongo like this.
  16. TotallyHosed

    TotallyHosed Disciple (321) Jun 20, 2009 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Had a Vanilla just a few weeks ago that had spent it's entire life (since purchase) in the refrigerator. This bottle had the most vanilla flavor than the several glasses I've had on tap at different locations and dates throughout 2012. I'm convinced that the refrigeration kept the vanilla flavor intact, which really should not be surprising. This made me rethink my cellar strategy: drink fresh then decide to refrigerate or cellar the second bottle.
  17. 4DAloveofSTOUT

    4DAloveofSTOUT Poo-Bah (2,313) Nov 28, 2008 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Lots of BCBVS haters in this thread...prehaps the expectations were set too high? Afterall its just beer in the end no matter what label it has...
  18. stxSS07

    stxSS07 Initiate (0) Nov 23, 2010 Illinois

    Not seeing any haters. Guess I need a new prescription.
    pmoney likes this.
  19. tjfilippo

    tjfilippo Initiate (182) Jan 28, 2008 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    Agreed! It all depends how it was stored. IMO BCBVS was at it's peak when it was fresh. However, a month ago I had a BCBVS that was kept in the fridge and there was still alot of Vanilla flavor. Much more so than one I had 6 months ago that wasn't stored in the fridge.
  20. waltersrj

    waltersrj Initiate (0) Dec 16, 2010 Washington

    Just had one this last Friday and the Vanilla is very pronounced. I think it has gotten better with the bourbon smoothing out a bit. It was in a blind taste test and scored higher than Black Note, Rare, BT 09', and more.
  21. ASUBeer

    ASUBeer Aspirant (206) Nov 4, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    I'm ready for the reign of Bramble. :wink:
  22. axeman9182

    axeman9182 Initiate (0) Aug 5, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    I'd get comfortable, you might be waiting a while yet for that.
  23. infi

    infi Devotee (446) Apr 4, 2009 New York
    Beer Trader

    Was much better fresh than now, IMO. Everyone's palate is different, but drink it now.
  24. travMI13

    travMI13 Aspirant (213) Jan 7, 2012 Michigan
    Beer Trader

    Where is the option for "a year and a half ago"? In fairness, it's been a year since I had this last, so there's that.
  25. kdb150

    kdb150 Devotee (485) Mar 8, 2012 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    There isn't just bottle variation, but storage variation. A BCBVS kept at 40 will now taste different from one stored at 50, and from one stored at 60. If you kept it around in your fridge so you could peek in at it every time you got a glass of milk or some cheese, it is likely still pretty vanilla-y. If it sat in a proper cellar, chances are the vanilla has faded by now.
  26. ASUBeer

    ASUBeer Aspirant (206) Nov 4, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Just sayin
  27. tinypyramids

    tinypyramids Initiate (0) Jul 19, 2012 Illinois

    vanilla is a great beer. at this point, it won't be a vanilla bomb, but from what i heard the beer was fresh, you could go either way on it. i thought the vanilla was phenomenally integrated when i last had it in april.
  28. justforrazors

    justforrazors Initiate (0) Feb 16, 2013 Missouri

    We did all 5 variants+'09 bomber blind in August. Vanilla was very "meh" for all of us. I noticed the vanilla in the nose, and it definitely had a more rich mouthfeel compared to some of the others, but it was lacking in the flavor in my opinion. I think that you should drink up... it isn't going to get any better.
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