Infected Bourbon County Barleywine 2015

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by CJ_VJ86, Jan 3, 2016.

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  1. CJ_VJ86

    CJ_VJ86 Initiate (0) Jun 24, 2014 Michigan

    Has anyone had issues with '15 Bourbon County Barleywine being infected? I've heard issues with the coffee, so no need to beat a dead horse on that one. However, I have heard a few instances of infected barleywine version. I only have one bottle and haven't cracked it open. Bottle stamp 29OCT15 1453.
     
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  2. michael78747

    michael78747 Initiate (134) Jan 13, 2011 Texas
    Trader

    We have you heard of these instances?
     
  3. jloomis

    jloomis Aspirant (296) Jan 6, 2010 Florida
    Trader

    Several friends have had bad bottles. Was great day of release, but infection appears to be creeping up. Have not opened mine yet.
     
  4. nickfern

    nickfern Initiate (79) Oct 17, 2015 New Jersey
    Trader

    @Fernsanity, I guess I'll be bringing this one too in a few weeks.
     
  5. Boomer4ES

    Boomer4ES Disciple (309) Jan 31, 2012 North Carolina

    Approximately two thirds of the Barleywine was destroyed due to infection. This is a widely known fact. It is entirely possible that some bottles made it into distribution.
     
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  6. NDogg44

    NDogg44 Initiate (128) Oct 21, 2015 Texas
    Trader

    I opened a bottle over Christmas and had no problems - BW was fantastic.
     
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  7. Jstonerock24

    Jstonerock24 Initiate (0) Sep 4, 2014 Ohio

    Love that the bottles have changed and the price has increased and infections are now an issue. Haven't heard of many infection issues in BC in the past years. Total BS. I'm really worried that Rare might start turning the same direction may need to start drinking up.
     
  8. nickfern

    nickfern Initiate (79) Oct 17, 2015 New Jersey
    Trader

    I thought it was ⅔ of the coffee variant that was destroyed.
     
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  9. Lazhal

    Lazhal Devotee (473) Mar 13, 2011 Michigan
    Trader

    Mind providing a source?
     
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  10. CJ_VJ86

    CJ_VJ86 Initiate (0) Jun 24, 2014 Michigan

    Micheal, heard this from a couple people on other groups. But it was only 3-4 people who made mention of it. So I posed the question here.
     
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  11. CJ_VJ86

    CJ_VJ86 Initiate (0) Jun 24, 2014 Michigan

    Hey @NDogg44, can you provide you date stamp and the 4 digits that went after, or is that bottle long gone? Thanks.
     
  12. BrewsingBuffalo

    BrewsingBuffalo Initiate (0) Jul 6, 2015 New York

    Goodness, let's hope not. I don't have Rare, but I'd be pretty damn disappointed to crack a $60+ beer just to find out it was infected.
     
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  13. Mshea805

    Mshea805 Initiate (197) Apr 12, 2014 California
    Trader

    I had 28oct15 1800 bottle of BW 2 days ago. No infection but it wasn't what I've come to expect from this beer. A lot more dark fruit flavors and less of the decadent toffee, vanilla rich smoothness I remember from last year and especially the 2013 bottles.
     
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  14. NDogg44

    NDogg44 Initiate (128) Oct 21, 2015 Texas
    Trader

    Unfortunately, that bottle went into the recycling bin over Christmas. Wish I could help.
     
  15. SMH_NWI

    SMH_NWI Devotee (455) Jan 8, 2015 Texas
    Trader

    Everyone post the date and 4 digit stamp of all their Bourbon County as they drink them. Thanks.
     
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  16. Beerdsley419

    Beerdsley419 Initiate (0) Dec 25, 2015 Ohio

    I had 2 bottles of BW. 1st one was a geyser, sour disgusting mess.
     
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  17. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    They don't get irony around here... Just check out the Coffee gusher thread...
    I am expecting about 3 more pages of time stamps being posted. The Coffee thread is up to 6, but the barleywine never gets as much love :wink::grinning:
     
  18. TboneRN

    TboneRN Defender (648) Mar 30, 2014 Minnesota
    Trader

    I have had one bottle so far and the flavors were definitely off
     
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  19. NDogg44

    NDogg44 Initiate (128) Oct 21, 2015 Texas
    Trader

    In the Coffee thread someone said that Goose Island will offer you a $15 refund if you call them. It doesn't make up for your time in line to get the beer, but at least you are reimbursed for the money you spent (plus a little more).
     
  20. Beerdsley419

    Beerdsley419 Initiate (0) Dec 25, 2015 Ohio

    Thank you! This was the 1st time I made a trip to get a beer (drove the hour to Ann Arbor at 4am) so I hate that it ended like this.
     
  21. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    Apparently on the same thread someone posted that they are 'looking into the issue' and will respond next week. It could be really isolated, or a bigger thing, but I would imagine if it is more widespread they will be doing something more substantial like a recall or something. I doubt they want to leave potentially infected bottles out there for years since it says right on the label you can age it for 5 years... They will be fielding complaints forever!
     
  22. JrGtr

    JrGtr Devotee (436) Apr 13, 2006 Massachusetts

    Guess I should pop that BW I have sooner rather than later. I have a couple 4-packs of previous vintages that have been sitting for a while.
     
  23. nc41

    nc41 Poo-Bah (2,545) Sep 25, 2008 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    The ratings are great I wouldn't panic on it. No reason to think its systemic at all, if it's infected its infected so it's shitty whether you drink it now or a year from now. I'd opt its great and better with a year on it .y
     
  24. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    I am trying to motor through all my 2013 - it is really starting to shift to oxidized and sherry dominant flavors with an earthy quality. I love the stuff, but it seems to peak (for me at least) at about a year to 18 months.
     
  25. Kevhopped17

    Kevhopped17 Initiate (0) Jan 4, 2016

    I can confirm. Had a coffee and a barleywine on New Years, and the barley smells like my home brews when I forget to disinfect something. It's so incredibly sour and purely undrinkable. The coffee was heavy on the coffee at the start and finished with a sour that lingered.
    Coffee: 17/sep/15 - 1947
    Barleywine: 28/oct/15 - 1456
     
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  26. Thesotu

    Thesotu Initiate (56) Dec 30, 2014 Florida

    Just cracked my BW # 1127. Total infection bomb. I have 5 others to crack but I'm assuming they were all from the same batch. I don't know what the process is but I'll try for some compensation from Goose Island for loss of revenue, mental distress, defamation, loss of sleep, etc.
     
  27. lambpasty

    lambpasty Devotee (426) May 3, 2013 New Hampshire

    I've had both my bottles and had no issues aside from the fact that they both were eventually empty.
     
  28. SMH_NWI

    SMH_NWI Devotee (455) Jan 8, 2015 Texas
    Trader

    The BCBCS gusher thread is exactly why I made my post.
     
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  29. MerryTapster

    MerryTapster Zealot (594) Mar 6, 2010 Pennsylvania

    Now how are you going to say Bourbon County is bad bee because it's not. Now would I rather drink a Neshaminy Creek or Hill Farm Stead or Other Half Brew. Of course. But come on dude.
     
  30. Boomer4ES

    Boomer4ES Disciple (309) Jan 31, 2012 North Carolina

    My source was multiple contacts within the AB network.
     
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  31. Can_if_you_can

    Can_if_you_can Crusader (793) Mar 15, 2012 Minnesota

    WOW. this whole post really REALLY blows my mind... been a huge fan of bourbon county and any of it's variants that I can get my hands on for the past 4 years... This year out of spite for the size change and price increase I decided to not bother buying anything but a single rye and 3 bottles of regular. Reading all this about the barleywine and coffee is truly sad. Last year I know there was A LOT of angry customers in the MN market that couldn't get nearly the amount of any of the variants or even the normal compared to years past. Now you wait in line or drive around for hours to pay MORE money for LESS quantity and then on top of it theres a good chance that what you waited/drove/shelled out for is infected... this is RIDICULOUS in EVERY sense of the word. If it wasn't bad enough that A.B. has had control over Goose Island for years, now they have full control over Bourbon County brand and on top of it they are distributing infected product just to make million$ more than they already have and don't need much less deserve. I was hopeful that we had another few years of amazing bourbon county before A.B. started cutting corners to put out a less desirable/more cost effective product, I guess I was wrong. I really feel bad for those who are new to the Bourbon County brand and may NEVER get the chance to have a great bourbon county coffee or barley wine. I mean if there are just going to distribute infected garbage might as well make it a year round brand and tell people the can take their chances in paying a boatload for a possible infected beer... I don't even know how to word my anger or frustrations... if this is how Goose Island repays their veterans and hardcore supporters of what USED to be one of the GREATEST products on the market than the Geese need to be SHOT DOWN AND BUTCHERED.
     
  32. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    Which is totally fine - just don't throw out comparisons to atrocities / war crimes / genocide / whatever the fuck else those bastards are going to do...

    Sure, if you don't like large corporations then Bourbon County being infected and the problems this will cause (costs, recalls, lost business) will certainly be satisfying to watch... but good people, and some amazing brewers might just lose their jobs if the shit hits the fan. Regardless of the company they work for, something they worked mighty hard to create has gone wrong. Hate the corporation, but at least respect the people who make the beer...
     
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  33. ebin6

    ebin6 Disciple (334) Jun 11, 2009 California

    Are you talking to me?
     
  34. Kevhopped17

    Kevhopped17 Initiate (0) Jan 4, 2016

    Has anyone attempted to get their bottles replaced instead of refunded? I'm going to call tomorrow morning and try, but I'm not sure if it's ridiculous to push on that or not.
     
  35. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    Aaaand moving back to the actual topic.

    I just checked all my bottles (have ~10 of the barleywine) and there are 2 bottling dates - 28th and 29th of Sept. Time stamps range throughout the day, so I expect they did several barrel dumps and blends over the course of at least 2 days (possibly more).

    Good chance there are going to be good bottles mixed in there since there are more bottles (and batches presumably) of the barleywine compared to the coffee.

    If this is a legit issue, it does lead some credence to a theory of a friend who told me yesterday it might be due to the bottles not being totally clean when filled. The new bottle with the embossed glass apparently leaves little nooks and crannies inside the bottle which (so the theory goes) might have trapped some bacteria / yeast.

    No idea if this is true or utterly made up, but it might explain why there is a lot of variance. It also raises the possibility that basically all bourbon county this year could have issues... So far from the half a dozen or so bottles of different things I have had everything has been amazeballs, with no infection at all, so hopefully this is a 1 in 10, or 1 in 20 (or smaller) sort of issue that means we might still be able to age our beer!
     
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  36. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    No worries! I am just trying to get the thread back on topic so the whole thing doesn't get deleted!! I think the trolling is more the string of "F!@# you" that was from someone else - the mods get stressed about threads going too far off on a tangent (which is totally fair) so I thought we should reign it in - no worries at all!

    To your actual question, the sour sisters are barrel aged (Juliet, Madame Rose, Lolita, etc...) and I have no idea if they are in the same facility or completely separate. Some breweries have completely separate facilities to avoid the issue, but that is assuming it is a cross-barrel infection from one of their sours (which it might not be), and I have no idea were Goose keeps their sour barrels.

    It could be wild bacteria that are in the air getting into some of the equipment (that wasn't then subsequently sanitized) or in the bottles... Heck, it could be a bad batch of bottle caps, which would be super hard to detect since they are all the same cap on BCBS and variants as far as I have noticed.

    Apparently (according to a thread elsewhere and a random internet source!) Central Waters Peruvian Morning infections were due to the coffee roaster they used sharing ventilation ducts with a bakery next door (I guess yeast traveled through) but the short answer is, infection can get in from a bunch of sources, especially when it is a barrel aged adjunct stout - there are a lot of steps where something can go wrong.

    My guess is that since it seems to vary bottle to bottle that it has something to do with the bottles themselves or the caps. I have no idea how big the tanks are that GI uses to blend all the seperate barrels into a batch, but I bet they aren't small, so if it was a larger barrel problem I would think it would be pretty prevalent, and not sporadic.

    One thing that AB InBev does very well is sanitation and quality control. Consistency is key for these big brewers, so they have pretty stringent processes and are constantly looking for improvements. Time will tell, but my fingers are crossed that this is isolated to a relatively small proportion of bottles... mostly because I have a bunch in my closet right now!:stuck_out_tongue:
     
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  37. ebin6

    ebin6 Disciple (334) Jun 11, 2009 California

    Yeah, I'm glad the Bruery got ahead on this with Teurreax (or however it's spelled) seeing as they pretty much only make BA beers and sours these days.

    Despite my hatred of AB, I DO feel bad for all the people who got infected beers. It probably won't do anything in the long run aside from screw people out of a lot of money
     
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  38. pagriley

    pagriley Meyvn (1,027) Oct 27, 2014 Illinois
    Trader

    Yep, the Bruery route of a separate facility does seem smart to minimize the risks. I had thought Firestone Walker was doing the same thing with their barrel works program, but not sure - they might have all their barrel stuff in one facility (although presumably separate spaces / warehouses...)

    I have an arseload of regular and a goodly amount of variants too - I love this beer and although the money will hurt (I dropped a bunch this year when the second round hit Chicago) the really sad thing is this is an amazing beer, and it would suck if people didn't get to enjoy it!
     
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  39. ebin6

    ebin6 Disciple (334) Jun 11, 2009 California

    Yeah, 99% sure Barrelworks is just sours. Haven't really had a chance to try many of them. They fly off the shelves around here.
     
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  40. BrewerMatty

    BrewerMatty Initiate (0) Mar 10, 2009 Minnesota

    For what it's worth,I've cracked 2 of the 7 barley wines I secured. Both have been stellar to this point
     
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