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Goose Island Bourbon County Stout - Rare

Serve in Snifter


on tap


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RATINGS: 413   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.41/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 390   ABV: 13%
From Greg Hall:
"BCS rare, I’m excited. Brewed in 2008, aged for 24 months in 23 year old Pappy Van Winkle Barrels. These are the very best smelling barrels I’ve come across in 18 years of barrel aging beer. Barrels were originally filled with spirit in 1985. We have 50 bourbon barrels aging, it will be a one time bottling, it will not be repeated."

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Cavie (4086) - Arlington, Texas, USA - DEC 21, 2010
Bottle with big thanks to thirdeye11 and Mora2000. He almost sold his naming rights to this beer but no one took him up on it. Poor Bill. I’ll enjoy your beer though! Pours a sticky brown color with a slight bit of carbonation. Aroma is huge vanilla with stinging bourbon, wood, cocoa, heavy dark malts. Wow, nice. Flavor is very sweet with a sharp touch of tart wood. Bourbon finishes out the flavor with a nice punch of roasted malt. Wow fantastic. Lovely.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
BBB63 (6507) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - NOV 26, 2010
UPDATED: AUG 9, 2012 Rerate from bottle # 4335 and served in my Stone IRS snifter: Pours Obsidian with a small ring of foamy bubbles which did leave some lace upon the glass at first but did finally fade away,some dark oily tears as well. The nose is all about rich vanilla, bakers chocolate, roast, leather, Turkish pipe tobacco with some prune and plum esters along with a bit of wood. Minor olde school oxidization but in a way the enhances the aroma along with faint bile and still aggressive booze. The taste is very earthy and sweet, big malts and bourbon are the center point which everything else revolves. Ashy charred wood mingles with the anise and leathery components. Like before still get a lot of "salty/peaty" character with some burnt creme brulee sugary notes. The mouth feel very full-bodied, sticky, oily and lush. Lightly biting booze on the finish. Actually knocking down the palate -1 from the tap version but increasing the aroma +1 so my score is still the same... so glad to have one more bottle to open at a later date. (still not worth the monies in the long run)

INITIAL REVIEW: Tap offering on Black Friday at GI Clybourn: Pitch black with a small but lasting foam, fair lace and some oily tears. The aroma has notes of heavy roast and char, tobacco and leather, hint of tar, plum and raisin, with the noticeable bourbon barrel vapours of vanilla, oak, and sweet booze. It does not however seem over alcoholic. The taste pretty much follows suit with lush chocolate, roast and black malts that are supported by earthy undertones, coffee and liquorice with an over-ripened fruit character. A charred oak and moderate bourbon influence along with a "salty/peaty" character as well. What I love most about this brew is the mouth feel, many BA beers tend to thin out but this version of BCS is still full-bodied, sticky and slick. The alcohol does warm you a bit but is not over-the-top, dangerously drinkable. Very well done brew and right behind the BCS Ancho Chili as my favorite alternate version. Is it worth standing in 20 degree temps and then paying $43 a bottle for... well I think for some it very well could be for others not a chance. For this stoutie, I would say yes but with a cost caveat.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
pantanap (3366) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 10, 2010
Bourbon county rare. 5oz sample at goose island clybourn on the Black Friday releas... Pours a velvety, silky solid liquid night black pour with a thin khaki head quickly receding towards the glass’ edge leaving a wispy presence of it’s former self... Aroma is fairly assertive on the bourbon front, somewhat thick and sticky, with molasses and vanilla. Subtler coconut undertones mingle soflty with the aforementioned qualities... Flavors are much of what was described in the nose with smooth bourbon characteristics combining sublimely, well perhaps not to that extent, with more than subtle hints of vanilla. Not so much heat or a boozy presence detected (as it would with a fresh batch of BCS) although does make an appearance in a slow yet persistent manner... Body has held up to the prolonged aging which is significant in itself. Carbonation is present and body is smooth. Decadent to say the least. Not sure if it’s worth the pricetag but it’s a must-try for me as a bourbon county stout lover. 8/4/9/4/17

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
mreusch (851) - Olathe, Kansas, USA - DEC 30, 2010
22oz. bomber, #3,760, with thanks to dgugliuzza from over on BA, and selfishly shared with no one on my own little New Years Eve Eve party by myself. Pours a nice dark black with a minimal brown head that quickly disappears leaving a still surface. Aroma is lovely, with lots of barrel notes, oak, vanilla, molasses, bourbon, chocolate, and ripe dark fruits. There is a definite initial note of alcohol that dissipates as it has a chance to breathe, and other than needing a little time found this quickly went away. Flavor is equally up to the task, with more rich vanilla, oak, molasses, chocolate and a blend of ripe dark fruits. The carbonation is just a touch higher than I’d hope, with some prickliness, but retains a smooth and coating finish. A fine beer, but not quite at the level of something like FiftyFifty’s PVW Eclipse. Embarrassed at how much this costs, but for a one bottle, one time kind of thing there are no regrets. Thanks again Danny!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Sean9689 (285) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 17, 2011
Bottle provided by AgentZero at our post-Christmas tasting, thanks Mike! Poured from 22oz bomber into 3F wine glass. A - Pours black, mocha-colored head, some nice lacing and a thin cap on top which eventually dissipates to some random bubbles and some thin whisps. S - Chocolate, oak, bourbon, toffee, burnt sugars, roasted nuts. The alcohol is a little hot, but hey, it’s still not overpowering by any means. The sweetness is not overdone like I find in some other big -bal aged stouts. T - A very nice smooth and rich oaky bourbon character, chocolate, roasted nuts, burnt sugars, caramel. Very rich and big, but nothing in this beer is too much for me. All balanced out nicely and very enjoyable. M - Full body, rich and viscous, creamy finish. D - Goose really made an awesome beer here. It wasn’t as good as the PVW Eclipse that we had in our blind tasting but it was very very close, which is impressive. Highly recommend.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
SuperDave (1932) - Beautiful Sunny Mesa, Arizona, USA - JAN 28, 2011
Near black pour with a creamy tan head that lasts a while. Aroma of dark roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, wood and bourbon. Flavor is a bit sweet and very roasty, with all of the aromas and then some. A truly great brew!

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
dmac (5093) - Toms River, New Jersey, USA - MAR 10, 2011
Bottle shared at the 5,000 party. Poured a viscous black body underneath a small deep beige foamy head. Aroma was awesome, although boozy, with notes of vanilla, bourbon, choclate, wood, tobacco a touch of smoke. Flavor of bourbon, vanilla, fudge, chocolate, wood and tobacco. Awesomely perfect body with a super smooth and creamy mouthfeel along with a touch of alochol heat that brings just enough to liven up the palate along with soft carbonation that dances on your tongue. Simply exquisite but I feel this one might actually get even better with time.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
MeadMe (1551) - Fishhawk, Florida, USA - APR 7, 2011
Thanks to the Chicago crew for sending this one my way. Pours black as night with just a few bubbles. Aromas of rich roasted malt, chocolate, vanilla, and a bit of booze. Flavors are nice and rich roast and fudge. The barrel really comes out nicely with flavors of vanilla and smooth bourbon. Thick and still on the tongue. Could use a bit more carbonation. Real nice brew.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Lagunitasfan (1322) - San Diego, California, USA - APR 10, 2011
Tasted at the mikes gi vertical. Nose is high sharp alcohol. Smooth bourbon. Taste massive alcohol bomb with oak and hints of cherries waaaaay in the top and back. Massive alcohol. Lots of movement but lords hotness. Super glad I got to try this one.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
after4ever (7061) - Brier, Washington, USA - APR 17, 2011
22. Thanks, ebay. I appreciate the opportunity to hemorrhage cash into you. Pours black with a dense and creamy dark tan head that doesn’t stick around for too awfully long. Big sweet chocolate and vanilla nose. Sweet, creamy, and roasty. Very bourbony. Smells like BBQ. Sticky thick fairly lively body, given the style, but very thick and rich. Roast, chocolate, coffee, bourbon, vanilla, maple, and bbq on the mid-palate. Sweet, roasty finish. Nice big thick BA impy.

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