slimchill (1044) - Austin, Texas, USA - AUG 19, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
2007 Bottle. Bourbon and oak in the nose, light fruit and some chocolate deeper down. Inky ruby-black, still with no head. Very bourbon-heavy, but balanced with some roasty/smoky tones and chocolate. Amazing palate, chewy and engulfing. A bit boozy, but in good taste, appropriately emphasizing the bourbon flavors.
HonkeyBra (3959) - Lemont, Illinois, USA - AUG 19, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
2006 vintage. Pours jet black with a small brown head. Aroma is sharp from the strong suggestion of bourbon, with hints of chocolate, soy, and oak. Taste is heavy on the bourbon, with dark chocolate, vanilla, caramel, marshmallow, and maple syrup notes. Lots of alcohol make it a slow drinker, but at 11% that is to be expected. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy. Finish is long. This is the most impressive of the Goose Island reserve series and is ultimately very worthy of its high rating. Great beer.
timfoolery (1126) - California, USA - AUG 18, 2008
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Poured almost syrupy black with absolutely no head (like marriage). The aroma, but more-so the flavor, was overwhelmingly sweet and malty. The coffee flavors were put on hold for huge chocolate tones and BOURBON (duh), whereas DTM thought the aroma was more mint-chocolate. I agreed, and we continued to get worked in Halo, while maintaining the zen atmosphere (at least, until the beer was gone...).
carruthm (1401) - Seattle, Washington, USA - AUG 17, 2008
4.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
black with dark tan thick head
complez malts and coffee aroma
rich dark chocolate with a bourbon edge in the finish. Lots of chocolate.
lightly bitter with some chocolatey elements.
fredandboboflo (1570) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 17, 2008
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: SEP 20, 2009 Bottle, 2007. So after 700+ ratings, I canít really add to anything others have said. Itís a bourbony beer whose bourbon is less overpowering than many others and whose base stout is better and shows through slightly more than in others. I enjoyed it greatly but I really fail to understand how a beer so dominated by BOURBON could be rated one of the top 50 BEERS out of tens of thousands. Maybe some day Iíll learn. 6-4-8-4-15/3.7
Rerate from multiple 2008 bottles. So I guess you could say Iíve learned now, and this has become one of my favorite beers. For a slow sipper and powerfully bourbony beer, this has to be one of the smoothest out there. No tannic woody notes, instead rich, lovely bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, caramel, molasses, pleasant, warming, sweet alcohol, not at all out of place, very much in place in fact. All in all, leaves nothing to be desired. While still a mood beer for me, one that I find myself increasingly in the mood for.
LilBeerDoctor (3637) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 15, 2008
2.3 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Bottle, 2007. Pours black with a small dark tan/red head that dissipates quickly. Aroma of bourbon. Flavor of bourbon, alcohol sweetness. I can tell that this is a better bourbon barrel aged beer than a lot of other BBA beers, but I can’t actually taste any of the underlying stout. I suppose it’s less bourbony than other beers, but it is definitely dominated by the bourbon. And I don’t want my beer to taste like bourbon, I want it to taste like beer. Also the 13% makes it extremely difficult to drink. Suffice it to say, I didn’t care for this bourbon bomb.
BMan1113VR (7914) - Los Angeles, California, USA - AUG 12, 2008
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle marked October 11, 2007; 13%. Fantastic oak aged beer! Thick pour that leaves a minimally sized light brown head that turns in to a ring quite quickly, but leaves a nice thin line of lacing. Pitch black body. Aroma of burbon, oak, chocolate, caramel, and some roasted nuts. Wow, that tastes good!, Rich and chocolatey, with vanilla and boozy, burbon goodness! Syrupy-creamy mouthfeel that is nearly flat carbonation wise. Leaves a bit of a dry, cedar-oaky aftertaste/mouthfeel. Really Really nice!
Kevster (344) - Bradenton, Florida, USA - AUG 11, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2004 Bottle thanks to Tony @ Oldsmar Tap House: Pours black with a medium tan head. Alcohol is very evident in the aroma. However, it’s well hidden in the flavor. Roasty flavor has hints of chocolate, liquorice and soy sauce. Very smooth and delicious!
Jblauvs (1357) - Chester, Vermont, USA - AUG 11, 2008
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: AUG 30, 2009 Motor Oil Black pour with a dissipating tan head. Smokey, Bourbon sweetness in the aroma, a little woody and alcohol. Thick, Viscous mouthfeel, Intense Bourbon character. Roasty, woody and smokey. Thick and Delicious but a perfect balance of smoke and bourbon makes this sipper an Incredible treat. Thanks to Pat
MrChopin (3999) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - AUG 9, 2008
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Many thanks to MaltOMeal!
As a fan of whisky, this is right up my alley. í07 bottle pours black and oily with a thin tan ring for a head. Iíd normally call this a 4/5, but because the beer is so like a spirit, I think its appearance is ideal. Strong, sweet bourbon nose with vanilla, smoke, and raisins. Thick, viscous mouth reveals bourbon, smoke, vanilla, and chocolate, some nice woody malt and alcohol in the aftertaste. The bourbon works wonders throughout the experience, adding warmth and character while playing with other elements, yet the beer remains refined in a category where excess is overpraised and alcohol-masking overpreferred. Ironically, itís never overbearing like WWS or even DL. BCS is all class.