beerandrugby (210) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - MAR 29, 2005
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
draft (cask) Wrigleyville Chicago. I was excited to see that this beer was on cask at the brewpub. A lucky find I think! Poured (drawn) a dark rick black with a tan head. Intense sweet aroma of heavy malt, roasted, bourbon, and chocolate. Inintial sweet roasted chocolate, licorice, malty, taste that rolled slowly across the palate to reveal an oaky bourbon flavor with a nice dose of hops to even things out. Great mouthfeel, very very nice beer! Itís really too bad we cannot get Goose Island products here in Tennessee. One of my favorite beers I have tasted! I would like to taste it bottled...I think the cask aging is a boost to the flavor. If you live in Chicago rush over to the brewery to try this beer!
11026 (1772) - Alabama, USA - MAR 27, 2005
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle from NPDEMPSE. Pours with the viscosity of overused motor oil, thick and syrupy. No real head formation to speak of and no lacing. Aroma is great! Molasses, hints of vanilla, a little alcohol. Thick and coating mouthfeel. Sweet initially with roasted grain bitterness gaining strength slowly. Bourbon notes with vanilla being predominant. Hearty alcohol presence warms the gullet nicely. Well done.
Firetroll (1) - Tinley Park, Illinois, USA - MAR 20, 2005 does not count
3.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sure, my first rating and I couldnít have imagined a more complicated brew to describe...
Pours syrupy-thick, black, opaque, topped with a conservative caramel-colored head. It clings to the glass like soy sauce. Comes to the nose with a charred, caramely sweetness. Thick on the tongue, warming. Bold, smokey, sticky and sweet, mild EtOH. HEAVY-DUTY! Finishes like a caramel Cohiba. Not a brew I would reserve a shelf for in the fridge (not that I could afford to-with this one). í Glad I had the opportunity. Iím no lightweight and I enjoy a good, bold beer, but this one is a little over the top for me. 11% is apparent after 2... Iím such a lightweight.
5000 (6262) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - MAR 18, 2005
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle pours a viscous black, no real head to speak of, lackluster lacing, but the shear blackness of this one speaks volumes. † Just by the looks of it, it appears as if it has been aged for years. † Strong vanilla, appleskin, graham cracker on the nose. † Some chocolate and roasted malts are noticable. † Noticing a bit of alcohol as well. † Sharp on the tongue, vanilla, roasted malts, and quite a bit of Bourbon. † Very unique. † Feeling a bit of heat from this one. † While the alcohol doesnít really show itself, the warming of this one is quite noticable. † Body is big, mouthfeel is coating and somewhat slick. † This is not a beer infused with Bourbon, this is Bourbon infused with beer! † Finishes with more of a fig/date flavor, lots of apple skin, with the aformentioned Bourbon. † This is a strong brew, very warming. † This one is big, VERY big. † I should have shared this, considering the amount I have already had this evening. † By far one of the biggest/heartiest brews ever to grace my lips. † Thanks goes out to Captain Cougar for the trade!
beermatrix (1497) - Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA - MAR 17, 2005
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Aroma is quite nice, an ever changing array of strength with dark caramel and darker still, chocolate; masked by a firm girth of bourbony sweetness that really comes across as smooth and well checked, mainly due to the chocolate tones keeping it quieter then it ought to be. A nice medley on the nose. Simple notes of vanilla and cookie dough remain ever present as well. As it warms the bourbon makes a bigger effort to overcome the chocolate.
Deep and dark fudgy brown nearly and completely black once fully poured with a late-to-appear thin, dark cocoa cap of whipped cream fluff. The foam creeps away leaving a thin collar and the lacing sticks in small amounts of strings close to the collar.
Taste is thick and oily with a smooth dark chocolatey front, then, as if it had a choice, gets overtaken by a very sweet bourbon heat and tinge thats pretty intense. Whhooffda! This sucker is nicely heated. Still in check though, much like the aroma, the chocolate tones tend to supersede over the top of the flavors but staying underneath the alcoholic heat. An interesting effect. Super awesome finish, subtle, warming, late return of chocolate after the heat settles off leaving leftovers of crispened charred vanilla bean, caramel stickies, and sweet, sweet bourbon. Oh my, what an encapsulated ride of fun this stuff is, wow! That sweet bourbony heat builds strongly and just cinders for what seems an eternity while all the other stuff play underneath.
Feel is powerfully heated with a bourbony sweetness and back-throated burn that is absolutely awesome to behold. Thickishly full body with an oily front and somewhat creamy length throughout the rest of its stay that mediates under the overall heat. If it were a notch less heated it would be phenomenal as far as its feel and drinkability. It could be quite a drinkable treat if it werenít so ABV hitting. Although, thereís nothing wrong with slowing down and enjoying it, appreciating it, ...loving it, cuz thatís what itís all about with this one. I didinít think Goose Island had it in them, but man does this stuff rock! Nicey nice!
rudolf (2340) - Buffalo, New York, USA - MAR 16, 2005
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Why do I open good beers when Iím in this state? Alcohol/bourbon and chocolate in the nose. It ends up being a bit too astringent. Pure caramel (I like DAASís description of it as being like a snickers bar) A lot of sweetness here and a lot of alcohol.
Silphium (3167) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - MAR 14, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: JUL 30, 2007 Re-rate based on 3 July 2006 bottling. badnewsbeers shared this more recent vintage with me, and I was blown away. Thicker with a more complex flavor profile than the previous vintage I tried, offering huge prunes, plum, and soy, with big charred roasted malts and more subtle oak and bourbon notes than I remember from the original bottling. The 2006 vintage still has the hot alcohol finish, but everything else seems bolder and better crafted. Outstanding.
Deep opaque charcoal brown/black body, thin/medium ochre head. Strong oak and vanilla aroma with chocolate, soy, and roasted malts in the background. Flavor started out with dominant oak/vanilla, but there was enough roast and chocolate backing the barrel flavors to provide crucial balance. Coffee and a touch of soy rounded out the flavor profile. Pretty full-bodied and a bit sticky with a burnt aftertaste as well as alcohol notes. Very good. Thanks JCW! (Numbers: 8-4-8-4-16).
DrunkAsASkunk (847) - Lynnwood, Washington, USA - MAR 13, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
This beer comes courtesy of rudolf who was gracious enough to share some libations with me. This beer pours a black as night color with a thin creamy tannish head and some nice lacing. The aroma is strong and wafting... heavy bourbon and oak chips in there...more so than any other barrel aged beer I have smelled to date. Chocolate, caramel, nuts, coffee, toffee and vanilla malt aromas are mixed in with the thick musk of alcohol. It smelled somewhat like a Snickers bar. The mouthfeel is full bodied and round with a slight shutter at the 11% as is to be expected. Chocolate grainy mouthfeel, caramel and nuts really stand out here..it tastes just like a Snickers bar!!! Vanilla malts and more chocolate if i havent mentioned it already... this was truly an exceptional beer.
21iceman40 (1731) - vienna, West Virginia, USA - MAR 12, 2005
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
huge aroma, very powerful, very huge alcohol. very chocolate on the aroma and flavor, little hopps, very smooth deep chocolate overall, with some very huge unsalted balls.
brewblackhole (1588) - Muskego, Wisconsin, USA - MAR 10, 2005
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: NOV 6, 2009 Recommended by the barkeep at Landmark in Milwaukee. Poured very dark with little or no head. Coffee, chocolate and alcohol aroma, the first sip was absolute bliss. This is what a whiskey barreled brew should taste like. Creamy smooth mouthfeel, wonderful chocolate raisin taste,with a sexy velvety bourbon aftertaste. The 2nd best new beer Iíve tasted this year
Rerate-this was one of my initial ratings ,my opinion has grown for this since then