nbutler11 (1262) - Phoenix, Arizona, USA - MAY 30, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
On tap at the Clybourne location. Pours black with a ruby tint around the edges and a faint brown head. Smells hot -- like a brandy. Tastes just as aggressive. Loaded with plums, dark cherries, and caramel in the flavor. Well done.
shigadeyo (2919) - Harrison, Ohio, USA - MAY 27, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
5/26/2009: This beer was in the area at a couple bars awhile ago, but I missed out on it. Needless to say, I was both surprised and happy to see it available for growler fills at The Party Source when I was there yesterday. After missing it the first time around, I really didn’t think that I would get to try it, but now I have over half a growler of it to enjoy! ...
Goose Island Night Stalker is black as night and looks pretty thick on the pour. It has a low level of carbonation (my preference for this style), but it had enought to create and support a dense, tan-colored head. The rich aroma exudes heavily caramelized malts, dark chocolate, molasses, and hints of roasted coffee beans. The biggest twist is the sugary pineapple and sweet citrus hoppiness that is also present in the aroma. The flavor is also rich and quite interesting. The huge malt base is accompanied by an equally huge hoppiness. The bitterness doesn’t really seem all that high, but the hops deliver a lot of citrus (tangerine/grapefruit) and other sweet, tropical fruit flavors. This beer is indeed rich and complex. Deeply caramelized malt, sweet black licorice, semi-sweet and dark chocolates, as well as some espresso can all be found in the flavor. There is just a bit of alcohol burn in the finish which is both welcomed and even expected in this big beer. As expected, this beer is thick and really coats the mouth well. It is creamy and goes down quite smoothly (almost too easily for a beer this size) despite the full mouthfeel. Overall this is a very good beer and I am very glad that I was able to try it. Plus, several glasses of at home it is even better than just having one at the bar anyways! I think this beer really shows off how good Goose Island’s base Imperial Stout beer really is. Aging it in a bourbon barrel or dry hopping the hell out of it just push it over the edge and make it even better.
Draught (partial growler fill) from The Party Source in Bellevue, Kentucky. Rating #42 for this beer.
greco (41) - Zeeland, Michigan, USA - MAY 23, 2009
3.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Had this on tap at the Hopcat in Grand Rapids. Strangely enough when I held it to the light it wasn’t quite as opaque as would be expected from an Imperial Stout that should be pitch black. Nice foamy head with good retention.
I got very little aroma. Flavorwise-I got a lot of licorice to go with chocolate and roast bitterness out of it and the alcohol really comes through but in a good way. I was very happy with this beer all the way down.
Loineshawn (3007) - Massachusetts, USA - MAY 23, 2009
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
on tap at hopcat in grand rapids. whoa- this was good. pours a dark brown with atan head. notes of licorice, espresso, milk chocolate with some nice hop bitterness. what a treat.
CanIHave4Beers (2768) - Pouring Bus, Iowa, USA - MAY 22, 2009
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAY 11, 2010 On tap at El Bait Shop in Des Moines. This pours a deep black color with a small espresso swirl style head. The aroma is nice but a little faint; in fact that’s where it lost most of its points in this rating. There was some nice coffee and vanilla in there though. The flavor was wonderfully complex, and it’s really a pleasure to try the beer that becomes Bourbon County Stout minus the bourbon to see what gets eclipsed in the bourbon ageing process. The dominant flavor here is black licorice, not in a cloying annoying way, but in a wonderful way that compliments the rest of the flavors, this still has a woody earthy flavor and plenty of roasted coffee notes. Of course this has lots of sweetness like it’s barrel aged brother, but this one seems a little more balanced by plenty of hop bitterness you can even taste a citrus hop thing coming through eventually, there is plenty of good warming alcohol in there as well that plays very well with the rest of the beer. The texture is everything I could ask for thick and nicely silky with just enough effervescence to add a little sharpness. I couldn’t believe when I saw this one on tap here in Des Moines, this is just delicious!
Re-Rate notes. Out of the bottle the nose on this is out of control. There is so much fresh hop character. Plenty of fruitiness that matches the roasty and bitter chocolate notes of the stout very well. The flavor follows with a huge hop character featuring lots of citrus, mango, earthy tones and a ton of bitterness. Lots of bitter chocolate. Superb.
wmubronco1992 (562) - Coldwater, Michigan, USA - MAY 16, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Draft at HopCat in Grand Rapids, Mi. Pours a opaque black. Big tan head. Nice sweet chocolate aroma. Tastes of molasses, chocolate and licorice. Nice and malty. Thanks to the server at HopCat for suggesting this one. Very nice. Huge flavor. Just the right amount of sweetness to complement an excellent burger at Hopcat.
redlem (1290) - Ohio, USA - MAY 6, 2009
3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Well "Night Stalker" was based on vampires and monsters, something that should scare me, and as "homage" this beer did not scare me in the least. OK it was dark but I have a nightlight and wooden stake.
An opaque brown color with a medium tan head that is fairly dense. Some coffee notes in the aroma and taste as well as some grassy notes, reminds me of Bells 7000.
Fairly viscous with a mildly bitter, coffee aftertaste with some grassy notes at the end.
A standard IS.
cgarvieuk (12239) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAY 4, 2009
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tap at goose Pre DLD day ... deep black ... sweet roast malt nose ... luittle black current ... rich and syrupy ... hop back ground ... quite a difficult drink
chicagodri (1683) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 3, 2009
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Another good imperial Stout from Goose Island. Pours black with a tan head. Less chocolate and coffee than the County Bourbon Stout, but this had a lot more hop aroma and flavor. I was really impressed with how the hops were able to stand out in a such a thick flavorful beer.
noompa (130) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 3, 2009
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
On tap @ Map Room. Looked forward to this a lot, given my fondness for the BCS. Jet black w/ a swirling, galaxy head of beige; nutty nose, coffee w/ more vanilla than Bourbon County Stout, but less coffee and chocolate; very sweet flavor w/ some smoke, liquorish and mild coffee. The sweetness really overpowers most flavors. Lovely velvetty body that goes down exceedingly smoothly. However, as with their DIPA, the hoppiness comes w/ a hefty price: excessive sweetness. Lighter and more floral than BCS while bring more drinkable, but lacks the latter’s complexity.