RATINGS: 656   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.11/5   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 60   EST. CALORIES: 363   ABV: 12.1%
Aged in the third-use barrels that were once home to Kentucky bourbon and then our renowned Bourbon County Stout, this traditional English-style barleywine possesses the subtlety of flavor that only comes from a barrel thats gone through many seasons of ritual care. The intricacies of the previous barrel denizens oak, charcoal, hints of tobacco and vanilla, and that signature bourbon heat are all present in this beer. Hearty and complex, Bourbon County Brand Barleywine is a titan and a timeline; a bold, flavorful journey through the craft of barrel aging.

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Tortman18's rating

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
Tortman18 (174) - Batavia, Illinois, USA - NOV 30, 2013
Pours a pitch black with a very prominent amber hue. Almost no head, very thin mocha ring. Not much lacing. Nose is incredible. Vanilla, raisin, plum, bourbon, caramel, peach. Very sticky and viscous. The alcohol actually sleeves a slight burn. Mouth makes me cry a little. Almost identical to the nose. A TON of vanilla and bourbon mixed with a lot of dark fruits. Leaves a very sticky, syrupy feel. Its so awesome. Listening to "Melissa" by The Allman Brothers, paired perfectly while drinking this!

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
dwyerpg (5760) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - DEC 6, 2016
Delicious. A nice strong molasses aroma, good color. The flavor isnt too sweet and has a nice strong molasses and liquor flavor. Good stuff even with the high price.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
badgerben (4907) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - DEC 3, 2016
2015 Vintage. Tap. Dark brown color with a whisp of a head. Aroma of vanilla, oak, caramel. Massive flavor of graham cracker. Dark caramel, vanilla, booze. Full body. Sweet, but not cloying.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
TizzleJizzle (786) - Garland, Texas, USA - DEC 1, 2016
1 pint 0.9 ounce bottle. Poured an opaque maroon brown with a thin beige head. Taste of bourbon, oak, vanilla esters, smooth boozy burn on the finish. Average carbonation, full body. Wow, super complex and fantastic brew.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
smaynard6000 (1027) - Apopka, Florida, USA - NOV 25, 2016
Bottle. Pours a hazy dark brown color with minimal tan head. Aroma of plum and dark fruits. Somewhat hoppy with some smokiness. Full bodied with lingering caramel and toffee notes. Quite good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
FlacoAlto (4173) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - NOV 16, 2016
Bottled on: 24SEP13 0909; Sampled November 2016
I have been scared to drink this for no good reason since I have never had the beer, perhaps the Bourbon barrel character has mellowed sufficiently. A soft, steady pour yields a 1/4-finger thick, dark amber stained, tan colored head. The beer is a concentrated, dark, red-amber color that shows a clear, red hue when held up to the light. The aroma still has some alcohol and Bourbon barrel heat to it, but it is not overwhelming. Nutty notes of oxidized malt, raisins, and a bit of sherry are joined by rich vanillin and toasted coconut. The beer just smells sweet and caramelized; fruit notes of cherry, fig, actually this smells like a dense, malty, caramelized fruit cake in many respects.

Rich feeling, and first it is a "light" richness, but then as it sits on the palate it picks up heft, and coats the tongue with a density, and lingering viscosity; the texture is just about perfect for a Barleywine. The finish has lingering vanillin and sweet, toasted coconut, a hint of warming alcohol, and an accentuating, barrel spiciness and heat; though the heat is less than one might expect. As the beer hits my belly I can definitely feel it reacting and "warming" my innards. Dense fruit notes lie underneath the barrel character with flavors of raisins, dried figs, perhaps a touch of vanilla infused cherry preserves, . There is also a certain smokiness to be found here; a touch phenolic, and it adds to the richness, it is savory, with an almost preserved, oceanic peat character somehow. Aged malt character adds a richness, boosts the savor / smoky character, and adds a nuttiness to the dense caramel notes.

This was much better than I was fearing; while the bourbon barrel still plays a prominent role, it is well balanced by the dense malt character. I can see this beer aging for quite a bit longer, and it may not even have peaked, though it is probably close, as the oxidation may play a more prominent role as the years go by. I cant imagine a Bourbon Barrel Barleywine being much better than this, it is almost perfect for what it is; the balance of fruit, dense malt, and vanilla/coconut/wood/ bourbon character is a combination fit for an end of a cold winters night.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
tightslice (1076) - Redwood City, California, USA - NOV 13, 2016
On tap at While Foods Market in Redwood City, CA. Aroma is raisins, rum soaked fruit, toffee, boozy cherries, some herbal liqueur. Taste is bourbon soaked cherries, raisins, day-old old fashioned and flat whiskey coke vibes, some woody notes. Overall just a little too much sticky sweet, herbal cough medicine to be incredible but a good boozy beer nonetheless.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
zvikar (5445) - Ramat Gan, ISRAEL - NOV 4, 2016
Clear brown, beige head, aroma of toffee, caramel, speculoos cookies, waffle syrup, flavor of toffee, caramel, waffle syrup, medium+ bodied.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
chinchill (4440) - South Carolina, USA - OCT 11, 2016
12 oz, 17 Sept. 2013 bottle consumed in October 2016 from a Belgian snifter. Dark mahogany body with some sediment that eventually settles to the bottom of the glass. Aroma: ABV over 12% is evident, as is bourbon barrel. Hints of dark dried fruits, vanilla, dried cherries, and wood. Flavor: less boozy, but no less complex than the aroma suggests. Lightly sweet. Very rich. Feel: full, creamy smooth body with well hidden alcohol. Overall: excellent and highly complex version of the style.

   AROMA 1/10   APPEARANCE 1/5   TASTE 1/10   PALATE 1/5   OVERALL 1/20
RocketBrewer (1) - Garden Valley, California, USA - SEP 27, 2016 does not count
Bought a bottle of 2015 just over a month ago. INFECTED AND UNDRINKABLE! Found out it had been recalled and contacted Goose Island only to find out the recall was only for 1 month and ended in January (7 months before I purchased the beer) , sorry. I contacted them by email hoping to get some satisfaction. Got another sorry, cant refund your $15 beer. REALLY? A 1 month recall on a beer that THEY CLAIM CAN BE CELLARED FOR 5 YEARS! Im sure there are many more in for a rude surprise still. DONT WASTE YOUR HARD EARNED MONEY ON GOOSE ISLAND PRODUCTS!

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Frank (4047) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 7, 2016
Strictly speaking, it is not a great beer. Its got lots of nice and actually rather subtle whiskey barrel notes w/ some nice raisin malt presence. But there is a lot of alcohol heat lucking in there w/ the berry and woody notes and an overbearing amount of sweetness. This is okay for a taste but digging in to any degree leads to all manner of flaws.

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