Goose Island — Bourbon County Stout — 13%

Forewarned is forearmed. I heard there was a lot going on in this Chicago brew, but … Damn.

This is one beer that I could be happy with just smelling all evening. Upon first inky black pour, this Goose Island creation throws hints of licorice, caramel, coffee, and plenty of bourbon high notes. The more you smell this concoction, the more complex it becomes.

“Whenever you have that caramel/licorice thing going on, you of course have molasses,” Talkin’ Bob said, sticking his nose back into the pint glass.

As the Bourbon County Stout warms, its aroma completely changes. There’s a mellowing of fragrances as vanilla notes move to the front, along with rumors of a particularly smoky house fire.

True to its name, this stout has a beautiful bourbon finish, again with a subtle coffee, or perhaps dark roasted malt, taste on the back of the tongue. This is definitely a sipper, as you’ll want to stop and consider every drop; in short, a beer that can truly be called a work of art.

I don’t know where Bourbon County is, but I want to live there.

Grade: A+

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