CHICAGO — This Black Friday, holiday shoppers will be lining up for one of the most-coveted gifts of the season — Goose Island’s new batch of Bourbon County Brand barrel-aged beer, including three new varieties. On Friday, November 29, the Chicago-based brewery will release select quantities of the fan-favorite stouts nationwide and hold special Bourbon County Brand Stout (BCBS) events in Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Austin.
The originator of the entire bourbon-barrel aged beer category, BCBS is an imperial stout that was first produced in 1992 in honor of the 1,000th beer batch at Goose Island’s Clybourn brewpub. Since that inaugural BCBS brewing, Goose Island has released several Bourbon County Brand variants, including Coffee, Vanilla, Bramble Rye, and Cherry Rye. The Friday after Thanksgiving, craft beer connoisseurs can begin experiencing the brewing-and-aging expertise in the 2013 vintage of the following selections of Bourbon County Brands:
- Bourbon County Brand Stout is one of the most sought-after beers in the craft beer world. It has been recognized by judges at the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup. BCBS is dark and dense in a powerful yet silky body made to be sipped. Its nose is an intense mix of charred oak, chocolate, vanilla, caramel, and smoke; finishing with a signature bourbon heat only this bold stout could harness. The beer is 14.5 percent alcohol-by-volume, develops in the bottle for up to five years and is sold in four packs of 12-ounce bottles.
- Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout is brewed using coffee roasted from Intelligentsia Coffee, our next-door neighbor at the Fulton Street brewery. This world-class roaster puts the same passion and skill into their coffee as Goose Island does with its beer. Each year, our brewers collaborate with the coffee experts at Intelligentsia to select a new bean. In 2013, we feature ‘Los Inmortales’ coffee beans from El Salvador. The beans were roasted and cold brewed just days before being blended into the stout. With the change in coffee comes a change in the flavor profile, making each release truly unique from the previous years. The beer is 14.3 percent alcohol-by-volume, develops in the bottle for up to five years and is sold in four packs of 12-ounce bottles.
- Bourbon County Brand Barleywine is new in 2013 and is aged in the third-use barrels that were once home to Kentucky bourbon and then Bourbon County Brand Stout. This traditional English-style barleywine possesses the subtlety of flavor that only comes from a barrel that’s 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. The beer is 14.2 percent alcohol-by-volume, develops in the bottle for up to five years and is sold in four packs of 12 ounce bottles.
- Backyard Rye Bourbon County Brand Stout is new for 2013 and was inspired by the berries our brewers first remember eating from the trees in their backyards. Aged in Templeton Rye whiskey barrels with fresh mulberries, marionberries, and boysenberries. Full of dark, spicy and pleasantly sweet flavors, this trio of berries nicely complements the flavors imparted from the barrel resulting in a smooth, jammy stout perfect for sipping on your back porch. The beer develops in the bottle for up to five years and is sold in 22-ounce bombers.
- In addition, Proprietor’s Bourbon County Brand Stout is a small batch brewed exclusively for Chicago. This special variant is meant to show our immense gratitude to the loyal and adventurous fans in Chicago whose support helped bring Bourbon County Brand Stout to towering new heights. In 2013 it was aged in Templeton Rye whiskey barrels with coconut toasted by hand by the Goose Island brewers. The beer develops in the bottle for up to five years and is sold in 22-ounce bombers.
“Our Bourbon County Brand Stout has been in high-demand since we first brewed it in 1992. At last year’s Black Friday release event in Chicago, the beer sold out in just a few hours,” said Brett Porter, Brewmaster at Goose Island Beer Company. “We’re thrilled about this year’s release because we’re now able to bring one of our most coveted beers to more people than ever before. We hope beer drinkers all over the country are as excited for Black Friday as we are.”
This is the fourth year Goose Island is releasing Bourbon County Brands on Black Friday. In 2012, at the release event in Chicago, more than 400 people lined up for a chance to purchase Bourbon County Brand Stout and its variants. In 2013, with special events in three more cities, the company expects even more people to come out for the opportunity to buy the limited-release beer.
To learn more about Goose Island Bourbon County Brands, Black Friday event locations in Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Austin, visit www.gooseisland.com, Facebook and on Twitter (@GooseIsland).
About Goose Island
Founded in Chicago in 1988, Goose Island is one of the most successful craft breweries in the Midwest and produces some of the most popular, and award winning, beers in the U.S. Since 1989, Goose Island beers have won a variety of awards at acclaimed beer events including the World Beer Championships, World Beer Cup, European Beer Star, World Expo of Beer and the Great American Beer Festival (GABF).