In honor of today’s Derby, I tried three beers that were aged differently, but all used barrels that had previously contained Kentucky bourbon. I stuck with stouts that had an age of 2 to 12 months of additional time.
Bourbon County Stout by Goose Island
Michelle described the initial nose as similar to opening a new box of choclates. That matched up with the vanilla, carmel and chocolate that I smelled. As the evening progressed and the beer warmed up a bit, I started to get additional notes of butter toffee along with a little bit of oaky tannins on the finish. At 13% AbV, this is a sipping beer that would go great with dark choclate, cakes, or even creme brulee. I think this was my favorite of the three listed and all around a really nice beer. I would recommend this to almost any one. Even Michelle, who is not usually a beer drinker enjoyed her share, deciding it was a nice dessert beer.
Jefferson’s Reserve by Bluegrass Brewing Company
A nice Kentucy brewed beer from Louiseville, home of today’s muddy Derby. This was the mildest of the three in overall intensity. At 8% AbV and aged for 60 days in Jefferson’s Reserve Bourbon barrels, there was almost a candied orange flavor along with coffe and oak on the finish. I would reccomend this to stout lovers who want to try something with a hint of bourbon aging to see how the stout changes.
KBS by Founder’s Brewing
This is a stout aged for one year in a Bourbon barrel. I would consider this the heaviest of the three I tasted. The nose jumps out with wood and coffee to which adds vanilla in the main flavor. The 11.2% AbV is not apparent as the coffee and wood cover any of the overall influence. I’m not sure I would reccomend this to a lot of beer drinkers unless you like stouts with heavy wood influances.
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