Well, 2017 did not go as well as 2016 did with regards to Goose Island’s Bourbon County Brand Stout. Last year I was able to finagle my way into eight bottles. This year looks set to close on just six. I am holding out hope for a few stragglers but you can’t win every time.
I know of a few people who were able to bag some pretty hefty scores of 8+ bottles or more. Some of the places I had stopped had sold half of a case or the whole case to a single person rather than doing a 1-2 bottle limit like most others. While I applaud those folks for working an angle, it does, at the same time, severely limit the distribution to many people. I am not complaining here, as I would likely take advantage of the same opportunity, but with limited distribution it makes hunting a bigger challenge.
If you were unable to get any Bourbon County, find someone who did and see if they are doing a beer share at any point and have them invite you along (wink, wink, nudge, nudge). In addition I know that Sconni’s Alehouse and Eatery in Wausau, WI will be having it on tap today, Thursday November 30th in the evening starting around 5pm.
Stout hunting of course is NOT just about Bourbon County, though it tends to kick off the season. Central Waters has some awesome barrel aged beers along with other breweries as well. If you miss out on Bourbon County don’t fret and go hunting for some of the other awesome beers out there. Founders much anticipated CBS (Canadian Breakfast Stout) will be making a return beginning Dec 1st. Some other great barrel aged beers to keep an eye out for (in WI and the mid-west) would be Surly’s Barrel Aged Darkness, Central Waters Cassian Sunset, Bourbon Barrel Stout, Bourbon Barrel Barleywine, Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale, Founders KBS and CBS, Deschutes The Abyss, 3 Sheeps Cuvee and Barrel Aged Veneration, Bell’s Barrel Aged Expedition Stout (very limited MI only release)