(Chicago, IL) – Last week, label approval came in for Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Barleywine in 12 oz. bottles meaning the beer is cleared to be sold nationally in that format, state-by-state rules notwithstanding. If or when that will be is up in the air.
Goose Island first tipped fans off to this beer way back in October. The barrels shown in the photo come from Heaven Hill Distilleries so this is technically not a re-branding of another bourbon barrel-aged barleywine called King Henry, which was aged in 23-year Pappy Van Winkle barrels.
Though it took some flack from Chicago drinkers for spreading around recent barrel-aged bottles to a number of markets, the company notes in a Facebook comment that, “The majority of barrel aged beers stay in the Chicago area.”
Why the trouble? Bottles in Goose Island’s ‘Bourbon County’ series tend to disappear from shelves as soon as they arrive, with lines forming outside of stores in some cases.
A request is out to Goose Island for more information.