The lottery gives winners a chance to be the first to try and buy this year’s Bourbon County Stouts.
Goose Island Bourbon County Beers
Credit: Courtesy of Goose Island Beer Co.

Since essentially launching the barrel-aged beer craze in the mid-‘90s, Goose Island’s Bourbon County Brand Stout has not only gone on to legendary status but even become an institution in its own right. In 2010, the brand coopted the biggest shopping day of the year—Black Friday—for the release day of these coveted beers, a tradition that has left people lining up at the brewery the day after Thanksgiving. And since 2016, Goose Island has given the most diehard fans an even more exclusive opportunity: the chance to try and to purchase the latest Bourbon County Stouts—including the Chicago-only Proprietor’s Stout—a couple weeks ahead of everyone else at an event known as Proprietor’s Day.

This year, Proprietor’s Day is set to take place on Sunday, November 11. Goose Island is once again expecting a big turnout: So big, in fact, that tickets are being issued by a lottery system. From now until October 8, interested beer fans are encouraged to go to where they can submit their name up to once per day for the chance just to purchase one of the $30 tickets.

If you’re lucky enough to be selected, what do you get for your $30? Well, don’t put your wallet away just yet: Your ticket includes the opportunity, if you wish, to purchase a bundle of two bottles of Proprietor’s Bourbon County Stout and one bottle of Bourbon County Vanilla Stout for $70, giving you a solid 12 days of bragging rights before the public gets their hands on them. What makes Proprietor’s Stout so special? Well, beyond only being sold in Chicago, the brewery explains, “This year’s Proprietor’s is all about the chocolate. Using a combination of dark chocolate and two types of cocoa nibs, this rich and decadent beer highlights the whole range of chocolate from smooth and silky milk chocolate flavors to deep and earthy dark chocolate.”

Meanwhile, a chance to buy beer isn’t all you get for your 30 bucks. The purchase price also comes with a commemorative snifter, a custom Bourbon County tote bag, and seven tokens for 3-ounce tasting pours of all the 2018 Bourbon County varieties (or cans of 312 Dry Hop if that’s more your speed). The event also features a street market where “local Chicago companies will be sampling their unique goods made with or inspired by Bourbon County Stout,” as well as music, food trucks, and maybe even “some surprises from the past along the way.” Basically, if you’re looking to party on the streets of what is likely to be a very cold Chicago in November, you could easily find less exciting ways to do it.