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Category Archives: Alltech

Review of Kentucky Ale

For tonight’s review I’m going to be sampling the Kentucky Ale brewed by the Alltech Lexington Brewing and Distilling Company located right in the middle of “horse” country in Lexington, Kentucky.  Actually, this brew was the official beer of the World Equestrian Games in 2010 (which is like the Olympics for horses) held in Lexington, so it was a big deal around these parts because it was the first time the Games had ever been held in the United States.  

I have already reviewed both the Kentucky Light and the Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale, so be sure to check out those reviews when you have a moment.

Alltech only brews these three beers and the Kentucky Ale is considered their flagship and most readily available.

A little description from kentuckyale.com

Our Master Brewers describe Kentucky Ale as a marriage between two classic beer styles, Irish Red Ale and English Pale Ale. 

Light amber in color, Kentucky Ale owes its unique body and character to select imported malts and a pinch of wheat malt for a rich, smooth taste.

The unique body and character of Kentucky Ale is heavily influenced by the water, drawn from aquifers in the limestone rock underlying the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky.

Let’s pour the Kentucky Ale. 

This beer has an ABV of 5.34% and comes in a 12 oz. bottle.

In the glass the beer appeared a very clear, light copper to light amber color.  Golden highlights shimmered across the bottom and sides of the glass.  It had a slightly off white head that poured to a nice size; was somewhat soapy and smooth, yet didn’t have a tremendous amount of retention.  The lacing looked ok to begin with, but as the brew settled it completely vanished along with any trace of a cap. 
The aroma kicked off with a decent burst of caramel malt and tones of vanilla extract.  Pretty sweet smelling really.  A grainy, bready note along with a freshly “beat” dough helped simmer some of the sweetness.  Some hops were found, which smelled both a bit floral and a bit earthy.  I found the aroma to be balanced pretty well to tell the truth. 
The taste re-introduced the caramel malt, but this time it brought along a hint of butter.  The hops were more “earthy” in the taste, however they seemed to be more relaxed and subdued.  Definitely a more “malt forward” beer.  The grain savor came through, but it leaned more to a wheat bread implication.  Not a bad taste here actually. 
The mouthfeel was medium, smooth, crisp and semi-refreshing.  Some flavor was left behind, but not a whole lot.  It was gone pretty quick. 

This brew is not bad at all.  It had some distinct character and was complex enough for some discussion.  This would be a great introductory craft beer for anyone looking to branch out from the “macro” world.  It glides down smooth and easy, is not too filling and very easy to drink.  I don’t think I would have any problem enjoying this for a night or at anytime during the year.  It’s not an extraordinary brew, but it does give us Kentuckians a local beer to enjoy and celebrate here in the middle of Bourbon country.  Pick up a bottle or two and see for yourself.

I trust everyone is having a great holiday weekend and enjoying some tasty craft beer.

Thanks for reading.  Cheers!!!

Score:  3.45 out of 5
Grade:  B-    

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Posted by on July 4, 2011 in Alltech, Country: USA

 

Review of Kentucky Light

I love my home state of Kentucky.  I’m proud to say that I was born, raised and have lived here my entire life.  Its beautiful countryside is something to behold with the plains and flatlands of Western Kentucky that give way to the rolling, bluegrass hills of Central Kentucky finalized by the mountains of Eastern Kentucky Appalachia.

Kentucky is best know for KFC, The Derby, UK basketball and Bourbon, all of which are honorable and proud things to be noted for, however one thing The Bluegrass State is not known for, is world class craft beer.

The Alltech Lexington Brewing and Distilling Company (kentuckyale.com) hope to change that.   

Currently, they produce three different brews.  The Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale (which I have reviewed on the blog),  the Kentucky Ale and Kentucky Light. 

Today, I’m going to be reviewing the Kentucky Light.  I found this detailed description on the website. 

Kentucky Light is a light bodied easy drinker for a thirst quenching low calorie, low carb experience.  The aroma is lively with a crisp, zesty finish.  That’s because our specialized yeast, said to be the life force in beer, is the single greatest flavor contributor to this remarkably smooth and flavorful microbrew sure to be a Bluegrass favorite for years to come.  Whether you’re strickly a light beer drinker or prefer a medium bodied microbrew, one taste of Kentucky Light will prove you can have a great tasting light beer full of flavor without all the calories. 

This is the only one of the three that I have not had, so I’m looking forward to seeing how it tastes.

This brew comes in a 12 oz. bottle with an ABV of 4.32%.

The beer appeared a crystal clear, straw/yellow color with a super bright white, soapy, fizzy head.  The head, actually had very nice size and girth, however it didn’t stick around very long and the lacing was minimal at best.  I was amazed by how clear the body was.  Impressive really. 
The aroma produced a faint grain with a dry wafer or cracker note followed by some lemon citrus and a mild, butter”y” zest.  It smells clean, laid back and balanced.  
With the taste, I detected a dry, crisp, cracker flavor with a gentle lemon citrus, which provided some well needed touches of bitterness.  A prevalent, grain”y” savor was recognized to add some intricacy and, like the smell, I think it had a very “clean” profile.  The overall resume was somewhat subdued and slight, but it still had enough mettle to keep me interested.  The one setback, that I encountered, was the arrival of some “dreaded” rice adjuncts.  The weren’t putrid or off putting, but I was just hoping that I wouldn’t find them.  It was still balanced fairly well though. 
The mouthfeel was medium/thin, dry and smooth with a very crisp finish.  It was not at all watery like a lot of other Kolsh style brews are, but it was still very refreshing and thirst quenching.

One thing is for sure.  This IS a light beer.  Not filling, very easy drinking and seems like the type of beer I would want after a hard, hot days work in the tobacco patch.  I think it’s still better than any “macro” out there.  Much better smell, flavor and mouthfeel.  This might be the perfect brew to persuade non “craft beer” drinkers to expand their palate a bit.  It is similar to a “macro”, yet it still has a personality and a presence that is duly noted.  Give it a try if you want a Summer refresher. 

On a side note, I hope to post a review of the flagship Kentucky Ale in the near future to complete the “trifecta” of the Alltech Lexington Brewing and Distilling Company brews.

As always, thanks for reading and commenting.  I hope you guys are getting as much enjoyment out of the posts as I am.  Let me know if you don’t mind.  I would love to get some feedback. 

Score:  2.6 out of 5
Grade:  C- 

 
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Posted by on May 26, 2011 in Alltech, Country: USA

 

Review of Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale

For tonight’s review, I thought I would try another Bourbon Barrel Ale from my home state called the Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale made by the Alltech Lexington Brewing and Distilling Company in Lexington, Kentucky.

The Bluegrass State is known for producing some of the finest Bourbon in the world and this concoction blends whiskey with a traditional ale.

From the website, kentuckyale.com, I found a nice little description.

Award winning Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale is a unique sipping beer with the distinctive nose of a well-crafted bourbon.  Our Kentucky Ale is aged for up to 6 weeks in freshly decanted bourbon barrels from some of Kentucky’s finest distilleries. 

Subtle yet familiar flavors of vanilla and oak are imparted to this special ale as it rests in the charred barrels.  Pleasantly smooth and robust, Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale may also be served as an aperitif or after dinner drink.

Let’s see if it makes the state proud.

This 12oz. bottle had a cool little label and an ABV of 8.19%.

The appearance was a very clear, dark orange to light amber in color.  An off white head that was small and dissipated rather quickly.  It left only a scant amount of lacing behind as I worked my way down the glass.  The fizzy head was comprised of small bubbles that settled to a thin ring around the top. 
The aroma was at first, of course, the Bourbon whiskey.  It smelled slightly sweet, conjuring up notes of vanilla and toffee that gradually gave way to some welcome caramel as it warmed. 
The flavor brought out more of the Bourbon along with the oak”y”/woody tones.  The Bourbon was a bit strong on the initial swallow, but as I continued to sip, the alcohol started to become more pleasant and balanced.  The “oak” tones seemed to become more restrained also, which let the sweetness of the caramel and vanilla take part in the complexity. 
The mouthfeel was an overall medium that was surprisingly smooth, considering the high alcohol presence.  This Ale left a dry, welcome, warming effect deep in the chest, however it was nothing harsh, distracting or displeasing.  Trace amounts of flavor were left on the tongue, although I thought more could have been accounted for.  Overall though, it wasn’t bad.

The Lexington Brewing Co. provides a decent example for this style.  It’s not the best Bourbon “beer” I have tried, however it’s nowhere near horrible or undrinkable.  It wasn’t balanced as well as I thought it could have been.  The Bourbon comes off a bit strong at first, but it does calm down as you get going.  I’m more than proud to say this is a “hometown” brew and I hope they continue to make it.  This definitely puts Kentucky in the discussion when it comes to making a respectable, worthwhile beer.  

Have you had it?  What did you think?  Please leave a comment.  I would love to hear from you.

Score:  3.45 out of 5
Grade:  B-      

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2011 in Alltech, Country: USA

 
 
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