1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale - Alltech’s Lexington Brewing and Distilling Co.

Not Rated.
Kentucky Bourbon Barrel AleKentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

2,140 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,140
Reviews: 516
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 18.53%
Wants: 98
Gots: 359 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Alltech’s Lexington Brewing and Distilling Co. visit their website
Kentucky, United States

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  8.19% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial 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.

(Beer added by: SheepNutz on 07-13-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,140 | Reviews: 516 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bendurgin
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this as an extra in a trade with 6DaysBottomOcean recently. I am very excited for this one for I haven't heard of it until it fell in my lap. Poured into a pint glass. This one is a very clear amber color with about two fingers of bubbly white head. Nice sticky lacing on this. The smell is unlike any other beer I can recall. Smells of rich butterscotch and sweet bourbon run straight to the front. My words can't do the smell justice. It has a certain sweetness to the aroma that I am familiar with but can't place my finger on. It smells really nice and very malty with subtle oak undertones. I'm intrigued to say the least. It has a nice balance of bourbon and malt with a slight sweetness that I can only call comforting. The bourbon hits nicely right up front but it creeps very subtly, to finish strongly with sweet malts and a spot on oak flavor. The mouthfeel is as expected, medium bodied with fair carbonation. For what this is I would say it is quite drinkable, even though I would only want it once in a while. It is however, really hitting the spot on a cool Autumn night in New England.

Bendurgin, Sep 27, 2010
Photo of JMS1512
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

JMS1512, Mar 09, 2014
Photo of BeerBeast
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

BeerBeast, Nov 20, 2014
Photo of tdmccarthy
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

tdmccarthy, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of mattreitz49
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

mattreitz49, Jun 22, 2014
Photo of Elicoleman
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Elicoleman, Sep 03, 2014
Photo of aforbes10
1.93/5  rDev -47.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle purchased by shivtim on his drive through Kentucky. We assumed this was one of those MBC "front breweries" but apparantly its not. Pours an uninteresting amber with a slight, wispy head. Smells like grain alcohol, shitty bourbon. Tastes like watered down bourbon, vanilla flavoring and not much else. pretty bland and watery. Medium to thin bodied. Eh.

aforbes10, May 11, 2008
Photo of Lemke10
4.38/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I tried this on-tap at Conway and O’Rielly’s in Janesville, WI in mid 2012. Pours a golden amber color with a strong bourbon scent. Strong crisp taste of bourbon that is silky smooth that is barrel aged to perfection. I thought this was a lot better than what the ratings reflect.

Lemke10, Aug 02, 2012
Photo of JakerLou
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

JakerLou, May 23, 2014
Photo of Greywulfken
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: medium gold body, finger of head

S: bourbon is predominant, secondary malty caramel and vanilla

T: nice malt character enhanced by bourbon, vanilla, and oak

M: thin on the palate, mild carbonation, no aftertaste

O: reminiscent of Innis & Gunn beers, but with a slightly denser character and more sweetness - I personally prefer this to them - a decent drink, worth the try, but probably not something I'd return to

Greywulfken, Sep 15, 2012
Photo of sbricker
3/5  rDev -18.3%

sbricker, Feb 18, 2012
Photo of KeefD
4.22/5  rDev +15%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a snifter. Bright amber orange with no head, but plenty of carbonation. Big hints of bourbon soaked fruit on the nose. Hints of vanilla and spice. Taste is wonderful. Definite hints of bourbon, backed up by some sweet malt, some vanilla undertones, and a not-too-cloying fruit sweetness. Hints of caramel are present. This beer is a bourbon lover's dream. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin, but it's perfect for the style. Not too much carbonation to get in the way of the body, which would have made it a bit too crisp. A very nice Kentucky Koncoction.

Go BIG BLUE!!

KeefD, Jul 24, 2008
Photo of silentjay
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

with a beer that doesn't fit into a specific style guideline, its hard to say what it should look like, but I was very surprised to see a crystal clear yellow/copper beer with a pure white head. it forms to about 1 finger in height, quickly recedes to a thin, spotty film, but leaves nice lacing on the glass.

the aroma is a mixture of light caramel, vanilla, bourbon, raisins, light molasses, oak, maple syrup.

the flavor is as if i poured a shot of bourbon into a weak-flavored amber beer. vanilla and caramel and toast. thats about it. I like the flavor, but its just so simple for a barrel-aged beer.

syrupy medium bodied with subtle carbonation and a slight alcohol heat.

if i wanted a weak bourbon, I would drink it on the rocks. I like when they use barrels to add complexity rather than use beer to water down bourbon. It tastes good enough, I would drink it again, but its nothing Id seek out.

silentjay, May 18, 2011
Photo of ChrisMon02
2.5/5  rDev -31.9%

ChrisMon02, Apr 02, 2014
Photo of biggred1
4.28/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Clear copper with a slight white head, very fine lacing.

S- Pretty potent smell,big oaked wood and whiskey aroma, some sweet faint vanilla in the background.

T- Nice vanilla bean, coconut and caramel up front with a decent warm alcoholic woody finish.

M- Smooth and creamy, coats the tongue.

D-Nice stuff in moderation. One of the better examples of the bourbon beer in my opinion.

biggred1, Jun 06, 2008
Photo of zrab11
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a Very Clear light amber color with no head.

S- The first aroma is Bourbon whisket with some slight sweet notes of carmel. Has a very warm Smell

T- Bouron whiskey hits you right off the bat. Starts to warm your belly like straight whiskey or a bottle of wine would do.

M-Very light and Crisp, witha warming effect

D- This beer was not that drinkable for me. It was more like i ordered whiskey on the rocks and the rocks had melted. I felt like i was drinking a mixed drink more than a beer. Still good tasting but the whiskey was too over powering for me.

zrab11, Apr 17, 2011
Photo of Proclarush
4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

Proclarush, Jan 01, 2013
Photo of steve8robin
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one on a work trip to OH. 12oz bottle...

A: Super clear copper color with a very white 1/2 inch head that fades at a decent pace. Good.

S: A nice bourbon malt upfront with some grape booziness in the middle and hints of toffee on the backend. Good.

T: Some light sugary malt and rye breadiness followed by some watery earthiness. Not much else. Decent.

M: Medium body with a good carbonation. Good.

D: Goes down very easy.

All in all, this is an ok brew. Decent brew, but not a good or great brew. Many other offerings in the style that are better. Super Kitty comes to mind. Don't worry about this one unless you have access.

steve8robin, Oct 31, 2010
Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.2/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

wow, this was neat! particularly if you like bourbon. thanks to hopasaurusrex for sharing this brew.

A - nice clear copper color with a thin head white head that quickly fades.

S -wonderful bourbon whiskey - solid vanilla and oak with a touch of caramel in the background. Wonderful aroma!

T -wonderfully balanced, definitely all about the bourbon. The vanilla became a bit overdominant in the end of the glass.

M - medium bodied, nicely carbonated, nice lasting bourbon notes.

D - nice sipping brew. would've scored higher if the bourbon notes didnt' run so strong into the vanilla flavors. I'd get this again!

barleywinebrewer, Jul 29, 2008
Photo of ONUMello
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass
A: Orange-amber color with a one-finger head that thinned quickly
S: Fairly nondescript overall, though malt and the toasted bourbon aromas do come through.
T: Sweet, with tons of vanilla and bourbon. Malty; hardly anything hoppy comes across.
M: Medium-bodied, smooth and a bit sticky from the sweetness.
O: Tasty for sure, though I'd prefer a little less sweetness and a little more complexity.

ONUMello, Feb 02, 2012
Photo of hopkrid
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

hopkrid, Jul 06, 2014
Photo of OriolesFan1008
3/5  rDev -18.3%

OriolesFan1008, Jun 05, 2012
Photo of cosmonick
2.5/5  rDev -31.9%

cosmonick, May 25, 2013
Photo of browniewithnuts
3/5  rDev -18.3%

browniewithnuts, Apr 16, 2013
Photo of cdkrenz
3.8/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - It pours a crisp orange body with mild carbonation. The head is bubbly like a soda but stark white and lives only long enough to set my glass down before its gone nearly immediately.

S - It has a nice aroma of malt. The brewery claims this is a combination of a couple beer styles, one being an Irish Red. That's evident in the aroma.

T - It certainly has Irish and English traits in the sharpness of the flavor. The bourbon barrel aging seems to have added a nice subtle accent.

M - It has medium to full body which is common for the style but uncommon for and Irish Red or English Pale. Either way the slightly abrasive texture across the tip of my tongue is nice with the finish lasting long enough to savor each pull..

~ I like this beer but I don't think I'll be seeking it out in the future. I would have liked to see the bourbon and oak flavors come through with greater emphasis. Perhaps more time in the barrel could have aided in that request.

cdkrenz, Jan 04, 2012
Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale from Alltech’s Lexington Brewing and Distilling Co.
83 out of 100 based on 2,140 ratings.