1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. 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

1,772 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,772
Reviews: 489
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 17.98%
Wants: 71
Gots: 196 | FT: 3
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)
View: Beers (16) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,772 | Reviews: 489 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Cloaked_Phantom
Cloaked_Phantom

Georgia

3/5  rDev -18.3%

07-19-2014 06:23:32 | More by Cloaked_Phantom
Photo of BostonHops
BostonHops

Massachusetts

3.28/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle served in a mug.

pours a clear, medium-light amber tone while yielding a finger or so of short lived head. not much lacing to speak of. nose is a bit more subdued than i was anticipating with subtle notes of caramel malt, a touch of vanilla and mild bourbon.

flavor mostly follows the aroma with caramel, vanilla, a little oak, and some - though not a lot of - bourbon. unique flavor profile, not what i expected. medium bodied mouthfeel with average carbonation.

overall, while it does have the uniqueness element going for it, in the final analysis it's an average beer - doesn't really work for me. it's not terrible, just not something i would seek out again. worth a try though.

(originally reviewed: 02-08-2012)

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2012 04:33:44 | More by BostonHops
Photo of djre4orm
djre4orm

Virginia

4/5  rDev +9%

06-13-2013 19:51:42 | More by djre4orm
Photo of Dizzy242
Dizzy242

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

12-24-2012 18:36:53 | More by Dizzy242
Photo of Rempo
Rempo

Indiana

4/5  rDev +9%

11-20-2011 23:17:35 | More by Rempo
Photo of gshackles
gshackles

New York

4.25/5  rDev +15.8%

12-15-2012 03:29:17 | More by gshackles
Photo of kirok1999
kirok1999

Ohio

4.05/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear light gold with a small white head that leaves just a little lacing.
Smells sweet, vanilla and slight bourbon.
Tastes wonderful with mild carbonation. Oak, vanilla, bourbon, honey meld together really well. Not exactly what I expected and I'm glad as this is a great brew. I'm glad to see it's 7% as I plan to drink a few more.
Get some, you won't be disappointed.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2007 00:59:52 | More by kirok1999
Photo of projectflam86
projectflam86

Ohio

3.3/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Light brown color with thin head that dissipates quickly leaving some mild lace.

S- Whoa! This smells like straight bourbon! A deeper sniff revealed some light vanilla and oak scents.

T- Tastes like bourbon with the slightest malt and vanilla sweetness. A bit hot from the alcohol but not much else really going on.

M- Smoother than I anticipated, but bitter ester alcohol in the finish.

D- Not a bad brew but the flavor profile was a bit one demensional.

Serving type: on-tap

03-17-2009 21:09:50 | More by projectflam86
Photo of hopley
hopley

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

05-26-2013 03:45:30 | More by hopley
Photo of grumpygerman
grumpygerman

Alabama

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

10-21-2013 21:53:35 | More by grumpygerman
Photo of gpawned
gpawned

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

06-28-2012 16:49:52 | More by gpawned
Photo of deadonhisfeet
deadonhisfeet

Kentucky

3.03/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a small brandy snifter. Color is clear, light amber gold. In fact, it looks like lightly carbonated bourbon. The nose offers up some muted alcohol aroma mixed with some citrus. In other words, it smells like a screwdriver.

Flavor is somewhat hop-forward. It's light and fizzy and there is a faint taste of bourbon that just doesn't complement the beer flavor at all. Mouthfeel is average.

Overall, this was disappointing. I wouldn't say that this is a poorly-made beer, just that it was poorly thought out. Bourbon-barrel aging just cries out for a beer that is rich and malty, not a light ale that is crisp and hoppy. I don't want a beer that tastes like bourbon, I want a beer whose flavors are complemented by the bourbon notes (see Founders Backwoods Bastard or BBC Bourbon Barrel Big Brown). This was not what I was looking for.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 17:20:25 | More by deadonhisfeet
Photo of BKBassist
BKBassist

New York

3/5  rDev -18.3%

03-05-2014 20:44:58 | More by BKBassist
Photo of pjs234
pjs234

Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%

08-26-2012 23:31:49 | More by pjs234
Photo of millelacsmark
millelacsmark

Minnesota

4/5  rDev +9%

11-17-2011 03:40:33 | More by millelacsmark
Photo of BlurryVisi0n
BlurryVisi0n

New York

3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a snifter glass.

Appearance: Transparent amber, light bubbles on the body and a white head that is maybe 1/4" off the body.

Smell: Light scotch smell and just sniffing it just a bit more you can feel the sweetness of this brew.

Taste: This right off the bat tastes like something familiar, already like feels your scotch ale but little richer.

Mouth: Medium not exactly sticking but still well made. I would pair this after the whole dinner and would probably compliment a dessert.

Overall: I have heard the hype and was expecting a little more but it is definitely not a disappointing brew. I would buy it again but wouldn't go nuts looking for it like it was the best thing made since hops. Salud!

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2012 05:34:31 | More by BlurryVisi0n
Photo of BrownAleMale
BrownAleMale

Wisconsin

3.4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Horny Goat pint glass.

Appearance- A yellow orange and red tint to the beer with a very small amount of white head that fully dissipates. Lots of carbonation bubbles.

Smell- Burbon and lots of sweet and sour fruits. Some sweet carmel malt notes too.

Taste- Bourbon begining with a sour hop middle and the big bourbon comes back for the finish. Honestly I am a Jameson on the rocks drinker and this tastes a lot like that. A watered down whiskey.

Mouthfeel- Very watery

Overall- Basically if you are a whiskey fan you will probably enjoy this since it tastes like whiskey on the rocks. For what it is, it misses the mark. Do I enjoy it? Yes!

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2012 21:39:49 | More by BrownAleMale
Photo of becktone
becktone

Ohio

2.98/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is poor. The color is very nice-crystal clear copper. The beer looks dead very little carbonation bubbles floating to the top. This beer's inability to form a head and or lacing and keep what little film it did form is sorely disapointing.

Wow! Strong aroma of burbon, almost overwhelming! I can't say that this is bad, however I am not really a fan of burbon. However, I saw this beer and decided to try it. No hop or malt aromas, just burbon and alcohol. It is a burbon barrel aged brew and it definitely smells like burbon so I guess it achieves what the brewers were going for.

Weirdest beer that I've ever drank. It tastes like burbon, though I've never had it I can assume that it tastes like burbon. I've had scotch though, and it reminds me of that. Lots of flavor, some butterscotch in there. As I Said before I am not a fan of burbon or scotch for that matter, ever since I drank a whole bottle of scotch in one night.

Can't really finish this brew, it tastes too much like scotch/burbon. Sure that's what the brewer was going for but I can't take it. It is light on the palate and almost flat, very low carbonation. Alcohol is obviously apparent. I will not buy this brew again. I can't abide the taste of scotch/burbon. Since I am reviewing this brew with an open mind and trying to judge it by the brewer's interpretation of an American Strong Ale aged in Burbon barrels I'll give it flat 3's across the board...except for appearance, all beer should be able to form and keep a head.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2007 02:25:03 | More by becktone
Photo of jk3
jk3

New York

2.5/5  rDev -31.9%

10-18-2012 01:49:29 | More by jk3
Photo of megamass
megamass

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

05-08-2013 22:58:25 | More by megamass
Photo of adam42381
adam42381

Florida

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%

01-26-2013 19:07:24 | More by adam42381
Photo of mulder1010
mulder1010

Australia

3.05/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

355 ML poured into a tulip
Thanks to Shagtastic for the bottle
Shared with Mr Kennedy

A-- Poured a near clear, light colored carmel. One finger of white head that faded to a white collar. Just bits of spotty lacing one sides of the glass.

S-- Barrel notes all over the place. Oak, bourbon, big vanilla, and Carmel. Vanilla dominated the nose through drinking.

T-- See above. Reminded me of a vanilla wafer as had a bit of crisp wafer taste along with the vanilla.

M-- Quite a thin body. Not a lot of the base beer to notice as the barrel character, vanilla, just dominated the beer. Slightly sweet feel and a lot of dry vanilla.

O-- Had this in Louisville on tap in July 2011 and loved it. Bottle version??? Not so much. Really dominated by vanilla. Would get it again if on tap only. Was far more balanced on tap.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2012 13:30:17 | More by mulder1010
Photo of MoreThanWine
MoreThanWine

Massachusetts

3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 1" off-white head. Body is slightly copper colored and slightly hazed. Smells of malt and mildly vanilla. Taste has much more vanilla, caramel, and malt, and it's a touch salty. Medium finish.

I was quite pleased with this because it brings the indulgance of bourbon without the harsh high aclohol burn common in other bourbon barrel aged beers. Nice product.

Serving type: bottle

12-15-2011 03:09:15 | More by MoreThanWine
Photo of bnes09
bnes09

Illinois

4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Caramel color and semi-transparent. White head forms then dissipates quickly leaving a ring around the glass and minimal lacing.

Rich aroma of oak, caramel, toffee and nuts. Complex, intricate and inspires curiosity.

Similar flavors in beginning and middle. Definitely a sweet tone with caramel and brown sugar. Some vanilla and mild bourbon notes. Fruity with cherries and apples adding to the sweetness. Finishes fairly clean with lingering bready malt flavor.

Surprising light feel, just barely medium bodied. Crisp, even carbonation. Exceptionally smooth texture.

I really like this. Highly complex and well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2012 03:41:08 | More by bnes09
Photo of Hophead717
Hophead717

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A 12 ounce bottle poured into a DFH Signature Glass.

A: A perfectly clear golden brown. The shade on this one is absolutely beautiful. Not a lot of head-a 1/4 in of fizzy head fades quickly. A significant amount of lacing though.

S: This is easily the most bourbon I've ever gotten in a nose-perhaps because it's on a brown ale, rather than a big stout, but still. I get some sweet malts too-almost hints of raisin in the sweetness-but the nose is just dominated by a sweet bourbon. It smells awesome, but I'm concerned that it's going to taste a bit too sweet.

T: This is one of the more unique brews I've sampled. Upfront is strong bourbon, which is quite pleasant. You get some notes from the oak too. Underneath the bourbon and noticeable oak flavors, is a somewhat standard ale. It's not too sweet, as I feared, but it's right along the line. Definitely one to sip on. The alcohol is noticeable, but not overpowering. The aftertaste is more oak than anything else. It's a good flavor, but the bourbon isn't of the highest quality, so it's unable to break above a B for me.

M: A bit thin to be sure. Finely carbonated, though.

O: An incredibly unique "bourbon ale." I'm glad I have three more to savor. I'd recommend trying this one if you come across it, but don't trip over yourself to locate it.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2011 01:41:37 | More by Hophead717
Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale from Alltech’s Lexington Brewing and Distilling Co.
83 out of 100 based on 1,772 ratings.