Try top beers from Lexington’s signature breweries

Illustration by Ben Wade

Adam Pennavaria

Salutations, beer nuts! We’re going to look at the best Lexington beers to wet your whistle with during these frigid months from each of Lexington’s five breweries: West Sixth, Blue Stallion, Ethereal, Alltech and Country Boy.

In fifth place comes Alltech’s Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Stout (8 percent). The Bourbon Barrel Stout has a thick, dark-brown tint with a mild chestnut head. The aromas of vanilla and espresso tease the nostrils before the smooth combination of oak, bourbon and dark chocolate malt wash over the tongue. This is definitely a winner in the bourbon-coffee beer circle.

Blue Stallion’s Kürbisweisse (5.25 percent) takes fourth place. Unlike many other breweries that produce pumpkin beers, this one is made with real baked pumpkin in a hefeweizen style. Many other breweries use copious amounts of nutmeg and cinnamon with minimal pumpkin, making it too spicy or too heavy. While the Kürbisweisse still uses nutmeg and cinnamon, pumpkin is certainly the main profile. One mouthful tastes just like a slice of pumpkin pie with a dollop of whipped cream. 

Third place belongs to Country Boy’s Nate’s Coffee Stout (8 percent). This brew pours solid black (like coffee), smells of roasted java beans (like coffee), and its flavor invigorates the taste buds with tones of earthy malts and chocolate (like coffee). Don’t miss out on this batch of liquid love.

The Ethereal Quadzilla (12.2 percent) is in second place. If there’s anything better in this world than tripels, it’s quadrupels. The Belgians certainly know how to make a scintillating beer with little to no alcohol taste. This ale has a ruby hue, almost like that of black cherry. A mixture of candy, brown sugar and berries fill the nostrils and indulge the mouth in a wonderland of taste. This is the perfect beer for connoisseurs of sensory overload.  

Finally, West Sixth’s Snake Eyes Imperial Stout (11 percent) takes first place. This marvelous blend of caramel, dark chocolate, roasted grain and herbal hops is quite possibly the best West Sixth beer to date. While the alcohol flavor is still present here, it doesn’t scorch the throat on the way down like many other imperial stouts can. The brewers clearly consider this beer to be truly outstanding because it was recently released in four-packs around Lexington. Don’t play yourself, though — grab a pint before everyone else catches on to this heavenly brew. Cheers.

Adam Pennavaria is the beer columnist of the Kentucky Kernel.

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