Beer Column: Country Boy Brewing

Welcome to the inaugural Kentucky Kernel Beer Column. For this column I will ask a bartender at each of the local breweries for a flight of their stand out beers. Our first brewery is Country Boy, the closest brewery to UK’s campus. This small tap room has an authentic Kentucky atmosphere. There are deer heads above the restrooms, a buck for the men’s and a doe for the women’s, and bourbon barrel tables cover much of the floor space. The tap room has 24 taps, of which 18 were brewed in house and one empty when I wrote this column. The bartender recommended a flight of the Country Jacket, Barreled Jalapeño Porter, Warehouse Experiment #3, and Sinkhole Stout.

1. I began with the Country Jacket, which is a Crab Apple Saison. The first sip impressed me with it’s a tart flavor. It clearly contains apples, but does not come close to cider territory like many apple beers do. It isn’t overpoweringly fruity despite it’s apple base. This beer is incredibly refreshing and would pair extraordinary well with a nice rocking chair on a screened in porch during a hot summer day.

2. The Jalapeño Porter is a surprisingly subtle mix of sweet and spicy. The spiciness of the jalapeño is not at all overwhelming, and pairs very nicely with the initial sweetness inherent in porters. For those who do not like bourbon, however few of these people there may be in the Bluegrass, this would be a good bourbon barrel beer as the taste of bourbon is incredibly subtle.

3. This contrasts with their Warehouse Experiment #3, which is a barreled aged stout. The taste of bourbon is evident with the first sip of this heavy bodied beer. If you are new to craft beer and uncertain about the idea of bourbon barrel aged beers, this beer is a wonderful place to start. It has the taste of bourbon, without overpowering the stout flavor. It also has very little of the bourbon bite. If you are fan of both bourbon and stout, you will enjoy this experimental beer.

4. The final beer recommended by the bartender, Sinkhole Stout, is a fantastic after-dinner beer. It is also bourbon barrel aged (a theme with many of Country Boy’s stand out beers) and has more of the bourbon bite. It has a bourbon flavor and coats the mouth with a flavor that lingers. If you are a die hard bourbon drinker, this is the beer for you.