Kentucky Vanilla Barrel Cream Ale

Alltech Lexington Brewing and Distillery Co.

Crafted in: Lexington, Kentucky

HopShock Brew Review by KevMal


They Say:  

Kentucky Vanilla Barrel Cream Ale is our take on a classic American style of beer. We took a cold-conditioned cream ale, brewed with a hint of flaked corn and bourbon vanilla beans, and aged it in freshly decanted bourbon barrels for at least six weeks. Kentucky Vanilla Barrel Cream Ale’s medium body and 5.5% ABV make it the perfect barrel-aged beer for an all day event.(  


HopShock Snapshot:

Style: Cream Ale

ABV: 5.5%

IBU:  18

Malt: 2 Row Pale, Munich 10, Crystal 60, Biscuit Malt, Flaked Maize

Hops: Centennial

Global Untappd: 3.83/5


Looks Like:

The body of this brew is a moderate straw-gold color that is very comforting for those who have not tried a cream ale before.


Smells Like:  

My first impression of this brew came from the rich vanilla scent it was giving off. Following this came a striking bite of bourbon that caught me off guard. The two flavors mingled together and combined for a wondrous scent.


Tastes Like:  

The overall taste was not too malty, as the dominating characteristics were the vanilla and bourbon. This makes the beer extremely easy to drink with a smooth mouthfeel to it. Whether you like beer or bourbon, it really gives you the best of both worlds!


When to Drink:  

I enjoyed this beer on a cool evening outside which really helped draw out those oak and caramel notes from the whiskey.



Originating in the pre-prohibition era, cream ales were created to compete with the traditional macro-brewed American lagers by mimicking the crisp quality of German lagers. By using both lager yeast and ale yeast, with rice and corn additives, cream ales quickly became a unique spin on classic American beer. Kentucky Vanilla Barrel is conditioned in cold temperatures (similar to the fermentation process of lagers), brewed with hints of flaked corn, and aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels for two months. This beautifully balances out the rich vanilla flavor with that strong bite we get from the whiskey. This was the best cream ale I have tried to date and I cannot recommend any other cream ales because the ones I tried would not compare.


KevMal’s Rating:  4.5/5 – Sweet vanilla and strong bourbon combine to make this a pleasurable experience.



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