Breweries are coming to Kentucky.
It first started a year or two ago when Kentuckians saw the likes of Green Flash, Dark Horse, and Southern Tier starting to appear in their favorite liquor stores. Then came more artisanal breweries like Prairie Artisan Ales, Stillwater, and Jester King to meet our non-traditional beer needs. Then the craft king of cans, Oskar Blues, brought their beer up from Brevard, NC last month to give West Sixth IPA (Kentucky’s best beer?) a cooler mate. Following close behind was Sweetwater (well, in Louisville at least) with Deschutes and Lagunitas trailing behind. Just as Louisville is growing as a beer city, the market is growing right along with it. Bars may have to add more tap handles while package stores may have to add more shelf space…but that’s another discussion in itself.
Word came out yesterday that Uinta (pronounced “you-in-tah;” I just learned how to say Schlafly, damnit!) would be coming soon to the Bluegrass state. I drank my fair share of Uinta a couple months back out in Salt Lake City. I first fell in love with their brewery at the 2011 Great American Beer Festival when I tried as many as their Crooked Line series as I could. Labyrinth, a 15% black ale, and Cockeyed Cooper, a barrel aged barleywine, are often over looked by beer geeks but are solid offerings.
Like most breweries coming, I assume they will give Kentucky offerings of their Classic Line with intentions of bringing some of their Organic and Crooked Lines over time. I’ve had quite a few of them, so here’s my best guess of what’s coming our way.
- Cutthroat Pale Ale: the flagship pale ale. Standard offering in all their markets.
- Hop Notch IPA: their signature IPA that is now being canned. Perfect for summer. Underrated in my book.
- Dubhe: pronounced “doo-bee,” it is an imperial black IPA brewed with hemp seeds. Insert Beavis and Butt-Head laugh.
I think more will come, but these are just my guesses since these are some of the more popular brands. One thing that makes Uinta stand out is their “Earth, Wind, and Beer” philosophy with 100% of their company powered by wind since 2001. In 2011, they installed solar panels to be 15% solar and 85% wind. They also boast their own glass recycling center helping to eliminate waste. Captain Planet would tip his hat to Uinta.
Open arms, Uinta. I welcome you with open arms.