‘Black and Blue’ screening rescheduled for Friday

Published 2:20 pm Monday, February 7, 2022

By Warren Taylor

The Winchester Black History & Heritage Committee will host a documentary film screening about four special pioneers of the gridiron Friday.

The free showing of “Black in Blue” will be Saturday night at the Leeds Center for the Arts in downtown Winchester. The doors open at 6:30 p.m. and showtime is at 7.

The 2019 film by writer and director Paul Wagner chronicles the trials, tribulations, and ultimate success of Nate Northington, Greg Page, Wilbur Hackett and Houston Hogg, integrating the South’s most popular sport during the volatile racial climate of the 1960s.
Hackett is a Winchester native and the first team captain of color in SEC history.

“All I wanted to do was to get an education and play football. The historical aspects of it never really crossed my mind,” Hackett said in a 2019 story published by The Kentucky Kernel. “I was too busy trying to survive.”

The film event was previously scheduled for last Saturday but was postponed due to the potential for severe winter weather.

Due to the rise of COVID-19 cases, the Leeds Center requires proof of vaccination or a negative test that is 48 hours old to attend the event. Masks are required.

Quick Beer-cheese Dip



A good beer-cheese dip takes little time but some attention and a few tricks

Whether you’re prepping for a Super Bowl gathering or keeping it to yourself, cheese dip is decidedly comfort food. Pouring beer into the pot bumps the blend up several levels. For the ultimate score, I add homemade ingredients with smoky, roasted flavors.

A good beer-cheese dip takes little time but some attention and a few tricks. Coating the cheese with cornstarch keeps the fat from separating, the proteins from clumping and the water in both cheese and beer from thinning the sauce. It helps you get away with a sharp or even extra-sharp cheddar, which can be hard to melt evenly but pairs oh so nicely with beer.

Beer choice deserves some consideration, especially if you tend toward hoppy IPAs or full-bodied pale ales. When cooking with beer, a less bitter brew gives the smoothest flavor. Start by looking at the international bitterness units: At their most basic, the lower the IBU rating, the less bitter the beer. So when making dip, I save IPA for sipping and hit up one of valley’s many local breweries for a low-IBU kölsh or lager. Bias Brewing in Kalispell makes beer queso with its Mittelkinder Kölsh; if it’s not on tap, swap in Bias’s Whistlepunk Lager or a similar style from your favorite local brewery.

Once you have your cheese and beer, you can pile in other flavors to taste. I reach into my fridge for home-smoked cheese and chili paste, homemade German-style mustard and heads of roasted garlic. You can find recipes for all of these flavor boosters on the blog at Until they become fridge staples, smoked paprika and store-bought mustard make good substitutes.

Tortilla chips, thick enough to support the cheese, and crisp produce like apples and carrots make tasty dippers, but I always lean toward sourdough. If you joined in last month’s sourdough giveaway and have your own starter, head to the blog for recipes for Sourdough Pretzel Bites and Sourdough Pita Chips. Cheese, beer, sourdough – touchdown.

Quick Beer-Cheese Dip

Makes about 3 cups

12 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

2 tablespoons cornstarch

12 ounces low-IBU beer, such as a kölsch or lager

1 teaspoon smoked paprika or chili paste, or to taste

2 tablespoons prepared mustard

2 cloves roasted garlic, minced (optional)

In a medium bowl, toss the shredded cheese with the cornstarch until coated. In a small pot, bring the beer to a gentle simmer over medium heat. Gradually stir the cheese into the simmering beer, letting the cheese melt into the liquid until smooth before adding more. Stir the paprika or chili paste, mustard and minced garlic, if using, into the smooth dip. Serve immediately with dippers, such as sturdy tortilla chips, apples, carrots or sourdough pretzel bites or pita chips. To keep the dip smooth longer, transfer it to a fondue pot or mini slow cooker set on warm.

Julie Laing is a Bigfork-based cookbook author and food blogger at

The “Crown Jewel” of South Main

 JAN 19, 2022  DowntownHistoryInterviews

Often referred to as one of the “Crown Jewels” of Main Street, the Bluegrass Heritage Museum occupies a stately 128-year-old Romanesque Revival building on South Main Street that once housed the Guerrant Clinic. The museum covers the history of the Bluegrass people and places from the Eskippakithiki Indian settlements to the modern era.

Recently Chuck Witt caught up with Sandy Stults, director of the museum since 2006.

WCNV – Thanks for taking the time from putting away your Christmas decorations.  I wanted to start by asking what year the museum opened to the public.

SS – 2004

WCNV – And for a while, only the first floor was open to the public?

SS – Actually only a part of the first floor.  The back portion was still closed off when we opened the doors but we wanted to move ahead and see how the community would accept a museum.  The stair to the second floor was also opened, but the only space occupied on the second floor was my office and you should remember that since you were down here helping paint the room.  I remember you saying that a canary would get lost in here because of the yellow color.

WCNV – I do remember.  So when were the upper floors made available to the public?

SS – The first part of the second floor opened in 2007 and was completed in 2008.  The first room to open up here was the military history room, and we immediately saw a large number of donated items for that room.  I remember that a lot of veterans were involved and every time they came in they would start talking about their service, so it took longer to get the room prepared.  (At this point Sandy chuckled at the memory).  Everything was opened in 2009.

WCNV – You took over the directorship in what year?

SS – 2006

WCNV – There were some directors before you weren’t there?

SS – There were three, Nancy Turner, who went on to become director of the Tourism Commission.  Clare Sipple was director for a short period and just before me was Jim Pitts.  I think he moved and became director of another museum.  There were also some individuals who served double duty, working part-time at Tourism and part-time here: Holly Goeing, John Hearn, Matt Graham, and a lady whose last name was Cole.

WCNV – You were a teacher before taking this job weren’t you?

SS – Right.  I taught in Jenkins, Kentucky and when I moved here I taught reading and social studies at Conkwright, then at GRCHS teaching history and social studies, and finally at UK where I worked at supervision of student teachers.

WCNV – How much area do you have in the building?

To read the entire article click HERE!

Legacy Grove Park Is The Newest Park In Kentucky And It’s Incredible

Posted in Kentucky Nature January 07, 2022 by Sarah McCosham

It’s good to be a kid in Kentucky. Not only is the Bluegrass an epic nature lover’s playground, but it’s also a literal playground, full of the most amazing attractions and sites sure to instill a love of the great outdoors in even the youngest Kentuckians. This is most certainly the case with Legacy Grove Park, the newest park in Kentucky. This 30-acre public park has a two-acre adventure play area, nature trails, walking paths, dog parks, and open lawns, and the best part is that it’s incredibly inclusive, with an ADA-accessible paved walking path and a special play area designed for children of all abilities.

Read the entire article HERE!

15 Undying Habits That Prove You Can Never Take Kentucky Out Of The Kentuckian

Posted in Kentucky January 12, 2022 by Sarah McCosham

Here in Kentucky, we’re very proud of our history, heritage, and culture. We are a wholly unique group with traditions that combine the best of Southern hospitality, local history, regional culture and dialect, and a big dash of Bluegrass pride. As a result, when non-locals meet a Kentuckian, they might be taken aback by some of our habits and quirks, which might be misconstrued as oddities or eccentrics. But we know the truth: these 15 undying habits prove you can never take the Kentucky out of the Kentuckian… nor would we want to!

We’re known to bring Ale-8-One to every Bluegrass barbecue!

Read the entire article HERE!

Have a lot of beer leftover from the holidays? Make something delicious with it!

Jennie OemigWicked Local

Once the holidays are over, it’s not unusual to have a few unopened beers leftover, whether they were purchased for house guests to enjoy with their meal or left behind by a friend or family member who stopped by to visit. 

For some who aren’t beer drinkers or aren’t fond of certain styles, those beverages can sit around for weeks or even months, taking up valuable real estate in the fridge.

Instead of just pouring it down the drain, consider cooking with it. There are myriad recipes that call for beer, as well as others that can be modified to incorporate any type of ale or lager.

The most obvious way to use up those sudsy beverages is by deep-frying some beer-battered seafood — shrimp, haddock, clams, calamari, you name it. But there are so many more options.

Beer Cheese Dip (Pilsner/Lager)

When you’re looking for something in which to dip soft pretzels, beer cheese dip is one of the best pairings; it’s cheesy, it’s creamy and it’s nice and hot. The best style to use in beer cheese dip is definitely a lager or pilsner, something light-bodied with not a lot of hop bitterness – Miller Lite or Budweiser work great.

’ve made a couple different versions and some turned out really well, while others were utter failures. That’s the joy of working with melting cheese. My favorite though, consists of ¼ cup of butter; ¼ cup of flour; 1 teaspoon Adobo seasoning; a dash of cayenne pepper; 1 cup of milk; 8-10 ounces of beer; 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce; 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard; 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese; and 1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese.

Melt the butter, whisk in the flour and seasonings and cook for about 1 minute. Then whisk in the beer and milk, a bit at a time, until smooth. Add in the mustard and Worcestershire sauce and continue cooking until thick and bubbly.

Reduce heat to low, add in cheeses and whisk until they’re melted and the sauce is smooth and creamy.

Renovation Sisters: Peggy and Wendy McAllister discuss the joys and challenges of restoring historic buildings

Published 1:55 pm Thursday, December 30, 2021

By Warren Taylor

Texas Eats Season 3, Ep. 19: Southern Comfort, Midwest BBQ, and Shiner Beer Cheese

Japanese comfort-food, Euro classics, soul food egg rolls and a Shiner Beer cheese recipe

Join KSAT’s David Elder for some Southern food classics and soul food with an Asian twist.

Then, we take you to a West Side spot serving up some Birria and huge tortas!

Next, we take you to a Tex-Mex BBQ joint slang out some top 50 BBQ in the state. Then we’re off to Schertz to check out a Midwest-style BBQ spot, serving up smoked pork rib tips and other smoky delights.

We also take you to Southtown to visit a cocktail bar serving up some Texas-inspired, elevated cuisine. Then we share with you a Shiner Bock Beer cheese recipe that you can make at home, perfect for the holidays.

We’re also checking out an all-day brunch restaurant on the Northside of San Antonio. That, and so much more, on an all-new episode of Texas Eats!

You can watch “Texas Eats,” on Saturdays at 10 a.m. on KSAT 12, and KSAT Plus, our free streaming app.

WHERE IN THE WORLD? Gone But Not Forgotten: McEldowney House

Published 8:30 am Thursday, December 23, 2021

By Special to The Winchester Sun

By Harry Enoch/Contributor        The sad news came on August 31, 2011, when the Winchester Sun reported: “Mansion falls into history.” The article informed local residents that the historic McEldowney House at 215 South Main Street, a long-time showplace of the community, was gone.

In 1898, M. T. McEldowney purchased a house and lot on the east side of Main Street adjacent to the home of Dr. John W. Ishmael (later the Guerrant Clinic and now the Bluegrass Heritage Museum). McEldowney had the old house torn down and put up his mansion on the lot. Newspapers reported that the house was occupied by the summer of 1899: “M. T. McEldowney and wife of Winchester have moved into their new residence. It is among the most complete and attractive in town, being made of yellow pressed brick, with modern improvements.”

Morgan Thomas McEldowney (1866-1934) was born on a farm near Vanceburg in Lewis County, Kentucky. He came to Winchester as a young man (1883) and went to work for S. P. Kerr at the Winchester Roller Mills. McEldowney married Nancy Cassidy, a daughter of Judge M. M. Cassidy of Mt. Sterling. McEldowney advanced rapidly in Winchester, at first under Kerr’s tutelage and then on his own hook.

When Kerr died in 1906, McEldowney purchased Winchester Roller Mills with partners William Woolcott and David T. Matlack. He sold his interest to Woolcott and Matlack in 1921.

McEldowney began buying and selling real estate, which must have been profitable. In 1907 he built a handsome four-story office building on Cleveland Street that housed the post office, fraternal organizations, law offices and others. When the building burned the following year, he immediately went to work to replace it with a six- story fire-proof building. Constructed of brick and concrete, it used no wood except for doors and windows and had the town’s first passenger elevator. The McEldowney Building has undergone a major renovation by the current owners, DAM Holdings.

In 1916 McEldowney purchased a failed institution, the Commercial Bank and Trust in Louisville. He agreed to pay off the bank’s $74,000 of liabilities within seven years. When that was accomplished, in 1923 he started a new bank in Winchester: The Commercial Deposit Bank opened in a new building he had erected at the southwest corner of Main and Broadway. He served as its president until his death.

McEldowney suffered a heart attack in December 1933. While recovering at home, he had another, fatal, attack on February 20. His obituary stated that “he was always at the front in every call for public service, his time and his money were given
freely to church and civic enterprises.”

The McEldowney House had only three owners. The second was Allen M. Buckner Jr. (1935), the nephew of Nancy McEldowney. (Buckner would also acquire the McEldowney Building and Commercial Deposit Bank.) The last owner was the Guerrant Mission Clinic and Hospital (1943). The hospital closed in 1971 and the clinic in 1989.

By the time I moved to Winchester, the house had stood empty for many years; the yellow brick had long been painted white. With its two-story front porch and eight massive Corinthian columns, it was a local landmark.

The elements are not kind to unoccupied houses. Thus, over the years the house began to fall into disrepair. Several feasibility studies looked at restoring and preserving the structure. The first estimated the cost at just under a million dollars. After a few more years of deterioration, a second study put the price at 1.2-1.5 million dollars. One of the most seriously damaged elements was the striking front porch.

A summary of findings included several statements that dampened enthusiasm for restoration:

“It is not an architectural masterwork, although even in its dilapidated condition, it resonates boldly in terms of its design and
longstanding presence at this prominent location. One simple way to summarize would be to say that the building was constructed for massive proportion and good looks—which it achieved—but at the same time the construction materials and methods themselves were not capable of enduring for long, long periods—which is currently evident.”

The report concluded that “the McEldowney House is an overall poor candidate for full restoration and rehabilitation.”

How a Kentucky-born soft drink fueled a friendship through good times and bad

Keith Pandolfi Cincinnati Enquirer

There’s a six-pack of Ale-8-One sitting on my back porch right now. And I think of it as a blessing of sorts. Back when I was growing up, there were only two places in Cincinnati where I could find the spicy, citrusy ginger ale: a drug store on Ludlow Avenue in Clifton and a gas station along Clough Pike.

The fact that I can find it in just about any grocery store in town these days is something I’m thankful for. 

Ale-8 is more than just a soft drink. It’s a reminder of better times and an elixir that washes away the troubles of adulthood. Most of all, it’s a reminder of my best friend, Gordon. A friend who’s not with us anymore. Whenever I need to think good thoughts about him or mourn his loss, Ale-8 is always there. And around Thanksgiving time, I miss him more than ever. Because Thanksgiving is just as much about the families we forge through friendships as the families into which we were born. 

Our friendship started on an April day in the early 1980s. Over the intercom of what was then called Forest Hills Junior School (now Mercer Elementary), Gordon was summoned to the principal’s office because his mother had just delivered a baby. He looked embarrassed as he shuffled between desks to make it to the doorway through our seventh-grade classroom. He wore a smile that was nervous and sincere; his cowlicked hair was bouncing.

The next day, we were lacing up our running shoes in the locker room for track practice and I congratulated him on his new baby brother. He pointed out that it was actually his half-brother since his father was divorced from his mother and was married to a woman named Rose. I said congratulations just the same. 

Sometimes, after track practice, I would take the bus with Gordon over to his house on Collinsdale Avenue. His father, John, and his stepmother, Rose, seemed more glamorous and interesting than most of the parents I knew. John was a former writer who was born and raised just outside New Orleans. He wore pin-striped Brooks Brothers shirts with white collars and always smelled like Grey Flannel cologne. Rose drove a Karmann Ghia and once had a poem published in Esquire magazine. 

Growing up in the 1980s

In those pre-streaming days, Gordon and I spent most of our time in his room listening to records and cassettes: His copy of U2’s “October,” some old Supertramp and Beatles albums he borrowed from his parents and a new album called “Songs from the Big Chair” by Tears for Fears. To this day, that album calls me back to the cold winter days we spent in Gordon’s house listening to it while plotting how we would sneak out to another party and whose older brother or sister was cool enough to buy us some beer. 

Like a lot of kids of the 1980s, we watched a lot of John Hughes movies and tried to find some version of ourselves in them. I think he wanted to be the talented but troubled Rob Lowe character from “St. Elmo’s Fire” while I went so far as to wear a bandana tied around my jeans to look like Bender from “The Breakfast Club.”

Gordon grew sad sometimes. He would stay home from school for days and pretend he was sick but I later learned it was more than that. Sometimes I would check on him and we would sit by his stereo indulging his mood by listening to sad songs by the Commodores or Howard Jones. He would just sit on his bedroom floor with his chin resting in his hand thinking thoughts that seemed too deep for a kid his age. He was the sweetest, kindest and funniest kid I’d ever met. But even then I knew he was suffering from something. I just couldn’t figure out what it was. 

Discovering Ale-8-One 

I suppose the Ale-8 era of our lives began the same year we met. Gordon’s mother was an archaeologist who lived on a farm just outside of Winchester, Kentucky, and would often pick him and his brother, Zander, up and drive them back for the weekend. And soon after I met Gordon, I started tagging along. 

The farm had been in the family for several generations and was filled with elegant old furniture, original artwork and what seemed like thousands of books. The kitchen had a cathedral ceiling and an espresso machine on which Gordon’s stepfather, a tall Italian American named John Walton, would make cappuccinos for us every morning as we read newspapers or magazines in the breakfast room.

On her back porch, Gordon’s mother kept cases of something called Ale-8-One stacked about 3 feet high. I’d never heard of Ale-8 before I met Gordon and was surprised when he told me it was a ginger ale company. I was even more surprised when he told me that his family owned it. 

Ale-8 tastes more like ginger beer than ginger ale. It’s citrusy and gingery and not too sweet. As it says on every bottle, it also has “bracing pep!” It was invented by Gordon’s great-great-uncle G. Lee Wainscott in the early 1900s after he returned from Europe and fell in love with the fruity ginger beers he tasted there. 

After coming up with the formula, Wainscott held a contest at the Clark County Fair for someone to come up with a name. A little girl, her name now lost, decided “A Late One,” which then meant “the latest thing,” was appropriate. I’m not sure how the idea to shorten the name to Ale-8-One came about, but the original name can still be seen in parenthesis on every bottle. 

The Wainscotts had no children, so when he died in 1944, he left the company to his wife, Jane Rogers, who then left it to her brother, Frank Rogers, Gordon’s great grandfather on his mother’s side. By the time I met Gordon, his mother and her brothers ran the place and it’s now owned by Gordon’s first cousin, Fielding Rogers. 

In the mornings after breakfast, Gordon and I would grab some longneck bottles of Ale-8 and head into the rolling hills of Winchester. We would make inside jokes and talk about which girls we were in love with and he would tell me stories about his early childhood in Kentucky that sounded like something out of a Flannery O’Conner story. 

Sometimes we would go into the tobacco barn on the grounds and hurl corn cobs at each other until we were both bleeding and bruised then go back to the house and drink as many Ale-8s as we could. Some nights, if we could get our hands on it, we would mix in a little vodka or bourbon. 

‘Don’t you forget about me’

After high school, Gordon went to Miami and I went to Ohio State. But after our sophomore year, Gordon and his girlfriend, Anne, moved in with me and my girlfriend, Karen, at our house in Columbus for the summer. Back then, you couldn’t really find Ale-8 outside of Kentucky, so he was sure to stock his car with enough of it to get us through the summer. 

That August, I got a late-night phone call from my father’s girlfriend in Dayton, Kentucky. My father had died suddenly of a heart attack just hours after I’d talked to him on the phone. I started throwing things and breaking things and when I came downstairs to break more things, Gordon was standing at the bottom of the steps waiting for me. He gave me a tight hug that kept me under control and allowed me to break down and cry. He was the exact person I needed on the worst night of my life.

As we grew older, through our 20s and our 30s, we didn’t see each other much but remained close. Phone calls were rare and we would go six months or more without speaking.

A year or so after I moved to Brooklyn in my early 30s, I found a bar owned by two guys from Winchester who sold Ale-8. I would go there sometimes and get a shot of bourbon with an Ale-8 chaser. I would think about Gordon and how some friends are such a big part of who you are that you just don’t feel like yourself when they’re not around. 

Times of trouble

Gordon and Anne eventually got married. I was the best man at his wedding at the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club in Michigan and I gave a terrible, bumbling toast that I regret to this day and that he gave me crap about whenever he could. 

Over the years, I watched as Gordon’s life took off in all the ways I figured it would. He had the kind of shiny personality and charisma that convinced me he’d be a senator (or, well, who knows) someday. But after working on Capitol Hill for several years, he decided to get his MBA and go into international business, instead. Eventually, he and Anne had a son (they would later have a daughter, too) and moved to London where Gordon worked for IBM. 

It seemed like things were going well for him. But I knew that something was wrong. Some nights while he was living in London, he would call me up drunk slurring stories of the mess he was making of his life. He tried to make them sound comical, the kind of antics a lovable lush like F. Scott Fitzgerald would get himself into. But Gordon was smarter than Fitzgerald and I feared the small suicides he was committing would eventually do him in. 

He would stay out at the bars all night, skip work and spend his days in movie theaters. He once sat through three viewings in a row of “Cold Mountain” simply because he thought “it was pretty.” Though the movie was set in North Carolina, all I could think was that the scenery reminded him of Kentucky and that Kentucky is where he belonged; that Kentucky was the only thing that could save him. 

By the time we reached our early 40s, he’d received a diagnosis of bipolar disorder and started taking medication. I was hoping it would be the solution to all his problems, but because he couldn’t control his drinking, it didn’t work. His behavior became even more erratic and eventually resulted in a long-term stay at a psychiatric hospital.

When I saw him afterward, he seemed better. Much better. And when I was 41, I asked him to be my best man. When he arrived in New York for the wedding, I could tell he was suffering. His skin was breaking out in what looked like hives, his hands were shaky and he seemed painfully uncomfortable. Still, I thought, this is Gordon. Gordon always pulls through. 

At the wedding, he gave a trembly toast that left some of those who’d known him as the articulate charmer he once was wondering if he was OK. He wasn’t. Still, I was proud of him for just making it through. Afterward, I walked up to the podium where he was standing with tears in my eyes and bear-hugged him as tight as I could.

Last words

I wish I could say that Gordon eventually got better. But he didn’t. The drinking continued as did the dangerous behavior. He and Anne eventually separated. And while he’d always been a loving father to his kids, his illness made it increasingly difficult. Though he loved them more than anything in the world.

The last time I spoke to him was on the phone late one night when he was suffering from insomnia. He was playing old songs from when we were young and wanted me to stay on the phone with him until he fell asleep. I asked him to drive to New York the next day, but he never showed up and went to Kentucky instead. Not long after, on a late July day in 2018, I got a call from his cousin that he was dying in a Maryland hospital. 

The next day, I drove there and stayed for a week. Gordon was going in and out of consciousness but he couldn’t speak. When he was alert, I would make our inside jokes and reminisce about the times we had in Kentucky and D.C. and Ohio. I would sit beside him with his teenage son, who reminded me so much of the Gordon I’d met in the early ’80s, and play Psychedelic Furs and New Order songs for him on my phone. Sometimes he would work up enough energy to smile.

On a sun-drenched afternoon in late August, we spread Gordon’s ashes among the same Winchester hills where he and I used to sit and talk about the lives we’d someday live. Later on, when the sun was setting, I went outside with a bottle of Ale-8 and watched as my daughter and Gordon’s daughter ran with a pack of kids through the same tobacco barn we used to run through as kids.

As I write this, I’m sitting in our guest room in our house in East Hyde Park. It’s the Sunday before Thanksgiving. In a moment, I will go downstairs to my back porch and grab a green bottle of Ale-8. Each sip will remind me of Gordon. Each sip will make him feel alive again. Until the bottle is empty. Until the Ale-8 is gone.

Kentucky Has An Official State Drink – And It’s Not What You’d Expect

Pop quiz time: what’s the state drink of Kentucky? If you immediately responded “Bourbon!” — well, you’re not alone! Kentucky is world-renowned for its bourbon, and it’s only natural to think that this ubiquitous spirit would also be the official state drink of the Bluegrass. But it’s not. In fact, the official state drink of Kentucky is Ale-8-One, a soft drink invented right here in the Bluegrass!During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.Ale-8-One soft drink has been bottled in Winchester, Kentucky, since 1926. This iconoclastic soda is the only soft drink invented in Kentucky still in existence.

There’s a good reason for that… and that’s because it’s absolutely delightful. It’s gingery, citrusy, carbonated, refreshing deliciousness.

It’s true! And official. Governor Paul E. Patton, the 59th governor of Kentucky, proclaimed July 13, 2001, as “Ale-8-1 Day.” And in 2013, Governor Steve Beshear signed House Bill No. 205, officially making Ale-8-One the “original soft drink” of Kentucky.

Wondering how this legendary soda came to be? Let’s take a little trip down memory lane.

The story begins at the turn of the 20th century. Founder and inventor G. L. Wainscott began bottling soda water and several varieties of flavored drinks in a plant on North Main Street in Winchester, Kentucky. In 1906, he introduced Roxa-Kola, a combination of his wife’s name and popular “cola” suffix. After an ensuing court battle over the production of Roxa-Kola, Wainscott began his quest for a single unique flavor for his budding soft drink business.

He decided to go with a ginger-infused drink. Experimenting with ginger recipes acquired during his travels in Northern Europe, Wainscott eventually developed the Ale-8-One formula. The product was launched on July 13, 1926.

Since then, the secret family recipe has been passed down from generation to generation and is now in the hands of Wainscott’s great-great-nephew, Fielding Rogers.

Kentucky is a place that’s so proud of its history and traditions. And Ale-8-One is a bonafide part of the Bluegrass.

Of course, for those who thought bourbon was the official Kentucky state drink, you’re not wrong. In fact, you can create your very own epic Kentucky cocktail of Ale-8 and bourbon.

The Ale-8-One Company Store is located in the main office building at 25 Carol Road, Winchester, KY, 40391. The store features specialty items and memorabilia and is open to the public during the week. Visit the Ale-8-One website to learn more.

This is an iconic part of Kentucky history you must embrace and experience!

So now you know: Kentucky has an official state drink, and it’s Ale-8-One, of course! Have you had this Kentucky-made soft drink before? If not, give it a try! It might just become your new favorite.Address: Ale-8-One Bottling Co, 25 Carol Rd, Winchester, KY 40391, USA

Abettor opens second location

Published 4:06 pm Monday, November 22, 2021

By Warren Taylor

Abettor Brewing officially opened its Depot Street location this weekend in the most patron-pleasing way possible with trivia, food trucks and a Sunday brunch.

For its employees, though, the long-awaited unveiling heralded the time to take a deep breath.

“It’s a big stress relief,” said John Howard, Abettor’s taproom manager. “We’ve been pushing and pushing to get it off for a year … It’s nice to see it come to fruition.”

Abettor opened its first location on Lexington Ave in 2019 and quickly became a favorite local watering hole.

In a previous interview with the Sun, its founder, Tyler Montgomery, said he decided it was time to open a second location because he believes Winchester “can support more than one brewery” and to offer a better customer experience. He said he admired the Depot St. location, but it was continuously occupied until earlier this year.

Abettor started renting the building before eventually purchasing it outright. Before it could become the second location, the building needed extensive plumbing renovations to accommodate brew tanks and electrical upgrades for safety reasons.

It is still a work in progress.

“We have some things to take care of, but the space is usable,” Howard said.

The brewery’s customers were also ready for the new location to open.

“Winchester was begging for us to get going,” Howard said.

Unfortunately, they will have to wait a bit for any special commemorative beer to mark the second location’s opening, but Howard said customers should expect more of a local favorite.

“A lot of Winchester has come to like New England IPAs, so we are going to keep exploring and pumping out new ones of those,” he said.

Brittany Samples, an Abettor bartender, said the new location’s opening is indicative of the brewery’s fast growth.

“It’s really amazing how fast it has grown in the short amount of time it has been in Winchester,” she said.

Samples said that the crew “are all super ecstatic” about Depot Street and that she thinks it “will be more of a flagship” for the brewery in the years to come.

One customer was already impressed by it.

“It’s better,” Dale Budke said and compared it to Abettor’s other location. “It’s difficult to get in that one down there. I like it, but it is hard to get in and out.”

Budke and a group of friends from Mount Sterling “bop around” different microbreweries across central Kentucky and have come to love Abettor.

“We like this one because it is close and not a bunch of hassle. It’s kind of homey; normal folks, and it is not stuffy,” he said.

Adam Johnson and Jeanette Burke recently moved to Winchester from Huntington, West Virginia, and said that each visit made them feel like they were at home.

“Every time we came, we saw the same people, and they were super nice,” Johnson said. “They have a lot of regulars … What other factors could you want from a local watering hole type of deal?”

Burke said she enjoys the brewery’s products and atmosphere.

“The beer is great,” she said. “It has a nice very casual vibe.”

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