5:22pm

Fri March 1, 2013
State Capitol

Beer Cheese and Ale Eight One Bills Progress

Along with pressing issues like State pensions, tax reform, or Medicaid managed care, come some lighter matters at the capital.  The Kentucky Senate is considering a bill to declare Clark County as the birthplace of ‘beer cheese.’  Clark County Senator R.J. Palmer testified to the economics of beer cheese in her community.  “We had six thousand people in Winchester Kentucky for a beer cheese festival.     Six thousand people on Main Street in Winchester. We’ve got time to do these things while we’re here,” said Palmer.

Admitting the legislature is sometimes criticized for this type of legislation, Palmer and Committee Chair Alice Kerr both said it is a tourism related issue.  The panel also moved to designate Ale-Eight-One as the official Kentucky Original Soft Drink.  The beverage was first produced in Winchester in 1902. 

Senator Jimmy Higdon said he and his grandson traveled through all 120 Kentucky counties.  Higdon  asked his grandson what were his most memorable moments during the five thousand mile trip.

“We got lost one time, ended up in Middletown.  This is not the Middletown in Jefferson County, this is the Middletown,…in my district.  And he said Papa, I know why they call it Middletown, because it’s in the middle of nowhere.  And he was right.  And he mentioned drinking Ale eight in Winchester, so that was the three things in 120 counties, over five thousand miles over 16 days,  Ale Eight is one of the things that he remembered, so I do want to make that comment,” added Higdon.

Identical bills are moving through the Kentucky House.  The soft drink measure passed the House unanimously.