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Ale 8 One
Official Ale-8-One Logo
TypeSoft drink
ManufacturerAle-8-One Bottling Company, Inc.
Country of origin  United States
Introduced1926, 97 years ago
FlavorGinger ale/citrus
  • Ale-8 Zero Sugar
  • Caffeine Free Ale-8 Zero Sugar
  • Cherry
  • Cherry Ale-8 Zero Sugar
  • Orange Cream Soda
  • Blackberry
  • Peach

Ale-8-One, known colloquially as Ale-8, is a regional ginger- and citrus-flavored soft drink, distributed primarily to brick and mortar retailers in Kentucky. Ale-8 could be described as a ginger Soda with a "kick". It is a ginger and citrus blend, containing less carbonation and fewer calories than conventional soda.

It is bottled by the Ale-8-One Bottling Company in Winchester, Kentucky.[1]


The formula for Ale-8-One was developed by soda bottler G. L. Wainscott in the 1920s.[2] Wainscott, who had been in the soda business in Winchester, Kentucky since 1902, had developed Roxa-Kola, his previous flagship product, in 1906. In creating the formula for Ale-8-One, Wainscott drew upon his knowledge of ginger-based recipes acquired in northern Europe.[2]

Wainscott began bottling Ale-8-One in 1926. To choose a name for the drink, he sponsored a name-the-product contest. "A Late One" was chosen as the winning entry.[2][3] The "Ale-8-One" name is a pun[2] of the phrase suggesting that his product was "the latest thing" in soft drinks.[citation needed]

In 1935, Wainscott purchased a livery stable in Winchester and converted it to a bottling factory to expand his operation.[2] Upon Wainscott's death in 1944, half of his company stock went to his wife; the other half was divided among his employees.[2] When his wife died in 1954, her stock was left to her brother, Frank A. Rogers Sr.[2] Rogers bought the remaining company stock in 1962 and incorporated the Ale-8-One Bottling Company.[2] He named his son, Frank Rogers Jr., manager of the new company.[2]

The Ale-8-One Bottling Company constructed a new plant in Winchester in 1965.[2] It ceased production of Roxa-Kola in 1968 (but will reintroduce it in October 2023),[4] and by 1974, had halted production of all its other drinks to focus on Ale-8-One.[2] The company remains under the control of the Rogers family.[2]


The recipe for Ale-8 is a closely guarded family secret.[1] Reportedly, only two executives—former company president Frank A. Rogers III and his oldest son, Fielding Rogers, the current president—know the exact composition.[5] However, scientific studies have proven the soft drink has less caffeine than Coca-Cola, Pepsi, or Mountain Dew.[1]


In 2003, the company announced limited distribution of Diet Ale-8,[6] its first new product since the introduction of the original Ale-8 in 1926. Diet Ale 8, which was renamed Ale-8 Zero Sugar in 2020, contains 44 mg of caffeine and no sugars. The diet variety is sweetened with a mixture of acesulfame potassium and sucralose.[citation needed] Caffeine Free Diet Ale 8 (now Caffeine Free Ale-8 Zero Sugar) followed in March 2011. In addition to not having any caffeine, it is also sweetened with Splenda.

In 2018, Cherry Ale 8 was released, making it the first flavored Ale-8-One. It was first available exclusively in fountain drink form, then it became available in bottles.[7][8][9] A zero-sugar version of Cherry Ale-8 became available in 2020.[6] In April 2019, Ale-8-One announced a new orange cream soda flavor to be available in early May of that year.[10] In May 2022, Blackberry Ale-8 was released to the public, in a bottled form. In May 2023, Peach Ale-8 was released as a limited edition.[11]

In 2023, it was announced that Roxa-Kola would be revived after 55 years of dormancy as a limited seasonal run to commemorate the 121st anniversary of the company's establishment.[12]

Availability and distribution[edit]

A bottle of Ale-8-One

For much of its history, Ale-8 was only available in central and eastern portions of Kentucky. In April 2001, the Ale-8-One Bottling Company expanded its distribution to areas of southern Ohio, and southern Indiana, through an agreement with Coca-Cola Enterprises. Later, distribution to eastern Tennessee and far western Virginia was added. It is also available in some parts of West Virginia.

In July 2015, Ale-8 announced plans to expand distribution into Indianapolis.

Nationwide distribution[edit]

In 2016, Cracker Barrel began distributing the drink nationwide in all of its locations.[13][14] In 2017, The Fresh Market began distributing Ale-8 and Diet Ale-8 in their stores in the eastern and Midwestern United States.

Other products[edit]

In 2006, the Ale-8-One Bottling Company introduced Ale-8-One Salsa, which was available as an experimental product, but became a permanent item at Kroger stores and on the company's online store. The salsa was inspired by a Sullivan University student who won a contest commemorating the company's 80th anniversary by making a salsa dish with the soft drink as an ingredient.[15] Shortly after, Ale-8-One Barbecue Sauce was introduced.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Chellogren, Mark R. (July 31, 1994). "Trendy soft drink has local public following". The Portsmouth Daily Times. Associated Press. p. A4 – via Google Books.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Walton, p. 11
  3. ^ "Family Secret - Ale-8-One". Ale-8-One. Retrieved 2018-12-03.
  4. ^ Woosley-Collins, Hannah (September 29, 2023). "55 years later, Ale 8 teases return of Roxa Kola". WTVQ. Archived from the original on September 29, 2023. Retrieved September 29, 2023.
  5. ^ "About Ale-8-One". A Taste of Kentucky. 2017-06-29. Retrieved 2019-03-01.
  6. ^ a b "Varieties". Ale-8-One Bottling Company. Retrieved June 23, 2023.
  7. ^ "Cherry Ale-8-One on sale in Louisville May 25 at only one location". WDRB. May 24, 2018. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  8. ^ Motsinger, Carol (April 12, 2018). "After 92 years, Ale-8-One will release a new spin on its beloved soda". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  9. ^ Henry, Morgan (April 24, 2018). "Cherry Ale-8 to be available by end of the week". WTVQ-DT. Retrieved September 18, 2018.
  10. ^ Walters, Alexia (April 4, 2019). "Ale-8-One To Release Orange Creme Flavor". WLEX-TV. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  11. ^ "Ale-8-One to release seasonal peach flavor". LEX 18 News - Lexington, KY (WLEX). 2023-04-19. Retrieved 2023-06-26.
  12. ^ "Ale-8-One Revives Roxa Kola, The Retro Flavor That Started It All". WDTN. EIN Presswire / Newsmastics. Retrieved Sep 28, 2023.
  13. ^ "Ale-8-One will now be available nationwide in Cracker Barrel stores". WDRB. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
  14. ^ “Ale-8-One: Kentucky Soft Drink To Be Carried In Cracker Barrel Stores Nationwide“. Inquisitr (March 15, 2016). Retrieved June 10, 2017.
  15. ^ "Ale-8-One Offers Salsa". The Harrodsburg Herald. October 12, 2006. p. 12C – via Google Books.

Works cited

External links[edit]