Visiting the Kentucky Bourbon Trail
August 30, 2018
If you’re looking for an idea for a bachelor party, a couples’ getaway, or a unique birthday experience, look no further than Kentucky’s Bourbon Trail. Both bourbon lovers and non-bourbon drinkers alike will appreciate the history and craftsmanship that comes with some of the finest names in the bourbon industry. Most locations can be found just a couple hours north of Nashville, so take the weekend and explore the famous Bourbon Trail.
Before planning your trip, try out the different bourbons that you can experience in Kentucky, and then decide which distilleries you’d care to visit. There’s an overwhelming number of great ones, we’d love to give you some of our suggestions!
Old Forester Distillery
Old Forester Bourbon was established in 1870 and helped to usher in the Whiskey Boom in Kentucky. Rich with history, this distillery is a must-see when on the Bourbon Trail. The distillery is 4 floors of bourbon education, ending with a visit to the state-of-the-art cocktail lounge. Visit>>
Evan Williams Bourbon Experience
Not far from Old Forester, Evan Williams boasts their own artisan distillery in the heart of Louisville. There are two themed tasting rooms as well as a basement speakeasy to really get you in the right bourbon mindset. The Evan Williams Experience is just a short way from where Evan himself used to send the barrels down the river. Visit >>
Bulleit Frontier Whiskey Experience
Just a small distance west you can find the old Stitzel-Weller Distillery which houses the Bulliet Frontier Whiskey Experience. Just recently reopened to the public in 2014, the distillery is considered to reside on hallowed bourbon grounds. (Note: Stitzel-Weller is closed on Tuesdays) Visit>>
Jim Beam Distillery
Get an up-close and personal tour at the Jim Beam Distillery tour in Clermont, KY. You’ll learn about the natural limestone water well and all the way through the bottling process. After learning all about the making, you’ll be able to hand-dip your own bottle of Knob Creek right off the bottling line. Visit>>
Tourists can also get the Jim Beam Bourbon Experience in downtown Louisville. Or do both if you have time!
Heaven Hill Bourbon Heritage Center
Historic Bardstown is considered the Bourbon Capital of the World and an Official Trailhead of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. This is largely due to the town being the home of Heaven Hill Bourbon Heritage Center. Heaven Hill is the nation’s largest family-owned spirits producer making brands such as Elijah Craig, Larceny, Henry McKenna and many others. At the location, you can choose your tour and enjoy your samples in the barrel-shaped room. Visit>>
Spalding Hall- Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History | The Bardstown Historical Museum
The Oscar Getz museum is a gem for whiskey lovers to view the history of the product. The museum displays a 50-year collection of rare and unique artifacts pertaining to the American whiskey industry. Exhibits include bottles, jugs, advertising, art, novelty, and more.
The Bardstown Historical Museum contains artifacts from an over 200-year span of history from the area. You will find Indian relics, Lincoln documents, pioneer papers, John Fitch land grant, a replica of his first steamboat, Stephen Foster memorabilia, a new Trappist monks’ exhibit, gifts of Louis Phillippe and Charles X of France, Civil War artifacts and more. Visit>>
Lebanon is literally the “heart” of Kentucky — it’s the geographic center of the Bluegrass State–and an Official Trailhead of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. One of the most iconic American bourbons hails from this area of Kentucky- Maker’s Mark.
Visitors can see the bourbon barrels aging below a beautiful Chihuly glass installment and dip their own bottle of Maker’s. There’s also the opportunity to enjoy a delicious Southern meal at Star Hill Provisions and get a cocktail or alcoholic Ale-8-One slushy. Visit>>
Four Roses Distillery
Visitors love the romantic history that surrounds the Four Roses brand. This year is the 130th anniversary of Paul Jones Jr. naming his bourbon after the occasion of his love saying “yes” with a corsage of 4 roses.
Four Roses offers both Distillery Tours with a complimentary tasting glass for each guest over 21 and “A Taste of History”, which allows tourists to experience the full Four Roses tour. This experience provides guests with a discussion on the unique aspects of Four Roses, a historical background, and a guided tasting. Visit>>
Wild Turkey Distillery
Just about 8 miles down the road sits Wild Turkey Distillery atop the Kentucky River. Their brand-new distillery is a marvel and the pride of Master Distiller Jimmy Russell. Jimmy is always willing to pose for pictures and sign a bottle. There’s much bourbon knowledge to be learned from the world’s longest-tenured active master distiller, Mr. Russell. Visit>>
Woodford Reserve Distillery
Woodford Reserve has some of the most extensive options when it comes to their tours. The distillery hosts a 1 hour and two different 2-hour tour options. Whether you’re just wanting an overview and taste or an in-depth “Corn to Cork” experience, Woodford has you covered.
As a special experience, we recommend staying at the Woodford Inn. This boutique luxury inn offers everything guests could want and has an amazing on-site restaurant. No worries, however, you don’t have to be a guest to dine! Visit>>
If you can’t make the venture to Kentucky, stop on in to the store and we’ll show you our selection of favorite bourbons. Come home from the Bourbon Trail and needing a refill of your favorite? We can help you there too. Come explore the best bourbon selection in Hendersonville.