Jim Beam Distillery and Bardstown

Monday, March 23, 2015

After our last attempt at stop three on the Bourbon Trail, we finally made it to the Jim Beam Distillery in Clermont, KY this past weekend. It was an absolutely beautiful day in the Bluegrass and we had such a great day. 

This is the gift shop area from the outside. They have an enormous operation that no picture could really do justice. Just to give you an idea, if you do the guided tours, there is an actual bus to take you to the different points in the tour. 

This Bourbon Trail Almanac was a really cool book. It was filled with fun facts on each of the stops on the trail, as well as the distilleries that are not a part of the official trail. It also included different drink recipes you could make using bourbon and was only $5. 

All of the names on these barrels are names of the different bourbons produced at the Jim Beam Distillery. When we got there, it was around 3:00. Unfortunately for us, all of the guided tours for the day were already sold out, so we had to do the self-guided option. It was still neat to walk around and see what we were able to, but a lot of the property is only open to you if you are part of a guided our, so I'd say we will end up heading back to Jim Beam to do a guided tour. You learn a lot about the brand, the distilling process and the history and science behind the bourbons. Since I'm not a drinker, the history and science is what really interests me. 

How pretty are the grounds! One of the two small red buildings pictured depicts how the bourbon is made while the other had some really neat information and videos about how the actual bourbon barrels are made. 

The inside of the gift shop was really impressive. They had all of the bourbons for sale there, lots of Kentucky Proud foods that somehow incorporated bourbon, bourbon balls of course and lots of fun bourbon shirts. They even had furniture made out of bourbon barrels. The table and chairs you see in the picture above are some of the barrel furniture. 

This picture could not be anymore Kentucky. Basketball and Bourbon. I thought it was so neat there was a spot to play basketball right outside of one of the tasting rooms on the grounds. There was a Smokehouse at the distillery where you could eat, but since it was so crowded, we decided to backtrack and grab a very late lunch in Bardstown. 

I had never been to Bardstown before, only passed by it on the interstate, but it is just an adorable little town. Voted best small town in America according to a sign when you enter the town :) We ate at The Talbott Tavern and watched the game with a bunch of other rowdy UK fans. The food was so delicious. I got the Broubron Walnut Chicken, sun-dried tomato risotto and green beans and we all split a plate of fried pickles, fried banana peppers and fried green tomatoes. Everything was really delicious, I would definitely recommend it. We are planning on heading back to Bardstown in May for a wine festival someone there told us about. There were so many cute shops and boutiques in town, but everything was closed since we came through so late in the day. I'm really excited to head back though and explore the town a bit more. 
We had a really great day with friends and marked one more stop off of our Bourbon Passports. 

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