Kentucky Bourbon Trail

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Four Roses Distillery
Recently filled barrels of Woodford Reserve bourbon outside of the rickhouse, where they will be stacked and stored during the aging process
Jim Beam Distillery

The Kentucky Bourbon Trail, sometimes informally referred to as "the Bourbon Trail", is a program sponsored by the Kentucky Distillers' Association (KDA) to promote the Bourbon whiskey industry in Kentucky. The KDA has registered the phrase "Kentucky Bourbon Trail" as a protected trademark.


The KDA launched the Kentucky Bourbon Trail program in 1999. At the time, it included seven of the eight distilleries in the region.[1][2] In 2008, an eighth distillery, the Barton 1792 Distillery, joined the Trail program.[3] However, the distillery was purchased by the Sazerac Company the following year, and Sazerac withdrew both the Barton 1792 Distillery and the Buffalo Trace Distillery from the KDA at the beginning of 2010.[4] The two Sazerac distilleries continue to host public tours, and a Sazerac spokesperson stated they still feel they are "very much a part of the Bourbon Trail", but Sazerac wishes to promote its distilleries independent of the KDA.[4]

In August 2012, the Town Branch Distillery was added to the trail, bringing the number of distilleries back to seven.[5] The Heaven Hill Evan Williams distillery in Louisville was added in May 2013, expanding the primary tour program to include eight destinations.[6] In 2014, The Bulleit Experience at Stitzel-Weller Distillery joined the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, raising the number to nine destinations. In June 2018, Old Forester opened an urban distillery in downtown Louisville and became a member of the Bourbon Trail.[7] O.Z. Tyler Distillery in Owensboro joined the same month.[8] In July 2018, the KDA announced that Lux Row Distillers would be added to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.[9]

In October 2012, the KDA announced that it would expand the Kentucky Bourbon Trail program to include a new "Craft Tour" of seven artisan distilleries.[10] 2012 had the highest-ever rate of completion for participation in the trail.[11] In December 2013, the Craft Tour added Danville's Wilderness Trail Distillery, thereby expanding to eight destinations.[12] Several other distilleries have been added and the Bowling Green branch of Corsair Artisan Distillery closed on August 30, 2018, bringing the current number to 13 destinations on the Craft Tour.[13][14]

The KDA opened an official welcome center for the Bourbon Trail in August 2018 at the Frazier History Museum in downtown Louisville.[15]

Trail stops[edit]

Kentucky Bourbon Trail
Michter's Distillery
Evan Williams Bourbon Experience
Old Forester Distilling Co.
Angel’s Envy Distilling
Rabbit Hole Distillery
Bulleit Distilling Co.
Stitzel-Weller Distillery
Green River Distilling
Heaven Hill
Lux Row
Bardstown Bourbon Company
Maker’s Mark Distillery
Jim Beam American Stillhouse
Wilderness Trail Distillery
Four Roses Distillery
Wild Turkey Distillery
Woodford Reserve Distillery
Town Branch Distillery
New Riff Distillery
Pensive Distilling Co
Second Sight Spirits
Augusta Distillery
Old Pogue Distillery
Boone County Distillery
Neeley Family Distillery
Kentucky Artisan Distillery
Kentucky Peerless Distilling Company
Cooper & Kings
Jeptha Creed Distillery
Willett Distillery
Preservation Distillery
Log Still Distillery
Limestone Branch Distillery
Boundary Oak
The Bard
Casey Jones
MB Roland Distillery
Dueling Grounds Distillery
Whiskey Thief Distilling Co.
Castle & Key Distillery
Barrel House Distilling Co.
RD1 Spirits
Fresh Bourbon
James E. Pepper
Bluegrass Distillers
Hartfield & Co.
Michter's Fort Nelson Distillery

As of 2024, there are 46 stops on the Bourbon Trail.[citation needed] The program sends free T-shirts to people who mail in a promotional passport that has been stamped by all the participating distilleries.[16]

There are 18 stops on the main Bourbon Trail, broken down into 4 "gateway cities": Bardstown Gateway, Lexington Gateway, Louisville Gateway, and Northern Kentucky Gateway.[17] The 18 stops are:[17]




There are 28 stops on the Bourbon Trail "Craft Tour", broken down into 4 regions: Northern, Central, Western, and Bluegrass.[17] The 28 stops are:[10][19]

Northern Craft Tour

Central Craft Tour

Western Craft Tour

Bluegrass Craft Tour

Other stops[edit]

The B-Line,[20] an official partner of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail,[21] is another organization promoting distilleries, bars, and restaurants in the Bourbon Trail that are in the Northern Gateway area.[22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Clark, Jayne (April 29, 2004). "Sun shines bright on Kentucky bourbon". USA Today. Retrieved November 14, 2008.
  2. ^ "In search of... Bourbon in Kentucky". The Independent. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  3. ^ Warren, Jim (August 28, 2008). "Distillery added to Bourbon Trail". Lexington Herald-Leader. Retrieved November 14, 2008.
  4. ^ a b Patton, Janet (February 5, 2010). "Buffalo Trace, Tom Moore leave distillers' group, Bourbon Trail". Lexington Herald-Leader. Retrieved March 4, 2010.
  5. ^ Snyder, Chris (August 16, 2012). "Alltech's Town Branch Distillery in Lexington added to Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Lexington Ace.
  6. ^ "Evan Williams Bourbon Experience joining the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Tour". Lane Report. May 9, 2013. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  7. ^ "Old Forester Makes Triumphant Return to Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Whisky Advocate. June 14, 2018. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  8. ^ "O.Z. Tyler Joins the Kentucky Bourbon Trail - Owensboro Living". June 4, 2018. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  9. ^ "Lux Row Distillers Joins the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Tour". Kentucky Bourbon Trail official website. July 2, 2018. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  10. ^ a b "Bourbon Trail launches new tour of artisan distilleries". Lexington Herald-Leader. October 12, 2012.
  11. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail tour shatters completion record — with three months left to go". The Lane Report. October 9, 2012.
  12. ^ "Kentucky's Next Craft Distillery: Wilderness Trace in Danville". Ace. December 5, 2013. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  13. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour – Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Retrieved August 21, 2018.
  14. ^ Autry, Lisa. "Bowling Green Distillery Closing After a Decade in Business". Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  15. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail Welcome Center opens at the Frazier History Museum". WDRB. Louisville, KY. August 30, 2018. Retrieved September 2, 2018.
  16. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail New Passport". May 30, 2021. Retrieved May 30, 2021.
  17. ^ a b c "Map". Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  18. ^ Schreiner, Bruce (May 9, 2013). "Kentucky Bourbon Trail Expands to Include Stop in Downtown Louisville". Associated Press.[dead link][verification needed]
  19. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour". Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  20. ^ "The B Line". The B Line. January 20, 2024. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  21. ^ "Map". Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  22. ^ "Visit the B-Line in Northern Kentucky". Biz Journals. January 20, 2024. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  23. ^ "Five New Stops Added to The B-Line®". Kentucky Bourbon Trail. June 20, 2023. Retrieved July 3, 2023.
  24. ^ Barrier, Katherine. "The B-Line Celebrates National Bourbon Day By Adding Five New Stops Along The Trail". Cincinnati CityBeat. Retrieved July 3, 2023.

External links[edit]