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 shortened to "the Bourbon Trail") is a program of the Kentucky Distillers' Association (KDA) to promote the bourbon industry in Kentucky. The KDA has registered the phrase "Kentucky Bourbon Trail" as a trademark.


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

In August 2012, the Town Branch Distillery was added to the trail, bringing the number of distilleries 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 the 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 Distillery would be added to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.[9] There are now 13 destinations on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.

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][11] 2012 had the highest-ever rate of completion for participation in the trail.[12] In December 2013, the Craft Tour added Danville's Wilderness Trail Distillery, thereby expanding to eight destinations.[13] Several other distilleries have been added, raising the current number to 14 destinations on the Craft Tour.[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 member sites[edit]

The program sends free T-shirts to people who mail in a promotional "passport" that has been stamped by all the participating distilleries.

The 13 current primary Bourbon Trail destinations are:[16]

The members of the Bourbon Trail "Craft Tour" are:[10][16][17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Clark, Jayne (2004-04-29). "Sun shines bright on Kentucky bourbon". USA Today. Retrieved 2008-11-14. 
  2. ^ Gilbert, Richard (2003-06-01). "In search of... Bourbon in Kentucky". The Independent. Retrieved 2008-11-14. [dead link]
  3. ^ Warren, Jim (2008-08-28). "8th distillery joins Ky. Bourbon Trail". Lexington Herald-Leader. Retrieved 2008-11-14. 
  4. ^ a b Patton, Janet (2010-02-05). "Buffalo Trace, Tom Moore leave distillers' group, Bourbon Trail". Lexington Herald-Leader. Retrieved 2010-03-04. 
  5. ^ Snyder, Chris (August 16, 2012). "Alltech's Town Branch Distillery in Lexington added to Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Lexington Ace. 
  6. ^ a b Schreiner, Bruce, "Kentucky Bourbon Trail Expands to Include Stop in Downtown Louisville", Associated Press, May 9, 2013.[dead link]
  7. ^ "Old Forester Makes Triumphant Return to Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Whisky Advocate. 2018-06-14. Retrieved 2018-08-21. 
  8. ^ "O.Z. Tyler Joins the Kentucky Bourbon Trail - Owensboro Living". Retrieved 2018-08-21. 
  9. ^ "Lux Row Distillers Joins the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Tour – Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Retrieved 2018-08-21. 
  10. ^ a b "Bourbon Trail launches new tour of artisan distilleries". Lexington Herald-Leader. October 12, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Craft distilleries across the state added to Kentucky Bourbon Trail experience". The Lane Report. October 12, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail tour shatters completion record — with three months left to go". The Lane Report. October 9, 2012. 
  13. ^ "Kentucky Distillers Association Welcomes Danville's Wildterness Trace Distillery". KDA. December 5, 2013. 
  14. ^ "KENTUCKY BOURBON TRAIL CRAFT TOUR – Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Retrieved 2018-08-21. 
  15. ^ "Kentucky Bourbon Trail Welcome Center opens at the Frazier History Museum". Louisville, KY: WDRB. August 30, 2018. Retrieved September 2, 2018. 
  16. ^ a b "Kentucky Bourbon Trail". Kentucky Distillers' Association. Retrieved 2017-10-09. 
  17. ^ Craft Tour Passport

External links[edit]