BARDSTOWN, Ky. — Known far and wide as the bourbon capital of the world, Bardstown is the newest official gateway sponsor to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail adventure, the Kentucky Distillers’ Association announced today.
With its robust mix of iconic brand destinations and smaller craft distilleries, Bardstown is a hub for thousands of Bourbon visitors looking to sample the Commonwealth’s signature spirit, said Adam Johnson, senior director of the KDA’s Kentucky Bourbon Trail experiences.
This makes Bardstown a perfect choice as an official gateway to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.
“Bourbon is in the bedrock of Bardstown, and this community showcases the vibrant, small-town charm of Kentucky Bourbon culture that’s unique to our Commonwealth,” Johnson said. “This partnership will enhance the spirit and traditions of this historically significant Bourbon region.”
There are currently eight KBT and Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour participating distilleries in the Bardstown area including, Bardstown Bourbon Company, Heaven Hill, Lux Row Distillers, Preservation Distillery, Willett Distillery, Jim Beam (Clermont), Four Roses (Cox’s Creek), and Maker’s Mark (Loretto). The KDA also has a satellite office in town.
Bardstown also features many popular venues like the storied Old Talbott Tavern, which has provided shelter, food and drink to travelers since the 1700s. Visitors also can tour the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History, a rich and colorful archive of Kentucky’s distilling past.
Mike Mangeot, executive director of the Bardstown-Nelson County Tourism Commission, said bourbon is ingrained in the community’s heritage.
“Once guests visit our historic distilleries, taste some of our legendary bourbons and experience our true Southern hospitality they begin to understand why we say ‘Bourbon Comes from Bardstown’” Mangeot said.
“We are excited to be an official gateway to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Tour.”
“We are honored to receive the designation for Bardstown as an official gateway sponsor to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail tour,” Bardstown Mayor Richard Heaton said. “This will enhance our presence in the Kentucky Bourbon Trail attraction in collaboration with our local distilleries and the Kentucky Distillers’ Association.”
As an “Official Gateway” sponsor, Bardstown will receive prominent placement on the KBT website and marketing materials, including recommended itineraries, signage and more. Bardstown joins Louisville and Northern Kentucky as “Official Gateway” level sponsors.
“Nelson County has a rich history of Bourbon experiences,” Nelson County Judge Executive Dean Watts said. “We are proud to be an ‘Official Gateway Sponsor of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail experience.”
KDA President Eric Gregory said Bardstown’s small-town traditions, rich history and growing group of heritage and craft distilleries give it a distinguished role as the bourbon capital of the world.
“Bardstown showcases both the tradition and evolution of Kentucky Bourbon,” Gregory said. “From family owned distilleries passed down through generations to innovative new facilities, this area offers an authentic Kentucky Bourbon experience that makes it a true bucket list destination.
“We look forward to working with Bardstown as an official gateway to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail tour to elevate and preserve Kentucky’s heritage as the one true, authentic home for Bourbon.”