Woodford Reserve opens new tourist welcome center

VERSAILLES, Ky. — Woodford Reserve Distillery, which last year welcomed a record 150,000 tourists from around the world, Wednesday opened its new welcome center.

The building, a modern take on a traditional Bluegrass farmhouse set amid the rolling hills of Central Kentucky, is now where visitors start their tour.

Woodford Reserve, which opened in 1996, was among the earliest distilleries that welcomed tourists — and it helped launch the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, which last year saw a record 1.4 million tourists.

The new center includes a main hall with seating, a ticketing area, restrooms, a bar, and outdoor entertaining spaces. Materials include oak and limestone as a nod to the importance of both in the bourbon-making process.

The artwork in the main hall are all originals by mostly Kentucky artists depicting the Kentucky landscape.

Guests will board a bus to go across the street, where they will experience fermentation, distillation, maturation and bottling before heading to the visitor’s center for a tasting.

The visitor’s center will continue to house the gift shop, Glenn’s Creek Cafe, under the direction of Chef-in-Residence Ouita Michel, and a cocktail bar.

Woodford Reserve is the world’s leading super-premium bourbon and is crafted in Versailles on land where distilling began in 1812. The property is a National Historic Landmark.

For more information, visit woodfordreserve.com.

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