BARDSTOWN, Ky. (Jan. 29, 2018) — The Kentucky Distillers’ Association today announced that it has opened a satellite office in Bardstown as a result of the city’s renewed efforts to strengthen its focus as the “Bourbon Capital of the World.”
“Our KDA staff are finding themselves more and more in Bardstown with all the new distilleries and opportunities to showcase the city’s history, culture and booming Bourbon lifestyle,” KDA President Eric Gregory said.
“We need an established space to best support our members and assist the Bardstown community whenever possible,” he said. “The KDA Board unanimously agreed. We’re all proud to be part of the growing effort to elevate Bardstown’s unique Bourbon and tourism offerings.”
The office is at Spalding Hall, 114 North Fifth Street, on the second floor above the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History. The Kentucky Bourbon Festival headquarters are located on the third floor.
“Bardstown is certainly at the heart of the tremendous momentum that Bourbonism is enjoying all over the world, so having a KDA office there seems like a natural,” said KDA Board Chairman Rob Samuels, Chief Operating Officer at Maker’s Mark.
Gregory said KDA staff will rotate office hours at the new site. The non-profit trade group is headquartered in Frankfort, the state capital, and has a satellite office in Louisville at the Frazier History Museum on historic Whiskey Row.
“We are proud to welcome the KDA to the Bourbon Capital of the World,” Bardstown Mayor Dick Heaton said. “In Bardstown and Nelson County, we have more barrels of Bourbon aging than anywhere in the world, so it’s only natural that folks want to spend more time here.”
Last year, Heaton and other elected officials launched the Bourbon Capital Community Alliance, a non-profit group of community, business and government leaders working to expand Bourbon tourism and increase economic investment in the heart of Kentucky’s Bourbon-producing region.
Rep. Chad McCoy said, “It’s very exciting that the KDA is opening an office in Bardstown, the Bourbon Capital of the World. Bardstown is becoming a national leader in tourism and economic development for the entire Bourbon industry, and I look forward to continued growth and innovative developments as a result.”
Gregory noted that KDA currently has five member distilleries in Nelson County – with more on the way – and several in neighboring counties. Bardstown also is an official “Trailhead” sponsor of the KDA’s Kentucky Bourbon Trail tourism attraction.
Founded in 1880, the KDA is the state’s voice for Bourbon and spirits issues with 36 diverse members from legendary, global brands to emerging micro distilleries that are building the next generation of America’s only native spirit.
Kentucky is the birthplace of Bourbon, crafting 95 percent of the world’s supply. Only the Bluegrass State has the perfect natural mix of climate, condition and pure limestone water necessary for producing the world’s greatest Bourbon.
Bourbon is one of the commonwealth’s most historic and treasured industries, a booming $8.5 billion economic engine that generates as many as 17,500 jobs with an annual payroll topping $800 million, and pours $825 million into tax coffers each year.
In addition, the industry is in the middle of a $1.2 billion building boom, from innovative new tourism centers to expanded production facilities, all to meet the growing global thirst for Kentucky Bourbon.
There are now 39 companies operating 52 distilleries in the Commonwealth making 6.8 million barrels of aging Bourbon – all modern records. Distillers also paid a record $19.2 million last year in barrel taxes that fund critical local programs such as education, public safety and health.
The KDA’s famous Kentucky Bourbon Trail® and Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour announced last week that visitors made more than 1 million stops at participating distilleries for the second straight year. Attendance has skyrocketed by 314 in the last 10 years.