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Oct trip to Bourbon Country on the books - time for lots of research ;-)


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tascabe

My wife got me a long weekend vrbo rental for early Oct in Midway, KY for my birthday.

Even conspired with a buddy to be there so I have somebody to do the tours and drinking with.
 

So now I need to double down on research to make the most of the time there!

If anybody has 'must visits' and 'don't bothers' to share - I am all ears.

I will be reading through the forum posts as well here to try and determine those.

 

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A visit to the Bar at Willett would be enjoyable if you are a fan of WFE, because they have plenty of it there.

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BottledInBond

There are lots of past threads on this topic to go back and read through but a couple of thoughts:

 

As @Kyjd75 mentioned Willett is a cool spot, beautiful grounds, just be prepared for things to be expensive, and they may not have any WFE bottles to purchase in the gift shop depending on the day

 

If you go to Willett, you will likely also go to the Heaven Hill Heritage Center as it’s right next door basically. They often do have some good LE bottles in their gift shop, although they’ll be limit 1 per person, and often they’ll be even more expensive than store MSRP. 
 

I have always enjoyed Maker’s Mark. Beautiful location, cool tour, up close and personal. Within the Beam Suntory family, I’d much rather go to MM than Beam. 
 

If you want to do Four Roses, make sure you go to the distillery, not Cox’s Creek. I find Cox’s Creek to be pretty much worthless personally. 
 

Depending on your brand preferences, Wild Turkey and BT are definitely worth visiting. Another that people rave about, although I haven’t been there but it’s high on my list for my next trip, is Castle & Key. That place has cool architecture and history, although they don’t have much for well aged whiskey yet. 
 

If you end up in metro Louisville you’ve got several options right in town which is convenient even if they aren’t the best overall experiences. Personally I’d focus on the real locations though. 
 

Enjoy your trip. It’s a very relaxing area to just drive around through the rolling hills

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geclbxf
On 3/24/2021 at 7:20 PM, Kyjd75 said:

A visit to the Bar at Willett would be enjoyable if you are a fan of WFE, because they have plenty of it there.

And have an egg salad sandwich - best I have ever had - maybe thats the flight of rye talking, LOL

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flahute
11 minutes ago, geclbxf said:

And have an egg salad sandwich - best I have ever had - maybe thats the flight of rye talking, LOL

Don't think it's the rye. I don't like egg salad sandwiches generally but I heard so many good things about it that I decided to take a chance and boy was I glad I did. It's amazing.

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geclbxf
15 minutes ago, flahute said:

Don't think it's the rye. I don't like egg salad sandwiches generally but I heard so many good things about it that I decided to take a chance and boy was I glad I did. It's amazing.

the Panisse is awesome too!

 

Back to topic, the Willett lunch and Bardstown Bourbon company dinner is as close as I have ever come to a Napa valley experience on the bourbon trail.

Might not be for everyone, so Mammy's Kitchen is just as awesome but different.

 

We have been staying in Bardstown more and more on the last several trips.

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flahute

Midway places you on the Lexington side of bourbon country. tons of options there.

 

Woodford is near Versailles. The visitors center looks like a golf club so not very historic but the rolling hills with the stone rickhouses is great to see and you drive through horse farm country to get there.

As already mentioned, Castle & Key is not far away and is a must see even if their whiskey isn't old enough to be plentiful at this point. Just down the road from C&K is a restaurant called The Stave. Grab lunch there, it's great.

 

Further south is Wilderness Trail in Danville.

 

BT is up near Frankfort.

 

To the west a bit is Lawrenceburg where you can take in Wild Turkey and Four Roses. (This is the 4R location that has the distillery.)

You can grab lunch in downtown Lawrenceburg. Heaven's to Betsy is a great sandwich shop and bakery.

 

If you make the trek to Bardstown, and you should, the Bar at Willett as already mentioned is great. Bardstown Bourbon Company has a great restaurant in addition to the obvious tours and bourbon.

Mammy's Kitchen has a great bologna sandwich. Old Talbott Tavern has a nice bar and bar food. I've heard Kreso's is good but have never been there. La Herradura - incredible Mexican food. Don't be deterred by it's strip center locale. Great bourbon selection as well. Yes that's correct. Out of town a bit is a dive bar called Bluegrass Tavern that makes great burgers and sandwiches.

 

And that's all for now as I have to head into a meeting.

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tascabe

Thank s for the input - I went through other threads and copied out comments and lists to sort through.

I have time to plan it out well - do not want to have to rush too much so just trying to weed out the less stellar stops and make sure and hit the 'best' ones.

I intend to be back so can hit the good but not great ones later 😉

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Kreso's in Bardstown is good, but the gem is their sister cafe, Cafe Primo.  Just up the street with the best pizza I've had in awhile.  Worth a try if you want something Italian, especially a good pizza.

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FYI, I happened to be at Bardstown Bourbon Co. on this past Wednesday (3/31) to meet with their event planner for something a group of us have been working on for quite awhile (thanks to c-19).  At 1pm their restaurant was packed.  I was surprised, to say the least, as I have been there several times before and it is usually never that busy on a Wednesday during the afternoon.  Things were hopping, which is a good thing for BBC and Bardstown in general.  Looks like folks are starting to get out once again.  As usual, the food and drink were excellent, as the wife and I ate lunch after I had my meeting. With my meal I sampled the Discovery #4, which I found to be absolutely fantastic.

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