Bardstown is often referred to as "The Bourbon Capital of the World." It has excellent breweries where you can sample some of the world's finest bourbon and find out how this beverage is made. BBonline recommends the best of these breweries for your Bardstown Things to Do list.
107 East Stephen Foster Avenue,
Bardstown, Kentucky 40004
Chapeze House is home to the Kentucky Bourbon Cooking School, the Kentucky Bourbon Society, and the Chapeze Distillery. Tastings are held here every Friday. Apart from the Ultra-Premium Bourbon from each of the distilleries in Kentucky, you can also dine on Southern cuisine inspired by Kentucky Bourbon. The Chapeze House mansion was constructed by Ben Chapeze in 1810, and 1846 saw the development of the Distillery, so you will be visiting a historic site.
Your hosts, the Colonel and Margaret Sue, are celebrities in Kentucky who have appeared on the Fine Living Channel, Travel Channel and Food Network TV. Margaret Sue cooks for her guests herself. The Chapeze House offers an experience you cannot afford to miss during your stay at your Bardstown Bed and Breakfast.
Four Roses Distillery
624 Lotus Road, Cox's Creek,
Bardstown, Kentucky 40013
In this distillery housed in a Spanish Mission-style mansion, you can watch bourbon being bottled by hand and enjoy the sweet aroma of the beverage aging in white oak barrels. The 1911 mansion features in the National Register of Historic Places. You can take a tour of the site.
Heaven Hill Distilleries Bourbon Heritage Center
1311 Gilkey Run Road, Bardstown, Kentucky 40004
This is a distillery with a difference, offering interactive exhibits which teach you the history of the bourbon industry in Kentucky, and how bourbon is made. There's a rustic tour available of a working rick house. You can personalize your bottle of bourbon and take advantage of a tutored tasting in a barrel-shaped room named "Taste of Heaven."
Jim Beam American Outpost
Highway 245, Clermont,
Bardstown, Kentucky 40110
In this 200-year-old distillery, you can taste Jim Beam bourbons and learn about the heritage and modern methods used in their creation. Jim Beam is the world's top-selling bourbon. After an interesting short film about the Beam family, you can go on a self-guided tour of the site.
The Beam family home is a National Historic Site and worth heading out to from your comfortable Bardstown Inn.
Maker's Mark Distillery
3350 Burk's Springs Road,
Loretto, Kentucky 40037
This is the only working distillery in the United States recognized as a National Historical Landmark. Built in 1805 as a gristmill distillery, it became home to Maker's Mark in 1953. The red shutters on this dark brown building are shaped like the Maker's bottle
Plenty of interesting places are included on the one-hour tour, such as the Master Distiller's house constructed during the 1840's, the Toll House, the Firehouse with its antique fire engine, the 1805 Still House and the Barrel warehouses built in the late 1800's and early 1900's. Discover how Maker's bourbon is made from start to finish and get a taste too. You'll see how each bottle is dipped by hand into the signature red wax and get the chance to dip your souvenir bottle yourself.
Tom Moore Distillery
901 W. Stephen Foster Avenue,
Bardstown, Kentucky 40004-2401
This historic distillery offers the only full distillery tour in the town. It also happens to be the only fully working distillery here. The 1792 brand of super premium bourbon which the distillery is known for commemorates the year Kentucky became a state.
You won't find a tasting in this distillery, but you could sign up for a free two-hour behind-the-scenes tour which will provide you with an exhaustive introduction to the production of bourbon.