Toast to Springtime in the Bourbon Capital of the World

The best place to raise a toast to springtime is in Bardstown, Kentucky, the Bourbon Capital of The World.

Bourbon comes from Bardstown, so you can access 11 different distillery experiences within 16 miles of downtown! Spring is a great time to visit since you’ll typically find available slots on multiple tours. And the warmer weather makes it nice to walk around exploring the distilleries’ sprawling properties.

Don’t miss Heaven Hill, the nation’s largest family-owned spirits producer, which just completed a massive $19-million expansion of its Visitor Center including an interactive “You Do Bourbon” elevated tasting that includes personalizing a bottle that you can take home.

Bardstown Bourbon Company, the Napa Valley experience of Bardstown, offers several different tours plus the hands-on “Shaken & Stirred” curated cocktail class where you’ll learn how to expertly make two iconic bourbon cocktails—add it to any tour!

Lux Row Distillers, the newest destination on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, offers a behind-the-scenes look at the bourbon-making process from start to finish. It’s also home to a stunning peacock that roams the distillery.

You’ll also find abundant tour and tasting opportunities at Log Still, a sprawling 300-acre campus with an amphitheater, tasting room, quaint cottages and more; Barton 1792, the city’s oldest fully-operating distillery; Willett, an independent, family-owned producer; Preservation, the region’s first and only 100-percent pot-distilled producer; Old SteelHouse Distillery, a brand first launched in 1844 that’s now offering historic tours; Jim Beam, the world’s No. 1 selling bourbon brand; Maker’s Mark, the small batch bourbon known for its iconic red-waxed bottle necks; and the Four Roses Warehouse & Bottling Facility, where 10 distinct bourbon recipes are aged and processed.

In downtown Bardstown, you can belly up to the bar at the Old Talbott Tavern that’s been operating since 1797! Walk over to the recently renovated Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History. Delve into the nation’s whiskey history from Colonial days through the 1960s. Exhibits showcase an array of treasures including Abraham Lincoln’s liquor license, Prohibition-era alcohol prescriptions, moonshine stills, antique bottles, and more.

Check into the new Dant Crossing, a pastoral 300-acre campus anchored around Log Still Distillery that offers a range of entertainment options including the distillery tasting room with behind-the-scenes tours and tastings of Monk’s Road spirits. You can also explore acres of wooded walking trails. Cast a line in the 12-acre fishing lake. Enjoy outdoor concerts at The Amp amphitheater. Stay overnight at a stunning fully-renovated historic bed and breakfast, in a lakefront cottage, or at a Federal-style mansion.

Dine outdoors to take advantage of beautiful weather. Among the options, Scout & Scholar Brewing Co., where beer is paired with international fare, boasts outdoor fire pits and market lighting every evening. Heaven Hill’s new Five Brothers Bar is an upscale place to savor handcrafted cocktails, straight pours, and flights of American whiskeys with a lounge area and outdoor patio. Family-owned Mammy’s Kitchen serves country-style breakfast, burgers, and bourbon with sincere Southern hospitality on its cozy patio. Enjoy upscale dining plus a selection of more than 130 bourbons on the patio at The Rickhouse Restaurant & Lounge. Sip a craft cocktail or nibble on seasonal fare at Bardstown Bourbon Company, which has vast walls of glass so it’s easy to see inside the distillery on the patio.

Spring in Bardstown offers lots of reasons to say cheers!