Tourism along the world-famous Kentucky Bourbon Trail continues to grow year after year. Now, Four Roses Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, one of the founding members of the Trail back in 1999, is ready to welcome more bourbon fans than ever before thanks to a completely new and expanded visitor center.
Four Roses celebrated the grand opening of its visitor center with a ribbon cutting and the release of a commemorative distillery only bottle of Four Roses 20-year-old single barrel OBSV bourbon. The visitor center project is part of Four Roses’ ongoing investment to accommodate a growing demand for its bourbon. It was just about a year and a half ago they doubled bourbon production capacity, expanded its bottling line and added new warehouses at their facility in Cox’s Creek to help keep up with worldwide demand.
The new 14,446-square-foot visitor center is designed to both inform and educate guests about Four Roses’ different bourbons, its distilling process, and its unique history in an enjoyable, immersive experience.
The new building is modeled after the existing Spanish mission-style structures unique to Four Roses and this part of the country. The interior space has an accompanying 3,850-square-foot outdoor covered patio and cocktail area.
The new visitor center provides the potential to double Four Roses’ visitor capacity. In the most recent year of full tourism, 2019, Four Roses welcomed 84,979 guests from all 50 states and over 45 countries.
“I’m very proud to be here today to celebrate the next step in Four Roses ongoing investment in Kentucky,” commented Four Roses Distillery President, CEO & CMO Masakazu ‘Mark’ Ashida. “In the past several years we have doubled our distillation capacity here in Lawrenceburg to meet the increasing global demand for our bourbon. We have also built new warehouses in Cox’s Creek where our bourbon is quietly aging. And today, we open this beautiful new facility enhancing our stop on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.
“Over the past five years we have seen more than a 40% increase in the number of visitors, and we are so pleased to be able to welcome even more guests from all over to the world to this beautiful facility. We now offer an elevated experience and a number of new tasting and educational opportunities. Kentucky has been our home since 1888 and we are very appreciative of the partnership Four Roses has had with Kentucky all these many years.”
Stay Informed: Sign up here for the Distillery Trail free email newsletter and be the first to get all the latest news, trends, job listings and events in your inbox.
What Can Visitors Expect in the New Four Roses Visitor Center?
“It’s an exciting time at Four Roses and we are proud to take this next step in our effort to provide an enhanced experience to our visitors, while maintaining our commitment to producing top-quality Bourbon,” said Four Roses Guest Experience Manager Kelli Wright. “The new visitor center provides our guests with more opportunities to learn about and experience Four Roses in some very welcoming and comfortable new spaces.”
The new visitor center includes:
- Bar 1888 – named for the year the Four Roses name was first trademarked, with offerings from Four Roses’ current bourbon portfolio and specialty cocktails. In addition, Bar 1888 will offer selections from Four Roses’ highly acclaimed annual releases from the Limited-Edition Small Batch series
- The Al Young Archive Collection – an interactive display showcasing the range of Four Roses bottlings from throughout its 133-year history. The display is named for the beloved Al Young, who spent more than five decades in various roles at the distillery, including recording and sharing the rich history of Four Roses through years of research into archives and artifacts
- Four seated tasting rooms offering a space for enhanced educational experiences
- Enhanced tasting experiences including an exclusive opportunity to taste individual selections from Four Roses’ ten bourbon recipes that are used to create its core product line
- Expanded retail gift shop with Four Roses’ Bourbon products and other branded merchandise for sale
- Outdoor patio space where visitors can enjoy the beautiful distillery grounds
“We could not build a structure such as this without a lot of planning, a lot of hard work and some excellent partnerships,” said Director of Corporate Strategy & Development Four Roses Distillery Brian McBrayer. “In total 53 different companies and organization worked together to construct this building. Hundreds of workers over the last year and a half have labored at this site.
“111 years ago, our predecessors decided that the Spanish Mission style of architectures was going to really catch on in Kentucky. But they determined that that is what they wanted to stay with so when we trying to design, and figure out what we were going to do at the visitor center, we thought we would stay with that. And believe it or not, 111 years ago they selected an architectural firm, Joseph & Joseph + Bravura Architects, out of Louisville to help them do that. And you know what? We selected Joseph and Joseph to help us design this.”
Introducing the ‘Al Young Archive Collection’
“This new visitor center is over 14,000 square feet,” explained Four Roses Chief Operations Officer Ryan Ashley. “Inside you’ll find Bar 1888. Our brand-new bourbon and cocktail bar which will offer a number of new tasting opportunities. The space itself draws from several bourbon related features; white oak floors and ceilings paying tribute to our bourbon barrels; our bar tables feature 100-year-old reclaimed barn wood, and a section of the original Vendome Copper & Brass Works copper beer still is featured inside.
“But perhaps the feature inside that is most special to me, and I’m sure quite a few of you out there, is the new interactive display showcasing the range of Four Roses bottlings from throughout our brands 133-year history. We are dedicating this new display in the name of the late Al Young who spent more than 50 years as a part of the Four Roses family.
“Al served a variety of roles at the distillery but is best known and beloved by many for his story telling. As brand ambassador and historian, he spent years researching, archiving, going through distillery records, news accounts, photos, artifacts and bending the ear and asking the question of anyone he could find all in order to record and share the rich history of Four Roses with the people around the world.
“Anyone who met Al knew that he was someone special. Members of Al’s family are here today. His daughter Heather, his son Mark and his beautiful bride Gretchen.
“Today we honor the memory of our beloved friend through the ‘Al Young Archive Collection’. His work in helping to tell the story of Four Roses will be displayed to Four Roses visitors for many years to come.”
–––––– TRENDING STORIES ––––––
Introducing Four Roses 20-Year-Old Single Barrel Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey
As a part of the grand opening Four Roses has released a limited-edition 20-year-old Kentucky Straight Bourbon OBSV whiskey. This limited 114.2 proof (57.1% ABV) bourbon is only available at the distillery and select retail stores. It has a suggested retail price of $199 for a 750 mL bottle.
Established in 1888, Four Roses combines two mashbills with five proprietary yeast strains to distill and age 10 distinct Bourbon recipes, each with its own unique flavor profile.
Reservations are required for distillery tours.
How to Read a Four Roses Single Barrel Label – It’s as Easy as OESO [Infographic]
Four Roses Distillery Tourism Up 43%, Announces Visitor Center Expansion to Double Capacity
Four Roses Distillery Senior Brand Ambassador and Historian Al Young has Died
Four Roses Distillery Celebrates Journey from Exile to Rebirth to $55 Million Expansion – Doubles Capacity