In what at first seems like an unlikely pairing actually makes perfect sense. Both Copper & Kings American Brandy Co. and Sazerac, parent company of Buffalo Trace Distillery and Barton 1792 Distillery play to the beat of a different drum. The companies have announced they are pairing the three distilleries into a unique new tour experience called Barreled & Bold – Kentucky Distillery Adventures. The new tour experience includes Copper & Kings American Brandy Company in Louisville, Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort and Barton 1792 Distillery in Bardstown, the “Bourbon Capital of the World.”
Barreled & Bold – Kentucky Distillery Adventures
When people think of distillery tours in Kentucky they naturally think of bourbon but in this case it’s a blending of much more. The Barreled & Bold tour includes a unique combination of Kentucky distilled spirits including brandy, gin, vodka, absinthe, Destillaré liqueurs and course American’s Native Spirits – Bourbon. The experience ranges from the historical side of Buffalo Trace with brands like E.H. Taylor, Jr., George T. Stagg, Albert B. Blanton all the way through Copper & Kings state-of-the-art urban distillery that focuses on the distillation of brandy-based spirits. One thing regulars to bourbon tours won’t see at Copper & Kings is the mashing of grains like corn, wheat or rye. The three patina’d stills you see here are distilling fruits like grapes, pears or apples.
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Copper & Kings American Brandy Expects to Double Distillery Visitors
In a conversation with Copper & Kings Co-Founder Joe Herron he said he reached out to Buffalo Trace’s President and CEO Mark Brown about the idea four months ago. From there he worked with the tourism team to work out the details. In 2018 the distillery had about 30,000 visitors and he hopes to double that to nearly 50,000 or 60, 000 once they are fully ramped up. He expects that number could double again once the new Louisville City FC Soccer stadium is completed in 2020. Copper & Kings is the official brandy sponsor of the new stadium and is within shouting distance to the entrance.
“Ok, wow, all-star line-up for sure,” said Herron. “What a proposition! Bourbon Pompeii to Rock & Roll Brandy, Warehouse X, maybe not SpaceX, but it does feel like a rocket about to take off. Three completely unique perspectives of adventurous Kentucky spirits, Bourbon, American Brandy, Gins and Absinthe. From the barrel for the bold, bold from the barrel. Its Kentucky hospitality distilled. Our guests will be surrounded by Kentucky’s unique, welcoming charm, and the distinctive educational experiences will hopefully keep them coming back for more.”
Buffalo Trace Distillery – More than 230,000 Visitors in 2018
Buffalo Trace Distillery is one of the most popular distillery tours in all of Kentucky. The distillery saw a 15% year over year increase in tourism and is in the midst of a $1.2 billion investment to expand its distilling and aging capabilities, and again expand its visitor center to accommodate an increasing number of guests.
“Bringing together the union of the world’s most award-winning distillery, Kentucky’s oldest fully operating distillery in the Bourbon Capital of the world, and perhaps the most imaginative new distillery in America, is something akin to the aligning of stars,” said Brown. “However, this is not just serendipity, this is allowing for a partnership that can provide an exciting, adventurous window to the past, present and future of distilling in America, well beyond the borders of Kentucky.”
Free Distillery Tours and Progressive Merchandise Discounts
Tours at all three distilleries are free. Copper & Kings used to charge for tours but eliminated the admittance fees to match Buffalo Trace and Barton 1792. Visitors can pick up a Pass to be stamped at each of the distilleries. The stamped book will provide visitors with progressive discounts – the first discount will be 10%, the second stamped stop will be rewarded with a 15% discount, and the final stamped visit will receive a 20% discount and a commemorative gift. Discounts don’t apply to spirits.
Barreled & Bold – Kentucky Distillery Adventures tours are available immediately. The new program will provide guests with the full spectrum of Kentucky’s distilled spirits manufacturing, as each distillery has a varied and distinctive story to tell.