In 2013 Wilderness Trail Distillery in Danville, Kentucky, was making about two barrels of bourbon whiskey a day. In 2016 they moved out of their downtown location to the outskirts of town and expanded production to 12 barrels per day. Then they added another shift and double production to 24 barrels per day. Pretty impressive.
They still couldn’t keep up with demand so in 2017 they expanded again by adding another column still and multiple fermenters. This time, production capacity increased big time to 150 barrels per day. As they improved efficiency, they got that number North of 200 barrels of bourbon and rye whiskey per day.
Wilderness Trail Distillery Expands Yet Again
Not wanting to sit on their laurels, Wilderness Trail Distillery Co-Founders Shane Baker and Dr. Patrick Heist said it is time to expand production capacity yet again. The duo plans to add six new fermenters, made by Vendome Copper & Brass Works.
“We are excited to add these fermenters for additional capacity and expanded fermentation times. The expansion will allow us to increase the number of barrels we produce per day and provide a lot more flexibility in our overall operations as we continue to grow,” said Baker.
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Three new 4,000 gallon fermentation tanks will be installed within the original distillery directly adjacent to the stills. And three new 20,000 gallon fermentation tanks will require the construction of a new “ferm-house” near the other larger fermentation tanks. Construction is expected to begin in January 2022.
How Many Barrels of Bourbon Will Wilderness Trail Produce with the Expansion?
Baker said, “Once the new fermenters are operational, we stand to gain 10,000-20,000 more barrels per year from this expansion. That would be bring us up to around 80,000 barrels capacity per year.”
Where Will All Those Barrels Be Stored?
The fermentation expansion is not the only area where Wilderness Trail is expanding. The distillery’s eighth warehouse, visible from Ky. 34, is almost complete. Warehouse K will house 24,624-barrels. Buzick Construction of Bardstown will build five more warehouses on the property’s southern ridge.
“We have been in constant construction since 2011 and we have a few more years of building to go before we begin rotating our larger warehouses with space of our new production each year. We produce 24/7, 350 days a year and soon will have produced a quarter million barrels and we are just blessed to be able to do what we do,” said Baker.
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Order Wilderness Trail Bourbon and Rye whiskey online here.