During the 19th century, Lexington was a leader in Kentucky's hemp industry. As one of the state's key cash crops, Lexington played a central role in its production, sale, and use.
Before the Civil ...more
Explore the birthplace of Bourbon with Lexington as your home base!
Within 35 miles of Lexington, Kentucky, you can enjoy tours and tastings at nine working distilleries. Stay in Lexington and explore the origins of the United States' only native spirit
While we don't claim that Bourbon was invented in Lexington, we do claim the first registered distillery in Central Kentucky, the Ashland Distillery (R.D. #1) later known as "Old Tarr." Built in the mid-1800s on Manchester Street, one of its warehouses still stands and is home to Manchester Music Hall.
In the 19th century, this area at the west end of Lexington was a major hub for Kentucky's Bourbon industry. Exciting initiatives are underway in the Distillery District utilizing historic buildings for shopping, craft beer breweries, restaurants, coffee shops, housing and entertainment venues. And of course, for distilling!
Stay tuned. Another craft distillery is coming on line soon: Three Boys Farm Distillery in Frankfort.
Buffalo Trace Distillery
25 miles west of Lexington.
Tours on the hour. Open year-round 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday with the last tour at 4 p.m. Open Sundays from noon to 5:30 p.m. with the last tour at 3 p.m.
Four Roses Distillery
24 miles west of Lexington.
Tours given on the hour Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 3 p.m.
The distillery stops Bourbon production in the summer months. Tour ticket also gives guests access to tour the Cox's Creek Warehouse and Bottling Facility on the same day, or within 60 days of ticket purchase.
Wild Turkey Distillery
23 miles west of Lexington.
Tours given on the hour, Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tours on Sundays March through October, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Open year-round, except for major holidays.
Woodford Reserve Distillery
21 miles from Lexington.
Open year-round Monday through Saturday. Tours on the hour from 10 a.m. with the last tour at 3 p.m. Tours on Sundays at 1, 2 and 3 p.m. March through December only. Reservations suggested. Reservations can be made online. By reservation only ($30): "Corn to Cork" tour at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, or the "National Landmark" tour at 2:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.
New Craft Distilleries
Barrell House Distilling Company
Tour/Tastings Wednesday through Friday noon to 5:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Tours and tastings available at 15 minutes past the hour. Their Bourbon, RockCastle, was released on July 24, 2015.
Hartfield & Co.
(formerly "The Gentlemen Distillery"
18 miles northeast of Lexington
Brief tours offered Tuesday through Friday with advance appointment. One hour tours offered on Saturdays at 6:00 p.m. by appointment. This is the first bourbon to be produced in Bourbon County in almost a century. Their first Bourbon went on sale September 18, 2015. You can also taste a Rum and a wheated Vodka.
Town Branch Distillery
$10 (free under 18)
Alltech's $9.2 million distillery downtown on the edge of the Distillery District is the first to be built in Lexington in nearly 100 years. This new Kentucky Bourbon is called Town Branch Bourbon. Tour includes the bourbon distillery plus the brewery on site.
Open 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays. Tours are on the hour with the last tour at 4 p.m. Closed on Tuesdays in January and February.
Wilderness Trail Distillery
35 miles southwest of Lexington
Tours offered Thursday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with the last tour at 3 p.m. Tours start on the hour. (Bourbon is currently aging in barrels.)
Tours and tastings offered with advance notice, Thursday through Saturday November through March, and Tuesday through Saturday April through October. Hear the story of the region's newest small batch craft distillery which opened in November of 2015.
The National Geographic Traveler included the Kentucky Bourbon Trail in its "Drives of a Lifetime - The World's Greatest Scenic Routes."
|Bluegrass Tavern was recently named by Southern Living as one of the Best Bars in the South.|