Barton 1792 Distillery (#15 of 19) in Bardstown, KY features amazing free tours. On the free Estate Tour you'll get a full immersion into the world of distilling. In fact, you'll see more than just their product, you'll see a bottling facility pumping out a variety of spirits.
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About the Barton 1792 Estate Tour and Tasting
- Location: Bardstown, KY
- Impression: Excellent and thorough tour with complimentary tasting.
- Website: Tour Information (Requires Age Verification)
- Cost: I did the Estate Tour, which is only available for up to 5 people and is only at 11 AM Monday through Friday. I made reservations by email.
- Samples: Incredible tour (little did I know I'd be there the day and hour the warehouse collapsed, don't expect this on your tour! ;) You get to finish up with a taste of Very Old Barton, 1792 and a locally available liquor.
- Perks: Estate Tour comes with a free water bottle and the tour is free of charge (as are all of thier tours). And we got a little piece of chocolate to pair with the bourbon. Also, a cool keepsake is a stamped bung stopper. They stamp the date of your tour. Since mine says 18F22 (Year 2018, F month meaning 6th month June) and Estate, it's a little proof of my time there on the day of the warehouse event.
- My Barton's Estate Tour Instagram Photos
My Barton's Estate Tour Review
- Free, I mean really? It was a fantastic tour.
- Hear the story as to why there is a crack in the wood carving of the 1792 bottle. Also, they have the world's largest beer barrel that you only get to see on the Estate Tour.
- The "Big House" was really cool. Got to see the left over char from the barrels, where they dump the bourbon once it comes out of the barrels.
- If you ever wanted to buy a barrel and take it home (without the alcohol in it) they have a fantastic price on them. Half what anyone else was charging.
- Drunk cows: One of the fables that I heard ad nauseam everywhere else was that the spent grains from distilling were sent to farms and that is why Kentucky, not California, had happy cows. In reality, if there is any alcohol in the grain, it's probably the equivalent to the amount caffeine in decaf coffee. But what was cool about Barton's is, besides not hitting us with that lame joke once again, they also turn this spent grain back to a solid so it doesn't go bad so quickly. The grains provide protein to livestock. But it also can make them a little overweight if given too much, so this is just mixed with their regular feed.
- My tour started at 11 AM. The big warehouse collapse happened at 10:55 AM. Did I hear it? Nope...amazingly. The only thing I knew was something out of the ordinary had happened, because we saw the fire marshal drive by, then someone told our tour guide we couldn't go up on the hill, and finally we saw a fire engine so we knew something was up. They finished our tour (I can't imagine the confusion and stress the office personnel were probably going through) and did our tasting, but we were the last tour of the day. It wasn't until I was over at the Willet's tour that someone said, did you hear about the warehouse collapse at Bartons? They also mentioned it during the Jack Daniel's tour the next day. These distilleries really do look out for each other, even from a distance. I highly recommend the tour and I hope for a speedy recovery for the distillery...that is a lot of bourbon laying in a pile.
- Nope, not doing a technology tour anytime soon. Cupertino, you're safe!
Terminology: Opening Up
When you drink a whiskey that is too strong, it can burn and mask the flavors. Adding a couple drops of water is said to "open up" the drink. In other words, it helps reduce the alcohol burn to reveal the flavor profile. On Four Roses Small Batch, I find it a little bit too harsh to the palate at full strength. However, with a few drops of water, it opens up a butterscotch taste and still keeps the creamy mouth feel.
Next up, Willett Distillery in Bardstown, KY.