bourbon

Four Roses

A Kentucky bourbon distillery is planning a $55 million expansion at two different locations.

Four Roses plans to invest $34 million to add production capacity at its Lawrenceburg distillery. A separate $21 million investment will add new warehouses at its Bullitt County property.

The projects will receive over $1 million in state tax incentives.

The news comes on the heels of an announcement earlier this springs that Four Roses was expanding its Bullitt County bottling plant that will include a high-speed production line and a separate line producing a single-barrel version of the bourbon.

Kevin Willis

Kentucky's two U.S. senators have introduced legislation they say will level the playing field for American bourbon and whiskey producers.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's office said in a news release Monday that unlike most other spirits, bourbon and whiskey producers must capitalize interest expense that's incurred to finance inventories and it isn't deductible until the product is sold, as long as 23 years after the liquor is aged. The release said in the U.K., spirit producers may deduct interest the year it's capitalized.

McConnell and Sen. rand Paul on Monday introduced a bill that would allow American bourbon and whiskey makers to deduct interest associated with production in the year it's paid.

McConnell said more than 15,000 jobs in Kentucky are related to the bourbon industry, which produces billions of dollars for the state's economy.

Craft bourbon, like craft beer, is in the midst of a boom: In the past 15 years, the number of distilleries in the U.S. has surged from just a handful to around 600.

Nine people have been indicted on charges of stealing what Kentucky authorities say was more bourbon whiskey than one person could drink in a lifetime.

The indictments were handed up Tuesday. Prosecutors allege the scheme led by rogue distillery workers lasted for years and involved tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of whiskey.

Authorities say two distilleries were targeted — the Buffalo Trace and Wild Turkey distilleries.

They allege the criminal syndicate operated since 2008 or 2009, and that the recovered whiskey alone is worth at least $100,000.

The indictments tie together two highly publicized heists in the world’s bourbon-producing hub — the theft of barrels of Wild Turkey bourbon earlier this year and the disappearance of Pappy Van Winkle bourbon.

Boundary Oak Distillery

A craft distillery that began production last year in central Kentucky is expanding to a second location in Hardin County.

Boundary Oak Distillery says it will set up another production still in a building offered by the city of Radcliff.

Boundary Oak owner and master distiller Brent Goodin plans to use the new site for production and storage and as a visitors' center.

Goodin has resumed his family's whiskey-making tradition that dates to the late 1700s in Kentucky.

His distillery makes bourbon, moonshine and other spirits. He began production last spring at a distillery on the family farm outside Elizabethtown.

Angel's Envy

International spirits company Bacardi Limited has made its entry into the booming bourbon market with the purchase, announced today, of a Louisville-based bourbon maker.

Bacardi is the new owner of Angel’s Share Brands. The company includes the popular Angel’s Envy bourbon, developed by the late Lincoln Henderson and his family. Henderson was a longtime master distiller for Brown-Forman Corporation.

Angel’s Envy is currently distilled off-site and aged in port wine barrels.

Kevin Willis

Visitors can sip tea or soda — but no bourbon — at the Jim Beam Distillery's restaurant in central Kentucky. The drink menu could add the distillery's famed whiskey if a bill that advanced Wednesday becomes state law.

"Wouldn't it be nice to have a nice Knob Creek on the rocks while you're enjoying a ... barbecue sandwich?" Kristin Meadors with the Kentucky Distillers' Association said after the bill cleared a House panel.

The measure would allow Kentucky distilleries to sell their own products by the drink on their premises. Visitors could sip a small-batch bourbon or a mint julep at special distillery events or after taking tours.

Distilleries now are limited to offering two one-half-ounce free samples per guest.

Abbey Oldham

Kentucky’s Bourbon Trail is celebrating another record-breaking year in attendance. The Trail’s nine participating distilleries greeted 627,032 visitors in 2014, an increase of 10 percent over the previous year.

The nine smaller facilities that make up the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour are also seeing an explosion in popularity.

“The first craft distillers that came in are now on their second and third phases of expansion,” said Eric Gregory, president of the Kentucky Distillers Association. “And just in the first year of our Craft Tour—from the first to second years—(attendance) has gone up over 50 percent.”

Gregory said he expects the number of Craft Tour distilleries to increase to at least a dozen by the end of the year. He also expressed optimism that the Bourbon Trail, which is mostly made up by the state’s larger “heritage” distilleries, will see increased membership in 2015.

“We’ve got a number of big-name distilleries that have announced, like Michter’s in downtown Louisville. It’s our hope that Angel’s Envy, when they get up and running, will come on board. Brown-Forman has announced the Old Forester distillery on Whiskey Row.”

Frankfort-based Buffalo Trace, which is not a member of the Bourbon Trail, saw a 26 percent increase in visitors last year.

Here is a list of the member distilleries that are a part of the Bourbon Trail and Craft Tours:

Christian County's Arlon Casey Jones, or AJ, and his wife, Peg Hays, produced their first spirit run of "Casey's Cut 92" a prohibition-style corn whiskey January 2nd. The whisky comes from a secret family recipe developed during the prohibition era, produced using a still built by Jones' grandfather, Alfred "Casey" Jones. They speak with Kate Lochte on Sounds Good about the distilling process, their progress on becoming legal distillers and how they got the antique still back from Land Between the Lakes.

If you could make a lot of bourbon whiskey these days, you could be distilling real profits. Bourbon sales in this country are up 36 percent in the past five years.

But you'd need new wooden barrels for aging your new pristine product. Simple white oak barrels, charred on the inside to increase flavor and add color, are becoming more precious than the bourbon.

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