bourbon

Business
5:54 am
Tue January 29, 2013

Kentucky Bourbon Trail Sees Another Record Breaking Year

Barrels at the Woodford Reserve Distillery in Versailles, Ky.
Credit Kevin Willis

More than 500,000 people visited distilleries along Kentucky's bourbon trail in 2012, marking a 15% increase over the year before.

The Trail's director said the new attendance record was 509,292. It's the first time since the trail opened in 1999 that the number of visitors broke the half-million mark. Adam Johnson said visitors came from all 50 states and more than 50 countries.

The Kentucky Bourbon Trail is a distillery tour that features Four Roses and Wild Turkey in Lawrenceburg, Heaven Hill in Bardstown, Jim Beam in Clermont, Maker's Mark in Loretto, Town Branch in Lexington and Woodford Reserve in Versailles.

Business
10:56 am
Wed December 12, 2012

Kentucky's Bourbon Distillers Rooting for State Tax Reform

Barrels aging in a warehouse at Woodford Reserve in Versailles
Credit Kevin Willis

One of the big issues Kentucky lawmakers are expected to take up in the next legislative session is an overhaul of the state tax code. It's something that the commonwealth's bourbon distillers will have their collective eyes on, because a provision under consideration would create a new tax credit for manufacturers designed to offset a longstanding barrel tax.

"We pay a tax on every barrel that is aging in the commonwealth, as long as it sits in one of our warehouses. So if you're drinking a bottle of 18-year- old bourbon, it's been taxed 18 times," says Eric Gregory, president of the Kentucky Distillers Association. "That makes Kentucky non-competitive in the global marketplace. We are the only alcohol manufacturer in the world that pays such a tax."

Tax legislation designed to help Kentucky's bourbon distillers has previously passed in the Senate, but has never made it out of the House. Gregory says distillers are sensing a renewed seriousness on the part of many lawmakers to get a tax code overhaul passed next year, either in the regular session that begins January 8, or during a special session.

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Business
1:21 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Kentucky's Craft Spirits Distilleries Get a Tourist Trail of Their Own

Corsair Artisan has distilleries in both Nashville and Bowling Green.

They may not be household names like Jim Beam or Wild Turkey, but Kentucky's craft bourbon distilleries now have their own tourist trail. One of the stops on the list—Corsair Artisan Distillery--is found in downtown Bowling Green.

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Environment
3:49 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Louisville Asks Liquor Warehouse to Control Vapors

Air quality officials in Louisville are warning liquor giant Diageo that it could face fines if it doesn't control the vapors coming from its storage warehouses in southern Louisville. The Air Pollution Control District says the vapors from the liquor storage houses cause a sour alcohol odor and promote the growth of a black mold or fungus that gathers on nearby homes.

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Health
8:23 am
Wed August 15, 2012

Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Auction to Help Charity

Bourbon barrels in a warehouse at Woodford Reserve
Kevin Willis

Bourbon and barbecue are teaming up next month in Danville to benefit Heart of Kentucky United Way. The second annual Kentucky State Barbecue Festival on Sept. 7 will feature a charity bourbon barrel auction.

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Business
1:40 pm
Tue July 3, 2012

No Downturn Seen in Kentucky's Bourbon Production

The Four Roses distillery in Lawrencburg, Ky
Kevin Willis

The bad national economy hasn't put a dent in one of Kentucky's signature exports. In fact, bourbon production has increased 115% over the past 13 years, according to Eric Gregory, president of the Kentucky Distillers Association.

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Business
1:31 pm
Mon May 7, 2012

Maker's Mark Accused of Allowing Workplace Sexual Discrimination

One of Kentucky’s most famous bourbon distilleries is being sued by current and former employees who claim they were victims of sexual discrimination. Four of the five women suing Maker’s Mark still work at the distillery. The women filing the sexual discrimination suit say they were subject to a hostile and intimidating atmosphere around the bottling line at the distillery in Loretto.

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Kentucky Bourbon
8:22 am
Sat February 4, 2012

Beshear Wants to Help Bourbon Industry by Eliminating Barrel Tax

Kentucky bourbon barrels

Kentucky’s bourbon distillers may soon be getting one of their biggest wishes: a change in the barrel tax. The tax, named because it charges property taxes on bourbon aging in barrels in distillery warehouses, is a one-of-a-kind.

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Bourbon
10:39 am
Mon September 19, 2011

Kentucky Author Says Bourbon Can Help Make a Great Dish, as Well as Drink

Chef, culinary instructor, and author Albert Schmid

Bowling Green, Ky – Everyone knows bourbon is Kentucky's signature spirit. But Albert Schmid says many people don't realize bourbon makes a wonderful cooking ingredient as well. Schmid is a chef and an instructor at Sullivan University's National Center for Hospitality Studies in Louisville. He recently authored "The Kentucky Bourbon Cookbook", which contains seasonal recipes for food and drink. He stopped by our studios and spoke to Kevin Willis.

Business
9:43 am
Tue February 8, 2011

At Maker's Mark, Things Remain the Same Despite Leadership Change

Rob Samuels (left) and Bill Samuels, Jr.

Loretto, Ky – Maker's Mark is the highest-selling premium bourbon brand in the world. When you visit the distillery in tiny Loretto, Kentucky, you're struck by the humility of the employees, and their desire to carry on the tradition started in the early 1950s by Bill Samuels Sr. His son, Bill Jr., is stepping down as president of the distillery after 35 years. WKU Public Radio's Kevin Willis visited the distillery to meet Bill and his son, Rob, who is set to become chief operating officer.

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