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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Bowling Green, Ky – From our friend Cole Phelps, master mixologist at The Oakroom in Louisville:
Mint julep: Put 12 mint leaves in a glass, and add 3/4 oz. of syrup. Muddle gently, without tearing the leaves. While that sits, crush ice with a mallet. Add ice to glass, then pour in 2 1/4 oz. of bourbon. Add more ice to fill glass to the top. Pour in 1/4 oz more of the syrup on top of the ice, then garnish drink with mint. Add one sma
Louisville, Ky – The mint julep stands proud as the beverage known as Kentucky's signature drink. Unless you're new to the area and haven't been paying attention, you know the julep is synonymous with the Kentucky Derby. What you might not know, however, is that the mint julep's history traces back to a rose water drink in the Middle East. Kevin Willis recently visited the famous Seelbach Hotel in Louisville to learn the history and proper preparation of the famous drink.
Owensboro, Ky – In Owensboro, the Charles Medley Distillery has been largely dormant for more than two decades. That's changing now, as the distillery will soon become Kentucky's most far-western bourbon producer. WKU Public Radio went to Daviess County to meet plant manager Derek Schneider, who explained bourbon's growing popularity both here and abroad, and how Owensboro's underground limestone river will be the key to great bourbon production.