Woodford Reserve Distillery is a highlight of my home state of Kentucky and is one of the state’s oldest landmarks. The distillery began in 1780, which also makes it one of the oldest destinations on the famed Kentucky Bourbon Trail.
The most convenient way to get to Woodford Reserve is via Highway 60. Along this scenic highway are several famous thoroughbred farms, acres of rolling hills, and 19th century limestone fences. The highway stretches from charming Versailles to Frankfort, Kentucky’s capital.
Historians believe that the process of distilling was brought by Scottish, Irish, and English immigrants in the late 18th century. The main ingredients in Kentucky bourbon are corn (at least 51%), rye, wheat, and malted barley. Woodford Reserve bourbon is aged in oak barrels for 7 years.
Guided tours of the distillery are $14 per person and last about an hour. Samples of bourbon balls and chocolate bourbon balls (so delicious!) are offered at the end of the tour. The visitor’s center also has a cafe.
Distillery tour information:
Monday – Saturday: 10 AM to 3 PM on the hour.
Sunday (March-December): 1 PM to 3 PM on the hour.
For lunch, take a scenic 8-mile drive through horse country to get to Wallace Station Deli and Bakery. This popular restaurant offers Kentucky classics and horse racing themed dishes such as the Santa Anita Club, hot brown, and soup beans with cornbread. Wash it all down with an Ale8 One. Afterwards, stroll Midway’s charming downtown and explore their many antique shops.
The Kentucky Bourbon Trail stretches from Louisville to Lexington with plenty of stops in between. Plan for a couple of days to see all distilleries. Some of the sites on the trail include the distilleries that manufacture Four Roses, Maker’s Mark, Wild Turkey, and Bulleit Bourbon.