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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I've been on vacation!! yay!! part 1: the bourbon trail

Sunday night, my husband and I got home from a long, wonderful, much needed vacation withOUT kids! We were gone for about 10 days and the purpose of our trip was to meet up with 5 friends that I met online when we were all pregnant with our twins. Scott and I decided to take our vacation road-trip style, stopping along the way to soak up some new places.

The first leg of our journey led us down the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. We participated in program where you have a passport stamped at several different distilleries, earning a t-shirt if you get to all of them. It was fun to do and the countryside was just gorgeous! Scott even had to drive through a washed out road/river at one point! Gotta love back-roads.

We started out at Jim Beam. We don't drink Jim Beam, but it was a nice place!

Second stop was Heaven Hill. We hadn't even heard of it! Might have something to do with the fact that it all burned down in the 90's. lol Bourbon and fire don't get along well!

Next up was Maker's Mark. I remember visiting this distillery with my family as a child when we lived in Kentucky. The smells and heat from the huge vats of fermenting alcohol have always stayed with me. They weren't as intense as I had remembered, but it was fun to take Scott there so he could experience it too.

If you aren't familiar with bourbon, it's made from grains and corn, fermented until it's basically moonshine. Then they place it in wooden barrels that are charred on the inside, where they are aged for 6-8 years or so.

While on our trip, we became Maker's Mark ambassadors, which means we get our names on a barrel and when it's ready, we get a bottle from that barrel! You can sign up for free on their website and they send you Christmas presents and invites to events and stuff. It sounds pretty cool and we're excited!

We picked up a couple of bottles of the brand new "46" which is pretty darn good!

Next stop was Four Roses. By this time of day, the distilleries were getting pretty crowded, so we didn't stay long, but this was definitely a beautiful place!

Wild Turkey. The only whiskey/bourbon I've ever had a baaaaad experience with. lol

We saved the best for last. Woodford Reserve's distillery is the oldest and by far the best and most interesting place we visited. If you had to just pick one of these distilleries to tour, this would be the one we'd recommend. It was in a gorgeous spot too!

They use these cool copper things that no one else does, or so they told us.

We saw and sampled our way through all of these fun places and would definitely do it again! You can learn more about bourbon and the bourbon trail HERE.

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