Monday, July 8, 2013

A slight detour

Daddy and I worked really hard on the plans for the camping trip, but the plans for the rest of the time on the road were kind of loose.  Not knowing the area well, and just wanting to have time to discover things, we hit the road with the general destination of Louisville that night.  But then we saw the sign for the Jim Beam Distillery, and being ones who like to tour breweries and such, our interest was piqued.  Well, Daddy's and Mommy's was.

Now I can honestly say I'd never had bourbon before.  And Daddy really didn't care for it. But we'd both seen the History Channel show about how it's distilled and it's just too good to pass up.  So, the boys came along as we got to go on the actual floor of where it's produced. 

Our really great guide, telling us about sour mash, and how a bit of the previous day's is added to the current days, to establish continutity

The craft distilling tower

Watching the mash cook

Learning about the process of putting it in the barrels


And when they asked for volunteers, guess who got chosen??  Brant was not pleased that he couldn't even touch the barrel, because he wasn't 21!  We'd done such kid friendly stuff that this really rocked his boat. 


The distilling tower (I think it's called) was huge.  This was the "fine wine" or raw bourbon coming out of it. 

Say cheese as we win the "Parents of the Year" award for taking our kids to a distillery! lol!

On to bottling the craft bourbon...thing that stuck with Little B here?  They rinse out the bottles with bourbon, before FILLING it with bourbon!
 Now even Little B can't deny that the actual bottling floor was cool.  The machinery, the speed, the quick eyes of the employees...

the blur?  the bottles. It was that fast
 So then we rounded the corner and found a wall of bourbon.  Beam keeps a bottle, from each batch, for 2 years.  That way if they have any complaints they can pull it (without having to go to check the bottle complained about).  After two years the bottles are all given to the employees!

 The museum of the bottles and memoribilia was neat too

On to the warehouses..

I expected something like the bottling floor.  Metal, brightly lit, forklifts.  Nope.  Wood.  Lots and lots of wood.  As far up as you could see.  Made you wonder how they got it out!  And do they rotate it?  No, it all goes in a big vat and combined before bottling!

Barrels as far as you could see.  And so many warehouses!

see how tall this one is?

The new visitors "stillhouse"  Little B took this photo to document the "worst tour EVER!" because he couldn't do ANYTHING!!
By the way, it's only been open to the public for tours since October

Yep, we enjoyed ourselves.  Learned a little history.  Tasted a little bourbon.  Got the shirt.

And then we hit the road to Louisville!

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