The Maker's Mark Distillery: Loretto, KY
WHEN DID WE GO: August 1, 2017
WHY DID WE GO: Road Trip en route from Cincinatti area to Nashville!
HOW LONG WERE WE THERE: Probably about 2 hours or so!
I'm admittedly not much of a whiskey or bourbon drinker. I love a good stout, porter and glass of red wine. But, spirits have never been my thing.
That might have all changed at the Maker's distillery in Loretto, KY. Which is bumb-fuck nowhere in the middle of Kentucky. Seriously, you might wonder where your GPS is taking you. If you ever feel that way en route, well, then you're probably heading in the right direction!
This stop started (for me!) as kind of a novelty stop to fill time and entertain us...and because my road trip buddy, Kristin, loves whiskey! So the stop was more in her wheelhouse. But me? I like seeing how stuff is made. That's basically all I was looking forward to here.
So when we rounded the corner into the Maker's Mark grounds on a toasty summer day in August, I had low expectations. I was pleasantly surprised by the pretty grounds, but, still, I basically thought we'd be in and out in an hour or so.
How wrong I was...
THE TOUR. If you stop at the Maker's Mark distillery, I highly encourage you to do the tour. Maybe you're a bourbon aficionado and you know exactly what Maker's is your choice bourbon. But for $13, you cannot beat how awesome this tour was! Not only do they walk you through the basic distillation process, but they tell you all about the history about how they decided on the name, how the label and the iconic red wax came-to-be, the aging processes for Maker's 46 and all the private selection and to cap it all off you get to do....
BOURBON TASTING. Yes, there is a bourbon tasting included with the tour! And it was awesome! Again, me? I'm not a bourbon or whiskey drinker. But having our tour guide go through the whole process with us, going from the standard Maker's to the Maker's 46 all the way up to some of their private selects was REALLY fun! And really enlightening! She walked us through proper bourbon tasting and what some of the different prominent flavors are in the different styles of bourbon! I thoroughly enjoyed this!
THE GROUNDS & THE CHIHULY GLASS. While on the tour, you definitely get a wonderful glimpse into the Maker's Mark ground and, of course, the art that they're displaying on the grounds. They've partnered with Dale Chilhuly who is a glass artisan from my neck of the woods, Seattle! He actually has an entire Chilhuly glass museum in Seattle literally right underneath the Space Needle. So, needless to say, it was pretty awesome to see some of his work displayed at this distillery in the middle of Kentucky! I LOVED seeing all the different glass. But the highlights? Definitely the glass bowls on display in the Maker's 46/Private Select aging warehouse and the glass tunnel that we walked through on the way to the gift shop!
Uhhhh can I say none? Really! Once we got to this place, there really wasn't anything that I was disappointed by! The closest thing would probably be how isolated this was. We thought it was on the way from Cincinnati area to Nashville, but really it was super out of the way. That was probably the only bummer about it! But the experience itself? Spot on! And a great stop to break up a road trip!