Kentucky Bourbon Trail exceeded our expectations!

Kentucky Bourbon Trail exceeded our expectations! has been planning this trip for a long time with terrific anticipation and we finally made it up to Lexington, KY. Now we could offer this reportage and others to follow.

Frankly, I do enjoy a wee dram or two of brown water from time to time. I come by it honestly, my dad was quoted as saying; “I know bourbon gets better with age cause the older I get the better I like it.” – Col. R.H. Pipes

Dad was an early Kentucky Colonel, a big fan of the Kentucky Derby and had a pack of distant relatives living up in ole Kentuck.

The plan to give you our feedback on each of the four stops (14 total on the KBT) we made on the journey….starting with one on the ancestral grounds of the Samuels family over at Loretto, KY.

Simply a beautiful scene of remote KY countryside with gentle rolling hills, big farms and the air seemed perfumed with essence of the color, nose, taste and the finish of a fine bourbon.

The drive over to Loretto on the KY backroads was adding to the adventure. There’s a sign posted in Loretto that reads: $500 Fine For Littering” This results in amazingly….no litter. Our friends with Keep America Beautiful would be delighted to see how that has made for such a litter free community!

Bill Samuels, Sr. took the family’s trusted 170 year old recipe back in 1953 and started working it to perfection. He found that changing out the traditional rye grain for a soft red winter wheat was the ticket. This replaced the hot bite of rye with the delicate sweetness that “Maker’s” is known for today. Bill said: ” Give me a bourbon that won’t blow my ears off.”

It was Bill’s wife Margie that wisely choose the bottle shape, label and the signature red wax that makes the brand still today so recognizable.

The grounds of the MM Distillery were beautiful and the tour (about 90 minutes) was fantastic! The tour included a special tasting opportunity and ends up with a visit to the huge retail shop. I walked into the store with wonderment and expectations of logoed goodies and maybe some fresh product but when I spotted a baseball cap with the MM logo on a shelf for sale for $95.00 – I quickly exited stage left!

We’d highly recommend a visit regardless of your interest in bourbon making or imbibing. Enjoy the pics and plan a trip soon!

Notice the window shutters reveal the famous Maker’s Mark bottle shape.
Pipes has his wagon loaded with product for the trip back home…
Our GPS reveals the 10+ acre spring fed pond above the distillery that’s the source of the main key ingredient.

Maker’s Mark Distillery, 3350 Burks Spring Road, Loretto, KY –

Chris Pipes

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