Brown-Forman is betting big on bourbon boomtime–and the continuing flood of whiskey-related tourism in Kentucky–by building a 60,000-square-foot “distillery and bourbon experience” on Louisville’s Whiskey Row, set to be completed in late 2017.
The company released some click designers’ renderings of the facility today:
From the company’s release:
Located at 117 and 119 Main Street along Louisville’s historic “Whiskey Row,” the distillery and bourbon experience will be a world-class distilling operation and visitor’s destination showcasing the supreme craftsmanship of Old Forester, America’s First Bottled Bourbon™. In detail, the renderings highlight key locations within the distillery such as the welcome area, fermentation room, cooperage, tasting room, and bottling line.
“Upon Completion, the Old Forester Distillery will provide tourists and bourbon enthusiasts with an up close look at our bourbon making process and share with them a captivating story of entrepreneurship and achievement that characterizes Old Forester’s 146 year history,” said Old Forester President and fifth generation family member, Campbell Brown.
The distillery will celebrate founder George Garvin Brown’s innovative spirit and his commitment to making the highest quality bourbon. Old Forester is the longest, continuously distilled bourbon produced before, during and after prohibition by the same family. Including fermentation, distilling, barrel making, aging and bottling, the distillery will produce 100,000 cases of Old Forester annually.
“The Old Forester Distillery is a state-of-the art project that will add an additional layer of history and authenticity to Louisville’s Whiskey Row,” said Project Manager, Mike Beach. “We are both proud and excited about the distillery’s capabilities to showcase the bourbon making process for visitors from around the world.”
What do you think? Will it make your 2018 travel plans?
First taste of the recently released (as of summer 2015) Old Forester 1870 “Original Batch,” a tribute to founder George Garvin Brown’s innovation of batching his bourbon for consistency.
I found this one a bit puzzling…no mashbill stated, though the website says it combines “three expressions of Old Forester,” with “minimal filtering,” and most reviewers suspect that it’s OF’s standard recipe of 72% corn, 18% rye, and 10% barley.
Strong oak on the nose, with an undistinguished blend of caramel and spice on the tongue — far lighter body than OF Birthday Bourbon, which I love — and a sour tannic note on the finish. Didn’t get the bright fruit/candy apple others mention, though I’ve noticed fairly strongly divided opinions and impressions on it so far. (Pretty ironic for the “tribute to consistency”…)
May need to revisit this one. Other folks out there tried it? What do you think? – BO
Distiller: Brown-Forman. 49-50% ABV. Age: 12 years. Price: $60-80 (if you can find it)
The Birthday Bourbon is a special edition Brown-Forman releases each September to honor co-founder George Garvin Brown (born Sep. 2), who conceived of the idea of selling bourbon in sealed glass bottles. With this innovation, he launched his company in 1870.
As a limited annual release, the OFBB profile does change a bit year to year. Many tasters have pointed to the 2013 as a particularly good one…and I’m definitely one of them.
The 2013 OFBB has a big, rich, corn-sweet nose. The taste: Cracker Jacks. Salted Caramel. Dark oak. Cotton candy. Somehow not too sweet, in spite of the nose. Creamy. Substantial body, and at 49%, hugely enjoyable without any water. Long oaky finish.
The 2015 is hotter on the nose at first, but with a little time rounds out, with caramel, dark oak, and dry mint. Oak spice and more mint on the palate, then roasted peanut and pecan notes. The sweetness is subtler than the 2013, with less of the cotton candy and caramel corn I love in that one.
OFBB remains a great pour, a great bottle, and needless to say, a great gift. But with the price creeping up every year, the question of value is a fair one. The 2015 is good, but there are many excellent bourbons out there for less than $80.