You’re viewing a version of this story optimized for slow connections. To see the full story click here.

The Bourbon Tour

An exodus from Cancer

Story by Glenn Charles November 17th, 2014

The Winter of discontent

We spent the winter dealing with the dreaded C word. As if dealing with Cancer was not enough, it was one of the worst winters on record. To say we were exhausted by spring was an understatement. Our first order of business, was to finish a trip that we had been talking about for years — Bike the Kentucky Bourbon trail. Loosely, we took a week of ‘Credit Card’ touring to visit 9 distilleries, tasting their wares, and taking in a beautiful Kentucky spring. Below are some of my favorite images from our journey and the smiles that it put on our weary souls.

001_20140428142938_0192-Edit.jpg
002_20140428143039_0194-Edit.jpg
003_20140428152032_0198-Edit.jpg

our first distillery

As the trip progressed, we would often comment to one another how you could smell the sweet odor of mash well before we could see the distilleries or their Rack Houses, the large buildings where barrels of fine bourbon are aged.

004_20140429115825_0203-Edit.jpg

New and old

Jim Beam had one of the nicest displays of how it ‘used to be done’, followed quickly by a modern tasting room with very cool bourbon dispensing machines.

005_20140429123801_0206-Edit-2.jpg
006_20140429123939_0207-Edit.jpg
007_20140429124031_0209-Edit.jpg
008_20140429124055_0211-Edit.jpg
009_20140429130808_0215-Edit.jpg

rackhouse

The landscape is littered with these large, dark structures where bourbon is carefully aged in barrels.

010_20140429141010_0223-Edit.jpg

the nightly tasting sessions

You never got enough at the distilleries, so each night we went in search of what we had experienced during the day.

012_20140429171655_0237-Edit.jpg
013_20140429171742_0239-Edit.jpg
014_20140429191641_0243-Edit.jpg
016_20140430102027_0259-Edit.jpg

you quickly learn - the barrel is key

018_20140430103735_0273-Edit.jpg
019_20140430103805_0275-Edit.jpg
020_20140430132239_0288-Edit.jpg

winding roads

While the Kentucky scenery was stunning and the Bourbon delicious, I am not sure that Kentucky is ready to be a ‘Bike’ friendly state…
021_20140430142528_0302-Edit-2.jpg

wild turkey

Not necessarily my favorite Bourbon, but perhaps one of the prettiest distilleries that we visited.

022_20140501105130_0324-Edit.jpg
023_20140501130415_0332-Edit.jpg
024_20140501144152_0338-Edit.jpg
027_20140501145936_0347-Edit.jpg
028_20140501150607_0348-Edit.jpg
030_20140501152558_0361-Edit.jpg

the tasting room

026_20140501144235_0341-Edit.jpg

horse country

031_20140502101057_0367-Edit.jpg
035_20140502102148_0390-Edit.jpg

the holy grail

Woodford has long been my favorite Bourbon and their distillery did not disappoint. Somehow we managed to arrive the day before the Kentucky Derby, not the best timing I must say.

038_20140502104605_0400-Edit.jpg
039_20140502105633_0404-Edit.jpg
040_20140502110301_0405-Edit.jpg

Troll

I built up Ellens Orange Troll about 4 years ago and it has been everywhere with her. While she now has other bikes to ride, there is clearly a comfort and a connection that exists between bike and rider.

041_20140502112001_0408-Edit.jpg

nahbs

I got these cool mason jars and King Ti bottle cages at NAHBS a few weeks earlier. We kept thinking that we would make cocktails in them, but in the end it became more civilized to drink from them instead of directly out of the bottle.

042_20140502114045_0434-Edit-2.jpg
001_20140430145845_0321-Edit.jpg
Footnote: Shot with a Leica Monochrome and the 50/1.4 Summilux