Heaven Hill recently marked a major milestone in the more than $200 million project to build a new distillery in the Bourbon Capital of the World, completing installation of the distillery’s Vendome copper still. This critical piece of the new Heaven Hill Springs Distillery marks a major step towards returning the company’s distilling processes to Bardstown for the first time since the 1996 fire that destroyed the original distillery.
“This project represents a significant investment in the future of bourbon production, solidifying Heaven Hill’s commitment to upholding the time-honored traditions that have made Kentucky Bourbon world-renowned,” said Allan Latts, co-president of Heaven Hill Brands.
The distillery is expected to be operational by the end of 2024. Initial production is slated for 150,000 barrels a year, and over time will have capacity to ramp up to producing 450,000 barrels annually. This will be in addition to the company’s distilling that occurs at the historic Bernheim Distillery in Louisville, which will continue to operate at full capacity of 450,000 barrels annually.
The new Vendome copper still was shipped by Vendome to Bardstown in two pieces on separate flatbeds. At nearly 60 feet tall and weighing more than 22,000 pounds, this still is capable of producing 35,500 proof-gallons per day which is equal to more than 500 barrels per day.
The design of this new distillery reflects the company’s dedication to play a role in forming a more eco-conscious distilled spirits industry. The new still is insulated and then wrapped in a copper skin to enhance energy conservation throughout the whiskey-making process. The site will also include other sustainability efforts such as a wastewater pretreatment system and program to harness energy creation and recovery which will alleviate demands on the city’s electrical and water treatment plants. Once construction is closer to completion, the campus will use native plants and natural systems to manage stormwater runoff and improve habitat on the property.
“Our Bourbon Capital homecoming is one step closer as we mark this significant milestone in the development of our Heaven Hill Springs Distillery with the installation of the Vendome copper still,” added Kate Latts, co-president of Heaven Hill Brands. “As we uphold the values and heritage of our industry, this moment reflects our commitment to crafting exceptional bourbon and continuing our Heaven Hill legacy of excellence.”
Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and...