Three New Distilleries Join The Kentucky Distillers’ Association

By Nino Kilgore-Marchetti / September 27, 2016

Times are great to be a bourbon producer in Kentucky right now, there is no doubt. It is something in particular the Kentucky Distillers’ Association (KDA), representing most of the distilleries in that state, is quite happy to see, especially when it results in more whiskey makers joining its ranks. It is to this end three distilleries recently signed on to do so.

Starting off the trilogy, and registered now as the 29th member of the KDA, is Louisville Distilling Company. This outlet, best known to bourbon drinkers as the force behind Angel’s Envy, is in the process of “meticulously restoring an early 1900s complex … in downtown Louisville for its state-of-the-art distillery and visitor’s center.” Plans currently call for the $27 million facility to open later this year.

Bardstown Bourbon Company

image via Bardstown Bourbon Company

“Membership in the Kentucky Distillers’ Association is a coveted honor in the distilled spirits world,” said Wes Henderson, co-founder of Louisville Distilling Company, in a prepared statement. “Taking our place amongst some of the most innovative and socially responsible businesses in the industry is a dream come true for our brands, the Louisville Distilling Company and the Henderson family.”

Following up next behind Louisville is O.Z. Tyler Distillery, a property in Owensboro, Kentucky, formerly known as the Charles W. Medley Distillery. The Medley facility operated up until 1993, then sitting mostly vacant until 2014, when it was “purchased by Terressentia, a South Carolina firm that has invested $25 million in a massive restoration of the 26-acre site, including six warehouses and a 54-inch column still capable of producing 32,000 barrels annually.”

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O.Z. Tyler resumed production earlier this month. “We are delighted to join the KDA and appreciate the warm welcome extended, as well as that received from the Owensboro community,” said Terressentia CEO Earl Hewlette. “Everyone seems to have a story to tell about relatives who worked at the distillery at one point or another. It feels like a homecoming of sorts, particularly for Jacob Call, our third-generation distiller from Bardstown.”

Rounding out the group as the 31st member of the KDA is Bardstown Bourbon Company. This built from scratch, $25 million facility is set on over 100 acres of active farmland in Bardstown, Kentucky, and has already made headlines of late for being at maxed production capacity related to its making whiskey for other brands program. Plans call for Bardstown to ultimately be home “to a Napa Valley-style campus featuring a unique and educational experience, high-end tours and tastings, integrated visitors center, event space, and eventually a restaurant and boutique hotel.”

“We are thrilled to officially join the prestigious Kentucky bourbon industry that the KDA works so hard to protect,” noted David Mandell, Bardstown Bourbon Company president & CEO. “The KDA has been an integral part in reshaping the regulatory environment that will enable us to prosper and continue to grow.”