Courtesy Kentucky Distillers’ Association
One of the newest additions to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail is Jim Beam’s American Stillhouse, the highlight of a $30 million investment made by the company that opened October 3, 2012 at its Clermont, Kentucky distillery. Modeled after an authentic 1930s stillhouse, this interpretive center includes distinctive plank flooring, fascinating memorabilia from one of bourbon’s “first families” and an actual staircase from a Jim Beam facility dating to the era of Prohibition.
“We entertained more than 100,000 visitors in the three months after our opening in October,” said master distiller Fred Noe, a descendant of founder Jacob Beam, who first made bourbon in 1795. “We wanted to make part of the visitor experience actually getting into the distillery and seeing how bourbon is made. Most of our guests are touring the American Stillhouse and then doing a walking tour or a guided tour of our new little craft distillery just down the road.”
As a stop on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, guests are encouraged to bring their KBT passports to be stamped here and at all other stops on the trail. Those who visit every stop receive a complimentary Kentucky Bourbon Trail T-shirt.
“We’re seeing lots of different kinds of groups,” said Noe. “This is beautiful countryside to travel in. We’ve had motorcycle groups, tour groups, bachelor parties, and lots of women, too. Infused bourbons and cocktails made with bourbon are bringing more women into this category every day. Bourbon is doing very well worldwide.”
The Jim Beam American Stillhouse is located about 30 minutes southeast of Louisville just off Interstate I-65 in Clermont, Kentucky.