Elizabethtown is Bourbon’s Backyard
If someone is new to bourbon I usually recommend Basil Hayden on the rocks with a splash of water (or soda). I have a 100% success rate with that one. The only hitch there is if you are a Scotch drinker, then you’ll want to start with something that has a little more of the rye coming through like Four Roses Single Barrel, Eagle Rare or Buffalo Trace.
Hmm, this is a tough one. They all do a pretty good job of explaining what makes bourbon, well, bourbon. If I had to pick, I’d say Buffalo Trace because you get to see everything from the cooker to bottling in a truly historic setting, or maybe, Jim Beam because while they are the Big Daddy of distilling, their American Stillhouse Experience has created a distillery within a distillery so guests can understand the process. I lovingly refer to it as the Disneyland of the bourbon tours because it was created with the visitor in mind. So while it’s a little “produced”, it offers a wonderful overview of distilling… and hey, everyone knows Jim Beam.
I don’t know where to even begin on this one. If we go by the theory that the bigger the shop the better: Buffalo Trace, Evan Williams Bourbon Experience, Willett, and Jim Beam have some pretty fantastic finds.