Summer Vacation Day 2, KY

For all of the years we've visited grandparents and my aunt and uncle in Kentucky, we've never seen much aside from the front yard, the back yard, and the lake. Mom wanted to see something cool, so Monday morning we piled into the minivan and headed for Bardstown. Although Bardstown itself is not terribly famous, it is in the heart of the world-renown bourbon distilleries in the heart of the bluegrass state. After hours of driving, we knew we were getting close. Education comes first in the commonwealth, but apparently those that make it to lug-nut day have to give up adverbs.

Our first stop was the distillery for Maker's Mark. The distillery is the oldest in the US, and they sit on a nice patch of land. Whisky Creek didn't actually contain whiskey.

Old stonework and lots of trees.

The master distiller held the house on the hill for many generations. It kept him sober, as he had to fall uphill to get home in the evenings.

From the formal tour, we learned about the grounds, the people, the manufacturing techniques, etc. Here we can clearly see that the creek doesn't contain whiskey, but 100% moonshine.

The Maker's Mark mark.

The red shutters on each of their buildings has a cutout in the shape of the Maker's Mark bottle. The black paint helped the buildings absorb heat for fermenting.

This was the land of Abraham...when he was thirsty.

Inside, silo barrels twelve feet wide and twelve feet tall contained the mash in different stages of the fermenting process. Although we were encouraged to taste and smell the batch along the way, the extreme heat coupled with hot mash and yeast made our stomaches turn. Candice turned green. If you find a Maker's Mark bottle with green vomit in it, we don't know where it came from.

Alcohol in the making.

Mom went on to dip her own bottle of Maker's Mark in the trademark red wax. Sadly, I couldn't figure the stock flash on my camera, so Candice had to fill in with the pictures. I'll try to post hers. A trash can for what I think of that.

Candice, Ryan, and mom. Aunt Anita was still inside licking the bourbon ball plate for leftovers. They weren't as tasty as I would've hoped. Bourbon balls are typically revered as gentle mistakes in life's box of chocolates when you're aiming for caramel filled goodies. At least it wasn't coconut.

We returned to Bardstown for lunch. We parked in the same place we did to orient ourselves, in front of the Old Stable that also hosts weekly ghost tours. Although pale, none of us passed as ghosts.

Ryan is all class. Her number is in the phonebook.

What time is it? It's time for bottoms.

We settled on a theater dinner. The theater was closed until the evening show, but we did have some good food catered by an eccentric waitress. She was heavy into civil war reenactments. She also was single as her guy brought her to town and left her. Her number is also in the phonebook. Try McCrazy.

In a boutique, the lion from Alice in Wonderland. You know, the lion that was never on time...even worse than the rabbit? Well, the lion was so late he never even made the story. Poor guy. Now he's trapped through the window glass.

Golf, fish, bucket, boxers, shoes, shovels, and paint. Everything you need for a great first date in Bardstown.

More distillery buildings...close on Monday.

Bardstown does host the largest Civil War museum that focuses on the western front of the war. Truly a joy to walk through, each major battle was depicted, along with battlements and techniques of the period. This bearded woman held still for surgery. Bardstown was famous for the first successful leg amputation. Before knives, the couldn't really pull it off with childproof scissors and hammers.

Angry like a cannon.

Bardstown also hosts the second oldest settlement in Kentucky. Although a separate museum incurring a separate admission fee, the lady was closing the grounds and asked if we'd like to skip ahead while she locked the buildings up for the day.

Inside one of the buildings.

Candice walks out of the overall house. That's where they kept their overall...things.

The site also served during the civil war. A cannon for what I think of that.

The watermill and small creek.

A fire pit.

Grains and period materials on display.

A turkey-duck.