The Bardstown Bourbon Co. of Bardstown, Kentucky, is proud to become the first Nelson County bourbon distillery to launch a complete virtual 360 tour of its entire grounds and facilities online and free to the public. Created in response to state-mandated closures due to COVID-19, this enchanting, interactive and educational experience allows viewers to visually adventure throughout the groundbreaking facilities. From the outdoor grain bins, to the fermentation rooms, to the award-winning Kitchen & Bar, bourbon lovers can watch every step in the whiskey-making process, while learning more about one of the most modern, technically advanced distilleries in the nation from the comfort of their own home.
“While the distillery has recently reopened to visitors, we recognize people may still have concerns about visiting public places, and we don’t want that to limit anyone from experiencing what we have to offer,” said vice president of hospitality Dan Callaway. “The virtual tour allows us to expand our reach to bourbon lovers all over the globe and introduce them to the Bardstown Bourbon Co. brand.”
The guided virtual tour begins outside, providing a stunning panoramic view of the distillery, adjacent restaurant, The Kitchen & Bar, and rickhouses, all spread throughout 100 acres of active farmland. Viewers are then welcomed into the Visitors Center where they can effortlessly navigate the tour beginning at the tasting bar, which features Bardstown Bourbon Co.’s available products. During the experience, folks are encouraged to click on objects they’re interested in to learn more.
Bardstown Bourbon Co. prides itself on full transparency by providing a behind-the-scenes look into the complete whiskey making process. A series of video and graphic displays allows participants to dive deeper into each location and operation, experiencing the smallest of details exactly as they would in person. From learning how grain is carefully selected, sorted and tested before being cooked, to the analytical laboratory and bird’s eye view of fermentation tanks, to the distillation, barreling and storing processes, spectators will be allowed full access.
For the first time, visitors will also be able to check out Pete’s Place, the mesmerizing new tasting lounge named after the late founder of Bardstown Bourbon Co., Peter Loftin. The lounge is attached to the barrel viewing room where in-person tours can taste and thieve straight from the barrel.
The 360 tour concludes with a stop in the retail shop where patrons can purchase a bottle of a Bardstown Bourbon Company product, book an in-person experience or shop for branded merchandise. Miss something? Tourists can return to a location at any time or skip around to different stops by clicking on the panoramic menu.
“This virtual experience is unlike anything I’ve seen in the bourbon industry,” said Bardstown Bourbon Co. marketing director Laurel Altman. “As a modern company, we consider ourselves to be leaders in the digital space and the virtual 360 tour is a great example of how we continue to reimagine the traditional bourbon experience.”
The virtual tour is free of charge and can be viewed on the Bardstown Bourbon Co. website and any mobile or desktop device.
Bardstown Bourbon Co. partnered with local filmmaker Edward Heavrin of eALLEN Pictures to create the virtual tour.