This story was originally published in December 2019; offerings and opening times may be different due to COVID-related restrictions, so check in advance of a visit.
Bardstown Bourbon Co. isn’t shy about celebrating not just its own whiskeys, but also its many partner brands at Bottle & Bond Kitchen & Bar. Across the cocktail menu, names like Belle Meade and Jefferson’s share equal billing with Bardstown’s own Fusion Series, Discovery Series, and other bourbons. Collaboration is the keyword here, with a whole section dedicated to cocktails made with Bardstown’s Collaborative Series of whiskeys, like the recently featured Mack the Knife, combining Collabor&tion bourbon finished in Copper & Kings brandy casks with Averna amaro and Angostura orange bitters. (Tip: If Bardstown is offering a red wine cask-finished bourbon, ask for a New York Sour made with the whiskey and topped with a float of the wine.)
Collaboration extends to the bar’s barrel-aging program, which director of product development, visitors experience, and bourbon education Dan Callaway says is the largest in the world, created by the bar, kitchen, and distilling staff together. “We can talk to our master distiller about picking out certain chars and finding the right barrel for both short-term and long-term aging,” Callaway explains. “Then we work with the culinary team and find different flavors and spices [to complement the barrel profile].” There’s always a barrel-aged Old Fashioned and Manhattan on the menu, but the variations change regularly.
In addition to its extensive cocktail list, Bottle & Bond has a library of over 400 antique whiskeys and a full list of wine, beer, and mocktails. All this happens within an upscale restaurant with a menu offering everything from chicken-fried oysters and charcuterie boards to baby back ribs and a porterhouse steak for two. For dessert, you’ll find nothing more satisfying than a boozy milkshake like The Entrepreneur, featuring Collabor&tion bourbon, chocolate ice cream, chocolate syrup, malt powder, and a chocolate bar garnish.
Must-Drink Cocktail: Bardstown Mule, featuring Bardstown Bourbon Co. Fusion Series #1 bourbon, Sfumato rabarbaro amaro, apple butter, lime, and ginger beer
Don’t Miss: Theme nights, with cocktail and food specials, like Tiki and a Taco