Wilderness Trail Distillery announces plans for Kentucky birthday Bourbon
Published 7:59 am Thursday, June 8, 2017
WILDERNESS TRAIL DISTILLERY
Wilderness Trail Distillery has teamed up with Caverndale Farms to commemorate the 225th anniversary of Kentucky’s statehood with a special production of America’s Native Spirit, Kentucky Bourbon.
Caverndale Farms, the Danville farm supplying the corn, wheat and rye for Wilderness Trail Distillery, has sourced an original corn strain similar to what would have been planted when Kentucky became a state in 1792.
Shane Baker and Pat Heist, Wilderness Trail Distillery owners, challenged Barry Welty of Caverndale Farms to find this heirloom seed for the state’s anniversary celebration. Caverndale Farms is headquartered on part of the original land grant awarded to James Harrod in 1775. Welty was happy to oblige Baker’s request by sourcing special corn.
“We will make Bourbon from an original heirloom corn varietal that was grown at the time of our statehood. It will be grown and harvested to become a special limited edition of Kentucky Happy Anniversary Bourbon. It will be released to commemorate the 230th anniversary of Kentucky,” Baker noted at a June 1 celebration of the 225th anniversary of Kentucky’s statehood at Constitution Square.
Wilderness Trail Distillery, which chose its name to reflect the path that brought settlers to this area that became the 15th state, will release its first Bourbon this winter.
During his announcement at Constitution Square, Baker noted the important role distilling played in the state’s history.
“Excess agricultural grain was turned into Bourbon or whiskey and used to barter and trade. It was a lot of the cash flow in the early days.”
The parent seed already is in the ground for this season. In 2018, a few acres of the heirloom variety of this corn will be planted at the distillery.
Although Wilderness Trail is resurrecting a seed corn from a bygone era, today’s agriculture practices will mean significant increases in crop yields. When it was originally planted in the 1800s, the varietal only yielded 30-40 bushels per acre. Hybrids grown today can yield over 80 to 100 bushels per acre. In addition to the Kentucky Straight Bourbon, Wilderness Trail Distillery is a producer of fine Kentucky spirits such as Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey, Blue Heron Vodka and Harvest Rum.
In addition to being a member of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour, the distillery was named 2016 Kentucky Manufacturer of the Year, 2015 Kentucky Rum Distillery of the year, and 2015 Danville Small Business of the year.
Tours are offered 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday beginning at the top of the hour. The gift shop and tastings are open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For more information, contact Emily Toadvine at email@example.com or phone (859) 402-8707.