BBCo prepares to more than double capacity to nearly 7 million proof gallons
The Bardstown Bourbon Company (“BBCo”) hit another milestone today with the installation of its second 50-foot tall, custom made, 36-inch stainless steel Vendome Copper & Brass Works still. Delivered in one piece and hoisted above the 55-foot still tower by crane, the Vendome apparatus was lowered into the center of the building. The new still installation marks the second expansion for BBCo since it began operations in September 2016.
The still will be connected to Bardstown Bourbon Company’s new, 7,500 square foot fermenter building, which houses sixteen 12,500-gallon fermenters, a second laboratory, and an employee break room. The building will also be the future home of an expanded barrel dumping facility. BBCo anticipates the latest expansion will be complete by July 2018.
“The Bardstown Bourbon Company’s growth is a direct result of the significant demand for our Collaborative Distilling Program,” said David Mandell, President & CEO.
BBCo’s Collaborative Distilling Program is a unique model in the American whiskey market. The service provides craft distillers, non-distilling brand owners, and existing brand owners the ability to: (1) work side-by-side BBCo’s production team to create their own authentic and innovative Kentucky whiskey, bourbon, and rye products and mature them onsite;(2) ensure consistent, high quality production that can rapidly scale; (3) control the future source for their product; and (4) provide a production location and environment that they can celebrate and promote.
The program is limited to companies that qualify under BBCo’s stringent eligibility requirements. Program partners must have exceptional brands and/or only want to produce superior quality whiskey. Moreover, BBCo restricts the number of brands in order to provide the highest level of customer service. With the latest expansion to nearly 7 million proof gallons, BBCo will be turning nearly 70 fermenters a week and produce more than 24 different mashbills in 2018. To continue to meet production and technical demands, BBCo is expanding its whiskey distilling team, creating a dedicated quality control and lab technician team, and further upgrading its distilling technology.
“It is remarkable what is happening at The Bardstown Bourbon Company,” said Master Distiller, Steve Nally. “In all my years in the bourbon industry, I’ve never witnessed the level of knowledge sharing and collaboration between companies taking place in one facility.”
BBCo’s distilling team is led by Bourbon Hall of Fame Master Distiller Steve Nally – a 40-year veteran of the spirits industry and the former Master Distiller of Maker’s Mark, and John Hargrove, Executive Director of Distillery Operations, formerly Master Distiller and Distillery Manager at Sazerac and Barton Brands 1792. With more than 40 production employees, the team has an average of more than 15 years of whiskey making experience, working with world-class distilleries, including Jim Beam, Maker’s Mark, Barton Brands, Diageo, and Michter’s.
“We are pushing the boundaries each and every day,” said John Hargrove, Executive Director of Distilling Operations. “By respecting tradition while embracing and advancing innovation, we are able to attract some of the best brands from across the country and the world.”
Construction for the distillery expansion is led by Buzick Construction of Bardstown, Kentucky, which built the distillery, expanded it to its current three million proof gallon capacity, and constructed the three 22.5k barrel warehouses on the property. At the current production rate, BBCo will build more than two-and-a-half 22.5k barrel warehouses per year. The Company plans to start construction on its fourth barrel warehouse in the summer of 2018.
In addition to its Collaborative Distilling Program, BBCo is also developing and releasing its own brands and opening a destination experience with a unique visitor’s center featuring a full-scale restaurant, bar, vintage spirits library, and transparent educational experience. The Company anticipates announcing an opening date for its visitor’s center in the very near future.