“BBQ & BARRELS” Returns in May to Owensboro, KY. Your Sensory Dazzling Weekend Awaits!

"BBQ & BARRELS", May 9 - 11th, Owensboro, KY.

Looking to map out your summer weekend warrior plans? The month of May is a mighty fine time to visit The Bourbon State, just sayin’. Old Man Winter is out of the picture. At the same time, it’s not too hot…yet. Generally speaking, it’s the “perfect blend” to get out for a road trip! And what if we through in a few of our favorite things, BBQ & BOURBON, for good measure? Now I’ve got your attention;)

Your kick off to warmer weather wanderlust destination dreams starts in Owensboro (KY), with a BBQ and Bourbon immersed weekend experience you’re not going to want to miss!

May 9 – 11 (Thursday – Saturday), the riverfront city (~1hr 40 min west of Louisville) is hosting “BBQ & BARRELS”, a celebration and homage to the city’s sacred bedrock of “Western Kentucky BBQ” and Bourbon authenticity of which go back countless generations.  

While the event name may be new generally speaking, the foundation certainly is not as it continues upon the storied tradition of Owensboro’s globally renowned Int’ Bar-B-Q Festival which goes back nearly 45 years. The legacy of Owensboro’s iconic BBQ legacy dates back centuries ago, to the early 1800’s.  It is the epicenter of “Western KY BBQ“.  You may have heard of “burgoo” or “mutton”, perhaps even tried it, but you haven’t really experienced it unless you’ve done it in Owensboro proper!

And with its strategic river positioning and abundantly fertile grain supply, Owensboro was a titan of the Whiskey Industry, with 20+ large scale distilleries prior to Prohibition.

Now that you’ve had a glimpse of Owensboro’s glorious past, lets take a look at your delicious future their for the upcoming sensory dazzling extravaganza that awaits you in May!

ALL EVENTS are 21 years and older to attend.

Event Details

Riverfront at Owensboro, KY. Courtesy


The ultimate experience and the ultimate value. When VIP Tickets for Saturday’s Main Event sell out, this will be the only way to get them. Will save over 20% on total costs. This package goes on sale Monday, March 4th.

  • 2 night stay Fri and Sat, May 10 – 11th at the Hampton Inn Waterfront Hotel. Directly next to the Riverfront Conv Center.
  • 2 Tickets to the Green River Distillery Dinner & Whiskey Pairing on Friday May 10th
  • 2 VIP Tickets to Saturday May 11th “Bourbon Experience” main event (3 – 6pm CT).

CLICK HERE for info. Goes on sale March 4th.

Thursday, May 9th: “SMOKE & OAK DINNER”

Hosted by Lure Seafood & Grille. 6 expression Weller Tasting with 4 Course Meal. $350/person (includes gratuity). Special Guest – Melissa Page Warren, M.S., CFS Global Product Development Manager, Sazerac. More info: CLICK HERE

**To reserve your spot, call Lure Seafood & Grille directly at 270-240-4556**

6:00 Cocktail Hour – Welcoming Weller Special Reserve Old Fashions

Weller Tasting
•Weller 107
•Weller 12
•Weller CYPB
•Weller Single Barrel
•Weller Full Proof
•William Larue Weller

7:00 Surf n Turf Barbecue Dinner
First – Smoked Trout Dip, Cucumber, Pumpernickel ||
Chicken Drum, Hot White Barbecue Sauce

Second – Burgoo, Shrimp and Corn Hoe Cakes

Third – Beef Short Rib, Lobster Risotto, Red Eye Gravy

Fourth – Bacon Burnt End, Cinnamon Roll, Apple Compote, Bourbon Glaze


Join Green River Distilling Co. and Niko’s Bakery featuring chef Matt Weafer for a distinctive bourbon dinner pairing. The experience includes a unique four course meal paired with handcrafted bourbon and whiskey cocktails. A cash bar with beer and wine will be available as well. Tickets are $130 per person.

-Smoked salmon dip
-Smoked pimento cheese

First Course:
Maque Choux Salad – local greens, corn, tomatoes, onions, celery, red peppers, creole dressing and bacon

-Lemon Thyme Whiskey Sour
-Green River Wheated Bourbon, Lemon Juice and Thyme Simple Syrup

Second Course:
-Pecan crusted sea bass with smoked tomato chutney, pommes duchesse, and asparagus
-Duck a l’range with duck confit and bourbon orange glaze. Over chili-infused grits and Brussels sprouts

-Honey Ginger Old Fashioned
-Green River Kentucky Straight Bourbon, Ginger/Honey Rich Syrup, and Angostura Bitters

Third Course:
-Bourbon poached pear with goat cheese cremeux, smoked miso caramel, and almond gateau.

-Blackberry Manhattan
-Green River Rye Whiskey, Blackberry infused Sweet Vermouth, and Fernet

This event is 21 years and older.

Saturday, May 11th: Bourbon Education + The Main Event!

ALL EVENTS listed below take place at the Riverfront Convention Center.

**2 – 3pm CDT: Bourbon Classes**

$25. Must have ticket to main event to attend class sessions.

Class 1: “Scentsory” Experience with Jaz’min Weaver
Class 2: The Green River “GlenCaryn” Experience
Class 3: Mystery Class!
Class details can be found at the ticket link above.



Enjoy unique bourbon pours from over 30 distilleries paired perfectly with passed heavy hors d’oeuvres with an emphasis on BBQ. Ticket also includes an official VIP BBQ and Barrels Glencairn tasting glass. $110. For tickets, CLICK HERE.

**4 – 6pm CDT: MAIN EVENT**

Sample over 30 brands of bourbon from a collection of both large and craft distilleries. Ticket also includes an official BBQ and Barrels Glencairn tasting glass. $65 p/person. For tickets, ClICK HERE


Bardstown Bourbon Company Bard Distilling Co.
Blue Run Spirits
Bluegrass Distillers
Broadleaf Whiskey
Casey Jones Distillery
Castle & Key
Garrard County Distilling Co.
Green River Distilling Co.
Jefferson’s Bourbon Lexington Brewing & Distilling Co.
Log Still Distillery
Maker’s Mark
Old SteelHouse Distillery
Pinhook Bourbon
Pursuit Spirits
Western Kentucky Distilling Co.
Whiskey Thief Distilling Co.

Green River Distillery, Owensboro, KY. Courtesy

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