If you’re looking for something to celebrate—and who isn’t this year?—look no further than June 14. It’s National Bourbon Day! I had the privilege of asking Lux Row Distillers’ Head Distiller John E. Rempe a few questions to help us learn more about this delicious spirit in anticipation of its big day. Though we in Tennessee favor Team Whiskey, keep reading to learn why you should enjoy (responsibly) Kentucky’s Team Bourbon, too. Who said you can’t be on more than one team when it comes to cocktail hour?
What is the difference between bourbon and whiskey?
Whiskey is simply a spirit made from fermented grain. There are many types of whiskey depending on what grains are used and where it is made. Bourbon is just one type of a whiskey. The saying “all whiskeys are not bourbon but all bourbons are whiskey” applies here.
What is the difference between an expensive and an inexpensive bourbon?
Age makes for a more expensive bourbon, for sure. Having bourbon aging in a rickhouse for an extended period of time costs money, all while the amount of bourbon is decreasing due to evaporation. But it also could be who makes it, what grains are used, any special work needed that could raise the cost of producing it. Small batch and Single barrel bourbons with unique flavor profiles also will cost more.
What food does bourbon pair best with?
For me, bourbon goes best with a nice aged steak. For dessert, definitely something chocolate. Bourbon and chocolate are a great pairing, as they share a lot of the same flavor. This is why we pair specific chocolates with our bourbons during our distillery tastings.
What are some of your favorite mixed drinks with bourbon to recommend to folks?
The obvious choices for this are the Manhattan and the Old Fashioned. But another good one is the Kentucky Mule. Bourbon, Ginger beer and Lime are a tasty combination served in a nice cold copper mug.
How will you be celebrating National Bourbon Day?
With a neat pour of Blood Oath Pact 6 sitting outside on the patio.
And, be sure to shop Batch to stock up on all the goods you will need to celebrate. We have mixers, bar tools, cocktail guides, napkins and coasters, and even some great snacks to do it up right. As is always the case, we have a few Gift Batches that will give you or your loved ones the full set-up with minimal effort on your part—score! Enjoy, and be safe.