Thursday, October 23, 2014

Bourbon Festival and The Shaved Duck - on the road to awesomeness - Day 3 - September 17, 2014

We couldn't get out of the Castle Post Hotel fast enough! I was just happy we weren't murdered in our sleep!  Day 2 was full of amazing vistas, and great conversations on the road, but Day 3 quickly shaped up to be a fabulous day.  How does starting the morning off sipping bourbon at the Four Roses Distillery not start a most excellent day?

I can't say enough about the tour. So worth traveling over there to Lawrenceburg, KY, and taking a walk through the bourbon making process. We are now informed bourbon drinkers! It also smelled really good in there, like bread, beer, yeast, warm delicious amber wonderfulness.

Also, we arrived on day one of the Kentucky Bourbon Festival. We got there so early, Four Roses was just setting up tents on the property and getting ready to celebrate for the weekend. The real business of the Festival happens in Bardstown, KY, and turned out to be way too off of our path that day.  It would be a fun weekend... maybe next year?!!

Jeff in front of the massive copper vat

 Here's me outside. Just around the corner was the grain inspection booth, where we saw how they checked each truckload of corn. It smelled good in there too. You can see the little hut in the back left corner of the fisheye photo here

The tour takes you all around the facility, on scaffolding and ramps. Here we are looking down into the fermenting vats. Smells kind of like nail polish remover in here. 

They haul two truckloads of distilled bourbon out of Lawrenceburg every day. They weigh the truck leaving the distillery and weigh it again when it arrives at its destination.  It goes to a facility 20 miles down the road in Cox's Creek, where it is poured into barrels and then shut away for a long long time.  We didn't have time to go tour the aging facility, but we would have if we had time.  At the end of the tour you arrive back in the "gift shop" and you get to try four different bourbons and keep the little glasses too!  Yum!

This is what it would look like if you went to Cox's Creek - this photo from Four Roses' site

Here is a brief video... not sure if I've uploaded this properly. HA!  If it does end up playing you can hear the tour guide with her big ol' Kentucky accent. She was great!

We drove a lot this day.  A lot!  582 miles, driving out of Lexington, KY, to Louisville, and then all the way across Kentucky, to St Louis, MO, all the way across Missouri to Kansas City, KS.  It seemed like more driving than the last two days... probably because of the landscape.  Here is the arch as we were rolling into St. Louis. It seems like there is construction on every single road in the USA.

LUNCH!!   The Shaved Duck, found in St. Louis! One of the best BBQ places we found on our trip! It was already around 2 p.m. and we had the place almost to ourselves. On the menu for us: Duck Confit, a Moscow Mule, Smokey Baby Back Ribs, Pulled Pork, Loaded Smoked Potato Wedges, Mac and Cheese, and a Ginger Beer. Needless to say, we were fat and happy after that meal. So worth the trip into the city to find this place.

Grain storage in Poseyville, Indiana

The sunset just outside of Kansas City was spectacular. Suddenly a massive sun reveals itself from a canopy of clouds, low to the road. Pink reflections shoot up off the road from the backlit cars.  Everything is bathed briefly in golden magenta hues, and wisps of fog and mist start creeping up along the sides of the road filling in the knolls and valleys as we passed.  Then storm clouds and a dark curtain of clouds descending on the city as we arrived. 

We stayed at the Aloft in Overland Park, Kansas City. We were so super tired, but the desk attendants were very nice and wanted to high five us for making it!  We ate at the XYZ bar and talked to the bartender, who related a story about almost getting killed on his cross country road trip when his girlfriend fell asleep at the wheel.  I cannot remember what we ate but I do remember a Woodford's and ginger ale. 

Highlights from Day 3
  • Four Roses Distillery
  • Lunch at the Shaved Duck, St. Louis
  • Massive sunset driving into Kansas City
  • Aloft hotel
  • 582 miles
What we drove
From Versailles, KY to Kansas City, KS. On the road to Louisville, KY and out on 64 through Indiana, small towns, stopped in Poseyville then into Illinois staying on 64 to St Louis, Missouri. Got on 94, scenic road to Jefferson City, Missouri, then up on 179 to 87 into Boonville, then picked up 70 west to Concorcia, into Kansas City, Missouri and then Kansas City, Kansas.

Here is the sunset, the iPhone camera does it no justice

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