The flood gates are open and people are on the move after a year and a half. They are tired of staying home and are on the Road again for new adventures. Jim and I sat down this week to discuss your options for Bourbon and Whiskey Festivals across the nation. If you can’t make it to Kentucky, we got you covered, from the Northeast to the West Coast, to the southwest and plenty of stops along the way in the Midwest. Stick around as we explore the best bourbon festivals of 2021.
Make sure you listen in on the link below as we go over all of our recommendations.
The Bourbon Road Media Player
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So here are just a few that we would suggest looking into for the remainder of 2021 as we sip on two 15 year old bourbons (Calumet Farm Single Rack Black 15 Year Kentucky Straight Bourbon and Sam Houston 15 Year Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey) to celebrate the opening of Americas Whiskey Trail and welcome you back to our home of Kentucky. We hope you enjoy the list we have put together for you.
16-19 SEPT 2021 THE KENTUCKY BOURBON FESTIVAL (every list starts here)
Bardstown, Kentucky is the Bourbon Capital of the World® and the home of the Kentucky Bourbon Festival®, which draws people to this quaint little town for a week of celebrating the storied history and art of distilling America’s native spirit. The Kentucky Bourbon Festival® began in 1991 as a Bourbon tasting and dinner, and has grown tremendously over the past 30 years. Today, it is one of the Commonwealth’s leading community festivals, and is not only a celebration of Bourbon, but also the people and the community that have supported the industry for generations.
08-11 JUL 2021 Bacon, Bourbon & Brew Festival- Newport, KY
What do you have when you take one of America’s most loved breakfast meats and celebrate it along with beer and bourbon enthusiasts? Bacon, Bourbon, and Brew unite in a festival July 8th – 11th at Newport on the Levees Festival Park. This festival is dedicated to the area’s rich history and connections to the brewing and pork industries as well as our region’s long ties to the Bourbon industry.
10 JUL 2021 Beattyville Bourbon & Moonshine Festival-Slade, KY
Ya can’t have Bourbon without Moonshine! A new festival in Beattyville, Kentucky, near the Red River Gorge, for bourbon & moonshine lovers! The largest export for Kentucky is Bourbon and the touring industries related to bourbon bring in visitors from all over the world. Moonshine also has a rich history in the hills of Appalachia and Beattyville, Kentucky is home to a few local moonshiners.
18-22 AUG 2021 New Orleans Bourbon Festival – N.O., LA
Let the good times roll. The motto of a city that knows how to host a party. Now couple that with a historic relationship to Bourbon, world-renowned food, music and culture. New Orleans Bourbon Festival’s mission is to provide its attendees with an opportunity to enjoy exceptional Bourbon and cuisine surrounded by the charm and culture of New Orleans.
20 AUG 2021 Whiskey Business – San Antonio, TX
Whiskey Business is San Antonio’s premier whiskey tasting event, hosted at the legendary riverfront Witte Museum. Discover the best in whiskeys, bourbons and select scotches— from locally-produced bourbons to single malts from Scotland, from small batches to single grains, from the new to the classics. Meet brand ambassadors who will offer their unique insights and specialty products, and experience interactive seminars led by the distillers themselves. Sample dishes from the hottest local restaurants, enjoy live music and multiple DJ stages, select Witte Museum exhibits, craft beer, wine and much more. Whiskey Business is a charitable event that benefits with Witte Museum 501c3.
28 AUG 2021 Railbird Festival Lexington KY
Horse Racing, Music and Bourbon at Keeneland for an entire weekend. Band of Horses, Dave Matthews Band, Leon Bridges, My Morning Jacket, Khruangbin, The Revivalists, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, Japanese Breakfast, Midland, Pinegrove, and more… The inaugural Railbird Festival took place in 2019, combining music-festival atmosphere with a celebration of Kentucky’s beloved bourbon traditions and horse race betting.
18 SEP 2021 Wings & Whiskey Crawl – Louisville, KY
Does wings and whiskey all day sound like a great time? Then you don’t want to miss this one. Cant make it to Louisville Checkout the site and see if there is a city near you that will be hosting this amazing event.
24 SEP 2021 The 4th Annual Bourbon Burn
The Burn — part bike tour, part bourbon festival — is a three-day, fully-supported bicycle tour of the bourbon distilleries and Thoroughbred horse farms of Kentucky. $449.00
1-2 OCT 2021 Kentucky’s Edge Bourbon Conference & Festival Covington, KY
The Kentucky’s Edge Conference – featuring keynotes, speakers, panels and exhibitors – will improve your bourbon IQ. The city will come alive with music. The music festival features bluegrass, bourbon and beer. Feel like dancing? Head to the Smoke Justis Block Party. With keynotes from Bill Samuels, Jr. – Maker’s Mark, Marcus Niemann – Four Roses, and Molly Wellman – Author, Mixologist, plus breakouts featuring some of the best in the industry – this conference should not be missed.
22-23 OCT 2021 Bourbon on the Banks Festival-Frankfort KY
Bourbon on the Banks returns this year to historic Downtown Frankfort on the Banks of the picturesque Kentucky River. Once again we will be featuring dozens of bourbons, ranging from the largest most popular to the smallest and discreet. Area microbreweries and wineries will also be giving samples as well. Food tents along with food trucks will be on hand with a wide and eclectic variety of foods to pair with the endless libations. Walk the banks of the Kentucky River, enjoy acoustic musicians, sample rare and unique bourbons, spirits, wine and beer… does life get any better than that?
03-06 NOV 2021 Bourbon Classic 2021- Louisville, KY
Bourbon Classic is the holy trinity for experiencing the very best in the culinary, cocktail and Bourbon arts through a collection of rare, interactive events.
Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival 2021 in Tampa, FL, Charlotte, NC, New York, NY, Cary, NC, Atlanta, GA, Oxen Hill, MD.
The Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival makes pit stops in several cities across the US for a palate-pleasing celebration. The one-day event boasts over 60 microbrews on tap, 40 barrel-aged bourbons and succulent, mouth-watering barbecue. Additional attractions include live bluegrass, blues and rock music, a cigar tent and tasting seminars lead by pitmasters, head distillers and brewmasters.
Whiskies of the World Events in cities like San Francisco, CA, San Jose, CA, New York, NY, Dallas, TX, Atlanta, GA and Seattle, WA.
Imagine having a world’s worth of whisky under one roof. Whiskies of the World packs over 200 whiskies from around the world, and they’re all at your fingertips for you to enjoy. Makers and brand ambassadors from each distillery are present to help you make the most of your experience.
So with you plans set for the rest of the year, you will have plenty of time to listen as Jim and I discuss these events as we sip on two amazingly aged bourbons on this adventure down The Bourbon Road. Don’t forget to grab that glass and a bottle of your own to enhance your listening experience. Cheers
Mike (Big Chief)
Covid is a difficult time for everyone. But things are coming back to normal in 2021. The list you have provided is amazing. Many people will find this useful.
2021 Bourbon Classic 2021- Louisville, KY and Bourbon on the Banks Festival-Frankfort KY are particularly amazing. Thank you very much for this information.
Thanks. We appreciate you listing and reading the article. Is there anything else you would like to hear on the show or a bourbon you would like us to review.
Mike (Big Chief)