LOUISVILLE, Ky. — After a tough year dealing with effects of the coronavirus pandemic, Kentucky bourbon distilleries are beginning to bounce back.

What You Need To Know

  • The bourbon business is booming in Kentucky, starting to quickly recover from the COVID-19 pandemic

  • Kentucky Bourbon Boys is making a comeback after pandemic hardships

  • Private and custom tours are available at many Kentucky distilleries

  • Due to rising popularity, bourbon tours are often booked months in advance

Kentucky Bourbon Boys is a family owned and operated business based out of Louisville, Kentucky. Since 2016, the business had been hosting private and custom tours of bourbon distilleries for their visitors. All of that changed when COVID-19 hit the Commonwealth.

“I didn't do any tours during the pandemic because of health risks and so I'm just now getting started back again and I really love it and enjoy it," Tim Landers, tour director for Kentucky Bourbon Boys said. "I like bourbon and I like the people and that's why I enjoy doing it."

Guests enjoy a pour of bourbon during a distillery tour. (Spectrum News 1/Scott Neumann)

Kentucky Bourbon Boys risked losing it all when the pandemic and shutdowns wreaked the Bluegrass. Now as restrictions ease and a full reopening date is set for June 11, chief operating officer Tim Hagan said the bourbon boom is making a comeback.

“Of course COVID-19 knocked everybody for a loop as we all know and we managed to hang on, just barely and we’ve come back like gangbusters," Hagan said. "We're setting records now every month and every week."

The tours include visiting three distilleries as well as tastings, lunch, complimentary snacks and water and pick-up and drop-off at your location of choice. For one Miami couple, their tour involved visiting Three Boys Farm Distillery in Frankfort.

“Every member of my family loves bourbon, all of my friends love bourbon and so we wanted to stock up so we can make sure we had it for all of our parties over the summer,” Amy Dean said.

Because of the surge in demand and distilleries expanding, tours are being booked months in advance.

“People don’t realize what's going on with the return of bourbon tourism coming back so fast and so much all at once that they believe they can call us on a Tuesday and get a tour on Friday and we are telling people now to book 3 months in advance,” Hagan said.

It's a comeback Kentucky Bourbon Boys desperately needed after the hardships of the pandemic. For more information on how to book a bourbon tour, click here.