Bourbon & Beyond



Check out our 2018 Bourbon Headliners below.


Willett Distillery


The Willett family distilling legacy began in Kentucky shortly after the Civil War. John David Willett was the Master Distiller and part owner of Moore, Willett & Frenke Distillery in Bardstown, KY. John David’s son Lambert Willett walked 5 miles each way to his distill- ing job at the current site of Barton’s. It wasn’t until Lambert began working at the Bernhiem Distillery in Louisville that he purchased a car for his commute. Lambert worked 6 days a week for nearly a decade at Bernhiem.

During prohibition, Lambert raised cattle and hogs to support his family and community. The effects of prohibition were devastating to the Bourbon Capitol of the World. Immediately following the repeal of prohibition in December of 1933, Lambert’s son Thompson Willett began learning the distilling trade working alongside his father at the age of 25.

Est. 1936. Three short years after prohibition, the Willett family chose the highest point in Nelson County, Kentucky to begin construction on what is now the Willett Distillery. By St Patrick’s Day 1937, the first barrel of whiskey was rolled into Warehouse A.

After 80 years, Willett remains independently family owned and operated. Under the leadership of parents Even and Martha Willett Kulsveen, the fifth generation of family distillers, siblings Britt and Drew Kulsveen, are continuing the family tradition of spirits excellence, generosity and southern hospitality. Janelle Kulsveen, Drew’s wife, hosts visitors from all over the world for tours and tastings. The over 43,000 annual visitors have necessitated a number of expansion projects on the Willett property including the addition of a premium cocktail bar.

Family of Brands: Willett Pot Still Reserve, Johnny Drum Private Stock, Johnny Drum Black Label, Old Bardstown Bottled In Bond, Old Bardstown Estate Bottled, Old Bardstown 90 Proof, Noah’s Mill, Row- an’s Creek, Pure Kentucky, Kentucky Vintage and the Willett Family Estate collection.

Drew Kulsveen

Master Distiller, Willett

If Drew were a whiskey he would be Willett Family Estate Rye. The elegant exterior honors a long storied family his- tory marked by courage and generosity while the liquid inside has a forward fresh avor that is youthful yet mature. Drew is a native of Bardstown, KY and graduate of Western Kentucky University where he exempli ed a commit- ment to school spirit by wooing the star of the dance team to marry him. After graduating with degrees in mar- keting and economics, Drew returned home for a complete education in the family business. Initially, Drew spent much of his time studying the careful precision of co-mingling whiskey but soon Drew’s knack for all things engi- neering would land him in the distillery. Over the years, Drew has developed additional mash bills to expand the company’s bourbon and rye portfolio earning him three nominations for James Beard Awards in the outstanding spirits professional category. When he is not making whiskey, Drew travels the country sharing his passion with bourbon newcomers and seasoned enthusiasts alike. Drew and Janelle live in Bardstown, KY with their endearing children Baron and Bridjette. They are known to
welcome guests with the most generous and authentic variety of southern hospitality.

Rock Hill Farms


Seductive aromatic notes of toasted walnut, dried red fruits, spice, cocoa and marshmallow. Flavors of dark chocolate, chocolate covered almond, coffee, tobacco and dark caramel. The finish is smooth, silky, toffee sweet and honeyed.

Bowman Brothers


John, Abraham, Joseph and Isaac Bowman were Virginia militia officers in the American Revolutionary War. In 1779, they led thirty pioneer families to Madison County, Kentucky and established Bowman’s Station. Later, the brothers helped establish and settle Fayette County. They were legends, admired and respected by fellow settlers for their courage and bravery. This hand-crafted bourbon whiskey is a tribute to these four heroic Bowman Brothers.



Booker’s® Bourbon is a rare barrel-strength bourbon, bottled uncut and unfiltered*. But you obviously know a good bit about bourbon, because you don’t end up here by mistake. We don’t advertise. We don’t do social media. We just do bourbon.

We focus on the sweet spot. The center of the rackhouse where the temperature and humidity stars align to create the deepest and most intense flavors. Once it’s aged to perfection, which always varies, the liquid is bottled uncut and unfiltered*. We don’t add, we don’t water down, and we don’t apologize for it. For some people, it may be too much. But for true bourbon fans, it’s probably the best ever.

Evan Williams


Evan Williams is a smooth, easy to drink Bourbon named after Evan Williams who, in 1783, opened Kentucky’s first commercial distillery along the banks of the Ohio River. Many years and barrels later, we’re still producing Bourbon with the same time-honored methods that Evan Williams did years ago.

Today, Evan Williams is the second largest selling Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey in the US and the world, distilled just a few blocks from the site where Evan himself built his distillery.

Elijah Craig


Long before the term Small Batch even existed, our Master Distillers were hand-selecting just the right number of barrels to make Elijah Craig. This expertise and attention to detail give Elijah Craig Small Batch the right balance of rich flavor and full body. Each small batch carries a signature warm spice and subtle smoke flavor. A combination that belongs in any Bourbon fan’s regular rotation.

Sara Barnes

Boone County Distilling

Sara Barnes is the Marketing & Events Coordinator at Boone County Distilling Company in Boone County, Kentucky. Since joining Boone County Distilling, Sara has helped foster relationships with numerous small businesses across the tri-state area and she has helped to raise the profile of craft distilleries across Kentucky through her involvement with the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour®. Sara oversees all private and promotional events with the distillery, manages the private barrel selection program, and she manages all marketing and social media.

She is a certified Executive Bourbon Steward, Certified Tourism Ambassador™, an active member of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association, NKY Chamber of Commerce member and a member of the Bourbon Women.

Sara grew up in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina and earned a Bachelor of Science in Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management from the University of South Carolina. Go Gamecocks!

Beth Burrows

Jim Beam

Beth Burrows is the Kentucky Bourbon Ambassador for Beam Suntory. A New York Native, she grew up in the restaurant and education world. At a young age, Beth worked in her family’s restaurant as a busser and recycling specialist. With a teacher for a Mother, a Chef for a step-father, and a childhood rooted in hospitality, she naturally developed a sophisticated palate and a passion for educating and leading others.

Her passion for bourbon came many years later, while she was working behind the stick in Louisville, KY. It was there that she quickly found a love for bourbon education and cocktail mixology, developing bar programs and competing in numerous cocktail competitions. Over the span of three years, Beth moved up the ranks of Down One Bourbon Bar – from server to General Manager, where she garnered respect and praise from both colleagues and customers. Her time in the restaurant world and constant involvement in the cocktail community prepared her for her current role where she utilizes her cultivated palate, broad bourbon education, and cocktail background to bring a new dimension to the Beam Ambassador position. Beth has spent the last five years of her career learning under masters of the bourbon and cocktail crafting world.

When she is not spreading the good word of Jim Beam Bourbon, you can find her jamming to nineties music, writing cocktail recipes and attempting to cultivate the next perfect bourbon & food pairing. A photographer by trade, Beth spends most of her free time behind the lens.

Tripp Stimson


Tripp Stimson hails from Chattanooga, Tennessee, He was recruited by Brown Forman, as a Research and Development Scientist, following his graduation from Tennessee Technological University with a degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. There he gained his experience in yeasting, fermentation, and the distillery sciences and operations. Following his 9 years with Brown Forman, Tripp started and grew a successful consulting company helping would be distillers all over the country design, build and efficiently run new distilleries. Most recently, he helped to design and build the Kentucky Artisan Distillery, where he was later employed as Master Distiller and the Director of Distillery Operations. He oversaw all the Jefferson’s Reserve project design and implementation including Jefferson’s Groth, and Jefferson’s Barrel Aged Manhattan. Additionally, he built the first malting operation in Kentucky in 2016.

Joe Beatrice

Founder and CEO, Barell

Joe Beatrice is a proven entrepreneur. He has established Barrell Craft Spirits as a blender and independent bottler of high-end whiskeys, akin to the whisky merchants of Scotland. He is transparent about selecting aged bourbon and whiskey that other distilleries have produced. The brand has been built using social media and word-of-mouth advertising, allowing the products to speak for themselves and let others speak to the quality and flavor. Barrell Craft Spirits has gone from distributing products in New York to one that has had fast growth with sales in over 40 states, while winning accolades and prestigious awards. Joe has done all of this with a few highly dedicated and motivated individuals, including two members of his family.

Jimmy Russell

Master Distiller, Wild Turkey Distillery

Dubbed the “Buddha of Bourbon” and “The Master Distiller’s Master Distiller” by his industry peers, James C. “Jimmy” Russell knows Bourbon like he knows breathing. For an astounding 60 years, Russell has been making whiskey at the Wild Turkey Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, and today, is the longest-tenured, active spirits Master Distiller in the world. Growing up five miles from the distillery, he followed his father, who taught him the traditions and techniques of Bourbon craftsmanship. From his first position at the distillery sweeping floors, he reached the apex of his career as Master Distiller in the 1960’s learning how to make Bourbon the right way – from the inside out and everything in between. No job too small, no task too tedious.

Jimmy’s passion for Bourbon led him to study under such Bourbon luminaries as Bill Hughes, Wild Turkey’s second Master Distiller, and Ernest W. Ripy, Jr., great-grandson of distillery founder James Ripy, Wild Turkey’s third Master Distiller. Even if his unparalleled tutelage wasn’t enough, his family history, impeccable knowledge of Bourbon, and possession of time-honored Bourbon-making secrets have led to his reputation as “the Master Distiller’s Master Distiller.” A part of an exclusive brotherhood, Jimmy is a member of the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame™ and a whiskey judge for the International Wine and Spirits Competition. He’s involved through the entire distillation and aging process of Wild Turkey Bourbon; his experience and wisdom shining through in every single bottle.

Over the past 60 years, Jimmy has been responsible for the launches of a number of new Wild Turkey brands and expressions, such as Tradition, Tribute, 17-year-old Wild Turkey for Japan, Rare Breed, American Spirit, Kentucky Spirit and Russell’s Reserve, which he co-created with his son and distilling partner Eddie Russell. Jimmy broke new ground in 1976 with the first honeyed Bourbon, at the time called Wild Turkey Liqueur. Today, fans know the evolution of that product as American Honey. Jimmy is also responsible for making sure the legacy of Wild Turkey stays intact; overseeing the production of Wild Turkey 101, Wild Turkey’s flagship brand. While waxing poetic about “aging techniques” and “grain selection,” you can often find Jimmy enjoying his beloved Bourbon neat or with a touch of branch water.

In celebration of Jimmy’s 60 years of service, the Wild Turkey global family decreed 2014 “The Year of Jimmy Russell,” marked by a series of honors and accolades from family, local and national politicians, and distinguished members of the Bourbon industry. Most notably, Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell cemented Jimmy’s achievements for posterity in the United States Congressional Record, while Kentucky Senator Julian Carroll and Representative Kim King sponsored a similar resolution in the Kentucky General Assembly. Furthermore, Jimmy was granted a Lifetime Honorary Membership to the Kentucky Distillers’ Association’s Board of Directors, an honor bestowed to only five other individuals within the organization’s storied 134-year history.

As special as these honors have been, the most personal recognition came from Jimmy’s son and fellow Bourbon Hall of Famer Eddie Russell. As an homage to his father, Eddie created Wild Turkey Diamond Anniversary, an outstanding limited-edition expression of 13- and 16-year-old whiskies.

When Jimmy is not at the distillery or on the road waxing poetic about Bourbon, which is a rare occurrence, he spends time at home with his wife Joretta, whom he met before he started working at Wild Turkey. They have three children – Eddie, Mike and Kathy; six grandchildren; and one great grandchild. A true Kentuckian and avid sports fan, Jimmy is a lifelong supporter of local Anderson County High School athletic programs for girls and boys.

Eddie Russell

Wild Turkey Distillery

On June 5, 1981, Edward Freeman Russell, the youngest of the three Russell children of Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, joined the family business as he took his spot on the lowest rung of the ladder at the Wild Turkey Distillery. Learning the Bourbon-making trade the way his father had before him, he was put through the paces taking on menial jobs that may have seemed irrelevant to the process then, but were everything to understanding the Wild Turkey way. The rest, as they say, is history.

Now, with 34 years of experience under his belt, “Eddie” knows a thing or two about Bourbon. As the son of legendary Master Distiller Jimmy Russell, and the third generation Russell to work at the Wild Turkey Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, Eddie Russell is of an unmatched pedigree in the Bourbon industry. Like his father, Eddie is involved through the entire distillation and aging process of Wild Turkey Bourbon, ensuring every bottle meets the exacting whiskey standards set forth by their predecessors.

Russell began his career at the distillery as a relief operator, eventually becoming a supervisor of new production and then a warehouse supervisor. After two decades in the business, he assumed the position of manager of barrel maturation and warehousing. In this role, he collaborated with his father to create Russell’s Reserve 10 Year Old, an award-winning small-batch Bourbon that serves as testimony to the family’s heritage of distilling craftsmanship and tradition. Eddie’s Bourbon legacy also includes the introduction of Wild Turkey 81, premium bourbon that can stand up to any mixer or in any cocktail with the bold, spicy taste that is distinctively Wild Turkey.

Most recently, Eddie has led the charge on groundbreaking innovations for Wild Turkey, American Honey Sting and Wild Turkey Forgiven – which was awarded the Chairman’s Trophy at the Ultimate Spirits Competition. With the worldwide boom in Bourbon consumption, Eddie has his eye squarely on creating new whiskey expressions that appeal to a globally expanding consumer base, while cultivating Wild Turkey’s core expressions.

In 2010, Eddie joined his father and other greats in the Bourbon industry when he was inducted into the illustrious Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame™. A few years later, it was time for Eddie to do the honoring. In celebration of his father’s 60th anniversary at Wild Turkey in 2014, he created Wild Turkey Diamond Anniversary, an outstanding limited-edition expression of 13- and 16-year-old whiskies.

Eddie and his wife Judy have two sons, and live in Lawrenceburg, where Eddie was born and raised. In his spare time, Eddie enjoys playing golf and training and hunting with bird dogs. Also, like his father, Eddie relishes in traveling the country and the world spreading the gospel of Wild Turkey to whiskey aficionados.

Corky Taylor

Peerless Distilling

Corky Taylor was past President and CEO of BENCOR Inc., a financial services company he founded. After selling his business located in Sarasota, Florida in 2009, Corky tried retirement but obviously it did not work.

He is currently resurrecting Kentucky Peerless Distilling Company after 98 years. His Great Grandfather, Henry Kraver, was owner of the distillery in Henderson Kentucky from 1896 to 1917. Corky is currently bringing back the family history and has re-opened a grain to bottle distillery in downtown Louisville.

Fred Noe

Master Distiller, Jim Beam

Frederick “Fred” Booker Noe III, son of the late Frederick “Booker” Noe Jr. and great grandson of Jim Beam, is a seventh generation distiller and keeper of a family flame that has burned for more than 200 years. Fred is Beam’s Master Distiller, sharing the craft of whiskey making and the rich history of his family’s legacy with bourbon enthusiasts worldwide.
Fred also serves as Ambassador of The Small Batch Bourbon Collection® — Basil Hayden’s®, Knob Creek®, Baker’s® and Booker’s® — his father Booker’s whiskies. He played an important role in the development and promotion of these ultra-premium bourbons, which are aged longer, feature higher proofs — representative of pre-prohibition whiskey. When these bourbons were first introduced, he would taste samples at the family’s kitchen table and help select the batches that were ready for bottling.

Fred was steeped in whiskey culture early on. He was born in Bardstown, KY the Bourbon Capital of the World, and grew up in the same house his great grandfather, the legendary Jim Beam, once lived in. He learned to appreciate and understand the craft of whiskey making while listening to his father’s stories about their family. After graduating from Bellarmine University, Fred worked under his father’s tutelage, learning every aspect of the bourbon-making process, including grain selection, fermentation and distillation.
In 2007, Beam Inc. honored Fred on by placing his portrait on the Jim Beam Bourbon brand label alongside the six family distillers who preceded him in the family business — Jacob, David, David M., Jim, Jeremiah and Booker.

Today, Fred still resides in Bardstown in a house built adjacent to the Beam family home. He remains instrumental in the Beam business, dedicating himself to perfecting the family’s closely guarded bourbon-making process and continuing his family’s legacy by training his son, Freddie Noe, to become the 8th generation family distiller.

Greg Davis

Maker's Mark

Maker’s Mark Director of Distillery Operations and Master Distiller Greg Davis has many responsibilities, but his most important mandate is: “Don’t screw it up.” To that end, from the selection of grains and overseeing milling, cooking, fermentation and distillation to taste testing the bourbon through its journey to maturity, Davis and his team are dedicated to ensuring that every bottle of Maker’s Mark and Maker’s 46 meets the high standards for quality and tradition set forth by three generations of Samuels’: Maker’s Mark Chief Operating Officer Rob Samuels, his father, Chairman Emeritus Bill, Jr., and his grandfather, Maker’s Mark Founder Bill Samuels, Sr.

Davis’ extensive experience in the Bourbon industry has prepared him well for this role. Prior to joining Maker’s Mark in 2010, he was master distiller at the Tom Moore Distillery (formerly Barton’s) for 10 years. While there he was instrumental in driving innovations and efficiency improvements in their operations.

Davis’ passion for wine and spirits blossomed in college when he began making his own wine and beer at home. Davis studied Brewing Science at the Siebel Institute of Technology & World Brewing Academy in Chicago and started his career at Brown-Forman in 1990, where he worked in research and development in the fermentation science lab. In between working at Brown-Forman and Tom Moore he also became a Brew Master and worked for several years at the Bohannon Brewery in Nashville, TN.

Originally from Paducah, KY, Davis is an avid sportsman and enjoys hunting and fishing with his two sons in his spare time. He is a board member of the Fish and Wildlife Foundation at the Salato Center in Frankfort, KY and also holds the honorary title of Kentucky Colonel.

Freddie Johnson

Buffalo Trace Distillery

Freddie Johnson is a third generation employee at Buffalo Trace Distillery and serves as its Distillery VIP Visitor Lead. Born in Paris, KY (Bourbon County), he spent some of his early childhood summers in the mountains of Breathitt County with his maternal grandfather who was a coal miner and friend to the moonshiners. The family moved to Frankfort, KY when he was five. Freddie enjoyed hunting, fishing and hanging out with his paternal grandfather, Jimmy Johnson Sr., and father, Jimmy Johnson Jr., at what is now known as Buffalo Trace Distillery.

Freddie was in the middle of a successful career as a network/operations engineer in Atlanta, GA when he put all of it aside to fulfill a promise made to his father, Jimmy, more than 20 years earlier. He had promised his father that he would work at the Distillery during his lifetime so they could say they had three generations of the Johnson family that worked at Buffalo Trace. Freddie took early retirement and moved back to care for his father and brother. Jimmy got him a job as a tour guide at the Distillery in 2002 but Freddie has been in and around the Distillery since he was five years old.

Freddie weaves together his childhood memories with the Distillery’s rich history as his entertains thousands each year in various tours around Buffalo Trace. One of the Distillery’s most popular and highly sought after tour guides, Freddie is the recipient of the 2015 ROSE (Recognition of Service Excellence) Award and the 2017 Lexington (Ky) Hospitality Award.

Fawn Weaver

Uncle Nearest

Fawn Weaver is a serial entrepreneur who has silently invested in real estate, tech and lifestyle brands. Weaver is often active in her investments, serving in leadership capacities behind the scenes. She is also a USA Today and New York Times bestselling author and a freelance writer for Huffington Post and dozens of other publications. Weaver has appeared on popular radio, morning and talk television shows across the US and has been interviewed by top morning, talk and radio shows in Canada, United Kingdom, South Africa, Italy, Belgium, Australia, Ireland, Australia, Poland, Spain and New Zealand.

Weaver launched her first company, a public relations and special events firm, in 1996. She went on to invest in a number of businesses after that time. Years later, following investment in, and management of one of the Top 10 New Restaurants in Los Angeles (as determined by Los Angeles Magazine), Weaver took a short break from entrepreneurialism, to learn what it was like to be an employee rather than the employer. Weaver held a variety of positions in the hospitality industry, beginning as the head of special events for the world-famous Viceroy Hotel and ending as a General Manager for Dimension Development Co., the operator of more than 50 Marriott and Hilton brand hotels throughout the US. The experience profoundly changed how Weaver invests and manages, focusing on a team-first organization in which she often serves as Chief Encouragement Officer, above all else.

Weaver has served on the executive boards of Slavery No More, MEND Poverty, and is the current executive director of the Nearest Green Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to shining a spotlight on the first African-American master distiller on record in the United States, the first master distiller for Jack Daniel’s Whiskey, and the person who taught a young Jack Daniel how to make Tennessee Whiskey. What began as an idea for a book, quickly morphed into a dozen projects focused on sharing and honoring this long-forgotten story of Nathan “Nearest” Green. Among those projects are a book, movie, memorial park, whiskey and a scholarship program for Green’s descendants which allows anyone in his bloodline to go to college with their tuition and books fully paid.

John Little

Smooth Ambler

John began his career in distilling in 2008, as the inception for the business that would become Smooth Ambler Spirits first began to take flight. A fervent reader with a passionate and canny understanding of procedure, Little quickly learned all he could; absorbing everything from hands-on distilling to studying – line by line almost – the Federal regulations on distilling and licensure- and opened the doors in 2010.

With Little at the helm, what began as small craft distiller with a limited, regional reach has flourished into one of the most respected small production distilleries in the U.S. Under Little’s supervision, in tandem with the spirits Smooth Ambler distills, it carefully selects other fine whiskeys which it merchant-bottles and brings to market under the Old Scout brand, another effort for which it has been highly praised. Smooth Ambler has won awards nationally and beyond, including the World Whisky Award’s distinguished “Best Single Barrel Bourbon in the World” for 2016. As CEO and Head Distiller, John continues to lead the Smooth Ambler team with passion, determination, straight-shooting, and an ever-vigilant eye toward quality of spirits and quality of life.

Wilderness Trail Distillery


Wilderness Trail Distillery began Bourbon production in October 2013 on a 250 gallon Vendome pot still. In addition to producing 3-4 barrels of our wheated bourbon mash bill a week, they expanded the distillery, created more room in rickhouses and became industry thought leaders. Their first bourbon release is one of the most highly anticipated in the state.

Wade Lyn Ranch Distilling


Wade lyn Ranch Distilling was founded in 2013 by Thomas Wade Daniels, a sixth generation distillery. The distillery was created with family traditions in mind. In fact, it’s also the name of their first single barrel Bourbon, bottled at barrel proof.

Old Pogue Distillery


The Old Pogue Distillery revives a proud bourbon family’s name. Made in one of the bourbon’s original cities, Old Pogue instills history in every glass.

Wild Turkey


We believe that being true to who you are is what counts in life, even if that means standing out. We say what we really think and embrace who we are, and it shows in our bourbon. Wild Turkey is bold, spicy and different—the way it’s meant to be made.

Stone Hammer

Named after Thomas Metcalfe (1780-1855), US Representative, Senator and tenth Governor of Kentucky, who was a stone mason prior to politics. Thus, his nickname was Old Stone Hammer. Enjoy notes of butterscotch, anise, pepper, hazelnut and caramel all weekend long with this 90 proof bourbon.

Stagg Jr.


George T. Stagg built the most dominant American distillery of the 19th century, during a time known as the Gilded Age of Bourbon. Uncut and unfiltered, this robust bourbon whiskey ages for nearly a decade and boasts the bold character that is reminiscent of the man himself.

Pappy Van Winkle


This very rare, limited edition bourbon takes generations of distilling know-how to produce. Only the most careful and expensive distilling method can be used to create a whiskey as special as this one. Each barrel ages for 23 years and is carefully selected from the heart of the warehouse. This whiskey should be enjoyed neat.

Maker’s 46

Maker's Mark Distillery


We age Maker’s 46 a bit longer inside barrels containing seared French oak staves. The staves create bolder, more complex flavors – while eliminating the bitterness that usually comes with whiskies that are aged longer.

Kentucky Owl


The nose on this rye has elements of sweet pine, honey, nougat, vanilla, cloves and lavender. Oaky undertones, subtle cedar saw dust or fresh split cedar. Rich in consistency and not forwardly spicy on the nose. It immediately coats the entire palate and nutmeg and cinnamon give way to pepper spice with vanilla on the front and anise across the middle. Subtle cinnamon spice clings to the finish.

Jim Beam Black


Elegant. Smooth. Refined. That’s what extra aging will do to bourbon. And now Jim Beam Black® is officially the #1 rated bourbon in the world after winning the Bourbon Trophy, the highest awarded accolade in the bourbon category at the 2016 International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC).

Bloody Butcher’s Creed

Jeptha Creed


The first batch of our experimental line, this limited edition bourbon will give you a taste of what’s coming in 2019. Made with our bloody butcher corn back in 2014 as a trial run for our corn, it’s ready to come out of the barrel and into your home. Enjoy its fruity aromas and soft oaky taste neat or on the rocks.

About Jeptha Creed:
Located in Shelbyville, KY, Jeptha Creed Distillery uses old fashioned methods to meet today’s demanding modern tastes. They use only the finest ingredients, locally grown and sourced to ensure their products meet the highest expectations for quality and flavor. Owned and operated by dynamic mother and daughter duo Joyce and Autumn Nethery, Jeptha Creed sits on 64 acres of farmland, where they grow the Bloody Butcher Corn used for all of their products, including vodka, moonshine, and bourbon.

Elmer T. Lee


Named after Master Distiller Emeritus Elmer T. Lee, this whiskey is hand selected and bottled to the taste and standards of Elmer T. Lee himself. Perfectly balanced and rich, as declared by the man who knows how great bourbon should taste.

E.H. Taylor


As founding father of the bourbon industry, Colonel Edmund Haynes Taylor, Jr. left an indelible legacy. His dedication to distilling began at the close of the Civil War when he purchased O.F C. Distillery. There, he developed innovative techniques that are still in use today. Made by hand, this Small Batch Bourbon Whiskey has been aged inside century old warehouses constructed by E.H. Taylor, Jr. Barrels are evaluated and selected to create a perfect blend of distinctive character that is like no other. This bourbon is a true sipping bourbon that honors the uncompromising legacy of E.H. Taylor, Jr.

Boone County


Reminiscent of the days when bourbon was celebrated as the life-blood of the region, our new distillery is 5,000 square feet set on 2.5 acres. It includes a 500-gallon pot still, four fermenters and a small bottling line with a capacity of hundreds of barrels of small batch bourbon a year. Barrels will be stored on site, in a 3,000-square-foot warehouse behind the distillery. In every detail of our operation, we’ve respected our history while investing in our future. Our tag line, “Made by Ghosts®,” harkens to the early pioneers who crafted spirits in Boone County more than 100 years ago.

Boone County Distilling Co. is a proud member of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour®. We are open to the public for guided tours and tastings Wednesday-Sunday. We offer a behind the scenes grain to glass experience and a tasting of our available products.



The finest bourbon in the world comes from a single barrel. It is never blended with whiskey from any other barrel. It’s a costly, painstaking way to produce bourbon. For a bourbon’s peak maturity varies from barrel to barrel and only a master distiller can determine the exact moment whiskey has extracted enough flavor from the wood. He vigilantly monitors each barrel until aged to perfection.

Bardstown Bourbon Company


The Bardstown Bourbon Company is a celebration of the art of making whiskey and the community responsible for helping bring it to the world. No secrets. No hidden recipes. Located on 100 acres of active farmland in the “Bourbon Capital of the World,” the Bardstown Bourbon Company:
· Produces high-quality, authentic Kentucky bourbon, whiskey, and rye brands;
· Offers complete custom whiskey production for customers in its Collaborative Distilling Program;
· Provides a unique, entertaining, educational, and interactive destination experience for visitors on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail with a full-service restaurant, bar and vintage whiskey library that is scheduled to open in May 2018.

Vickie Vaughn

A Western Kentucky native, Vickie Vaughn stomped into Nashville with a fistful of original material and a desire to front a Bluegrass band that showcased a fresh sound to the genre. Now in 2015, the Vickie Vaughn Band has released their debut EP, produced by Mr. Ronnie McCoury, on September 25 at the Station Inn then headed over to Raleigh for IBMA’s Bluegrass Ramble as official showcase artists. In 2014 the Vickie Vaughn Band was selected by the International Bluegrass Music Museum to lead their Bluegrass in the Schools program, and in 2015, the band’s tour schedule has included some dream festivals for Vickie such as ROMP and DelFest, just to name a couple. However, Vickie’s latest milestone achievement was just recently making her debut appearance on the Grand Ole Opry on August 1 singing background with Ms. Patty Loveless, with whom she’ll continue touring with this Fall.

The Wheelhouse Rousters

The Wheelhouse Rousters draw not only their moniker and musical style from the river and it’s industry, but their ebb and flow of energy. Focusing on long forgotten songs gathered by Mary Wheeler of Paducah, KY, the Rousters give a new twist to old tones.

Peggy Noe Stevens

Master Taster and Founder of Bourbon Women


In many ways, Peggy has been a trailblazer for women and yet has lived up to her heritage. She became the world’s first female Master Bourbon Taster in the industry and can trace her lineage back to some of the great bourbon making families in Kentucky. She is the founder of the Bourbon Women Association, the first female consumer group in the industry to celebrate and support the spirits industry with a platform for women. She also played a large role in the original strategic conception of the iconic Kentucky Bourbon Trail, which has become a global sensation for the spirits industry. Because of her accomplishments, she was given the prestigious “Networking Award” by the Kentucky Distiller’s Association in 2016 for making a difference in the industry for women. She has been called the “Oprah of entertaining,” and a “lifestyle maven.” As a spirit’s expert and sought-after speaker, she conducts tastings and food pairings around the world.


Spire will be showcasing its latest technology for professional-quality recording made simple – from an RV retrofitted into a mobile recording studio. Festival attendees will have the opportunity to be introduced to a completely new type of recording experience. Learn more at



Sierra High Altitude Lounge

presented by Sierra Nevada

The Sierra Nevada High Altitude Lounge is the ultimate destination for beer lovers to sit back and enjoy a curated selection of Sierra Nevada’s craft beers, including some of the brewery’s rare barrel-aged ales.

The Angry Tree Bar

presented by Angry Orchard

Surrounding the only large, shady tree near both music stages, The Angry Tree Bar is one of the major focal points at Bourbon & Beyond. Decorated with incandescent glowing apples hanging from the branches and featuring impressive wooden carvings that capture the essence of the Angry Orchard brand, this enchanting refreshment station will offer festivalgoers the perfect place to relax and catch the show, all while enjoying a curated lineup of Angry Orchard ciders and specialty cocktails.

Midway Cafe

The Midway Cafe is more than just a bar and restaurant. It is home to anyone who enters its doors, and in a home is family. We invite you to come eat, drink and write your own line into the history book of Midway Cafe.


Bringing you authentic Tex Mex to Kentucky, Food is prepared fresh and ready to satisfy. From the rich, smoky taste of our steaks, baby back ribs, chicken, seafood, and burgers grilled over a real Mesquite log fire to the zing of our original-recipe Tex-Mex spiced burritos, chimichangas, fajitas, enchiladas and quesadillas, there’s something sure to please every appetite.


Welcome to Ramiro’s Cantina, located in Louisville, Kentucky!
Chef/Owner Ramiro Gandaras, is proud to bring this unique hot spot to Frankfort Avenue. Please stop in for the relaxing atmosphere and delicious fresh food. Introducing Louisville’s premier authentic, Mexican cuisine.


MilkWood = Southern Inspiration + Asian Flavors + Bourbon Cocktails

Chef Kevin Ashworth and Chef Edward Lee explore the boundaries of Southern cuisine with influences and spices from a global vocabulary.


The legendary whole-hog BBQ tradition is the cornerstone of Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint. The restaurants have been featured on the Food Network, Travel Channel, Cooking Channel, and The Today Show and in publications such as Bon Appetit, Esquire, Conde Nast Traveler, and Men’s Journal. They come in at 5 am, every day, seven days a week. From the sides to the sauces, everything is made from scratch every single day. But the bar-b-que actually starts a day ahead, as the process for smoking whole hogs simply can’t be rushed.


Chicago’s Dog House rolls into Bourbon & Beyond with their gourmet Game Sausages. With over the top ingredients and band inspired creations you will find yourself having a mouth-watering melt down. Our favorite? The Smoked Alligator Sausage marinated in an Asian chili sauce and topped with caramelized onions.

The Big Cheesy

Gourmet Grilled Cheese with a New Orleans flair! From a classic bacon and cheddar, or caprese, to a Bourbon Street brie with triple cream brie, pralines, basil and balsamic glaze.


Build a bowl! Your choices of Drunken Lime Chicken, Spicy Beef, Chorizo, or Vegan Nopalitos and Roasted Pepper. You can have it served over quinoa and brown rice, black beans and rice or superfood salad. Everything can be made Vegan and Gluten free!

502 CAFÉ

Featuring some of the best brisket and pulled pork in town.  Try the fan favorite – the “Que Ritto” – a giant tortilla stuffed with brisket, Mac n cheese and BBQ sauce then topped with brisket chili and cheese.



FYE is the only place at the festival to get all your favorite band’s music — and maybe even get to meet your favorite Bourbon & Beyond musician! Check back for updates on artist meet & greet and autograph signing sessions!.

The Music Experience


The Music Experience features all the elements that are involved in making music in a professional band setting. The interactive exhibit features guitars, basses, amps, drums, keyboards, and electronic gear that are used by today’s most popular bands. After laying your hands on the hottest equipment available, you will walk away feeling like a rockstar and you may even see one there, too! Come and meet your favorite band members form the festival at the Music Experience Tent. With contests and interactive exhibits all day, you may have the opportunity to win free amps, free guitars and get tons of other free stuff.

Gelato Gilberto

An authentic artisanal gelato shop serving gelato, sorbetto, homemade crepes and locally baked cookies. Over twenty flavors of gelato to choose from, made from scratch each day using the best local and Italian ingredients we can find. Italian spoken!

Cheese Louise


Gourmet Grilled Cheeses! Using the freshest ingredients, Cheese Louise creators bring you to food-topia where you will find the perfectly melted combinations. Try the Buffalo Chicken Melt, or our favorite , the BBQ pulled Pork grilled cheese.

*Vegetarian & Gluten Free Options Available

Pie Baby


Gourmet Thin Crust pizza, prepared in front of you and cooked in our 900-degree wood fired oven. Try an array of toppings, combinations, and fresh salads.

*Vegetarian Options Available

The Bouquet


Bouquet Restaurant is a farm-to-table bistro opened in 2007 by Chef Stephen Williams. Bouquet offers award-winning seasonal cuisine and an eclectic wine and cocktail list. The menu is constantly evolving to utilize the best local products from over fifty farmers and purveyors.

*Vegetarian & Gluten Free Options Available

Longshot Lobsta


Fresh Lobster Rolls, served hot or cold, drizzled in drawn butter and lemon with side of slaw and homemade biscuit.

*Gluten Free Options Available

Texas Taco Depot


Don’t Mess with Texas, but you’ll definitely want to mess with these Tacos! Get them a la carte or make it a combo, choosing your choice of protein and a plethora of toppings. Try the slow cooked pork carnitas with grilled pineapple and Monterey jack cheese, spicy avocado and sour cream sauce!

*Vegetarian & Gluten Free Option Available

Mike’s Kentucky Kitchen

With traditional Kentucky BBQ recipes, Mikes Kentucky Kitchen brings savory, gourmet pork sandwiches, ribs and more!

Island Noodles


Say ‘aloha’ to your hunger with freshly-made Yaki-Soba noodles from Island Noodles! Made with buckwheat and traditionally served in Hawaii, these noodles are stir-fried with fresh garlic, ginger and a mix of vegetables, and simmered in a secret, light island sauce to offer a unique noodle dish with a high flavor profile.

*Vegetarian Options Available

Red Top Dog

Gourmet dogs with savory add-ons. Our go-to is the Black and Blue. Grass fed Beef, pretzel bun, smoked bacon, blue cheese, grilled onions and local blackberry jam.

Mike Wajda

Executive Chef- Proof On Main at 21c


Mike Wajda is the executive chef of Proof on Main, housed in the 21c Museum Hotel Louisville. Wajda graduated from the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute in 2007, and later worked as chef de partie at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay at the London Hotel in New York City.  After three years working alongside famed chef Gordon Ramsay, Wajda worked at multiple restaurants up and down the East Coast, including Craigie on Main in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In 2014, Wajda joined Michael Mina Group in San Francisco as corporate sous chef, and helped to manage 23 restaurants and over 1500 employees. Throughout his tenure with Michael Mina Group, he helped open seven restaurant concepts around the country, all within one year.

As executive chef of Proof on Main, Wajda showcases his unique, modern approach to comfortable and accessible cuisine with a focus on sourcing seasonal produce from Kentucky and the surrounding area. After growing up amongst Ohio’s farming culture, Wajda developed a passion for using the sustainable ingredients of the region, and his menu at Proof on Main focuses on local purveyors including 21c founders Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson’s Woodland Farm.

Rebel Yell

Rebel Yell Distillery


The rebel yell is one of the enduring legends of the War Between the States. Just as the rebel yell’s heritage remains true, so does that of its namesake, Rebel Yell® Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. An authentic wheated bourbon, Rebel Yell has been made according to its original time-honored recipe since 1849.

Ezra Brooks

Ezra Brooks Distilling


Still bottled and aged the old fashioned way – in new charred American white oak barrels, Ezra Brooks is then charcoal filtered for an unmistakable, unforgettable mellow flavor.

Ezra Brooks is distilled using high quality corns and ingredients, employing very specific temperature control settings. Aged in charred white oak barrels, this genuine sour mash bourbon delivers a beautifully smooth flavor and finish.

This careful process ensures an exceptionally smooth and subtle taste that is pleasingly soft and balanced, and preferred by bourbon connoisseurs everywhere.

Experience Louisville

Check out an exclusive list of Bourbon distillery and related attractions brought to you by the City of Louisville at discounted prices.We’ve also put together some one-of-a-kind Bourbon experiences for you. You can download your itineraries HERE.

9 Louisville Original museums, all located within a few walkable blocks of each other.

A collection of over 30 “Bourbon Bars” in the city, most in the downtown area. A passport for the trail can be picked up at the Louisville Visitors Center, or any of the stops along the way, or the Urban Bourbon Trail app can be downloaded on smart phones. With each stop made along the trail, guests will get a stamp (you don’t have to purchase bourbon either! you can purchase a soft drink, a beer, salad, whatever you like) in the passport. After 6 stamps are collected, the passport can be redeemed at the Visitors Center for a fun prize! And, the passport never expires, so no need to try to do it all in one visit!

Located on Louisville’s historic “Whiskey Row,” the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience features an artisanal distillery, tours, tastings, and more!

Mint Julep Tours offers city, horse farm and bourbon distillery tours.

Louisville Originals is an organization of fabulous locally owned restaurants.

This website features Louisville’s awesome culinary scene.

The Hot Brown is a dish that started in Louisville and over time, several locally owned restaurants have put their own spin on it. The Hot Brown Hop is a listing of all of the restaurants in Louisville that serve Hot Browns.

Featuring six underground zip lines, including a fun filled dual racing zip, two awesome challenge bridges that will test your skill, balance, and mettle; this tour is guaranteed to get your heart racing and your adrenaline pumping.

Denny Potter

Master Distiller, Heaven Hill Distillery


Denny Potter is Master Distiller at Heaven Hill Distillery, overseeing the distilling, aging and selecting of Heaven Hill’s world-renowned portfolio of American Whiskeys, which includes Evan Williams, the second largest selling Kentucky Bourbon in the United States and the world. Potter has spent 13 years in distillery operations, and has the enviable position of ensuring that the Bourbon produced at Heaven Hill Distillery possesses the same high quality and consistent taste consumers have come to expect from such storied brands as Evan Williams, Elijah Craig, Larceny and Rittenhouse. In addition to the distillation and production, Denny is also charged with safe-guarding the world’s second largest inventory of aging Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey—with more than 1.2 million barrels peacefully aging in open rick warehouses. Since his joining Heaven Hill Brands in 2013, the company has substantially expanded production at the Bernheim Distillery while continuing the company’s storied reputation for authenticity and world renowned, award winning brands. Under Potter’s leadership, the company was awarded the lauded 2016 Whiskey Magazine “Distiller of the Year” honor. Denny’s commitment to the craft ensures the whiskey produced and aged at Heaven Hill will continue the tradition of the company’s intense focus on quality and consistency.

Bernie Lubbers

Heaven Hill


Bernie Lubbers is the Whiskey Brand Ambassador for Heaven Hill Distillery. A veteran comedian of 25 years and an accomplished author, he is not only entertaining, but also extremely knowledgeable about Bourbon. Dubbed The Whiskey Professor, he can tell you more about Bourbon than you ever thought possible. He has been named Global Whiskey Ambassador of the Year by Whisky Magazine at Whisky Live in 2009, 2012 and 2016.

His draw toward Bourbon is natural. His grandfather was one of 13 saloon keepers who started the Falls City Brewing Company in Louisville, KY back in 1905. His father also worked there for 45 years. “Before you make whiskey, you’ve got to make beer,” Bernie says.

Each year, he travels over 100,000 miles educating people about Heaven Hill’s whiskeys including but not limited to Evan Williams, Elijah Craig, Larceny, Bernheim and Henry McKenna. In addition to traditional account trainings and consumer events, Bernie also performs his one-of-a-kind show “The Evolution of Bourbon”, which walks people through the history of Bourbon through music. He also educates consumers on how to read a whiskey label and what to look for before making a purchase. When he’s home, he spends time at the Bourbon Heritage Center in Bardstown, Kentucky where he learns first hand from Craig Beam and Denny Potter, Co-Master Distillers for Heaven Hill Distillery.

Bourbon Whiskey – Our Native Spirit is Bernie’s recently published book on Bourbon. The book includes a comprehensive overview on Bourbon including how it’s distilled and aged, why it was distilled, and how it became aged in the first place. It is published by Blue River Press and now available nationwide at and select book stores nationwide.

Caleb Kilburn

Distiller, Peerless


Our family’s very first bourbon went into barrel in 1889. We’ve revived the craft in our own state-of-the-art distillery, where we use the finest ingredients. We believe that patience builds character & fine bourbon can never be rushed. All under one roof, select Kentucky Peerless grains are milled, cooked, fermented, double-distilled and barreled as bourbon & rye. Allow us to share our distinctively authentic distillery and family history with you; we look forward to it.


Michter's Distillery


Michter’s Distillery is located in the Shively section of Louisville, Kentucky, the heart of the American whiskey industry. It makes highly acclaimed, limited production whiskeys that have been subject to allocation because demand has exceeded supply. Michter’s is renowned for its small batch bourbon, single barrel bourbon, single barrel rye, and small batch American whiskey. In 2015, Michter’s was named the seventh Heritage Member of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association, thereby becoming the first distiller in 33 years to achieve that status.

Blade and Bow

Stitzel-Weller Distillery


Named after the two parts of a skeleton key, the blade shaft and the ornate bow, the Blade and Bow brand is a tribute to the five keys that once hung on the door of the Stitzel-Weller Distillery. These keys represented the five steps of crafting bourbon—grains, yeast, fermentation, distillation and aging. But more importantly, they grew to symbolize the southern traditions of hospitality, warmth and enjoying the finer things in life. Today Blade and Bow is opening the door to the next chapter of Stitzel-Weller’s renowned history. The Blade and Bow family includes two distinct variants: Blade and Bow Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey and Blade and Bow 22-Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Each variant offers a completely unique experience that pays homage to this storied distillery and welcomes a new generation to the art of bourbon making that was perfected within these walls.

Cellar Door Chocolates

Cellar Door Chocolates just opened the first bean to bar studio in Kentucky. We are now roasting our own cacao beans from various regions across the world to bring the best quality chocolate to our customers. These chocolates will be made in small batches, blended just for you!  The wrappers are designed by Jeaneen Barnhart and Doreen Barnhart Dehart.

Tiki Barrel Bar

One part bourbon tiki cocktails. One part dance party. Stirred and shaken. The Tiki Barrel Bar will feature cocktails by bartenders Jane Danger (Mother of Pearl, New York) & Alla Lapuschik (Post Office, Brooklyn) plus DJ sets all weekend long by Craig Pfunder and Coat Check Pool Party.

The Tiki Barrel Bar is open to all festivalgoers. Follow us on social media to be the first to find out about more details to be announced in the coming weeks.

Southern Soul Party

Hosted by Maker's Mark

Come dressed to impress, ready to get down and eat up at the Southern Soul Party. Our friends at Maker’s Mark are coming to Bourbon & Beyond with a sophisticated celebration of throwback hits, classics cocktails, and good-to-the-bone barbeque.

In a unique twist on the meat-and-three tradition, Southern Soul Party will feature your choice of meat by Louisville favorite Boss Hog’s BBQ and three Asian-influenced sides by Chef Kevin Ashworth of acclaimed Louisville restaurant MilkWood. Rounding out our offerings are Maker’s Mark cocktails  and irresistibly funky tunes by Derby City Soul Club with DJs Matt Anthony & Kim Sorise, winners of the 2016 Louisville Music Award for “Best Live DJ”.

Also, make sure to catch Maker’s Mark maturation specialist Jane Bowie on The Mash Stage on Saturday, where she’ll be joining “The Wonder Women of Whiskey” panel.

The Southern Soul Party hosted by Maker’s Mark is open to all festivalgoers. Follow us on social media to be the first to find out about more details to be announced in the coming weeks.

The Big Easy Boil

Hosted by Southern Comfort

Southern Comfort brings the spirit of New Orleans to Bourbon & Beyond with The Big Easy Boil: a weekend-long party featuring refreshing Southern Comfort cocktails and delicious Cajun cooking.

The incredible Shaggy Davis (NOLA Crawfish King, New Orleans) will be slinging over half a ton of fresh-caught seafood all weekend long. Louisville’s very own Chef Anthony Lamas (Seviche, Louisville) will make a guest appearance with a Latin spin on the classic Cajun tradition.

Shaggy Davis and Anthony Lamas will also be making an appearance on The Mash Stage with bartender extraordinaire Susie Hoyt (The Silver Dollar & El Camino, Louisville) for a special demo of The Big Easy Boil.

The Big Easy Boil hosted by Southern Comfort is open to all festivalgoers. Follow us on social media to be the first to find out about more details to be announced in the coming weeks. #SouthernComfort #TheSpiritOfNewOrleans

Coopers’ Craft

Brown-Forman Corporation


Coopers’ Craft bourbon is a Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, which uses a unique beech and birch charcoal-filter finishing process for a smooth and flavorful bourbon. As the only major distiller to make its own new barrels, Coopers’ Craft leverages our knowledge of barrels and expertise with wood to create a remarkably smooth bourbon that pays tribute to our Coopers’.

Wes Henderson

Co-Founder & Chief Innovation Officer, Angel's Envy


As Co-Founder, Wes Henderson’s vision to create a one-of-a-kind spirit with his father introduced the world to Angel’s Envy. His son, Kyle, would later join them, making Angel’s Envy the work of three generations of Hendersons. Today, that same vision continues, as Wes serves as the brand’s Chief Innovation Officer. In this role, Wes shepherds Angel’s Envy’s future as his company continues to innovate, grow and craft some of the finest, award-winning whiskeys in the world.

Since Angel’s Envy’s launch, Wes has served as a tireless ambassador for the fledgling brand, forging personal connections with both fans and folks new to whiskey all across the country. While he has many other roles and responsibilities, his ability to share his love for his work over a glass of Angel’s Envy can never be understated.

Before co-founding Angel’s Envy, Wes was the CEO for Master Distilling Select, as well as the President and CEO of Conecuh Ridge Distillery, the producer of Clyde May’s Whiskey. He also serves his community as a volunteer firefighter, and is a licensed pilot, specializing in search and rescue. Wes is a devoted husband and the father of six boys. His proudest achievement has been building a distilling legacy for his family. Three generations may have launched Angel’s Envy, but Wes is always looking to the future.

Trey Zoeller

Founder, Jefferson’s Bourbon


 Founded in 1997, Jefferson’s is the brainchild of Trey Zoeller and his father Chet, a famed bourbon historian. They were continuing a family tradition that goes back to Trey’s 8th generation grandmother who was arrested in 1799 for the “production and sales of spirituous liquors.” To personify the brand, they chose Thomas Jefferson—known for his curiosity and experimental spirit. This is a mindset to which Trey has dedicated himself, pushing the boundaries of the definition of bourbon. Upholding tradition, yet always discovering new possibilities.

Susan Reigler

Author, "Kentucky Bourbon Country"


Award-winning writer and Louisville native Susan Reigler is the author of Kentucky Bourbon Country: The Essential Travel Guide (now in its second edition), and is co-author of The Bourbon Tasting Notebook (with Michael Veach), The Kentucky Bourbon Cocktail Book and More Kentucky Bourbon Cocktails (with Joy Perrine). Her other books are Kentucky Sweet & Savory: Finding the Artisan Foods and Beverages of the Bluegrass State and The Complete Guide to Kentucky State Parks.  From 1992 to 2007, Reigler was the restaurant critic, beverage columnist, and travel writer for the Louisville Courier-Journal. She has also written about bourbon for Wine Enthusiast, Malt (now Whiskey) Advocate, and LEO (Louisville Eccentric Observer). She has been a judge for the James Beard Foundation Restaurant Awards since 1997 and in 2015 she was invited to join Les Dames d’Escoffier International, a society of women culinary professionals.

A certified Executive Bourbon Steward, Reigler has lead bourbon tastings from Seattle to Savannah as well as tastings to benefit non-profit organizations including Locust Grove, the Falls of the Ohio Foundation, and Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill. She has been a judge for craft spirits awards and numerous bourbon cocktail contests and she regularly helps restaurants and retailers select barrels from distilleries for private bourbon bottlings, including Party Mart in Louisville as a member of its three person Bourbon Board of Directors. Reigler is also the current president of the Bourbon Women Association, which has members across the United States.

A graduate of Indiana and Oxford Universities, she is a Research Associate in Biology at Indiana University Southeast where her research examines the possible effects of bourbon warehouse staining on polymorphism in Geometrid moths. She lives in Louisville.

Stacie Stewart

Beverage Director, 610 Magnolia




Limestone Branch Distillery


Yellowstone Limited Edition Kentucky Straight Bourbon, a marriage of some of the finest hand-selected bourbon available, celebrates the return of Yellowstone to the family of Limestone Branch founders Steve and Paul Beam – and the many fine bourbons to come.

Woodford Reserve

Woodford Reserve Distillery


The art of making fine bourbon first took place on the site of the Woodford Reserve Distillery, a National Historic Landmark, in 1812. The perfectly balanced taste of our Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is comprised of more than 200 detectable flavor notes, from bold grain and wood, to sweet aromatics, spice, and fruit & floral notes.

W.L. Weller

Buffalo Trace Distillery


The Original Wheated Bourbon Whiskey features an exceptionally smooth taste, substituting wheat for rye grain. Bottled at 90 proof, this bourbon stands out with its burnt orange color. Its softer flavor notes make this bourbon great for sipping or making cocktails.

Southern Comfort

Southern Comfort Distillery


On July 4th, 1850 two people in Ireland had a baby. They named that baby Martin Wilkes Heron. Not long after, they packed up and left for America. A bit later, M.W. began working as a bartender, in a bar, in New Orleans. Dissatisfied with the harsh taste of whiskies at the time, Heron’s customers begged for something a little smoother. Seizing his opportunity, Heron gathered a few of his favorite fruits and spices, and mixed them with whiskey. He named his concoction “Cuffs & Buttons.” Turns out Cuffs & Buttons was hard to say, so he renamed it Southern Comfort. A tradition was born and it’s been on the label ever since.

Old Scout

Smooth Ambler Distillery


With a combination of knowing palate, a legacy of patient Appalachian know how, and the benefit of the finest, local ingredients, Smoother Ambler produces and procures some of the worlds most refined spirits. Located in the hills of West Virginia, we have at our disposal both the finest distillery equipment available, and a blend of unique natural resources: clean mountain air, pure natural water, and teh ideal highland climate.

Old Forester

Old Forester Distillery


A truly rare and distinctive occasion took place in Louisville, Kentucky in 1870. When George Garvin Brown sealed Bourbon in a bottle for the very first time, he did so knowing it would guarantee quality and consistency for Bourbon lovers everywhere. And five generations and nearly 150 years later, our family still watches over the production of every drop of Old Forester with that same care.


New Riff Distillery


Our OKI Straight Bourbon Whiskey embraces the incredible lost history of Greater Cincinnati’s distilling history. We don’t distill OKI, but we do age and select the barrels and bottle it in time-honored Cincinnati fashion. About 120 years ago, Cincinnati was a huge whiskey town, with vast amounts of aged bourbon passing through its gates en route to the world. All this juice came from distilleries spread all over Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, including a number of distilleries in Cincinnati’s West End, Clifton, Newport (Finchtown, actually), Latonia and other nearby communities. One of these distilleries supplying Cincinnati’s whiskey merchants was the Rossville Union Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. This distillery was founded in 1857, and after Prohibition was purchased and enlarged by Seagram’s. To this very day, the distillery makes superb bourbon and rye whiskey and supplies many brands around the country—and what’s more, our Consulting Master Distiller Larry Ebersold was Master Distiller in Lawrenceburg for over 35 years. We bottle our OKI Bourbon in purist fashion, with no added flavors and with no chill filtration, so all the flavor of the barrel gets into your glass.

MB Roland

MB Roland Distillery


MB Roland Distillery is a completely “grain to glass” craft distillery in Pembroke, Christian Co., Kentucky. Their bourbon is made with local white corn and bottled at “distillation & barrel proof.” It’s named after its co-founder Merry Beth (“MB”) Tomaszewski, who started it with her Iraq war veteran husband, Paul, in 2009.

Julian P. Van Winkle III

Owner, Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery


Julian P. Van Winkle III is the third generation Van Winkle to produce bourbon whiskey in Kentucky. He joined his father, Julian Jr., in 1977. At that time, Old Rip Van Winkle produced only two labels of its wheated bourbon whiskey. They were a 10-year 90 and 107 proof Old Rip Van Winkle.

Since then Julian has added 12-year, 15-year, 20-year and 23-year bourbon labels to the Van Winkle selection of premium bourbon whiskeys. He also has added a 13-year premium rye whiskey to the whiskey portfolio. All of these whiskeys have received ratings in the 90s by the Beverage Tasting Institute in Chicago, with the 20-year receiving a 99 rating.

Julian operated the company by himself after his father’s death in 1981. He was joined by his son Preston in June 2001, the fourth generation of Van Winkles to venture into the whiskey business. In 2002, the Van Winkles entered into a joint venture with Buffalo Trace Distillery in Franklin County, Frankfort, Ky. All of the Van Winkle’s whiskey production now takes place at Buffalo Trace Distillery under the same strict guidelines the family has always followed.

In January 2009, Julian was honored to be nominated as a Fellow at the Southern Foodways Alliance annual fundraiser at Blackberry Farm in Walland, Tennessee. The following year, Julian was inducted into the Fellowship of Southern Farmers, Artisans and Chefs. This is a tremendous honor as the group members are some of the most talented people around. In 2011, Julian received the coveted James Beard Award for Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional, becoming the first James Beard winner from Kentucky.

Maker’s Mark

Maker's Mark Distillery


In 1954, at a small Victorian distillery in Loretto, Kentucky, Bill Samuels, Sr., created one of the finest Kentucky Bourbons. He decided to make his whisky in small-batches of 19 barrels, developed a proprietary barrel char to enhance the softness and sweetness of his whisky, and then rotated each barrel by hand to ensure exposure to consistent temperatures throughout the warehouse, and, ultimately, he aged each barrel to taste. Today, Maker’s Mark® makes its bourbon the same way its founder, Bill Samuels, Sr., did over 60 years ago, in small batches by craftsmen who hand-dip each bottle. Maker’s Mark® Bourbon (45% alc./vol.), Maker’s 46® (47% alc./vol.) and Maker’s Mark® Cask Strength™ Bourbon Whisky, (54%–57% alc./vol.) are distilled, aged and bottled by the Maker’s Mark Distillery, Inc., in Loretto, Kentucky. In 1980, the distillery was designated a National Historic Landmark, becoming the first distillery in America to be so recognized, and has also been decreed as the “world’s oldest operating bourbon whisky distillery” by Guinness World Records®. The Maker’s Mark Distillery is one of the Commonwealth of Kentucky’s most popular tourist destinations, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors annually. For more information, please visit the Maker’s Mark® website (

Knob Creek

Jim Beam Distillery


We don’t take days off. We just leave our watches at home. You see, out here time is measured in barrels and passed in bottles. Because we adhere firmly to the belief that if you don’t take your time, somebody else will. While the world busies itself with doing everything faster, this is where we come to slow down and enjoy what’s ours to share. Out here, we don’t just work for work’s sake. The reason we do things the hard way is that it makes the reward at the end that much better. And we let the whiskey remind us of that. Every drop in every barrel is the fruit of hard-earned experience. It’s an act of nature, our bourbon. And over the years, we have learned to capture it, one bottle at a time. So that we can bring it out here, in it’s true element. The Creek.

Josh Hollifield

Visitor Center Manager of Barton 1792 Distillery


Josh Hollifield has been honing his love of Kentucky bourbon for many years, starting his career at some of Louisville’s most reputable dining establishments, including the Oakroom at the Seelbach Hotel, Limestone Restaurant, and The Galt House Hotel.  Josh then went on to manage the private barrel program for Horseshoe Casino before joining Barton 1792 Distillery in 2012 as Visitor Center Manager.

Josh’s knowledge and appreciation of Kentucky’s native spirit make him the perfect fit to lead the hospitality program for 1792 Distillery, which includes the visitor center, private barrel selection experience and promotional events for the 1792 brand.

Josh serves as President of the Bardstown-Nelson County Hospitality Association and is Chair-elect for the Bardstown/Nelson County Tourism Board. He holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Kentucky.


Kentucky Peerless Distillery


Our family’s very first bourbon went into barrel in 1889. We’ve revived the craft in our own state-of-the-art distillery, where we use the finest ingredients. We believe that patience builds character & fine bourbon can never be rushed. All under one roof, select Kentucky Peerless grains are milled, cooked, fermented, double-distilled and barreled as bourbon & rye. Allow us to share our distinctively authentic distillery and family history with you; we look forward to it.

Jim Beam

Jim Beam Distillery


Jim Beam was founded in 1795 and has been operated by one family for seven generations. We’ve always created bourbon our way, aging it twice as long as the law requires. That’s how we Make History® every day.

Jane Danger & Alla Lapuschik

Authors, "The Bourbon Bartender"


Jane Danger began her bartending career at CBGB’s, a punk rock music club on the Bowery.  She began cocktail waitressing at the new Death and Company in 2006. This sparked her interest in the finer drinks in life.  From there she went on to work the bar at Please Don’t Tell.  During this time she also worked under Sasha Petraske in the west village at Jazz cocktail den, Little Branch.

Moving uptown a bit, two years were devoted to the skill of fine dining service at The NoMad Hotel.  From there she began her own beverage program at Rum Punch bar Cienfuegos, in manhattans eclectic East Village, and their sister bar downstairs Mother of Pearl, a modern tiki bar.  She spends most of her days and nights her on the corner of 6th and Avenue A.

She has also been part of the openings at The Rabbit Club, Dutch Kills, Nomad 10 West, Dream Baby, The Bourgeois Pig.

Her work can be found in The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Village Voice, New Yorker, Food and Wine, Imbibe, Vogue, Details, Self. Bloomberg.

Cuban Cocktails, The Nomad Cocktail Book,The Please Don’t Tell Cocktail Guide, The Little Pink Cocktail Book, Cocktails For The Holidays, Mister Boston 75th Anniversary Edition.

Cooking Channel, Food Network, FoxNews. CBS morning


Alla Lapaschik assisted with the opening of the Bourgeois Pig while studying at New York University before moving help with the openings of Mayahuel, Death & Co., Desnuda Cevicheria, Ceinfuegos and 124 Rabbit Club.  In 2010, she opened her own place, Post Office, an American whiskey focused bar.  In 2013, she opened OTB, which focuses on cocktails, craft spirits and comfort food.

She has been featured in Imbibe, New York Times, The Little Pink Cocktail Book, Punch, Village Voice, among others.  She was also named one of Time Out New York “Brooklyn’s New Order.”


Kentucky Artisan Distillery


“Transform Corn, Get Bourbon. Transform Bourbon, Get Jefferson’s”. “Jefferson’s, Alchemy is Everything”

HOW DO YOU PUSH THE BOUNDARIES OF BOURBON WITHOUT TAINTING THE TRADITION? By taking the science of distillation, the art of maturation, and adding some good old-fashioned experimenting. That’s how we add complexity – through different selection, agitation, and environmental processes. The result? A provocative taste unlike any other bourbon out there..

Jack Daniel’s

Jack Daniel's Distillery


Officially registered by the U.S. Government in 1866 and based in Lynchburg, Tenn., the Jack Daniel Distillery, Lem Motlow, proprietor, is the first registered distillery in the United States and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Jack Daniel’s is the maker of the world- famous Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey, Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Fire, Jack Daniel’s Sinatra Select and Jack Daniel’s Country Cocktails. Today, Jack Daniel’s is a true global icon found in more than 170 countries around the world and is the most valuable spirits brand in the world as recognized by Interbrand.

Hartfield & Co.

Hartfield & Co. Distillery


Hartfield & Co. Distillery–founded by Andrew Buchanan and his wife, Larissa–became the first licensed distiller in Bourbon County since 1919 when they opened The Gentleman Distillery, which was later renamed to Hartfield & Co. to reflect their family’s distilling heritage in Green County in the 1800s.

Four Roses

Four Roses Distillery


All you have to do is take one sip and you’ll discover something that may both surprise and delight you – Four Roses is unlike any other Bourbon. Perhaps it’s because only Four Roses handcrafts 10 distinct and extraordinary Bourbon recipes. One has been selected by hand to become Four Roses Single Barrel. Four are expertly mingled by hand to create Four Roses Small Batch. And as many as all 10 are used to create Four Roses Bourbon. Handcrafted artistry such as this may take a little more time, but after your first taste, we’re sure you’ll agree, it’s worth the effort.


Heaven Hill Distillery


Larceny Kentucky Straight Bourbon has its origins in the long and colorful history of John E. Fitzgerald and the Old Fitzgerald brand. According to lore, John E. Fitzgerald built a distillery on the banks of the Kentucky River in the 1870s and sold his fine Bourbon to rail lines, steamships, and private clubs. The Old Fitzgerald brand was first registered in the 1880s by S.C. Herbst, and was eventually sold to Julian P. “Pappy” Van Winkle during Prohibition. Pappy moved production of Old Fitz to his distillery where it became the first great wheated Bourbon and eventually one of the most famous Bourbon brands in the world.

Eighteen 33

Boone County Distillery


The first thing you notice is the rich amber color, glowing soft as warm caramel drizzled on an autumn apple. The way bourbon used to look when distillers paid attention to their craft. Next you’re met with a welcoming aroma, which our patrons have described as reminiscent of aged oak, vanilla, and caramel. Take your first sip and you’ll enjoy notes of sweet oak, vanilla, caramel and a hint of apricot. This is a rich, uncompromising flavor palette, no question. The finish is unique and complex, ranging from vanilla to a hint of cinnamon and even subtle notes of rye bread. Different people find different things to love. Isn’t that the way it should be? We like to think that we’ve crafted Eighteen 33 to offer something to every bourbon lover.

Eagle Rare

Buffalo Trace Distillery


Eagle Rare Bourbon Whiskey is masterfully crafted and carefully aged for no less than ten years. Every barrel is discriminately selected to offer consistent flavor but with a seemingly individual personality. Eagle Rare is a bourbon that lives up to its name with its lofty, distinctive taste experience.


Bulleit Distillery


Bulleit Bourbon is inspired by the whiskey pioneered by Augustus Bulleit over 150 years ago. Only ingredients of the very highest quality are used. The subtlety and complexity of Bulleit Bourbon come from its unique blend of rye, corn, and barley malt, along with special strains of yeast and pure Kentucky limestone filtered water. Due to its especially high rye content, Bulleit Bourbon has a bold, spicy character with a finish that’s distinctively clean and smooth. Medium amber in color, with gentle spiciness and sweet oak aromas. Mid-palate is smooth with tones of maple, oak, and nutmeg. Finish is long, dry, and satiny with a light toffee flavor.

Jane Bowie

Maturation Specialist, Maker's Mark


Kentucky native and bourbon expert, Jane Bowie has been a part of the Maker’s Mark family for over a decade. What began as a hobby matured into a passion, and finally a calling: As Maker’s Mark Distillery Maturation Specialist, Jane leads one of the industry’s most innovative programs – the Maker’s Mark Private Select Experience.

Alongside Maker’s Mark COO Rob Samuels, and under Jane’s watchful eye, in 2015 Maker’s Mark launched a first-of-its-kind barrel program, Maker’s Mark Private Select. The new experience allows retailers to “make their own Maker’s” by finishing fully-matured cask strength Maker’s Mark Bourbon in a single barrel made up of their custom selection of oak staves. In her present role, Jane spearheads every aspect of the Private Select Experience – from wood and barrel education, to sharing the flavor nuances each stave will have on a final selection, and spreading the magic of Kentucky’s finest bourbon with the world.

Jane’s longstanding relationship with Maker’s Mark dates back to 2006. After years spent traveling abroad, Jane returned to her hometown of Monticello, KY, and wrote to the Maker’s Mark Distillery insisting they hire her for a position that did not at that time exist – Global Bourbon Ambassador. A presumptuous request, her timing could not have been better; Rob Samuels stumbled across her letter just as he began firming up his own plans to lead international growth on behalf of his family’s handcrafted whisky. Jane was soon hired as the first international Maker’s Mark employee, and shortly thereafter became the face of the brand across five continents.

From Brazil to Australia to Japan, Jane played a crucial role in developing Maker’s Mark in the global arena before establishing herself in London where she spent nearly five years creating and implementing baseline trade engagement programs. With the introduction of the brand’s first-ever Global Drinks Program and Cocktail Competition (a blueprint that would go on to be executed in 14 international markets), and ensuring placement at established high-end bars and retailers, Jane’s efforts contributed to building brand awareness. Today, Maker’s Mark Bourbon is the number one premium bourbon in the United Kingdom.

In 2012, Jane returned to the States to work directly under Rob Samuels as Maker’s Distillery Ambassador where she continued to champion Maker’s Mark to consumers and trade within the commonwealth of Kentucky. Her transition into Distillery Maturation Specialist, again in a new role that was carved out for Jane specifically, was a natural evolution as she looked to bring the brand to a new audience through innovation in the Maker’s Mark way.

Jane holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Transylvania University in Lexington, KY; an M.B.A. from Bellarmine University in Louisville, KY; and a Professional Spirits Qualification from the Wine & Spirits Education Trust (WSET) in the U.K. She happily resides in Bardstown, KY with her husband Alex and their daughter Beatrice. Aside from her love for bourbon (she prefers Marker’s 46 with one ice cube), Jane is an avid runner with a passion for visiting distilleries, breweries and wineries around the world.

Buffalo Trace

Buffalo Trace Distillery


Ancient buffalo carved paths through the wilderness that led American pioneers and explorers to new frontiers. One such trail led to the banks of the Kentucky River where Buffalo Trace Distillery has been making bourbon whiskey the same way for more than 200 years. In tribute to the mighty buffalo and the rugged, independent spirit of the pioneers who followed them, we created our signature Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.

Harlen Wheatley

Master Distiller, Buffalo Trace Distillery


Harlen’s formal education in chemistry and chemical engineering brought him to Buffalo Trace Distillery, but it’s the on-the-job experience that led him to become the resident Master Distiller in 2005. Born in Mount Sterling, Kentucky, in 1969, Harlen has spent almost all of his life in the Bluegrass. After relocating and spending much of his youth in Florence, KY, Harlen attended Northern Kentucky University, attaining his degree in chemistry. He then migrated to work full-time at a chemical company in Central Kentucky while completing a chemical engineering degree at the University of Kentucky, gaining formal training in distillation and separation techniques.

Harlen joined the Distillery as a supervisor in 1995. Not long after, the Distillery was rechristened and the flagship Buffalo Trace Bourbon was introduced. It marked a new era in the Distillery’s esteemed history and Harlen continued to make his mark as he was promoted to Distillery Manager in 2000. Harlen was named Master Distiller in 2005, becoming Buffalo Trace’s sixth Master Distiller since the Civil War.

Having worked in every aspect of production from raw materials to barrel aging, as Master Distiller, Harlen has driven many initiatives, including solidifying standards and consistency, quality focus and efficiency gains. He is active in overseeing a number of distilling and aging operations in various locations, all while promoting and educating the public on some of the world’s finest bourbon whiskeys.

Harlen is a four-time James Beard Award nominee in Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional category.

Bluegrass Distillers

Bluegrass Distillers


Bluegrass Distillers is a craft bourbon distillery in the heart of the Kentucky Bluegrass where fast horses are bred and where the best whiskey in the world is made. Our recipes are formulated in house and each batch hand crafted at our distillery with organic and locally sourced Kentucky Proud ingredients. Following distillation, our spirits are aged to perfection right here in our new custom made charred white oak barrels. Our special group is very proud that every aspect of our product from the blending of ingredients, mashing, fermentation, distillation in our 250 gallon copper still, bottling, and even labelling is done in our own distillery by the hands of our dedicated team.

Drew Mayville

Master Blender, Buffalo Trace Distillery


Drew Mayville has more than 34 years of experience with some of the largest companies in the beverage alcohol industry. Drew is currently the Canadian Whisky Maker and Director of Quality for Sazerac. Since joining Buffalo Trace Distillery (owned by Sazerac) in 2004 as Director of Quality, he has taken on additional responsibilities including new product development. He has worked hands on with all the award-winning products produced at Buffalo Trace.

Prior to joining Buffalo Trace, Drew worked for several years at Diageo as Vice President of Blending and Production Planning for North America. The vast breadth of his experience comes from more than 22 years of experience with Seagram’s. While at Seagram’s his progressive experience encompassed all areas of manufacturing, including the Distillery, Quality, Bottling, Packaging QA, Specifications, Blending and Technical Services for North America. Drew was the fourth and final Master Blender to serve under the Seagram dynasty.

Drew is a Senior Member of the American Society for Quality and has been certified as a Quality Engineer since 1987. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.s.

Bloody Butcher’s Creed

Jeptha Creed Distillery


The first batch of Jeptha Creed’s experimental line, this limited edition bourbon will give you a taste of what’s coming in 2019. Made with our bloody butcher corn back in 2014 as a trial run for our corn, it’s ready to come out of the barrel and into your home. Enjoy its fruity aromas and soft oaky taste neat or on the rocks.

Andrea Wilson

Master of Maturation, V.P. & G.M., Michter’s Distillery


Andrea is Michter’s Master of Maturation as well as its Vice President – General Manager. As Michter’s Master of Maturation supporting Master Distiller Pamela Heilmann, Andrea manages barrel specifications, barrel procurement, heat cycling and temperature monitoring during aging, tracking maturation of barrels, whiskey filtration in preparation for bottling, and innovation to continue to improve the aging process. Andrea is admired for her accomplishments in the whiskey industry and has been involved in all aspects of making Michter’s whiskeys. Prior to joining Michter’s, Andrea spent over ten years with Diageo in various whiskey related positions including Director of Distillation and Maturation, North America – overseeing both the U.S. and Canadian distillation and maturation programs. Prior to her departure from Diageo she was the company’s Director of Whiskey Strategy for North American operations. Becoming the first woman to ever serve as Chair of the Kentucky Distillers Association is among the many honors achieved by Andrea during her illustrious career. She holds a Master of Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Louisville, and she has been highlighted in the KET television documentary, Kentucky Bourbon Tales: Distilling the Family Business.

Allisa Henley

Distiller, Sazerac of Tennessee

Allisa is a born and raised Tennessean with a passion for all things whiskey.  She is especially passionate about Tennessee Whiskey and Bourbon and serves as the Distiller for Sazerac of Tennessee. Allisa plays an integral role in the development of Sazerac’s new Tennessee Whiskey, along with other fine Tennessee spirits.
She has worked in the spirits industry for more than 12 years, spending the first part of her career at Diageo. During this time, she wore many hats, including brand marketing, ambassador, educator, and distillery and warehouse operations.  She was the first Diageo operations person recognized as a Master of Whiskey.  Through her hard work and dedication, she became the Distiller of George Dickel Tennessee Whiskey.
Allisa travels the country sharing her industry experience and knowledge.  She can uniquely discuss the business from the distillery and maturing operations side as well as from the marketing and customer perspective.  She continues to share her experiences in tastings, seminars, representing women in whiskey, and by hands on education in a distillery setting.
Allisa has a B.A in Business Administration from University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and M.B.A. from Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN.

Basil Hayden’s

Jim Beam Distillery


Late in the 18th century, Master Distiller Basil Hayden Sr. left his Maryland home for the greener pastures of Kentucky, bringing his family and reputation with him. Not yet privy to the old guard’s ‘rules’ of bourbon, legend has it that Basil set out to make a batch simply using the ingredients he had on hand, unaware of what the traditionalists might think of his mash. What resulted was a bourbon with a uniquely high-rye mashbill, combining the sweetness of corn with the spicy undertones of rye. The purists may have been displeased, but not the neighbors who tried it. Over 200 years later, the Noe family pays tribute to Basil’s masterful discovery with a high-rye, small batch bourbon that embodies the spirit of that very first recipe.



At Barrell Craft Spirits, our goal is to find and select barrels of great tasting, high quality spirit. We craft products that explore the unique effects of different distillation methods, barrels and aging environments, and bottle them at cask strength. Every batch of bourbon and whiskey we produce is a limited release and has an intentionally distinct flavor profile. We take pride in producing, preserving, and presenting spirits to the people who enjoy them most.

Angel’s Envy

Angel's Envy Distillery


Angel’s Envy is a bourbon finished in port barrels and inspired by Lincoln Henderson’s lifetime spent crafting the world’s finest spirits. Given the Highest Recommendation by F. Paul Pacult’s Spirit Journal, celebrated by Whisky Advocate, The Bourbon Review and awarded Wine Enthusiast’s highest bourbon rating, Angel’s Envy is two fingers of the finest whiskey you’ve ever tasted.

The Tillers

Curated by The Bluegrass Situation


The Tillers got their start in August 2007 when they started thumping around with some banjos and guitars and a big wooden bass. Their earliest gigs were for coins and burritos on the city’s famous Ludlow Street in the district of Clifton. The songs they picked were mostly older than their grandparents. Some came from Woody Guthrie, some were southern blues laments, and many were anonymous relics of Appalachian woods, churches, riverboats, railroads, prairies, and coal mines. Their look didn’t fit the stereotype. They were clearly recovering punk rockers with roots in city’s west side punk rock and hardcore scene. The punk influence gave their sound a distinctive bite, setting them apart from most other folk acts- a hard-driving percussive strum and stomp that brought new pulse and vinegar to some very old songs. But their musical range soon proved itself as they floated from hard-tackle thumping to tender graceful melody, all the while topped by Oberst and Geil’s clear tenor harmonies. They began picking up weekly gigs around the city’s bar scene. It didn’t take long before their signature treatment of classic folk songs became the preferred versions of Cincinnati locals.

Their audiences swelled, growing into an assortment of grey-haired mechanics, neo-hippies, farmers, punkers, professors, and random strays all stomping, clapping, singing, and belting outbursts of “John Henry!” “Darlin’ Corey!” Ever since, the band has come to each show with the same energy. They are magnetic showmen, mature musicians, and colorful storytellers. The Tillers have since won over Cincinnati’s bar and festival scene, and launching tours with tireless momentum. They were awarded CityBeat Magazine’s Cincinnati Entertainment Award for best Folk and Americana act in 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014 & 2015. Their relentless gigging has taken them throughout the East coast, the Midwest and West, the Appalachian south and to the UK and Ireland opening for the St.Louis crooner, Pokey LaFarge. In the summer of 2009, veteran NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw featured the Tillers on a documentary about US Route 50. Brokaw showcased the group’s song “There is Road (Route 50)” as a testimony to the highway’s role as a connective tissue of the nation.

Musically, the band wears many hats. Their sound has proven to be an appropriate fit with a wide range of musical styles- traditional folk, bluegrass, jazz, punk rock and anything else they might run into. They have shared the stage with a broad swath of national touring acts, ranging from renowned folk legends such as Doc Watson, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Guy Clark, Country Joe McDonald, Jerry Douglas, Iris Dement, Pokey LaFarge and The Carolina Chocolate Drops to rambunctious rock daredevils like the Legendary Shack Shakers. Always moving, the Tillers continue to enter new territory. Their musical growth can be heard through the scape of their many releases, 2008’s debut record Ludlow Street Rag, 2010’s By The Signs, 2011’s Wild Hog in the Woods, 2012’s Live from the Historic Southgate House, 2013’s Hand On The Plow and many more bootleg releases. The band’s lineup has also taken new shape. In February 2010, long-time bassist Jason Soudrette fondly parted ways with the group, being replaced by Aaron Geil, brother of guitarist Sean. In 2015 the band added fiddler Joe Macheret (Joe’s Truck Stop/Urban Pioneers) to the ranks. Recalibrating has not slowed their pace. They continue to plot their travels around the map, electrifying new places and making new friends wherever they go. From place to place, they carry with them more instruments, new songs, and funnier stories. They are Cincinnati’s traveling minstrels. Expect to hear from them soon.


Curated by The Bluegrass Situation



NewTown features the first-rate vocal and instrumental work of five of the finest musicians in bluegrass music who share a bond that combines individual virtuosity with a background of formal training. They are based in Lexington, Kentucky and fronted by award-winning vocalist/fiddler Kati Penn Williams and her singer/banjo-picker husband, Jr. Williams.

Kati and Jr. are seasoned veterans of the Kentucky music scene, and not strictly in the bluegrass arena. Kati’s solo resume boasts numerous appearances as the opening act for major stars of Country as well as Bluegrass, and Jr. has performed Gospel music since grade school. The band features – guitarist/vocalist Hayes Griffin, mandolinist Mitchell Cannon, and bassist/vocalist Travis Anderson – all of whom have college educated backgrounds in music in addition to their collective decades of performing experience.

The band’s newest album, HARLAN ROAD, once again finds Kati and Jr. turning in outstanding vocal performances, with exceptional instrumental backing by the entire band. The project was produced by Grammy-winner Barry Bales, longtime bass player for Alison Krauss and Union Station. The hit first single is the Appalachian-flavored title track, a minor- key song of loneliness and longing written by Kentucky Singer-Songwriter Tyler Childers.

Love Canon

Curated by The Bluegrass Situation



Sprouting from the musical foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Charlottesville, Virginia’s LOVE CANON currently resides in full bloom. The musicians, led by guitarist Jesse Harper, are six seasoned virtuoso string players fused together by wood and wire to become LOVE CANON.

Love Canon doesn’t cover the music of the ’80s as much as kidnap it and take it on a bluegrass-tinged joyride.”

With a passenger van and a trucker’s atlas, LOVE CANON has been touring the mid-Atlantic since 2010 bringing their own raucous blend of bluegrass to the masses. The band’s diehard fans are music lovers first and foremost, drawn to the beautiful high-lonesome stylings of Harper’s guitar and vocals paired with banjo master Adam Larrabee, mandolin pickin’ by Andy Thacker with Darrell Muller holding down the low-end on standup bass. The band is augmented with the sweet sounds of resonator guitar king Jay Starling on the Beard MA-6.

LOVE CANON has previously shared the stage and studio with David Grisman, Ricky Skaggs, and Bruce Hornsby and as a band have toured with Josh Ritter and The Infamous Stringdusters. They have played festivals around the country; including LOCK’N and GOTV, have played live on the BBC and RTE radio and are currently recording their fourth studio album, LOVE CANON & FRIENDS, with special guest Keller Williams and many more.


Barton 1792 Distillery


Sophisticated and complex. A distinctly different bourbon created with precise craftsmanship. Made from our signature “high rye” recipe and the marriage of select barrels carefully chosen by our Master Distiller. 1792 Bourbon has an expressive and elegant flavor profile. Unmistakable spice mingles with sweet caramel and vanilla to create a bourbon that is incomparably brash and bold, yet smooth and balanced. Elevating whiskey to exceptional new heights, 1792 Bourbon is celebrated by connoisseurs worldwide.

Town Mountain

Curated by The Bluegrass Situation



ASHEVILLE, NC — Raw, soulful, and with plenty of swagger, Town Mountain has earned raves for their hard-driving sound, their in-house songwriting and the honky-tonk edge that permeates their exhilarating live performances, whether in a packed club or at a sold-out festival. The hearty base of Town Mountain’s music is the bluegrass triumvirate of Bill Monroe, Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs. It’s what else goes into the mix that brings it all to life both on stage and on record and reflects the group’s wide-ranging influences – from the Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia and the ethereal lyrics of Robert Hunter, to the honest, vintage country of Willie, Waylon and Merle.

“The Asheville, North Carolina, five-piece hews pretty close to tradition, especially when it comes to instrumentation: acoustic guitar, banjo, fiddle, mandolin, and double bass. And with three vocalists and driving forces within the band — guitarist Robert Greer, banjoist Jesse Langlais and mandolinist Phil Barker — the harmonies are there… But the band… has serious country and rock ’n’ roll DNA,” says The Bend Bulletin’s Brian McElhiney. Town Mountain also features fiddler Jack Devereux and Zach Smith on bass.

They released their 5th studio album, Southern Crescent, on April 1, 2016 on LoHi Records and toured throughout the year with it. Produced and engineered by GRAMMY winner Dirk Powell, Southern Crescent was recorded in Powell’s studio The Cypress House in south-central Louisiana town of Breaux Bridge. Since it’s release the band debuted on the Grand Ole Opry and the Ryman Auditorium stages bringing their sound to new audiences. The critically acclaimed album debuted at #4 on the Billboard Bluegrass Chart while staying for ten weeks on the Americana Music Association’s radio chart’s Top 40.  

“This Asheville band killed it at the Ryman this summer [2016] opening up the bluegrass series and they put out this stellar collection of original songs that asserts them as the hippest, bluest traditional bluegrass band of their generation. In an era of bluegrass with manners, they cut with a serrated edge,” exclaims Nashville’s Roots Radio’s Craig Havighurst in his list of “Essential Americana Albums We Loved in 2016.”

Town Mountain has released five studio albums including their most recent, Southern Crescent (LoHi Records 2016) which was recorded in a decidedly old-school way, live, with minimal fixes and overdubs, with all the musicians in the same room and no noise-reducing baffling between them. The album’s “Songs of escape (‘Ain’t Gonna Worry Me’), reunion (‘Comin’ Back to You’), alienation (‘House with No Windows’), rambling (‘Wildbird’), and gambling (‘Arkansas Gambler’) present a panorama of sentiments and situations adding heft to the bluegrass canon,” according to Raleigh News & Observer’s Jack Bernhardt.

Other efforts include Leave The Bottle (Pinecastle Records 2012), Steady Operator (Pinecastle Records 2011), and Heroes & Heretics (October 2008). They also independently released a LIVE album (2014 from a show at Isis Music Hall in Asheville) as well as a two-song EP (2015) of Grateful Dead tunes called The Dead Sessions. Their debut album (June 2008) is entitled Original Bluegrass and Roots Country and KSUT/Durango Telegraph’s Chris Aaland writes, “No critic has coined a better phrase to describe their sound.”

While the members have taken the road less traveled when it comes to the mainstream or traditional purists, they’ve been dubbed as “The Taco Stand Troubadours” by Aaland (due to their frequent stops at such establishments) and he calls them “one of those bands that has paid its dues and won over the Durango audience through the years, much like the Gourds and Leftover Salmon.”

In 2016 they performed opening shows with Railroad Earth, Peter Rowan, Hard Working Americans, Greensky Bluegrass, Yonder Mountain String Band, and Jim Lauderdale adding to previous years’ performances with Ralph Stanley and his Clinch Mountain Boys, The Del McCoury Band, The Seldom Scene, The Infamous Stringdusters, The Steep Canyon Rangers among others.

Since their formation in 2005, the same year they won the prestigious Rockygrass band competition, Town Mountain has traversed many a mile across the States, including Alaska, as well as into Canada, Germany, and Finland. Town Mountain has made their rounds to a plethora of festivals throughout the years including Pickathon, IBMA’s Wide Open Bluegrass, Wintergrass, The Durango Meltdown, MerleFest, Watermelon Park Festival, Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion, Suwannee Roots Revival, Suwannee Springfest, Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, The Grand Targhee Bluegrass Festival, The California Bluegrass Association’s Father’s Day Festival, DelFest, Lake Eden Arts Festival, Graves Mountain Festival, Bean Blossom Bluegrass Festival, Nelsonville Music Festival in Ohio, ROMP, The Festival of the Bluegrass, Three Rivers Arts Festival, Denver Beer Co.’s Sundrenched Music Festival, Rooster Walk, Mountain Song, and Nelsonville Music Festival among others.

What has become one of the group’s more memorable live performance songs is their cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m On Fire,” which they first recorded in 2008’s Heroes & Heretics, with Greer’s distinctive Southern drawl at the forefront. The track has reached over 2 million listens on Spotify and garnered over 850,000 views on a YouTube video posted in 2012. The Atlantic’s Matt Vasilogambros writes, “Bruce Springsteen is a natural fit for bluegrass… Even the Boss’s earlier music had hints of folk influences. Just listen to “I’m On Fire”… I keep turning to one cover, which I admittedly listen to more often than the original. It’s from Town Mountain… They dropped the synthesizer, added a banjo, a fiddle, and another singer for harmony, and made a gem.”

Another fan favorite is their Jimmy Martin-esque original “Lawdog,” penned by Barker in 2012, which music  journalist Juli Thanki instantly called an “unearthed classic” when the album was released. They recorded a live version of the song at WAMU’s Bluegrass Country Radio in 2013 which has nearly 100,000 views and continues to be a barn burner to this day with the entire crowd singing along as barker sings, “I make my livin driving, I’m a bluegrass music man… Chasin the horizon, for another one night stand… I got a lot of miles to travel, and I’m runnin a little late…  And a no show gets me nothin, so don’t you get in my way. I got no time for ya lawdog…”

“While it remains a bluegrass band in all things instrumentation and touring the bluegrass and festival circuit, it’s’ sound crosses into American roots and even outlaw country, perhaps as a result of the gritty, mournful tone of Greer’s vocals.” Durango’s KDUR radio’s DJ, Bryant Liggett says, “It is reminiscent of the 1970s truck-driving film sound, the perfect accompaniment to a car chase through the south á la ‘Smokey and the Bandit.’”


Curated by The Bluegrass Situation



When Mipso’s 2013 debut, Dark Holler Pop, rose to #8 on Billboard’s Bluegrass charts, the success surprised a lot of people – Mipso’s four members included. “Well, we didn’t know so many people would buy it,” laughs mandolin player Jacob Sharp, “and we definitely didn’t know we were a bluegrass band.”

Since then, Mipso has performed over 300 shows and welcomed frequent collaborator Libby Rodenbough’s voice and fiddle to the fold – and has continued to grow as musicians and songwriters, while drawing continual inspiration from their rich North Carolina roots. Their new album, Old Time Reverie – produced by Mandolin Orange’s Andrew Marlin – is a reflection of that musical and personal growth: a gripping, mature sophomore release that finds the quartet expanding their sonic resources while doubling down on their experimentation with string band tradition.

While the instrumentation on the acclaimed Dark Holler Pop embraced North Carolina’s bluegrass heritage head-on, Old Time Reverie finds Mipso shifting their focus away from bluegrass, introducing new instruments and textures to create a distinctly different sound. Clawhammer banjo out of 1920s early country music meets atmospheric electric organ (played by Josh Oliver of The Everybodyfields) more native to 1970s pop. Add imaginative songwriting and a group cohesion gained from two years of near-constant touring, and the resulting sound is powerfully rhythmic, lyrically sharp, and woven with beautiful four-part harmonies.

Before forming Mipso, Jacob Sharp (mandolin), Joseph Terrell (guitar), Wood Robinson (bass), and Libby Rodenbough (fiddle) were just classmates at UNC-Chapel Hill, where the experience of singing together in harmony drew them together. The sound of their blended voices remains one of the band’s hallmarks. Since those college jam sessions, the four have entered a new phase of life, one where the work of making music – and the work of living – has become a more complicated affair. Many of the songs on Old Time Reverie grapple with the moral ambiguity that comes with keeping hope in a difficult world and making sense of its contradictions.

These songs, after all, were born in the South and reflect its modern day complexity. “Our progressive college town shares a county with lots of old tobacco barns and farms and churches from the eighteenth century,” guitarist Joseph Terrell said. “We’ve chosen to stick around in this place where we’re rooted, to reckon with and learn from its contradictions.”

At times, the task seems doomed: “Everyone Knows” grapples with a world that is essentially “cold and dark,” “Mama” explores the enduring scars of loss; “Marianne” follows an interracial couple’s struggle to love one another against their community’s disapproval. But if Old Time Reverie conjures a dark vision of the world, it also meditates on points of radiance. Even the wary narrator in “Father’s House” can see “a light on the porch.” The album closer “Four Train,” too, is a crinkled smile at the end of a weary day, describing love as “like a stain that won’t come out” or “like a flame that won’t burn out” – or perhaps as both.

In both theme and temperament, the album finds an interplay between the sunrise and the twilight – a tug-of-war that’s itself an old-time tradition. From “Eliza,” a lively waltz-time romp, to “Bad Penny,” a surrealist dream sequence with an Abe Lincoln cameo, the album revels in the seesaw spectrum of experience and memory, where technicolor carnival hues blend with grown-up sadness and the whispers of ghosts. Mipso’s color palette, like its soundscape, is radically inclusive.

“We come from a place where traditional music is a living, changing thing,” fiddle player Libby Rodenbough said. “So we feel like having an ear for all kinds of stuff is not only true to ourselves, it’s a nod to the tradition.” Call it what you will – to listen is to understand: it’s either unlike anything you’ve heard before or effortlessly familiar. By digging deeper and expanding further, Mipso have created their own dark daydream of Southern Americana: Their Old Time Reverie.

The Steel Wheels

Curated by The Bluegrass Situation



Hailing from the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, The Steel Wheels are familiar with the traditions of folk music and how a string band is supposed to sound. In fact, they’ve been drawing on those steadfast traditions for more than a decade. Yet their name also evokes a sense of forward motion, which is clearly reflected in their latest album, Wild As We Came Here.

“I think we’ve always been able to write new songs with different landscapes. However it was really enjoyable for us, creatively and artistically, to depart from the straight-up acoustic sound that we’ve been known for,” says Trent Wagler, who plays guitar and banjo in the band and writes most of the material. “I’m excited to see what happens. There are fans out there who are ready for this and who have been waiting for us to do this.”

While on tour supporting Josh Ritter, the band forged a friendship with Sam Kassirer, who plays keyboards for Ritter on tour and has produced a number of his albums. While The Steel Wheels had been considering other producers and maybe recording in Nashville, they chose to follow their instincts all the way to rural Maine, where Kassirer owns a recording studio inside a renovated farmhouse from the 18th century. All four band members – Wagler, Eric Brubaker (fiddle), Brian Dickel (upright bass), and Jay Lapp (mandolin) – hunkered down for a week and a half to create Wild As We Came Here.

“It’s a gorgeous set-up,” Wagler says. “I didn’t grow up in a big city and I never made a record in a big city. It’s much more my style, and our style as a band, to completely hole up – probably more than we ever have – for 10 full days in Maine. I left the house for a couple of bike rides but I never went to a restaurant or a store the whole time I was there. We ate on site, we slept on site, and we recorded. It was a very immersive experience, top to bottom.”

Afternoon hikes amid the fall foliage helped them clear their heads, ensuring that everyone could stay focused on the task at hand – which in retrospect was quite daunting. The Steel Wheels had about 40 original songs stowed away before the sessions. Only two or three had ever been played live and the band had not arranged any of them.

“One of my favorite parts of the process was taking the first couple of days to rehearse and arrange the songs all in one room, with Sam offering his insights,” Brubaker says. “We had enough time to really build the songs from the ground up, examining each one to see what elements would best highlight the mood we were trying to capture.”

Wild As We Came Here is a significant leap for the band, which started its journey in 2004. Wagler, Dickel, and Brubaker studied at Eastern Mennonite University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, about an hour from Charlottesville. (All four members of the band grew up in Mennonite families.) Wagler and Dickel were in a punk/alternative band until acoustic music lured them in.

Wagler soon started crafting songs and learned flat-picking. Dickel took classes on building guitars. They briefly played as a duo before Brubaker joined on fiddle. Lapp eventually came on board after getting to know the band from the local folk circuit. In 2010, following a variety of EPs and LPs, the ensemble officially branded itself as The Steel Wheels, a tip of the hat to steam-powered trains, industrial progress, and the buggies of their Mennonite lineage.

Lapp says, “We found we really enjoyed singing and playing music together and it happened so naturally. To make it even better, everyone listens very well to what the other is playing, making it a total group experience. I’ve never worked with such a collected and well-spoken group of men, and it makes the experience of touring and performing a pure joy.”

Then as now, The Steel Wheels’ style weaves through Americana and bluegrass music, folk and old-time music, and the acoustic poetry of the finest singer-songwriters. By incorporating percussion and keyboards into the sessions for the first time, Wild As We Came Here adds new textures to their catalog, as themes of discovery and perseverance run throughout the collection.

The album begins with “To the Wild,” which explores the fascinating and unusual relationship that modern society has with the great outdoors, from exploitation to preservation. Wagler wrote the title track after reading a news story about a desperate man who starts bidding at a land auction – even though he had no way of paying for it – in order to prevent oil and gas companies from destroying the natural beauty of the area.

Meanwhile, the idea behind “Broken Mandolin” was inspired by a few lines from the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel All the Light We Cannot See, which takes place during World War II. Wagler describes “Take Me to the Ending” as essentially a bluegrass apocalypse – “like a sense of coming out from the bunker and there are still a few people playing fiddle tunes.”

Of course, exquisite harmonies remain a strength of the band, shining through on “Sing Me Like a Folk Song.” By making a social statement in uncertain times, listeners will want to lend their voices too. More than a decade into The Steel Wheels’ career, the simple act of singing together – something that carries them back to their Mennonite heritage – is still incredibly special. The stunning closing track, “Till No One Is Free,” provides an elegant ending to the band’s most satisfying album yet.

“It was my favorite studio experience from start to finish, by far, of any project we’ve ever done,” Dickel says. “A super-relaxed and experimental vibe coupled with some genre-stretching sounds really did it for me. I think we pushed ourselves much further than previous albums and I think we will push our fans a little too. Both of those are exciting to me.”

Caitlyn Smith



In a time when everything is big, fast and bombastic, it’s rare to find an artist who can hush a room with just the power of her voice or the will of her pen. Caitlyn Smith, one of Nashville’s most prized writers, is one of them: and, after years spent composing songs for and with everyone from Dolly Parton to Garth Brooks to Meghan Trainor, she’s finally ready to unveil all sides of her enormous talent with Starfire. Long lauded for her ability to whirl pure emotion into unforgettable tracks, Starfire is a raw, visceral journey about love, hardship and the struggle to pave your own way, all anchored by her unforgettable tone. A few minutes of listening and one thing becomes abundantly clear: there is no one better to sing the music of Caitlyn Smith than Smith herself.

“I wanted to unlock my heart and dig around inside a little,” Smith says about the songs of Starfire, with the first five songs available now. “And I wanted to be more vulnerable, and tell the stories I have lived. It’s more of a raw process to write for myself.”

Indeed, songs like “Before You Called Me Baby” shake the listener to the core: blending her soulful vocals with stirring, deeply honest lyrics and instrumentation that only amplifies the organic construction, they occupy a unique space that can both blossom with a full band or be stripped down into intimate, solo experiences. Because Smith, who has toured and opened for acts such as Eric Church, Sheryl Crow and Dierks Bentley, understands not only how important the craft itself is, but also how music can – and should – transform in a live setting. With just her acoustic guitar, Smith can stun to silence.

Raised in the small town of Cannon Falls, Minnesota, Smith grew up singing in the church and at county fairs – and it soon became abundantly clear that her talent stretched well beyond the ordinary. She wrote her first songs at the young age of eight, and had already convinced her parents that a career as an artist was her true path by the time she reached her teenage years. “I released two records before I graduated high school,” Smith recalls. “I knew I needed to do music and nothing else.” After a stint in Minneapolis, it was clear that Nashville was where she belonged, and she quickly became a sought-after force in the songwriting scene: so much so that even music she intended to sing herself quickly got snatched up by others, yielding her two top country hits, including the platinum “Wasting All These Tears,” recorded by Cassadee Pope.

A celebrated force in the writer’s room, Smith’s also had her songs cut by Parton, Brooks and Lady Antebellum, and co-wrote Trainor’s John Legend duet, “Like I’m Gonna Lose You,” among many others. For a while, Smith balanced her two worlds – as an artist, and a writer – while primarily focusing on the latter, working to perfect her craft and discover exactly what she wanted to say in her solo work. She released some music under her own name, but it didn’t capture the spirit she ultimately wanted. “I was shooting for something instead of singing music that was in my heart, that I loved,” she says, as honest as ever. “So I stepped back. I said to myself, ‘the next thing that I release, I don’t want to ask anybody’s opinion. I want to go into the studio and make a record that I love and is true to me.'”

That next thing became Starfire, produced by Paul Moak, who quickly became Smith’s trusted collaborator. They would often bunker down at his Nashville studio, while Smith enlisted friends and colleagues for co-writes, like Gordie Sampson, Kate York and Sarah Buxton. But suddenly, some news came along: Smith was expecting a child. “It added a beautiful layer of excitement,” she says. “Not only was I making a record, but I’m making a life. This little boy has been along for the ride.”

​ Starfire, itself, is all about growth, and what it takes to get to your most honest and true incarnation. Smith decided to trust her strengths: her soulful vocals, her strong sense of imaginative storytelling and her ability to craft melodies that exist outside of genre walls and instead focus on timelessness. But there are plenty of infectious hooks in there, too.

“We didn’t want to think about genre or radio or any boundaries,” she says. Like Chris Stapleton, Maren Morris or even Crow, she artfully blends a steady catalogue of influences and reference points, held together by stellar craft and her formidable voice. “We wanted to make music that moved us, stay out of the way of the songs and let my voice shine through. Some songs sound more country, some sound more folk. There’s a little rock and soul in there, too, which makes it a bit of a genre-less record. But it feels just right to me.”

​Genreless, maybe, but full of vitality, and also downright honest. Take a song like “This Town is Killing Me,” about how life as an artist in Music City isn’t all champagne and roses, even when there are small successes. “It can be a such a hard, heartbreak town,” Smith says. “As much as you want to write those songs you know would pay the bills, if you did it every day, the artist part in you would die. There is this balance of loving this town because you get to create, but also it is just so brutal.” Smith isn’t the kind to smile and nod – instead, she turns her emotions into moments like this that manage to be about both her own experience and the human condition as a whole.

​ And then there are songs like “Tacoma,” devastating in both its lyrics and its sheer beauty: “I’m burning your memory one mile at a time” Smith sings in her stunning vocal delivery to stripped-down production. Then, of course, there is the title track, which blends a pop groove with a soulful, chugging chorus. It’s about how important it is to keep going even when the world wants to bring you down – an attitude that has ruled Smith’s career thus far. Here, she proclaims her strength to a dynamite beat: it’s one thing to have the talent to be a star, but it’s another to have the will to keep your fire flaming bright.

“This whole record and process, I’ve been on a journey,” she says. “I’ve heard no many times and just kept going. I’ve learned that one thing is for certain: nothing is going to burn me out.”

Dave Cavalier



Dave Cavalier is an alternative blues artist deeply connected to his roots in Chicago but firmly focused on establishing the potency of his sound in the City of Angels. Since the release of his debut EP “HOWL,” Cavalier has performed with Don Henley, Aloe Blacc, Kendrick Lamar, Manchester Orchestra, Local H, Brand New & many more at festivals across the country. The Huffington Post called HOWL “…Simultaneously lush, voluptuous and uncompromising…Imagine Jack White merging his talents with those of Robert Palmer and you’ll have an idea of just how good Dave Cavalier’s Howl is.” OC Weekly has said of his live show, “Dave Cavalier Trio is an unapologetic blend of blues-based modern alternative rock bringing the soul of Chicago and the grit of Hollywood together in poetic mastery.” He’s currently recording a new EP with plans to release this fall, preceding the Bourbon & Beyond Festival.

Derby City Soul Club

DJs Matt Anthony & Kim Sorise


Kim Sorise hosts the groovilicious Global Grease on She’s the Derby City Roller Girls DJ & co-founder of the legendary Dirty Soul Party. She hails from Detroit and keeps her hometown’s Soul Music legacy alive on the turntables.

Matt Anthony hosts The Friday Night Sound-Clash & The Jazz Pulse on 91.9 WFPK Radio Louisville. He owns Matt Anthony’s Record Shop and was voted Best Live DJ at the 2013 Louisville Music Awards. Together the two have Deejayed with Soul Greats: Booker T, Maceo Parker, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Charles Bradley and The Budos Band.

Spinning on two turntables: Soul Sisters, Stax, Detroit, Memphis Hip Shakers, Rick James, James Brown, Jazzy Space Grooves, Northern Soul Movers, Big Beat, Cosmic Disco, Deep Funk, Betty Davis, Ancient Electro, People Records, Motown & Nu Yorican Boogaloo Vinyl Dance Party with Go-Go Girls, B-Movies & Burlesque Reels. This is the Derby City Soul Club.

The B&B Supper Club

Hosted by Jefferson's Bourbon

Bourbon & Beyond is proud to announce The B&B Supper Club featuring Edward Lee (610 Magnolia, Louisville) & Chris Cosentino (Cockscomb, San Francisco) and hosted by Jefferson’s Bourbon. Join us for an exclusive multi-course dinner and a different Jefferson’s Bourbon expression paired with each course by founder Trey Zoeller. Only 30 seats will be available; all featuring an unbeatable view of our music stages. After dinner, attendees will be invited to view the remainder of the show in the VIP Mint Garden viewing area and hang space.


Down The Rabbit Hole

Feat. Proprietors LLC of Death & Co.

Rabbit Hole invites you to go #DownTheRabbitHole into an exclusive bar hidden off the beaten path featuring cocktails by Proprietors LLC, the team behind Death & Co. That’s all we can say for now – figuring out how to get in will be entirely up to you!

Down The Rabbit Hole

Feat. Proprietors LLC of Death & Co.

Rabbit Hole invites you to go #DownTheRabbitHole into an exclusive bar hidden off the beaten path featuring cocktails by Proprietors LLC, the team behind Death & Co. That’s all we can say for now – figuring out how to get in will be entirely up to you!

F.Y.E. Fan Experience

The F.Y.E. Fan Experience is the only place to score your favorite Bourbon & Beyond artists’ latest albums at the festival and even get a chance to get them signed! They will be hosting artist signings all weekend long — follow FYE on Facebook and Instagram for the latest signing schedules and special pop-up performances.

Dean Corbett


Dean Corbett is the owner and executive chef of both Equus & Jack’s Lounge and Jack’s at Corbett’s in Louisville, Ky.

Chef Corbett’s culinary background includes extensive work in restaurants, hotels and private clubs. In 1985, he purchased a restaurant named Equus – Latin for “horse,” and appropriate in a city recognized worldwide for its horse racing. Equus’ culinary excellence earned a four-star rating in the Louisville Courier-Journal and accolades from Southern Living and Wine Spectator. In 2000, chef Corbett opened Jack’s Lounge, named after his late father, which would receive three “Best of Louisville” awards in a row. In 2010, chef Corbett merged Equus and Jack’s Lounge to create the city’s best upscale bistro, offering refined American cuisine and award-winning cocktails.

In 2007, chef Corbett pushed his boundaries further by opening Corbett’s: An American Place. Located in a beautifully restored 19th century mansion, Corbett’s offers New American cuisine with an award-winning wine list. In 2008, Corbett’s was named one of Esquire’s Best New Restaurants, and gained additional national attention with chef Corbett’s appearances on NBC’s “The Today Show” and the Cooking Channel’s “Food(ography).” In 2009, chef Corbett was one of six chefs to be inducted to the Honorable Order of the Golden Toque.

Giving back is a priority for chef Corbett. He helped start several fundraisers throughout Louisville, including Kosair Children’s Hospital’s “Bourbon & Bowties.” He is also involved in benefits supporting the American Heart Association, APRON Inc., Juvenile Autism, Juvenile Diabetes, March of Dimes and Multiple Sclerosis. Chef Corbett also works on initiatives to support local and regional farmers and purveyors. When not working, he enjoys spending time with his wife and their three sons.

The Manhattan Project


TMP offers an amazing sports viewing experience and the city’s best selection of bourbon, wine, and beer.

The Char House

presented by Brown-Forman


Brown-Forman is the the only major spirits company in the entire world to make its own new barrels, and Bourbon & Beyond is very excited to partner with The Brown-Forman Cooperage to offer festivalgoers the experience of witnessing the historic art of barrel raising.

The Bluegrass Situation Stage


Curated by The Bluegrass Situation, the #1 destination for American roots music, culture, and lifestyle, the BGS Stage inside The Big Bourbon Bar features a line-up of some of our longtime favorite bands, exciting, emerging talent, and Kentucky-based artists. For over half a decade, BGS has proudly represented a unique community that supports a rich and varied musical history, while looking ahead for ways to transform traditions into a carefully curated modern lifestyle. Join us in The Big Bourbon Bar to celebrate two staples of American culture deeply rooted in Kentucky: bluegrass and bourbon!

The Char House

presented by Brown-Forman


Brown-Forman is the the only major spirits company in the entire world to make its own new barrels, and Bourbon & Beyond is very excited to partner with The Brown-Forman Cooperage to offer festivalgoers the experience of witnessing the historic art of barrel raising.

The Big Bourbon Bar

Presented by Courier Journal

The Big Bourbon Bar presented by Courier-Journal features our incredible lineup of bourbons curated by our experts and you, the fans! Whether you’re in the mood for something adventurous or a classic concoction, our expert bartenders will be shaking, stirring, and serving up delicious bourbon cocktails all weekend long.

The Big Bourbon Bar will also feature great music and talks all weekend long. Our friends at The Bluegrass Situation have curated a lineup of bluegrass bands to provide the soundtrack for the weekend. In between sets, Bardstown Bourbon Company will host “Bourbon Time with Fred Minnick” and special guests.

The Big Bourbon Bar featuring 24 Bourbon Partners
1792, Angel’s Envy, Barrell, Basil Hayden’s, Blade And Bow, Buffalo Trace, Bulleit, Coopers’ Craft, Eagle Rare, Ezra Brooks, Four Roses, Jefferson’s, Jim Beam, Knob Creek, Larceny, Maker’s Mark, Michter’s, Old Forester, Rabbit Hole, Rebel Yell, Smooth Ambler, Peerless, W. L. Weller, Woodford Reserve.

Fred Minnick’s MiniBar
Bluegrass Distillers, Boone County, Hartfield & Co., Jeptha Creed, Limestone Branch, MB Roland, and New Riff.

Music curated by The Bluegrass Situation
The Steel Wheels, Mipso, Town Mountain, Love Canon, New Town, The Tillers, Reva Dawn Salon.

“Bourbon Time with Fred Minnick” presented by Bardstown Bourbon Company
Lineup and schedule coming soon! Follow us on social media to be the first to find out.

The B&B Supper Club

Hosted by Angel's Envy

Bourbon & Beyond is proud to announce The B&B Supper Club featuring award-winning chef, restaurateur, and Top Chef host Tom Colicchio. Join us for an exclusive four-course dinner prepared by Chef Tom Colicchio and whiskey pairings by Angel’s Envy, all while you enjoy an unbeatable view of our music stages. Only 30 seats will be available.

A portion of ticket proceeds will benefit A Place at the Table.

Sold Out

Curated Bourbons

Curated Bourbons by Chris Cosentino, Edward Lee & Fred Minnick.

  • Angel’s Envy
  • Barrell Bourbon
  • Booker’s
  • E.H. Taylor
  • Elmer T. Lee
  • Four Roses Small Batch
  • Jefferson’s Reserve Very Old
  • Knob Creek
  • Old Grand-Dad Bonded
  • Rabbit Hole
  • W.L. Weller Special Reserve
  • Bib & Tucker Small Batch 
  • Jefferson’s Ocean 
  • W.L. Weller – 12 year 

The Mint Experience

Freshen up your weekend by upgrading to The Mint Experience, and you’ll gain access to exclusive amenities. Packages include:

  • Dedicated entrance lanes into the festival.
  • The Mint Garden, an exclusive and comfortable hang area with dedicated culinary offerings.
  • Mint Bars with premium beverages for purchase and a daily happy hour with specialty bourbon cocktails.
  • Elevated grandstand-style bleachers and VIP-only viewing areas with excellent views of the music stages.
  • Upgraded restroom facilities.
  • The Mint Garden gift shop, where you can pick up your commemorative Bourbon & Beyond tasting glass, plus additional festival brand merchandise for purchase.

Get Details

Grab & Go Bars

You’ll find plenty of Grab & Go Bars throughout our grounds with Kentucky’s kindest bartenders serving bourbon, spirits, beer, wine, and nonalcoholic beverages for purchase.

Refreshments include selections from:

Southern Soul Party

Hosted by Maker's Mark

Come dressed to impress, ready to get down and eat up at the Southern Soul Party. Our friends at Maker’s Mark are coming to Bourbon & Beyond with a sophisticated celebration of throwback hits, classics cocktails, and good-to-the-bone barbeque.

In a unique twist on the meat-and-three tradition, Southern Soul Party will feature your choice of meat by Louisville favorite Boss Hog’s BBQ and three Asian-influenced sides by Chef Kevin Ashworth of acclaimed Louisville restaurant MilkWood. Rounding out our offerings are Maker’s Mark cocktails and irresistibly funky tunes by Derby City Soul Club with DJs Matt Anthony & Kim Sorise, winners of the 2016 Louisville Music Award for “Best Live DJ”.

Also, make sure to catch Maker’s Mark maturation specialist Jane Bowie on The Mash Stage on Saturday, where she’ll be joining “The Wonder Women of Whiskey” panel.

The Southern Soul Party hosted by Maker’s Mark is open to all festivalgoers. Follow us on social media to be the first to find out about more details to be announced in the coming weeks.



Seviche’s contemporary décor features decorative glasswork by artist om McMahon and soothing colors that create a casually sophisticated atmosphere. e interior dons a varied arrangement of Latin–in uenced art indigenous to the regions represented on the menu. During warm weather, guests can dine on the outdoor patio within view of trendy Bardstown Road.

Chris “Shaggy” Davis

NOLA Crawfish King


Considered royalty of the seafood boil, Chris “Shaggy” Davis is a master of his trade and specializes in South Louisiana cuisine. Whether it’s his famous boiled crawfish or succulent pig cochon de lait, he and his company Nola Crawfish King bring the flavors of Louisiana to you. Nola Crawfish King has been feeding the masses in New Orleans for almost 20 years including the likes of Bill Clinton, Dave Matthews, Foo Fighters,Arcade Fire and many more. Check out for more info.

Kiefer Sutherland


Kiefer Sutherland has been a professional actor for over thirty years, starring in movies like ‘Stand By Me’, ‘The Lost Boys’, ‘Young Guns’, Flatliners’, ‘A Few Good Men’, ‘A Time to Kill’, ‘Dark City’, ‘Melancholia’ and most recently, a western called ‘Forsaken,’ as well as the TV series ‘24.’

But unknown to many during the course of his career, he has taken on other vocations with the same kind of dedication and commitment. The first one, beginning around 1992, was that of a cattle rancher and competitive cowboy (roper) in the USTRC team roping circuit. He ran a successful ranch with partner John English for almost a decade. During that timeframe, Sutherland won numerous roping events around the country including Phoenix, Indio and the Los Angeles Open.

In 2002, Sutherland, with his music partner and best friend Jude Cole, began a small record label called Ironworks. The goal of this label was to record local musicians and distribute their music at a time when the music industry was going through a monumental shift. Some of their artists included Rocco DeLuca and the Burden, HoneyHoney and Billy Boy On Poison. In 2009, Sutherland left the label to recharge and figure out what he was going to do next.

In early 2015 Sutherland played Cole two songs he had written and wanted to record as demos for other artists to record. Cole responded positively to the songs and the album grew organically from those recordings. Two songs became four and four grew into six, until Cole suggested that they make a record. Their collaboration resulted in Kiefer Sutherland’s upcoming debut album: ‘Down In A Hole’.

Sutherland says of the 11 tracks that make up the album, “It’s the closest thing I’ve ever had to a journal or diary. All of these songs are pulled from my own personal experiences. There is something very satisfying about being able to look back on my own life, good times and bad, and express those sentiments in music. As much as I have enjoyed the writing and recording process, I am experiencing great joy now being able to play these songs to a live audience, which was something I hadn’t counted on”.

Fantastic Negrito


Fantastic Negrito is the incarnation of a musician who is reborn after going through a lot of awful shit. In fact, the name Fantastic Negrito represents his third rebirth, literally coming back from death this time. The narrative on this man is as important as the sound, because the narrative is the sound. Songs born from a long hard life channeled through black roots music. Slide guitar, drums, piano. Urgent, desperate, edgy. Fantastic Negrito is the story of a man who struggled to “make it”, who “got it”, and who lost it all. For anyone who ever felt like it was over yet hoped it wasn’t, this is your music; blues harnessed, forged in realness. For anyone who ever considered getting their old high-school band back together, this is your inspiration. These are singular songs by a true musician who writes and produces. They are his fuel as he embarks on the third comeback of his life.

The first life (‘who am I and where am I going?’). Fantastic Negrito was raised in an orthodox Muslim household. His father was a Somali-Caribbean immigrant who mostly played traditional African music. When, at the age of 12, Negrito’s family moved from Massachusetts to Oakland, he was hit with an intense culture shock. Oakland in 1980s was a million miles from Negrito’s conservative childhood. He went from Arab chants to Funkadelic in one day, living in the heart of one of the wildest, most infamous, most vibrant black communities in the nation. Shit was extra real in Oakland.

By the time he was 20, Negrito had taught himself to play every instrument he could get his hands on. He was recording music, but he was also caught up in street shit. This went on for several years until a near death encounter with masked gunmen. After that Negrito packed his bags and headed to LA, armed with a demo on cassette.

The second life (‘I want to be a star…I think’). It didn’t take long for Negrito to find himself entrenched in the ‘Hollywood’ lifestyle; “clubs and bitches and bullshit politics that have nothing to do with great music.” Negrito signed with a big time manager and soon after that, a million dollar deal at Interscope …and soon after that, creative death.

The record deal was a disaster. Gangsta rap was ruling the airwaves and Negrito was in the wrong place at the wrong era. Negrito came out of the deal with a failed album and his confidence gutted. He was infected by the constant emphasis on ‘what would sell’; which looks, hooks and gimmicks would attract an audience. He lost all sense of himself. The songs stopped coming to him, so he quit. He sold all of his shit and he quit.

In 2000, Negrito was in a near fatal car accident that put him in a coma. For four weeks it was touch and go. Because his muscles atrophied while bedridden, he had to go through months of frustrating physical therapy to regain use of his legs. Rods were placed throughout his body. And worst of all, his playing hand was mutilated. Though he rehabbed intensely for several years, the damage was permanent. In 2008, he returned home to Oakland.

The third life (the birth of Negrito). Back in Oakland, Negrito forgot about life as a musician. He settled down, planted vegetables, raised his own chickens, and made money growing weed. He also settled into being a man, on his own, clear of the distractions of wanting to be a star. This is when his specific POV of the world came into focus. His conservative Muslim values melded with the liberal, multi-cultural world of Oakland. The cynicism that comes from struggle made room for the hope that comes from cheating death. He truly knew who he was. He was confident about his place in the world because he understood it as much as any man can. And then his son was born.

With his son’s entrance into the world, all the creative energy Negrito bottled for years came rushing out. His musical choices were sharp and without doubt. He began recording without the hindrances that come with chasing trends. “Fuck what’s hot now, what moves me?” Negrito turned to the original DNA of all American music, the Blues. The beating life had given him primed him to channel his literal and musical forefathers: the Blues musicians of the Delta.

For Fantastic Negrito, “derivative” is the devil so to ensure his sound is his own, every chord comes from a place of immediacy. Immediacy opens the door for instinct. Instinct is God’s tool that makes an artist into an individual. Negrito leaves the original sounds of Lead Belly and Skip Woods intact and builds bridges to modernity by looping and sampling his own live instruments.

When you listen to Negrito, you’re invited to hear the story of life after destruction. Your dream can die. You probably will give up. But from there, you can start everything over.

Shawn James & The Shapeshifters


Shawn James & The Shapeshifters are a 4 piece heavy blues rock band from Fayetteville, Arkansas. Their brand of hard hitting electrified dirty delta blues rock combined with Shawn’s soulfully roaring vocals make for an intense listening experience whether playing the records or seeing them live.

With their busy tour schedule, you can catch them playing festivals and shows all over the world or hear their music featured on Discovery Channel, NBC, and other media platforms.

They’ve continuously gained momentum every year since they formed in 2013 and show no signs of slowing down. 

Nikki Lane


Nikki Lane’s stunning third album Highway Queen, out February 17th, 2017, sees the young Nashville singer emerge as one of country and rock’s most gifted songwriters. Co-produced by Lane and fellow singer-songwriter, Jonathan Tyler, this emotional tour-de-force was recorded at Matt Pence’s Echo Lab studio in Denton, Texas as well as at Club Roar with Collin Dupuis in Nashville, Tennessee. Blending potent lyrics, unbridled blues guitars and vintage Sixties country-pop swagger, Lane’s new music will resonate as easily with Lana Del Rey and Jenny Lewis fans as those of Neil Young and Tom Petty. 

Highway Queen is a journey through heartbreak that takes exquisite turns. The record begins with a whiskey-soaked homage to Lane’s hometown (“700,000 Rednecks”) and ends on the profoundly raw “Forever Lasts Forever,” where Lane mourns a failed marriage – the “lighter shade of skin” left behind from her wedding ring. On “Forever” and the confessional “Muddy Waters,” Lane’s lyrics align her with perceptive songwriters like Nick Lowe and Cass McCombs. Elsewhere, “Companion” is pure Everly Brothers’ dreaminess (“I would spend a lifetime/ Playing catch you if I can”). She goes on a Vegas bender on the rollicking “Jackpot,” fights last-call blues (“Foolish Heart”) and tosses off brazen one-liners at a backroom piano (“Big Mouth”).

“Love is the most unavoidable thing in the world,” Lane says. “The person you pick could be half set-up to destroy your life with their own habits – I’ve certainly experienced that before and taken way too long to get out of that mistake.” 

In 2014, Lane’s second album All or Nothin’ (New West) solidified her sandpaper voice beneath a ten-gallon hat as the new sound and look of outlaw country music. Produced by Dan Auerbach, the record’s bluesy Western guitars paired with Lane’s Dusty Springfield-esque voice earned glowing reviews from NPR, the Guardian and Rolling Stone. In three years since her Walk of Shame debut, Lane said she was living most of the year on the road.

Growing up, Lane used to watch her father pave asphalt during blistering South Carolina summers. She’d sit on the roller (“what helps smooth out the asphalt”) next to a guy named Rooster and divvy out Hardee’s lunch orders for the workers. “My father thought he was a country singer,” Lane laughs. “He partied hard at night, but by 6:30 AM he was out on the roads in 100-degree weather.” That’s the southern work ethic, she says. “We didn’t have a lot of money, but I was privileged with the knowledge of how to work hard, how to learn and to succeed when things aren’t set up for me.” Creativity was an unthinkable luxury, she adds. “When people told me I should try to get a record deal for songs I was writing, I was like, ‘that’s cute – I’ve got to be at work at 10 A.M.’” 

“Becoming a songwriter is one of the most selfish things I’ve ever done,” Lane says plainly. She describes writing her first song at age 25 like it was a necessary act of self-preservation after a devastating breakup. Many of her early songs, she said on Shame and Nothin’, were about the fleetingness of relationships she believed were permanent, she says. Lane’s main line of work in those days was a fashion entrepreneur (she’s currently the owner of Nashville’s vintage clothing boutique High Class Hillbilly). It brought her to cities around the country, New York to Los Angeles to Nashville. And like a true wanderer, Lane’s sound crisscrosses musical genres with ease, while the lonesome romantic in her remains. Even a soft song like, “Send The Sun,” with its lilting downward strum, is flush with bittersweet emotion. “Darling, we’re staring at the same moon,” Lane sings lovingly. “I used to say that to my ex,” she says with cheerful stoicism, “to try to brighten the long nights, stay positive.”

Highway Queen is poised to be Lane’s mainstream breakthrough. “Am I excited to spend years of my life in a van, away from family and friends? No, but I’m excited to share my songs, so they’ll reach people and help them get through whatever they’re going through. To me, that’s worth it.” 

“Lay You Down” is one of those unexpected moments for Lane. “That song was inspired by something Levon Helm’s wife posted on Facebook when he was sick with cancer,” Lane says. “I was just so moved by her telling the world how much love he felt from people writing to them, and moved that because of the Internet, I was able to see that love – even from a distance.” The song became surreal for Lane and her band when her longtime guitarist, Alex Munoz, was diagnosed with cancer while they were playing it. “It deepened my perspective and the importance of keeping everyone safe,” says Lane.

On the record cover, Lane looks out on wide, unowned Texan plains, leaning on the fearsome horns of a massive steer. Wearing a vintage Victorian dress, the stark photo invokes a time before highways existed. The symbolism isn’t lost on Lane. Highway Queen was a pioneering moment for her as an artist.

“I was always a smart girl, always had to yell to be heard,” she says, “But this was the first time in my career where I decided how things were going to go; I was willing to take the heat.” Lane included the bonus track “Champion” as a small testament to that empowerment. “It makes a point,” Lane says with a smile, “That I appreciate what you’re saying, but get the fuck out of my way.” 

ZZ Ward


ZZ Ward has roots in rural Oregon, but her accomplishments have led her far beyond that. She burst onto the scene in early 2012 with an eclectic mixtape, Eleven Roses, setting the tone for her unique blues-meets-hip-hop artistry and the reaction was palpable. ZZ’s debut album, Til The Casket Drops, featuring guests Kendrick Lamar, Fitz of Fitz and the Tantrums, and Freddie Gibbs, further solidified her musical artistry and songwriting prowess. Live ZZ’s smoky vocals and deliberate, varied arrangements make her one not to miss. Last year, she toured with Fitz and the Tantrums, Grace Potter, Gary Clark, Jr. and Allen Stone and this year launched multiple near sell-out U.S. headline tours.

Appearances on The Tonight Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Conan, , VH1’s Big Morning Buzz Live, Good Morning America, The View and Last Call with Carson Daly have kept her in the public eye, while her current single, “365 Days” is quickly rising at multiple radio formats. Ward’s songs have also been featured on Nashville, The Voice, Pretty Little Liars, The Good Wife, The Client List, Awkward, Mob Wives and prominently in the feature film We’re The Millers.

Chris Robinson Brotherhood



When the Chris Robinson Brotherhood headed into the studio to begin recording their new album, Anyway You Love, We Know How You Feel, no one knew just what to expect. These would be the band’s first recordings with new drummer Tony Leone (Ollabelle, Levon Helm), their first since the departure of founding bassist Mark “Muddy” Dutton, and their first time producing themselves. But as anybody who’s been following the CRB can attest, this is a band that thrives on the unexpected.

If you need proof, just go back to 2012, when they first emerged on the national stage by releasing not one, but two acclaimed full-length albums within a few months of each other. Critics hailed their sprawling debut, Big Moon Ritual, as a revelation, with Uncut calling it a “tenderly-executed piece of work…[that’s] both earthy and transcendent,” while The Independent raved that Robinson had “finally found the ideal vehicle to indulge his taste for ‘Cosmic California Music.'” The reviews were similarly ecstatic for its immediate follow-up, The Magic Door, which was praised by Relix as “classic rock in the finest sense.” The band’s relentless tour schedule brought their shimmering acid-Americana around the world for a staggering 118-date tour, firmly establishing the CRB as the new standard-bearers of the psychedelic roots torch.

In 2014, they returned to the studio for Phosphorescent Harvest, a masterful collection that showcased the blossoming songwriting partnership between Robinson and CRB lead guitarist Neal Casal. Rolling Stone raved that the album was “electrifying…boast[ing] a vintage rock vibe that’s at once quirky, trippy, soulful and downright magnetic,” and Guitar World called it “a treasure trove of soul that advances the band’s bluesy, kaleidoscopic sound.”

On each of those albums, the songs and arrangements had been locked in prior to the sessions, but heading back into the studio for Anyway You Love…, Robinson purposely left as much open-ended as possible, embracing the lineup changes and leaning into the virtuosic improvisational chemistry that’s always made their live shows such enthralling spectacles.

“Instead of seeing these things as challenges, we started to see them as something exciting,” explains Robinson. “It was an opportunity to see where our expression could take us. Some people get really uptight when they’re making records, but for us, the looser it gets the better. It’s all about taking our intuition and following it to where our ideas can really manifest themselves. This turned out to be the most spontaneous record I’ve ever been a part of.”

Not coincidentally, Robinson also cites it as perhaps the best recording experience of his life. The band relocated to northern California for the sessions, recording on the side of a mountain overlooking the foggy Pacific Ocean and channeling the natural majesty and melancholic weather of their surroundings into the album’s eight, epic, immersive tracks.

The album kicks off with “Narcissus Soaking Wet,” a psychedelic toe-tapper that marks Robinson’s first co-write with keyboardist Adam MacDougall and touches on everything from Dylan and Parliament Funkadelic to psych rock and Chicago rhythm & blues.

“For me, its the centerpiece of the record,” says Robinson. “It’s got all our CRB things we love, especially the groove, and it’s the first time I ever played harmonica on one of our songs. The lyrics are about control and egotism and false idolatry, about what happens when you’re a musician who puts yourself above the natural flow of harmony and music. It becomes the same mythic mistake that all the tragic heroes made.”

Ego takes a backseat to community in the CRB, where collaboration carries the day. Rather than coming into the studio with a collection of finished songs for this album as he had in the past, Robinson would present the group with sketches—a verse and melody here, a chorus and chord progression there—and let the band follow its collective muse to bring the music to life, a process he likens to putting an engine into the chassis of an old race car. Robinson had been sitting on “Leave My Guitar Alone,” for instance, for nearly 15 years, but only once he presented it to the rest of the band did it roar to life in a way that had eluded him for more than a decade.

“It’s a group effort,” says Robinson. “All it takes is one good, small idea, and then if everyone’s focused and in the moment, a few hours later, you can have something that you realize you’ll be playing for as long as you’re making music. I think when everyone’s aware that that’s the sort of magic that we’re looking for, then it happens naturally. More than any other session that I’ve ever been a part of, that’s how all of these songs were done.”

“Ain’t It Hard But Fair” calls to mind the soulful Americana of The Band, while “Oak Apple Day” is a mediation on life in the CRB, and “Forever As The Moon” came together in a stream of consciousness between Casal and Robinson.

“The album’s title comes from that song, and it was the first thing that came to my mind while we were playing it,” remembers Robinson. “I didn’t even have a pen and paper out. We’d just finished a hectic year on the road, and I was looking around at the world and all the anxiety and the chaos. The phrase felt like this universal statement, to me, that it doesn’t matter who or how or where or why, no matter what you ‘re going through, as long as you have love, everyone can relate to that.”

Some of Robinson’s finest writing to date arrives in the album’s final minutes, with the soulful, southern, gospel- tinged closer “California Hymn,” which finds him singing “Glory glory hallelujah / It’s time to spread the news / Though my good words may sound profane to some.”

“That whole chorus is about being a part of our community, our little CRB culture,” explains Robinson. “These are our services when we play our music. And when it’s at its best, we feel like the music makes a connection with people that’s on a level that has nothing to do with commerce or nostalgia. There’s some other gravity that keeps us all together in those moments, and I think this song is representative of that kind of magic spell.”

Indeed, the whole album is something of a magic spell, and now that it’s been cast, it’s time for services to resume in the psychedelic church of the CRB. That means they’ll be hitting your local rock and roll temple in their ongoing mission to make the holy profane and the profane holy, so pour a little wine, light up an offering, and get ready for the unexpected. Amen.

G. Love & Special Sauce


Tart, Tangy, Smooth, and oh so lip-smacking Sweet! Aaah yes, time to praise the almighty summer sippin’ thirst quencher, being served straight up G. Love and Special Sauce style, ice cool and always refreshing. On their second release for Brushfire Records, the Philly boys offer up “Lemonade”, a series of soul drenched tracks pouring out their blues infused hip-hop, which people have been trying to label for years. The best advice – dont try to tame it or claim it; its simply their sonic trademark, instantly recognizable and addictively delicious.

“The whole thing about lemonade for me was when I first set out from Philly to make it in the music world I went up to Boston, and I would just sit on the front porch of my place after playing the streets or practicing and make myself a big pitcher of lemonade. It just symbolized old time porch loungin’ for that’s where I did a lot of my shedding and writing. It was so simple and great, I said, if I ever get a record deal I’m going to get Lemonade tattooed on my arm.”

It’s there all right, and seven albums, thirteen years, and over a million worldwide units later, “Lemonade” is the most cohesive and rewarding album Garrett Dutton – a.k.a. G. Love (guitar, vocals, harmonica, sweat and tears) has ever delivered. Produced and engineered in the womb of Philadelphonic Studios by Chris DiBeneditto (Electric Mile & Philadelphonic) and faithfully anchored by the Sauce, Jimi “Jazz” Prescott (acoustic bass), and Jeffrey “Thunderhouse” Clemens (drums, percussion), G. pairs up with some of the best players in the game including Ben Harper, Donovan Frankenreiter, Jasper, Dave Hidalgo (Los Lobos), Blackalicious, Marc Broussard, Tristan Prettyman and Jack Johnson on a fourteen song celebration of his iconic career.

The tradition of the hip-hop blues has always been to rip open the heart and bare the soul. Tell the listener what they want to hear and you’ll have a fair weather friend; tell them the way it is and you’ll have true love. Thankfully, the Love is Alive, for G. delivers his loping lilt with bone humming honesty and he’s never sounded so clear. From the swarming infectious grooves of “Ride”, “Ain’t That Right”, and “Holla!” to the laid down easy of “Breakin Up”, “Still Hanging Around”, and “Missing My Baby” G. and The Sauce dance with the muses of their mentors, John Hammond, Bob Dylan, Jimmy Reed, De La Soul without ever missing the beat of their own signature time.

Pepper this with the mercury simmer of “Hot Cookin'” with Frankenreiter, the idyllic warmth of “Rainbow” with Johnson, the aching duet of “Beautiful” with Prettyman and the handclapping hallelujah of “Let the Music Play” with Harper and Broussard you’re left with the pure sound of summer ringing in your ear.

As G. says of all the collaborations, “We just reached out to a lot of our friends who just happen to be incredible musicians, and everyone was pretty enthusiastic about coming into the studio with us. So while the record maintains a real G. Love feel, it was a real group effort. Especially on “Let the Music Play”, I mean Ben and Marc just came down and demolished this track. We cut the rhythm track but left it wide open. So Bens comes through town and he’s just on fire. He wrote his verse on the spot, whipped up this tight Wurlitzer part and played a crazy slide guitar solo throughout the whole thing. I already had a chorus together, but he added this gospel style by stacking his vocals a bit which caught the vibe. To top it off I wanted to have Broussard sing some harmony on it, but once in the studio he wanted to try out one of the verses. I asked him if he thought he could do it and he says in his real New Orleans gruff voice, you think I came down here to suck, man? Well okay. Watch out, I mean I never appreciated what an incredible vocalist he is until he just went in, put his church on it and crushed it. To have Ben and Marc, who both come at music from such a soulful way, on the same track was simply epic.”

Even though G. is an insatiable musical omnivore when it comes to feeding off influences, “Lemonade” is his most stylistically cohesive and focused album yet. Grown out of the somewhat dark tension of “The Electric Mile” (2001) and the ass bumping smorgasbord of “The Hustle” (2004), “Lemonade’s” overall kickback beat begs the listener to blow out the speakers in musical reaffirmation. “Free” perhaps its deepest and most powerful track pulls the continuity string through it all, for its positive examination of the cycle of rebirth through a persons life backed with a “Fixin’ to Die” blues beat perfectly captures the sweat your funk out, soul searchin, dust ridden road warriors G. Love and Special Sauce have come to embody.

“I’m in a real comfortable place musically and in my life; I’m cruisin right now and it feels good. So when I set out to make this record, I wanted to take my sound, base it on the groove and really get into a deeper pocket. Lyrically, I wanted to talk about what I always talk about finding love, making love, losing love, life and lemonade.”

Yes indeed, what you hold in your hands is pure, fresh, organic, summer sound. So go ahead, scratch it, sniff it, squeeze it, bite it until its juices slide down your elbows and leave you satisfied.

Band Of Horses



Eddie Vedder


Music: 1990-present – Pearl Jam, singer, songwriter, guitarist, ukuleleist.

2007-present – solo, singer, songwriter, guitarist, ukuleleist. Solo releases: 2007 – Into the Wild, soundtrack, Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song “Guaranteed.” 2011 – Ukulele Songs, nominee for 2012 Best Folk Album GRAMMY Award.

Film: 1992 – Singles, appearance. 1995 – Dead Man Walking, soundtrack. 1996 – Hype!, appearance. 1999 – Cradle Will Rock, soundtrack. 2001 – I Am Sam, soundtrack. 2001 – Last Party 2000, appearance. 2003 – Big Fish, soundtrack. 2003 – End of the Century: The Story of the Ramones, appearance, camera work. 2006 – Reign Over Me, soundtrack. 2007 – Amazing Journey: The Story of the Who, appearance. 2007 – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Runnin’ Down a Dream, appearance. 2007 – I’m Not There, soundtrack. 2007 – Running the Sahara, soundtrack. 2007 – Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, appearance. 2007 – Slacker Uprising, appearance. 2007 – Into the Wild, soundtrack. 2008 – Song Sung Blue, appearance. 2008 – Body of War: Songs that Inspired an Iraq War Veteran, soundtrack. 2009 – The People Speak, appearance. 2010 – Eat Pray Love, soundtrack. 2011– Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop, appearance. 2011 – Pearl Jam Twenty, appearance, camera work and soundtrack. 2015 – Aloha, soundtrack. 2017 – Twin Peaks, appearance.

Activism: EB Research Partnership, Executive Board and Management; “Heal EB: Cause the Wave” campaign, JPHRO, Seattle Translational Tumor Research.

Gospel Bird


Eric Morris has worked his way through some of Louisville’s top kitchens alongside some of Kentucky’s best chefs. He gained his culinary skills the old school way– with experience as his education. That experience began by spending a year under Volare’s chef Josh Moore, followed by spending 5 years under chef Anthony Lamas of Seviche, but it wasn’t until Morris broke away from the mold to begin working under the chefs/owners of Louisville’s beloved Hammerheads that he found a cuisine that truly spoke to him. Going back to his southern roots, Morris partnered with those same owners to open Loop 22 Rotisserie and Grill. In Loop’s first year open, it was voted Louisville’s Best New Restaurant by

After Loop 22’s closing, Morris set out to open his own restaurant, Gospel Bird, and found a prime location just across the river in New Albany, Indiana. Gospel Bird opened in February 2016 and is swiftly gaining steam. Driven by bourbon, fried chicken, and southern fare, Gospel Bird is quickly becoming a local staple. Morris’ second restaurant, a seafood concept “Hull & Highwater,” also in New Albany, is set to open summer of 2017.

Doc Crow’s


Located in the historic Whiskey Row of downtown Louisville, Doc Crow’s offers the freshest flavors of American Southern cuisine. The traditional menu celebrates classic seafood favorites from the coastal areas and diverse barbecue styles found throughout the interior regions. This Southern institution pays homage to its Whiskey Row location with a wide selection of the world’s great whiskies and a focus on America’s Native Spirit, bourbon. 

Anthony Falco

Originally from Austin, TX, Anthony Falco moved to Seattle after barely graduating from high school. He started a web design company at the age of 19, a bar at 21, and a restaurant at 23. After all three failed, he moved to NYC. He bartended in Williamsburg, and cooked at Pulino’s in Manhattan and Vinegar Hill in Brooklyn. Former pizza czar at Roberta’s. Since 2017 he has become a full time International Consultant specializing in natural fermentation, wood fired cooking and pizza. 

Anthony Lamas


Anthony Lamas’ roots in the Latin culinary tradition run deep, as he found his passion for food while working in his family’s Spanish restaurant as a child. Likewise, his mother’s heirloom recipes sparked his interest in the cuisine of his Mexican and Puerto Rican heritage. By helping to prepare meals on the family farm and participating in Future Farmers of America, Lamas was practicing the “farm to table” philosophy before it was a national movement. To pursue his dream of becoming a professional chef, Lamas trained with the San Diego Culinary Apprenticeship Program and worked with Jeff Tunks at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort. Under Tunks’ tutelage, Lamas explored West Coast flavors while developing Pacific Rim recipes, and he credits the acclaimed chef as his mentor.

In 1992, Lamas discovered Louisville, Kentucky as an emerging culinary destination, and he moved there with the dream of cooking with leading local talent while working toward opening his own restaurant. His style of cooking was unique to the area, and in 2005 he opened Seviche to rave reviews. Early accolades included Lamas being named a “Top Chef to Watch” by Louisville Magazine. Seviche has consistently maintained a four-star rating from the Louisville Courier-Journal. The most recent rating from local food critic Robin Garr is an impressive 99 points, and the culinary expert says of the restaurant: “I head over there as often as I can, and I recommend Seviche highly to out-of-town visitors as one of Louisville’s best, with Latino flair that proves our city’s exciting culinary scene is about much more than fried chicken, “Southern” fare and Hot Browns.”

 Lamas has also garnered significant national attention for Seviche. He has cooked at the James Beard House five times, and he was honored as a semifinalist for the James Beard Foundation’s “Best Chef: Southeast award in 2010, 2011 and 2012.” John Mariani of Esquire has said, “Seviche has emerged as one of America’s best and most innovative Nuevo Latino restaurants with plenty of the chef’s personality in every dish…If you have time for one meal in Louisville, make it Seviche.” In 2011, Lamas won the title of Extreme Chef on the hit Food Network show where he created a wedding menu with $99 worth of ingredients from a 99 cent store. Seviche was named one of “ten great places for Latin flavor and flair” by USA Today in 2009, and this accolade was followed by a feature on that named Lamas as a “leader of the Latin food revolution” alongside chefs like Douglas Rodriguez and Jose Garces in 2010. Southern Living, Food Arts, Bon Appétit and Wine Spectator have also showcased Lamas’ talent.

In addition to his commitment to Nuevo Latino cuisine, Lamas is dedicated to raising awareness of sustainable seafood practices, and his efforts earned him a Seafood Ambassador Award at the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s 2011 Cooking for Solutions festival. As a celebrity chef during the event, Lamas was showcased in an Iron Chef style challenge with Top Chef alumni Bryan Voltaggio, Casey Thompson and Carla Hall and was recognized with the “Flavor and Spice” award.

Kevin Ashworth


Kevin Ashworth has been with Chef Edward Lee for over five years, first as a sous chef for 610 Magnolia, then as the Executive Chef of sister restaurant, MilkWood and now back to 610 Magnolia as Executive Chef. Through the years, he has traveled and cooked with Chef Lee in places like Korea, Malaysia, Milan, Italy and many cities across America working with the most reputable chefs of our generation.  His ability to bring a fresh perspective to classic southern dishes has earned him recognition from peers and critics alike. His dishes have been featured in several publications including Garden & Gun and Southern Living magazines. He was a finalist for the Eater “Young Gun” award, is a regular on the festival circuit from Atlanta, GA to New York City, New York, and recently appeared on The Cooking Channel.

Jose Salazar


Chef Jose Salazar was born in Colombia South America and was raised in Queens NY. Chef Salazar got his start in restaurants as a bartender and waiter at some of New York’s hottest establishments- among them, Donatella Arpia’s Bellini restaurant.  Although the front of the house is where he started, it was the kitchen that really caught his eye. This prompted him to enroll in to the culinary program at the New York Restaurant School. Upon graduating in 2001 he landed an internship with famed Chef Jean George Vongerichten at his name sake restaurant; Jean George. After completing the internship, he went on to work with some of New York’s most celebrated chefs and restaurateurs, including Geoffrey Zacharian of Town, Josh De’ Chellis of Sumile, and Eric and Bruce Bromberg of Blue Ribbon. However it was Jose’s four years working with Chef Thomas Keller that made the most palpable impression on his cooking philosophies. In 2003 Jose was hired as chef de partie to be a part of the opening staff of the highly acclaimed Per-Se restaurant. Then in 2006 he was instrumental in the opening of another of Chef Keller’s projects; Bouchon Bakery, where he became the Executive Sous-Chef.

In 2008, Chef Salazar took his knowledge and experience to Cincinnati Ohio, where he was tapped to be the Executive Chef of The historical Cincinnatian Hotel and Palace restaurant.  It’s there that Jose was able to hone his style of cooking, incorporating the ingredients and techniques of the Americas, Europe and Japan. Since his arrival to the Queen city, Jose has received many favorable reviews, including 5 stars (the highest rating) from Polly Campbell of The Cincinnati Enquirer. He’s also garnered national attention- In 2011 Food and Wine magazine awarded him the title of people’s choice “Best New Chef”. 

In December of 2013 Chef Salazar and his wife Ann opened Salazar, their much anticipated restaurant in the Over the Rhine neighborhood of Cincinnati. Immediately after opening it was clear that Salazar was going to be an instant hit. Their modern bistro is packed nightly with diners eating foods such as duck rillettes, fried oyster sliders, rib-eye steaks, and veal tongue al’a plancha. This little forty five seater, while just around three years old is recognized as one of the best in the city by the dining public and critics alike.

In August of 2015, Jose and Ann opened Mita’s, a 135 seat restaurant located in the heart of downtown Cincinnati. This restaurant features the food and drinks of Spain and Latin America with a formal but laid back design. In just a year and a half Mita’s has already set it’s self apart with wonderful food, service and ambiance. It has received praise from countless publications, both locally and nationally. Chef Salazar and Mita’s have received nominations for “best Chef”, Great Lakes from the prestigious James Beard foundation in 2016 and 2017.

Erling Wu-Bower


Nico Osteria’s chef de cuisine, 2015 and 2016 James Beard Foundation “Best Chef: Great Lakes” nominee, Erling Wu-Bower’s focus and intensity has driven him to great creative heights in his pursuit of invoking the spirit of coastal Italy in the states. Wu-Bower started his culinary career under Chef Paul Kahan’s tutelage, and has worked with One Off ever since.

Cooking runs in Wu-Bower’s blood; his mother is an accomplished food writer and his father a food loving Cajun. He had little choice but to pursue a career in what he was taught and loved most—food. “I don’t know what else I’d do; cooking has been ingrained in my soul. There aren’t many people who get to go to work and practice their passion every day.” Family came first, but at an early age Wu-

Bower found mentorship in acclaimed chef, and close family friend, Rick Bayless—it was Bayless who inspired his love of seafood, teaching him to expertly prepare fish.

After attending the University of Notre Dame as a philosophy student, Wu-Bower joined Chef Paul Kahan’s culinary team at avec as a cook. A few years later he opened The Publican as Sous Chef, and there under the careful watch of Brian Huston, learned what it meant to be a chef. Wu-Bower stayed with The Publican until it outgrew its space, crossing Green Street to help open Publican Quality Meats, where he served as Executive Sous Chef of both kitchens. Wu-Bower then returned to avec as Chef de Cuisine, where he embraced the restaurant’s core cuisine while making the menu his own. In 2013, Wu-Bower embarked on his biggest challenge to date, opening Nico Osteria. There, he combines his love of fresh seafood and ingredient-driven fare to produce a singularly memorable dining experience.

Edward Lee


Chef Edward Lee is the chef/owner of 610 Magnolia, The Wine Studio, MilkWood, and Whiskey Dry in Louisville, KY and culinary director for Succotash in National Harbor, MD and DC. He has received multiple finalist nominations for the James Beard Foundation Awards Best Chef: Southeast. He appears frequently in print and television and was recently nominated for a daytime Emmy for his role as host of the Emmy-winning series, Mind of Chef on PBS. Lee’s self-authored best-selling cookbook, Smoke & Pickles, chronicles his unconventional journey from the kitchens of Brooklyn to becoming a lauded Southern chef.

Amanda Freitag


Amanda Freitag is the co-star of Food Network’s hit series, Chopped, and the co-host of Food Network’s American Diner Revival, alongside Ty Pennington. Amanda has battled Bobby Flay on Iron Chef America, and can also be found contributing to Unique Eats on Cooking Channel. In the fall of 2009, she competed for the title of America’s Next Iron Chef.

Growing up in New Jersey, Amanda’s passion for food was fostered by everyone from her grandparents to her high school home economics teacher. They encouraged her to pursue a cooking career and to enroll at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. After graduation from culinary school, Amanda’s first position in a New York City kitchen was as rotissier and garde manger at Vong under the guidance of Jean-Georges Vongerichten. It was there that she was introduced to marrying French technique with Southeast Asian ingredients and flavors.

In 1994, Amanda began working with chef Diane Forley at Verbena, where she rose quickly through the ranks to become the restaurant’s chef de cuisine. Forley taught Amanda the importance of using local, organic ingredients and introduced her to the Union Square Greenmarket. During her time at Verbena, Amanda realized how much she had yet to learn about the culinary world, and in 1999 she traveled extensively through France and Italy to explore the bountiful markets and progressive restaurant scenes.

While in Paris, she spent two weeks working under chef Alain Passard at his venerable Arpege restaurant. While her time there was short, the lessons she learned were life changing. At Arpege, Passard insisted on the freshest ingredients and therefore, there was nothing left in the walk-in refrigerators at the end of service besides butter. This eye-opening experience helped Amanda to further develop her deep appreciation of superlative ingredients and the flavors of the Mediterranean region.

Upon returning to New York, Amanda worked at some of the city’s most popular restaurants including Cesca, where she cooked alongside Tom Valenti as his chef de cuisine and earned two stars from The New York Times. Following Cesca, Amanda accepted the position of executive chef at Gusto in the West Village, where her food was met with critical acclaim.

In January 2008, Amanda took over as the executive chef at The Harrison in TriBeCa. Over the three years that she helmed the kitchen, The Harrison received numerous accolades from local and national media, including a two- star review from The New York Times. Her first cookbook, The Chef Next Door: A Pro Chefs Recipes for Fun, Fearless Home Cooking, was released in September 2015. When she is not in the kitchen, Amanda enjoys traveling the world and collecting restaurant menus to add to her ever-growing collection.

Chris Cosentino


Chris Cosentino is the chef & co-owner of San Francisco’s celebrated Cockscomb restaurant – alongside partner Oliver Wharton and parent company Delicious MFG & CO – and the chef & co-creator of Boccalone artisanal salumeria. Cosentino’s first executive chef position began at Incanto in 2002 where his innovative Italian and whole animal cookery drew critical acclaim. Cosentino opened Cockscomb in 2014, showcasing a range of sustainable meat cuts and dishes inspired by the city’s culinary history, which San Francisco Chronicle restaurant critic Michael Bauer awarded 3 stars, deeming that: “There’s nothing else like it, and Cosentino has a consistent, unwavering vision.”

Cosentino has appeared on Food Network’s “Next Iron Chef America,” “Chefs vs. City,” and BRAVO’s “Top Chef Masters,” earning over $140,000 for The Michael J. Fox Foundation as the season four winner and is currently working on a title

dedicated to offal with writer and photographer Michael Harlan Turkell, published by Clarkson Potter.

Cosentino will also debut Jackrabbit in Portland, OR (winter 2017) and Acacia House in St. Helena at the forthcoming Las Alcobas Napa Valley (spring 2017), both new projects with business partner Wharton.

Kenny Wayne Shepherd


There are few artists whose names are synonymous with one instrument and how it’s played in service to an entire genre.

Utter the phrase “young blues guitarist” within earshot of anyone with even a cursory knowledge of the modern musical vanguard and the first name they are most likely to respond with will be Kenny Wayne Shepherd. Still barely in his 30s, the Louisiana born axeman and songsmith has been selling millions of albums, throwing singles into the Top 10, shining a light on the rich blues of the past and forging ahead with his own modern twist on a classic sound he has embodied since his teens. He met Stevie Ray Vaughan at 7, shared the stage with New Orleans legend Bryan Lee at13. As an adult, he continues to create genre-defining blues-infused rock n’ roll.

Kenny Wayne Shepherd’s How I Go not only serves as a strong reminder of the chops that caused Guitar World to place him right behind B.B. King and Eric Clapton on their list of blues guitarists, but it’s the strongest indication yet of his gifted songwriting talent. The album pairs Kenny’s deeply soulful and impassioned takes on classic material like Bessie Smith’s “Backwater Blues,” Albert King’s “Oh, Pretty Woman” and The Beatles “Yer Blues” alongside the strongest writing and co-writing of his career thus far.

Let’s not forget that Kenny co-wrote “Blue on Black” very early on. The song was #1 on the Rock Charts for 17 consecutive weeks. All of the accolades heaped upon his playing are well deserved and well earned. But there is so much more to offer.

“At this point, most people who know about me know I can play guitar,” Shepherd says. “As far as my approach to guitar on this record, it’s not about showing people how much I can play. It’s about really choosing the right notes and playing them at the right times so that every note penetrates people, and they feel it inside and it’s not just some fleeting thing that just goes right by them.

“I wanted to be conservative, and selective, and tasteful in the solos that I did,” he adds. “I wanted to concentrate on the song as a whole: the vocals, the arrangements, so every instrument that is being played contributes to the song and takes it to a better place.”

Where Ledbetter Heights (1995) was a little more bluesy; Trouble Is… (1997) offered more blues based rock; Live On (1999) took a turn to more blues based rock; The Place You’re In (2004) went straight ahead rock and the 10 Days Out (2007) documentary exemplified the best of straight blues, Kenny says this one “falls right down the middle between blues and rock.”

“Never Lookin’ Back” is a rocking song that sets the tone for album, with lyrics about moving on and rolling with life’s punches. The song “Cryin’ Shame” has that straight Texas shuffle longtime fans love to hear from Kenny and his band. “Show Me The Way Back Home” is a powerful blues ballad for the ages. “We hit a really great balance,” he says of the album, which he co-produced.

“Who’s Gonna Catch You Now?” is a very personal song. “I’ve become a father over the past couple of years. It’s about a parent accepting what it’s like to be a parent and having to accept a certain degree of powerlessness. It’s just learning about acceptance. If you’re a parent, it will pull on your heart strings for sure.”

The hard-rocking, blues-based, guitar-driven album sounds young, it sounds fresh. Yet it has that distinctive energy and vibe drawn from the deep heritage of the genre. Kenny Wayne Shepherd is growing as a songwriter, musician and producer. Which isn’t to say he’s not proud of his past. “I don’t have any regrets, other than maybe a couple of outfits that I wore on stage,” he laughs.

“My approach from day one was that I was not going to record anything that I couldn’t completely wrap my mind around and that I wasn’t prepared to play for the rest of my career. As a result of that approach and not letting anybody talk me into doing anything that I didn’t want to do, and nobody forcing me to record anything I didn’t want to, I’ve got a body of work that I’m proud of. I still enjoy playing all of the songs off my first album. They are as much fun to play today as they were in 1995 when that album came out. I’m not one of those guys who doesn’t want to listen to his own music. I don’t go around listening to it all the time, but, my thing is, if I’m making music that I don’t want to listen to, then why am I making music? I enjoy what I do. I have a lot of stuff that I’m proud of. Every album that we’ve done I’ve tried to do different things. I’ve never wanted to be an artist where people could predict what was next.”

The name “Kenny Wayne Shepherd” is absolutely synonymous with “young blues guitarist” but that phrase isn’t the totality of his person.

“Blues player is definitely one of the labels I’ve accumulated, because I’m a huge blues fan and I love to play the blues,” he says. “But if you listen to my music, especially over the course of my career, everything that I do is not blues. It’s the foundation of what I do, but my stuff has a lot more of an edge to it. It’s a little more contemporary. And there’s a certain youthfulness to what I do. I started writing and recording music when I was a teenager and that energy has been consistent throughout my career.”

Last year’s Live in Chicago! captured epic performances from Kenny and an assemblage of living legends in the blues world. Kenny’s incredible presence and perpetually giving performances, designed to get every person in the room on their feet and to leave them smiling, are all of the evidence one needs to determine that he’ll continue to do this for decades to come – just like his heroes.

“I’ve got a lot of a career left ahead of me and a lot of records left to make,” he says. “I’m hoping to be playing music when I’m in my 80’s like B.B. King. I’ve got a lot more songs left in me to write and record. My fans want to hear new music, they want to hear new albums, and then when they hear a new record they want to come out and hear us play that stuff live.”

Kenny Wayne Shepherd is very cognizant of the emotional role music can play in the lives of his listeners. He’s in awe of that responsibility and works hard to bring happiness to people with his considerable gifts. With that said, he’s bound and determined to be remembered as a guy who just straight-up kicked a lot of butt. “I get up on stage every night to play my heart out and to try to turn people on their ear, man. I want to bring light into people’s lives with my music. If I can make people feel good for an hour and a half to two hours and forget about whatever might be stressing them out, then I’m doing my job.”

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue


Trombone Shorty’s new album opens with a dirge, but if you think the beloved bandleader, singer, songwriter and horn-blower born Troy Andrews came here to mourn, you got it all wrong. That bit of beautiful New Orleans soul—”Laveau Dirge No. 1,” named after one of the city’s most famous voodoo queens—shows off our host’s roots before Parking Lot Symphony branches out wildly, wonderfully, funkily across 12 diverse cuts. True to its title, this album contains multitudes of sound—from brass band blare and deep-groove funk, to bluesy beauty and hip-hop/pop swagger—and plenty of emotion all anchored, of course, by stellar playing and the idea that, even in the toughest of times, as Andrews says, “Music brings unity.”

As for why it’s taken Andrews so long to follow 2013’s Raphael Saadiq-produced Say That to Say This, the man simply says, “I didn’t realize so much time passed. Some artists don’t work until they put a record out but I never stopped going.” Truly. In the last four years, Andrews banked his fifth White House gig; backed Macklemore and Madonna at the Grammys; played on albums by She & Him, Zac Brown, Dierks Bentley, and Mark Ronson; opened tours for Daryl Hall & John Oates and Red Hot Chili Peppers; appeared in Foo Fighters’ Sonic Highways documentary series; voiced the iconic sound of the adult characters in The Peanuts Movie; inherited the esteemed annual fest-closing set at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in the tradition of Crescent City greats like the Neville Brothers and Professor Longhair; and released Trombone Shorty, a children’s book about his life that was named a Caldecott Honor Book in 2016.

Adding to that legacy, his Blue Note Records debut Parking Lot Symphony finds Andrews teamed with Grammy-nominated producer Chris Seefried (Andra Day, Fitz and the Tantrums) and an unexpected array of cowriters and players including members of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, The Meters, Better Than Ezra, and Dumpstaphunk. Considering Andrews’ relentless schedule, it’s all the more surprising that this LP began with him in a room, all alone, back in New Orleans.

“I had two weeks at home so I went to the studio and set up the ‘playground,'” he recalls. “I had everything in a circle: tuba, trombone, trumpet, keyboard, Fender Rhodes, Wurly, B3 organ, guitar, bass, drums—and me buried in the middle.” He recorded an album’s worth of ideas and then, well, walked away for a year. Not because he was too busy, but because he wanted to hit the road and see how the music changed on him. When Andrews came back with a full band, the songs came to life.

Take the album’s two covers, a pair of NOLA deep cuts: there’s “Here Comes the Girls,” a 1970 Allen Toussaint song originally recorded by Ernie K-Doe that here (with Ivan Neville on piano) sounds bawdy and regal, like something from a current Bruno Mars album; and The Meters’ lovesick “It Ain’t No Use,” which swirls a vintage R&B vibe with resonant choir vocals and upbeat guitar from The Meters’ Leo Nocentelli himself to transport the listener to the center of the jumpingest jazz-soul concert hall that never was.

The story there is almost too good. The session band—guitarist Pete Murano, sax men Dan Oestreicher and BK Jackson, and drummer Joey Peebles with Dumpstaphunk’s Tony Hall in for Orleans Avenue bassist Mike Bass-Bailey—were in the studio to lay down “It Ain’t No Use.” Hall even had the vintage acoustic he bought from Nocentelli years ago, which was used on the original Meters session. On the way to the bathroom, Andrews saw Nocentelli coming out of a different tracking room: it was meant to be.

But that’s not unusual for a man raised in one of the Tremé’s most musical families. Andrews got his name when he picked up his instrument at four (“My parents pushed me toward trombone because they didn’t need another trumpet player,” he laughs). By eight, he led his own band in parades, halls and even bars: “They’d have to lock the door so the police couldn’t come in.” Promoters would try to hand money to his older cousins, but they’d kindly redirect them to the boy. In his teens, Andrews played shows abroad with the Neville Brothers. Fresh out of high school (New Orleans Center for Creative Arts) he joined Lenny Kravitz’ band.

Across that time, three Trombone Shorty albums and many collaborations since, Andrews nurtured a voracious appetite for all types of music—a phenomenon on fluid display with Parking Lot Symphony. On “Familiar,” co-written by Aloe Blacc, they practically mint a new genre (trap-funk?) while Andrews channels his inner R. Kelly to spit game at an old flame. Meanwhile, the instrumental “Tripped Out Slim” (the nickname of a family friend who recently passed) bends echoes of the Pink Panther theme into something fit for James Brown to strut to. And if you listen closely to “Where It At?,” written with Better Than Ezra’s Kevin Griffin, you may even hear a little Y2K pop. “I know it wasn’t cool to listen to *NSYNC or Britney Spears in high school,” says Andrews, “but those bass lines and melodies are funky.” They pair astonishingly well with all the Earth, Wind & Fire that bubbles beneath these songs.

It’s worth noting that Andrews’ vocals sound better than ever (he credits Seefried for that), because Parking Lot Symphony might be the man’s most heartfelt offering yet. The breezy title track, which Andrews wrote with Alex Ebert (Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros), is as much about walking the Tremé, being uplifted by the music that seems to seep from every surface, as it is about moving on from a broken heart. And the shuffling, bluesy “No Good Time” reminds us, with a world-weary smile, that “nobody never learned nothin’ from no good time.”

But Andrews is clear that this isn’t some kind of breakup record. “It’s a life record,” he says, “about prevailing no matter what type of roadblock is in front of you.” That message is clearest on “Dirty Water,” where over an easy groove, Andrews adopts a soft falsetto to address just about anyone going through it—personal, political, whatever. “There’s a lot of hope turning to doubt,” he coos. “I’ve got something to say to them / You don’t know what you’re talking about / When you believe in love, it all works out.” Amen. Now let the horns play us out.

Buddy Guy


At age 79, Buddy Guy is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, a major influence on rock titans like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, and Stevie Ray Vaughan, a pioneer of Chicago’s fabled West Side sound, and a living link to the city’s halcyon days of electric blues. Buddy Guy has received 7 GRAMMY Awards, a 2015 Lifetime Achievement GRAMMY Award, 34 Blues Music Awards (the most any artist has received), the Billboard Magazine Century Award for distinguished artistic achievement, a Kennedy Center Honor, and the Presidential National Medal of Arts. Rolling Stone Magazine ranked him #23 in its “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.”

Buddy Guy released his brand new studio album Born To Play Guitar on July 31, 2015 via Silvertone/RCA Records, which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Blues Albums chart. The follow-up to his 2013 first-ever double disc release, Rhythm & Blues, which also debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Top Blues Albums chart, Born To Play Guitar is produced by GRAMMY Award winning producer/songwriter and Buddy’s longtime collaborator Tom

Hambridge. The new release features guest appearances by Van Morrison, Joss Stone, Kim Wilson and Billy Gibbons.

Though Buddy Guy will forever be associated with Chicago, his story actually begins in Louisiana. One of five children, he was born in 1936 to a sharecropper’s family and raised on a plantation near the small town of Lettsworth, located some 140 miles northwest of New Orleans. Buddy was just seven years old when he fashioned his first makeshift “guitar”—a two-string contraption attached to a piece of wood and secured with his mother’s hairpins.

In 1957, he took his guitar to Chicago, where he would permanently alter the direction of the instrument, first on numerous sessions for Chess Records playing alongside Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, and the rest of the label’s legendary roster, and then on recordings of his own. His incendiary style left its mark on guitarists from Jimmy Page to John Mayer. “He was for me what Elvis was probably like for other people,” said Eric Clapton at Guy’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2005. “My course was set, and he was my pilot.”

Seven years later, July 2012 proved to be one of Buddy Guy’s most remarkable years ever. He was awarded the 2012 Kennedy Center Honor for his lifetime contribution to American culture; earlier in the year, at a performance at the White House, he even persuaded President Obama to join him on a chorus of “Sweet Home Chicago.” Also in 2012, he published his long-awaited memoir, When I Left Home.

These many years later, Buddy Guy is a genuine American treasure and one of the final surviving connections to an historic era in the country’s musical evolution. He keeps looking to the future of the blues through his ongoing work with his 16-year-old protégé, Quinn Sullivan.

“I worry a lot about the legacy of Muddy, Wolf, and all the guys who created this stuff,” he says. “I want people to remember them. It’s like the Ford car—Henry Ford invented the Ford car, and regardless how much technology they got on them now, you still have that little sign that says ‘Ford’ on the front.

“One of the last things Muddy Waters told me—when I found out how ill he was, I gave him a call and said, ‘I’m on my way to your house.’ And he said, ‘Don’t come out here, I’m doing all right. Just keep the damn blues alive.’ They all told me that if they left here before I did, then everything was going to be on my shoulders. So as long as I’m here, I’m going to do whatever I can to keep it alive.”

Amos Lee


Over the course of more than a dozen years and six studio albums, Amos Lee has continued to evolve, develop, and challenge himself as a musician. With SPIRIT, he makes his biggest creative leap yet.

Most notably, for the first time, Lee acted as his own producer. While his last two albums bore the stamp of strong producers—Joey Burns of Calexico on 2011’s Mission Bell (which debuted at Number One on the Billboard 200, Amazon, iTunes charts, and spun off a hit single with “Windows are Rolled Down”) and Jay Joyce (Little Big Town, Eric Church, Cage the Elephant) on 2013’s Mountains of Sorrow, Rivers of Song—Lee finally felt ready to take over the helm.

“I’ve been wanting to produce my own record for a long time,” he says, explaining that he met with numerous candidates before concluding that he should make the move. “What I wanted to provide was a place
for musicians to come and feel they were able to express themselves, and contribute in their own voice the way I was able to contribute in mine.”

Lee’s sense of ambition for SPIRIT largely derived from his own live performing experiences in recent
years. “Working with folks like the LA Philharmonic and the Mobile, Alabama Community Gospel Choir opened my mind to the possibility of pushing the edges of arrangement away from solitary moments into more collaborative, community experiences,” he says. “These were transformative creative opportunities that I never dreamed I would have. To stand on stage and be equal parts participant and observer during these career- defining moments was such a thrill, and I credit the singers, arrangers, and conductors for being so open and generous to the songs.”

Along with such monumental events as working with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra (a performance which yielded Lee’s most recent release, Live from Red Rocks), being a band leader over the last decade has also helped Lee hone his craft as an arranger. “I have a great, great band—the most gentle, genuine, musically open-minded people,” he says. “I push them some, but they always respond with creativity, and they inspire me to open things up musically. The versatility of my live band has been a gradual concept I’ve been working on since I started playing at the club The Tin Angel in Philly in 2002. Back then, we would play three- or four- hour shows. We had horn sections, violins, extended jams, improvisational songs, and whatever else would come from the ether. This current group of players I have on the road with me has re-inspired me to be more open, and less protective. I think SPIRIT reflects this attitude, and the vibrations are very much reflections of the connections.

“I’ve always loved such a wide range of music.” Lee adds, discussing some new influences, which were pulling him toward a new sonic direction. “I’ve been listening to a lot of Schoolboy Q, Drake, the earlier stuff by
The Weeknd, and I was wanting to open up that box a little more,” he says. “I’ve always loved ’90s R&B, and now with streaming services, it’s so easy to sample so much new music.”

To begin the new project, he began assembling musicians who he felt could blend a dynamic yet organic marriage of modern rhythm with classic instrumentation. “I chose the players because I had this instinct and hunger to challenge myself and expand,”says Lee, “and the foundation of this record was built when I chose the rhythm section.”

A performance by the Robert Glasper Trio in Philadelphia led Lee to the realization
that Mark Colenburg was the drummer he was looking for. “I remember watching Mark play with such incredible facility and musicality,” he says. “He’s such a diverse and soulful listener. It was one of those eureka moments, and he elevated everything so much.”

Lee had known bassist Adam Blackstone (who’s played alongside artists from Jay-Z to Al Green to Justin Timberlake) for years, but had never worked with him. “Adam is a genius,” he says. “He’s playing and hearing everything four bars ahead of everyone else. As a first-time producer, he was such a blessing to have.” Finding a three-day window when both of these busy players were available, Lee—along his live band’s musical director, Jaron Olevsky—went to Nashville. They knocked out ten songs, most in one or two takes, and the core of SPIRIT was formed.

“We had never played with this kind of rhythm section before,” says Lee. “And we came away from these sessions with a hybrid sound I wasn’t able to find in my previous records, but which I’ve always gravitated to as a listener—real gospel-soul-R&B stuff.”

This new energy is most apparent in a song like “Vaporize,” which served as a jumping-off point for
Lee’s vision of the record. But it was equally important that the album’s more straightforward, “singer- songwriter”-style songs were infused with a different approach. “With something like ‘Highways and Clouds,’ I didn’t want to just do the standard waltz feel that’s led by the acoustic guitar,” he says. “I wanted to add dimensions to the arrangements and try to transform them, rhythmically and instrumentally, so that the album was cohesive. The demo versions of these songs are remarkably different from what came out through the recording process, and it was so much fun to explore feels and textures, and bear witness to the transformation.

“The song ‘One Lonely Light’ had kind of a small, short verse with a sweeping chorus,” he continues. “I was always under the impression that if you just write a good song and play it, that’s the magic of it—which is not untrue, but now I also want to think about arrangements that can be impactful in a live setting as
well. On my first album, I didn’t think about any of that, and Lee Alexander did such a great job making that album all about me and my songs and voice. But I’ve picked up enough information and experience that now I can inject what I’ve learned from working with so many great producers into helping mold arrangements that are more in tune with what I’m doing live.”

Not that it was easy learning the ropes as a producer. “It’s not always magic-making,” says Lee with a laugh. “There’s a lot of grinding it out, with people you maybe don’t have a lot of history with, but it was such a joyous experience, even in those harder creative times.”

For Amos Lee, SPIRIT is the fulfillment of dreams and aspirations—musical, personal, and professional—that he’s had for a long time. “All you can ask for as an artist is the chance to create what you hear and feel inside of yourself,” he says. “The performances by everyone gave me such a strong place to draw from, and being more connected to the arrangements made it easier and more fun to sing. For my first time producing, I could not have been luckier—I was able to get into the heart of every single moment of this record.”

Gary Clark Jr.


February 10th, 2017 (Burbank, CA) — Gary Clark Jr. will release a new live album on March 17th via Warner Bros. Records. Live North America 2016, his second live album, is available for pre-order beginning today via all digital retail stores. Back when music was only available on a vinyl album, the pure excitement captured on a live album was considered the ultimate document coveted by hardcore music fans. Clark continues this tradition by bringing the live album to a younger generation of music fans. Live North America 2016 was recorded absolutely live, with no overdubs. What you hear is how it went down.

All pre-orders will include an instant download of a stunning live version of “The Healing.” Live North America 2016 will be available on CD, vinyl, and digitally.

The album includes all new and unreleased live recordings from Gary Clark Jr’s 2016 tour in support of his internationally acclaimed 2015 album The Story of Sonny Boy Slim. It features several songs from that album, including “The Healing,” “Grinder,” “Our Love,” “Cold-Blooded,” and “Shake,” featuring Leon Bridges and his saxophonist Jeff Dazey. The set is characterized by raw soul and funk, classic solo and blues performances, and several lengthy, tour de force guitar jams. It includes two previously unreleased covers, Jimmy Reed’s “Honest I Do” and Elmore James’ “My Baby’s Gone” as well as “You Saved Me” and “When My Train Pulls In” — fan favorites from Clark’s Warner Bros. Records critically praised debut Blak and Blu.

Clark’s incendiary performances were also beautifully captured on Gary Clark Jr. Live, which was released in September 2014 and met with tremendous critical and commercial acclaim. Both live albums chronicle Clark’s evolution on stage as his songs expand and find new life beyond the studio recordings. Much like the great blues, jazz, and soul legends of past, these recordings are lightening in a bottle — historical moments in time for an artist who is ever-morphing and one of the truly great improvisers of his generation and our time.

The release of Live North America 2016 coincides with Clark’s appearances as a special guest at Eric Clapton’s upcoming 50th anniversary shows at Madison Square Garden in New York City on March 19th and 20th and at The Forum in Los Angeles on March 25th.

Eric Clapton says of Clark, “Gary Clark Jr is incredibly inspiring to me because he does what I’d like to do onstage without any effort at all.”

Paul Rodgers


Founding member of Free, Bad Company and The Firm.  Grammy-nominated solo artist Paul Rodgers is a musical innovator who has successfully reinvented himself over the course of a five-decade career. A multifaceted creative force — a powerhouse vocalist, hit songwriter and peerless showman – he’s sold over 90 million records, and helped redefine rock ‘n’ roll in the process. Rodgers’ latest effort is a passion project that explores the formative, life-altering songs of his youth. Cut in Memphis, The Royal Sessions is throwback affair: an old-school, analogue, live on the floor recording that finds Rodgers digging into a set of deep Southern soul and R&B tunes from the ‘60s and ‘70s. Like his forays into the blues of Muddy Waters, Rodgers proves a peerless interpreter, bringing new light and shade to these classic sides, and adding yet another essential entry into his catalog.

Platinum selling Singer, Songwriter & Self-taught Multi-instrumentalist
Written, Recorded, Produced and Released 30 albums since 1968
Sold over 90 million records
Formed and Led 3 bands to worldwide success: Free, Bad Company, & The Firm
Grammy Nominated Solo Career

Has Recorded/Performed with Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Brian May, David Gilmour, Buddy Guy, Joe Walsh, Slash, Nils Lofgren, Charlie Watts, Bryan Adams, Stax Recording artist Sam Moore, The Four Tops and others.

Rabbit Hole

Rabbit Hole Distillery


Our Bourbon and Rye whiskeys are 100% Kentucky made, crafted to create a unique drinking experience. We produced our first barrel the same way we will produce every barrel: from our own mix of carefully selected grains, the mash fermented at ideal temperatures to preserve exactly the flavors and aromas we’re aiming for, then distilled without compromise. Rabbit Hole Distillery is at the city’s creative heart, the NULU district, the nexus of old and new, where artists and entrepreneurs pursue their vision without budgeting for regret. We could be nowhere else.

Marianne Barnes

Master Distiller at Castle & Key

Raised and educated in Oldham County, Kentucky, Marianne Barnes took a fascinating path from an interest in design to liquor. Although she always loved science and math in school, as a youngster her “dream jobs” when grown up progressed from linguist, to designer, and in high school had ambitions to be a mechanic even led to an active avocation working with cars. It wasn’t until her father suggested she might like engineering, which the path started on the direction to making spirits. Little did she realize that she would find herself in a history-making position in which the creative and the scientific would come together. A fortuitous confluence of circumstances – her love of science, analytic mind, exceptional sensory skills, drive, and a fateful internship choice – led to her being the first woman to earn the title of Master Distiller in Kentucky since Prohibition.

As a college student at University of Louisville, Barnes wasn’t sure just how she would utilize her chemical engineering degree. Barnes found herself having to make a choice between several possible college internships. It finally came down to choosing between renewable energy research or working for Brown-Forman. Choosing an internship in Brown-Forman’s R&D department where she first learned to make bourbon, though, would set her on in a direction that would put her squarely in the path of Bourbon history. “Being mentored by Woodford’s legendary Master Distiller Chris Morris was one of the best things that ever happened to me; learning from him really brought all of my studies and hard work together,” said Barnes. Barnes was recognized in Whiskey Advocate Magazine as “The Next Generation” for the Bourbon Industry, as well as being honored by Forbes and included in the 2015 Food & Drink 30 under 30 list. Now she steps into the role of Master Distiller herself and has been recognized by Wine Enthusiast Magazine as on of America’s Top 40 Under 40 Tastemakers. Her combination of technical knowledge honed by hands-on experience, with a specialized palate and creative sensibility turn out to be a unique formula for her role as Master Distiller.

At 28, Barnes is well poised as a leader of the new generation of Spirits professionals that will shape the industry. She points out that her goals are “To use the Former Old Taylor distillery, an indisputable industry icon, as inspiration to build a new legacy of honesty and thoughtfully crafted spirits that will distinguish us in our product lines and guest experience.”

Barnes’ role in changing the dynamic in a predominantly male industry is clear. Praise for Barnes comes from thought leaders such Fred Minnick, author of Whiskey Women, who states that, “now that Marianne Barnes takes this title, she honors all the women past, present and future as the first woman to rise up the production ranks at a major Kentucky bourbon company and become a master distiller”.

Kaveh Zamanian

Founder of Rabbit Hole Distillery

Rabbit Hole’s Founder, CEO and Whiskey Maker, Kaveh Zamanian, has taken an unconventional path to become the head of a modern bourbon brand and a whiskey distillery in the heart of Louisville. He has a PhD in clinical psychology and is a certified psychoanalyst. After 24-years of clinical practice and academia he turned his attention to the world of craft spirits. With his wife, Heather Bass, a Louisville native, and their children, Henri, Lilia and Isabella on his side, he embarked on the challenging path of creating imaginative and distinct styles of whiskey. He established Rabbit Hole in 2012 and started making personal recipes of Bourbon and Rye whiskey at a distillery in Kentucky. The first batch of his Bourbon and Rye whiskies were released on October of 2016 and in the same month construction began on the Rabbit Hole Distillery in NULU. The architecturally bold and ambitious distillery, designed by celebrated architect, Doug Pierson, is scheduled to open early 2018.

The Big Bourbon Bar

Presented By Courier Journal

The Big Bourbon Bar presented by Courier-Journal features our incredible lineup of bourbons curated by our experts and you, the fans! Whether you’re in the mood for something adventurous or a classic concoction, our expert bartenders will be shaking, stirring, and serving up delicious bourbon cocktails all weekend long.

The Big Bourbon Bar will also feature great music and talks all weekend long. Our friends at The Bluegrass Situation have curated a lineup of bluegrass bands to provide the soundtrack for the weekend. In between sets, Bardstown Bourbon Company will host “Bourbon Time with Fred Minnick” and special guests.

The Big Bourbon Bar featuring 24 Bourbon Partners
1792, Angel’s Envy, Barrell, Basil Hayden’s, Blade And Bow, Buffalo Trace, Bulleit, Coopers’ Craft, Eagle Rare, Ezra Brooks, Four Roses, Jefferson’s, Jim Beam, Knob Creek, Larceny, Maker’s Mark, Michter’s, Old Forester, Rabbit Hole, Rebel Yell, Smooth Ambler, Peerless, W. L. Weller, Woodford Reserve.

Fred Minnick’s MiniBar
Bluegrass Distillers, Boone County, Hartfield & Co., Jeptha Creed, Limestone Branch, MB Roland, and New Riff.

Music curated by The Bluegrass Situation
The Steel Wheels, Mipso, Town Mountain, Love Canon, New Town, The Tillers, Reva Dawn Salon.

“Bourbon Time with Fred Minnick” presented by Bardstown Bourbon Company
Lineup and schedule coming soon! Follow us on social media to be the first to find out.

The Big Easy Boil

Hosted by Southern Comfort

Southern Comfort brings the spirit of New Orleans to Bourbon & Beyond with The Big Easy Boil: a weekend-long party featuring refreshing Southern Comfort cocktails and delicious Cajun cooking.

The incredible Shaggy Davis (NOLA Crawfish King, New Orleans) will be slinging over half a ton of fresh-caught seafood all weekend long. Louisville’s very own Chef Anthony Lamas (Seviche, Louisville) will make a guest appearance with a Latin spin on the classic Cajun tradition.

Shaggy Davis and Anthony Lamas will also be making an appearance on The Mash Stage with bartender extraordinaire Susie Hoyt (The Silver Dollar & El Camino, Louisville) for a special demo of The Big Easy Boil.

The Big Easy Boil hosted by Southern Comfort is open to all festivalgoers. Follow us on social media to be the first to find out about more details to be announced in the coming weeks. #SouthernComfort #TheSpiritOfNewOrleans

Tiki Barrel Bar

One part bourbon tiki cocktails. One part dance party. Stirred and shaken. The Tiki Barrel Bar will feature cocktails by bartenders Jane Danger (Mother of Pearl, New York) & Alla Lapuschik (Post Office, Brooklyn) plus DJ sets all weekend long by Craig Pfunder and Coat Check Pool Party.

The Tiki Barrel Bar is open to all festivalgoers. Follow us on social media to be the first to find out about more details to be announced in the coming weeks.

Stevie Nicks


Words… and Music…By Stevie Nicks

I began thinking about making this record in February of this year because I had about five months before Fleetwood Mac rehearsals started in August.   We didn’t have a year to hang out and work on music like I usually do.  I had about 40 songs originally done in demo form from 1969-1987 and ’94 and ’95. I thought we could certainly make an album from this collection – probably three albums. Many of the songs were already out there on the internet and fans have been asking for them for years through fan sites and letters.  I used to make cassettes of my music and give them to anybody. But to know that these songs were finally going to be recorded with the same love they were originally done when they were demos – that was joyous for me. I narrowed it down to 30 and had to keep weeding out.  I think Waddy hit it on the head when he said, “Stevie really writes one very long song. They’re all involved with each other. Each song is a lifetime… Each song has a soul… Each song has a purpose. Each song is a love story… They represent my life behind the scenes, the secrets, the broken hearts, the broken hearted and the survivors… These songs are the memories – the 24 Karat gold rings in the blue box… These songs are for you.”

From the very beginning of the first song I wrote before I turned 16 to the last song I ever wrote, there’s a certain thread that I use because it’s just what I do… The songs are all about love and heartbreak – how to pick up the pieces – how to keep moving… I’m really chronicling love from the very beginning. When you write a song and it doesn’t go on a record, it floats around in your life for years. You think about it and go over it until it becomes part of your world.  These songs are now 24 Karat Gold.

It all started when I fell crazy in love with a really super handsome kid from Arcadia High School who is still my really good friend today… Even now when he walks through the door, it’s like the same as when I saw him walking down the hall in 10th grade… He started me out as a songwriter… From that second onward I told my parents I was going to be a famous singer songwriter.  I was 15 1/2.
You usually don’t write songs about being super happy… When you write a song or a book, it’s usually when someone walks away. I think that’s the first moment you start to think about it not working out and you start to write.  The relationship may go on for longer but you’ve already started writing in your head because you see the future… Other times, you know a relationship won’t work from almost the beginning but you wouldn’t trade what you shared for a million dollars…

It’s not acting… It’s never acting… It’s the reason I go onstage and sing Edge of 17 every night since ’81 or Gold Dust Woman. I just take myself back to that time when it was written… Sometimes I can’t remember what happened yesterday but I remember so well what happened through the whole period of time that I wrote these songs.

Fast forward to 2014, I said to Dave (Stewart, co producer), “How do we make a record in a few months?”   And he said, “We go to Nashville for two weeks.”  So we all got on a plane – Waddy (Wachtel co producer/Stevie’s musical director), Dave, Lori and Sharon (long time background vocalists), my assistant Karen and I headed to Nashville from LA.  By this time, I had narrowed it down to l7 songs. I knew we had to smash the recording of them into ten days.  Later I’d figure out which l4 would make the record.  We went in on Monday morning and did two songs – even got a good vocal… Then, two more each day through Friday. Then we went into the smaller room to do little touches.  We flew back to LA and started working at my house for three weeks doing background and guitar overdubs.  It was really coming together.

The only way this would have been possible was because of the amazing “Nashvillians” (as I named them) the brilliant musicians who we worked with in Nashville.  Dave said that these guys can record all these songs in two weeks. I had my doubts because I don’t know any band in the world that could record all these songs in two weeks.  It was like Annie Oakley rode in and hired a gang. We were a whole different can of beans than they were used to working with for sure. They were a great band – tantamount to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers… They reminded me of Tom’s band because they were so good and they played together so well.  We were awestruck for the whole time just watching them.  For me to stand in the vocal booth and be able to see all of them –  that they could learn the songs that fast – it blew my mind… I told them, “I’m making a great record. Don’t care if it’s a hit record.   And they were all on board. We recorded live and just about all the final vocals are live… This was going to be a fast moving train… That is how we roll and THAT IS HOW WE ROLLED. AND WE DID IT.”

Ages ago I wanted to learn how to become a photographer. I don’t sleep at night so I thought, who am I going to ask to stay up all night and then do a show tomorrow night… I’m not going to get Christine (McVie) to be a model… She’s going to say, Are you crazy?  I’m going to the bar, bye.  And so it began… I had a long cord that plugged into the Polaroid which I put on a tripod with the button in my hand… I’d be completely dressed – red lipstick and hair and long white gown in the middle of the night… I’d start moving furniture and lamps around and kept changing the lighting… Lots of times I ran out of film and would send people out to buy more in the middle of the night but the end result was I taught myself about lighting and how to take a great picture.  I realized the songs and pictures from that time all fit together and from these I would select the art work for the album.  They were of a time. I had stored them all in shoe boxes and they still look great. Many have a golden tone to them which is perfect for the title of the album.  And all the shots are not just me but certain people in my life who surrounded me as I was writing these songs… Everybody is represented here… These songs and photographs came from all these people. This is not a solo effort… We just got the last photo release signed by Jimmy Iovine… Without the pictures of Jimmy, I would have had to throw out the whole idea because he was so important with “Belladonna” and my solo career… If it hadn’t been for Jimmy, I don’t know if it would have ever really gone anywhere.

I even did some of the calligraphy for the packaging. My trusty assistant Karen found the most amazing calligraphy pen and I decided to write all the titles of the songs.  I never thought I could do it but the pen was indeed magical and I thought it was an extra added touch to include the calligraphy as part of the package for 24 Karat Gold.

Regarding Fleetwood Mac, it’s going to be so great to look over to my right and see Christine behind the Hammond organ… I’ve missed her so much… I never thought she’d come back… She said she was never coming back…  But she started seeing a therapist and one day she had an epiphany. I think he said, What are you doing staying out in your castle, Guenivere… What are you doing out there?  You need to come back and start living life… Go back to the band… At that time, it was Mick, John, Lindsey and I touring… She called up and asked, “What would you think it I came back to the band?”  And I said, “Chris, it is your band… Get a trainer…”   So she got a trainer and she’s been working out for the last six months and she’s stronger than all of us. She’s going to leave us in the dust.

Steve Miller Band


Steve Miller was a mainstay of the San Francisco music scene that upended American culture in the late ’60s. With albums like ‘Children of the Future,’ ‘Sailor’ and ‘Brave New World,’ Miller perfected a psychedelic blues sound that drew on the deepest sources of American roots music and simultaneously articulated a compelling vision of what music-and society-could be in the years to come.

Then, in the ’70s, Miller crafted a brand of rock ‘n’ roll music that was polished, exciting and irresistible, and that has dominated radio through today. Hit followed hit in an endless flow: “The Joker,” “Livin’ in the USA,” “Take the Money and Run,” “Rock’n Me,” “Fly Like an Eagle,” “Jet Airliner,” “Jungle Love,” and “Abracadabra” among them. To this day, these songs are instantly recognizable when they come on the radio-and impossible not to sing along with.

Running through Miller’s catalogue is a combination of virtuosity and songcraft along with melodic vocals and signature guitar riffs. His parents were jazz aficionados — Les Paul was his godfather — so as a budding guitarist and singer, Miller absorbed valuable lessons from their musical tradition. When the family moved to Texas, Miller deepened his education in the blues, meeting T-Bone Walker and learning to sing and play listening to him and Jimmy Reed. Miller then moved to Chicago where he played with Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Buddy Guy and Paul Butterfield..” Anthony DeCurtis

The Steve Miller Band has played to more than 15 million people in the last 20 years. In addition to touring with his band, Miller is also contributing his time to serving on the welcoming committee of the Department of Musical Instruments of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and as a board member of Jazz at Lincoln Center, where he curates and hosts shows at both institutions celebrating blues, jazz and early American music. In 2016, Miller presented five sold out shows at JALC: “Ma Rainey Meets Miles Davis” and “T Bone Walker – A Bridge From Blues to Jazz.” His 2017 plans for JALC will be announced soon.

Joe Bonamassa


As Joe Bonamassa approaches his 26th year as a professional musician, he continues to blaze a remarkably versatile artistic trail, and amass an authentic, innovative and soulful body of work. Bonamassa’s career began onstage opening for B.B. King in 1989, when he was only 12 years old. Today, he is hailed worldwide as one of the greatest guitar players of his generation, and is an ever-evolving singer-songwriter who has released 16 solo albums in the last 14 years, all on his own label, J&R Adventures. Bonamassa’s tour schedule consistently hovers at around 100 shows worldwide each year, and a heaping handful of markedly diverse side projects keep him thinking outside the box and flexing every musical muscle he’s got. He founded and oversees the non-profit Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation to promote the heritage of the blues to the next generation, fund music scholarships, and supplement the loss of music education in public schools. There’s a case to be made that Joe Bonamassa, like another star who shared the same initials, is the hardest working man in show business.

This spring, Bonamassa and J&R Adventures released two projects. The first was a collaboration with powerhouse singer Mahalia Barnes, one of the most impressive female vocalists to come out of Australia, and her band The Soul Mates on an album of Betty Davis covers called Ooh Yea! – The Betty Davis Songbook, which explores tracks from Davis’ sexy, raw funk records of the early 70s. Next is the CD, DVD and Blu-ray Muddy Wolf at Red Rocks, a tribute to Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf that was filmed last summer to a sold-out 9,000 person crowd at Red Rocks Amphitheater. Glide Magazine called it “one of the best live blues albums released in the last decade.”

Unlike any Bonamassa show before, Muddy Wolf At Red Rocks marks the start of a tribute concert series that will display a different band and catalog of material that will vary from Bonamassa’s music as a solo artist. This summer, he’ll continue his celebration of blues heritage with the Three Kings of Blues Tour during which he’ll travel to amphitheaters across the country with a musical tribute to Albert King, B.B. King, and Freddie King.

It all builds on Bonamassa’s ascendant prominence of the past few years. Recent kudos include his very first Grammy nomination for Best Blues Album, which he earned with much-buzzed-about singer-songwriter Beth Hart for their sophomore collaboration, Seesaw; a #1 debut on the Billboard Music Video Chart and Billboard Blues Chart for Muddy Wolf at Red Rocks; 14 #1 Billboard Blues Albums (more than any other artist); a platinum DVD certification for Joe Bonamassa: Live At The Royal Albert Hall; five consecutive “Best Blues Guitarist” wins and a top “Best Overall Guitarist” honor in Guitar Player’s Annual Readers’ Choice Awards, and recognition as Billboard’s #1 Blues Artist in 2010 and more recently in 2014.

Last fall, a much-anticipated new solo studio album called Different Shades Of Blue was released featuring all-new, all-original material. He recorded it in Nashville with Jonathan Cain (Journey), James House (Diamond Rio, Dwight Yoakam, Martina McBride) and Jerry Flowers (Keith Urban).
It debuted at #8 on Billboard’s Top 200, Bonamassas’s highest charting album, first top 10, and biggest sales week ever. According to Billboard, “Different Shades of Blue is the highest-ranking blues album in almost two years.”

Critics echoed its accolades calling it the guitarist’s “most cohesive and satisfying artistic statement yet” (MOJO), “ the best yet and then some from an artist whose vision continues to expand with every release” (Uncut) and “a career high” (American Way).

With sales climbing and accolades pouring in, music insiders and media are beginning to take note of J&R Adventures, the label Bonamassa started with longtime manager Roy Weisman ten years ago. Together, the two mavericks have built a business model that is thriving and nimble in a shaky and unpredictable industry. With divisions in publishing, management, promotion, and memorabilia, the label gives control to the artist and its management directly, rather than a larger entity. This strategy has allowed them to redefine the kind of success an independent artist is capable of, making them two of the music industry’s more savvy entrepreneurs and disruptors.

As usual, Bonamassa will continue performing live-on-stage, which is exactly where he’s most comfortable. “No one on the scene today plays with as much passion, has as much finesse and raw talent, has reverence for those who came before him, and has as much passion for his craft as Joe Bonamassa,” writes Classic Rock Revisited.

In January, he graced a new stage when he headlined two sold-out nights at the iconic Radio City Music Hall – a feat Bonamassa himself almost can’t quite believe. But Bonamassa’s still got a long way to go, and will certainly in turn inspire many who come after him as he continues to reinvent himself with a varied palette of side projects—and logs endless miles “dressing up in sunglasses and a suit,” touring the world and growing his legacy as one of the greatest guitar slingers of all time.

Fred Minnick

Author, "Bourbon Curious"


Wall Street Journal-bestselling author Fred Minnick loves whiskey so much he figured out a way to write and talk about for a living.

Minnick’s given private bourbon tastings to world leaders and celebrities, as well as appearing on CBS This Morning, NPR, New York Times, Esquire, Fox News, and many others just to talk about bourbon. The ascot-wearing Kentuckian covers whiskey in every possible way, too. Whiskey Women (Potomac Books, 2013) won multiple awards and inspired the creation of dozens of whiskey women clubs. Minnick’s Bourbon:The Rise, Fall & Rebirth of An American Whiskey (Quarto, 2016) broke new historical ground on a widely covered topic, solving mysteries such as the “Father of Bourbon,” medicinal whiskey and how bourbon became America’s Spirit, while Bourbon Curious(Quarto, 2015) established sommelier-level flavor profiles for bourbon. 

 His whiskey columns range from the basic-and-informative style in Covey Rise Magazine to the edgy insider writings in Whisky Magazine, where Minnick is the American contributing editor. He provides quick-hitting, easy-to-read, click-friendly stories to, scientific whiskey takes to Scientific American, bourbon advice to Men’s Health, and in-depth geeky features to Whisky Advocate, where Minnick scores American whiskey and pens the “American Spirit” column. In June, Minnick releases his first rum book—RumCurious.

 Minnick serves as a regular keynote speaker for conventions across the country and seminar moderator for Tales of the Cocktail, Arizona Cocktail Week, Kentucky Bourbon Festival and the Bourbon Classic. He is the Bourbon Authority for the Kentucky Derby Museum and is a judge on the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. View his work on

Tom Colicchio


Born and raised in Elizabeth, NJ, Tom Colicchio made his New York cooking debut at prominent New York restaurants including The Quilted Giraffe, Gotham Bar & Grill, Rakel and Mondrian. Since then, he has seen critical acclaim for Gramercy Tavern (with Danny Meyer), his signature venture Craft (2001), and Colicchio & Sons (2010), all in New York.  Craft was awarded The James Beard Foundation Award for “Best New Restaurant” in 2002, the same year Colicchio received The Bon Appétit American Food and Entertaining Award for “Chef of the Year.” The New York Times revisited Craft in September 2011, ten years after its debut, upholding its three stars and stating that the restaurant is “as magical and delicious as it was when it opened.”

Following Craft and its casual sibling, Craftbar (2003), Colicchio opened Craftsteak at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas (2002), Craft in Los Angeles (2007), which received three-and-a-half stars from the LA Times and has been named to Jonathan Gold’s annual 101 Best Restaurants, Colicchio & Sons (2010), which received three stars from the New York Times, Riverpark in New York (2010), which received two stars from the New York Times, and Heritage Steak at The Mirage in Las Vegas (2013). Outside of his fine dining restaurants, Colicchio opened ‘wichcraft – a sandwich shop rooted in the same food and hospitality philosophies as Craft – in New York City in 2003, now with eight locations throughout Manhattan. In 2015, Tom opened Beachcraft, Tom on Collins and The Sand Box at 1 Hotel & Homes South Beach and the following year (2016) opened Fowler & Wells at The Beekman Hotel, a historic landmark in downtown NYC.

Colicchio has published Think Like a Chef (2000), which won The James Beard Foundation “KitchenAid” Cookbook Award in May 2001; Craft of Cooking (2003); and a sandwich book inspired by ‘wichcraft (2009). In May 2010, Colicchio was awarded The James Beard Foundation’s coveted “Outstanding Chef” award, the culmination of his 30 years of hard work in the restaurant industry.

Since 2006, Tom has been applying his experience and expertise to cable television as the head judge on Bravo’s hit reality cooking series “Top Chef.”  The Emmy-winning show is currently in its 14th season. In January 2015, Bravo premiered “Best New Restaurant,” a new series where Tom applied his expertise as the host.

In an effort to broaden his long-standing social and political activism, Tom co-founded Food Policy Action in 2012 in collaboration with national food policy leaders, in order to hold legislators accountable on votes that have an effect on food and farming. He has also been an outspoken voice on issues like improving school meals and the use of antibiotics in food sources, and he continues to lobby for better anti-hunger policies in America.

Tom appears in and served as executive producer on A Place at the Table, Participant Media’s documentary about food insecurity in America, produced and directed by his wife, Lori Silverbush, and Kristi Jacobson. A Place at the Table, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and was released by Magnolia Pictures in 2013, was the inspiration for a national campaign centered on ending hunger in the United States which launched in January 2017 with a PSA featuring former-First Lady Michelle Obama.

Tom and his restaurants give back to the community by serving on the boards of Children of Bellevue, City Harvest, Wholesome Wave and Food Policy Action.  He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Lori Silverbush, and three sons. When he’s not in the kitchen, Tom can be found tending to his garden on the North Fork of Long Island, enjoying a day of fishing or playing guitar.

Carla Hall


Carla Hall is a co-host of ABC’s Emmy award winning, popular lifestyle series “The Chew,” seated alongside restaurateurs and “Iron Chef America” stars Mario Batali and Michael Symon, entertaining expert Clinton Kelly and health and wellness enthusiast Daphne Oz. Hall is best known as a competitor on Bravo’s “Top Chef” and “Top Chef: All Stars”, where she won over audiences with her fun catch phrase, “Hootie Hoo” and her philosophy to always cook with love. Carla’s approach to cooking blends her classic French training and Southern upbringing for a twist on traditional favorites. She is committed to health and balance in everyday living.

Carla Hall’s Southern Kitchen — the chef’s first restaurant —opened in June 2016.  A fast casual love letter to Nashville, the restaurant features iconic Nashville hot chicken and Southern sides, which are anchored by Hall’s family recipes and perfected with her personal touches.  Her cookbooks are “Carla’s Comfort Food: Favorite Dishes from Around the World” and “Cooking with Love: Comfort Food That Hugs You”.

A native of Nashville, TN, Hall received a degree in Accounting from Howard University, but traveling through Europe awakened her passion for food and inspired a new career path. She attended L’Academie de Cuisine in Maryland where she completed her culinary training, going on to work as a Sous Chef at the Henley Park Hotel in Washington, DC. She also served as Executive Chef at both The State Plaza Hotel and The Washington Club, and has taught classes at CulinAerie, Sur la Table and her alma mater, L’Academie de Cuisine. Hall is a true believer that, “If you’re not in a good mood, the only thing you should make is a reservation.”


Carla is also active with a number of charities and not-for-profit organizations that reflect her passion for causes close to her heart.  She serves as a Board Member for the Pajama Program and GenYouth.  Carla also actively works with Chef Jose Andres’ World Central Kitchen Chef Network, DC Central Kitchen, The USO, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Feeding America, WCR (Women Chefs and Restaurateurs) and she serves on the advisory boards for the Edible Academy for the New York Botanical Gardens and for the Food and Finance High School in New York City.  She lives in Washington, DC with her husband, Matthew Lyons.

Baxter’s 942


Baxter’s 942 Bar & Grill is located in the Highlands neighborhood of Louisville , Ky.
Welcome to Baxter’s 942 Bar and Grill the newest hotspot on Baxter Ave.

We have taken the approach that full-fills every bar hoppers and food enthusiast expectations with a variety of amenities accompanied by a full assortment of craft beers and great food.

We offer 12 beers on tap, a full service menu, pool tables, dart boards and more!!

We also provide entertainment 5 nights a week and have created an atmosphere that is suitable for every occasion.

Our unique decor stems from musical influences that have created a “Country meets Rock” ambiance and is surely unique to the Highlands area.

We are looking forward to seeing you at Baxter’s 942!!

We have multiple rooms within our building for dining, live entertainment and pool or darts. Multiple wide screen TV’s for sports events.

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