Barrel Global™ Launches New, High-End American Whiskey Experience with its “Kentucky Bourbon Retreat”

“Our Kentucky Bourbon Retreat democratizes barrel ownership by allowing individuals to create their very own batch of barrels with a truly bespoke mashbill."

Barrel Global™ Launches New, High-End American Whiskey Experience with its “Kentucky Bourbon Retreat”

Bourbon Barrel Ownership Service Offers Bespoke Travel, Tasting, and Distilling Experience

As the bourbon boom continues apace, and whiskey aficionados look for new and interesting ways to engage with their favorite brands, one company is introducing a travel, tasting, and distilling experience centered around America’s Native Spirit. Today, US-based Barrel Global announces the launch of a new bespoke service dubbed the “Kentucky Bourbon Retreat.” This immersive experience welcomes consumers and corporate clients to visit a distillery in Kentucky where they will distill their very own barrels of bourbon that will then be aged and bottled to their exact specifications. Learn more and book an experience.

“Our Kentucky Bourbon Retreat democratizes barrel ownership by allowing individuals to create their very own batch of barrels with a truly bespoke mashbill. Distilleries typically require a minimum order of more than 100 barrels for such a service, but given our distillery relationships, we’re able to bring that minimum number down to a more palatable 10 barrels,” said Barrel Global Founder George Koutsakis.

Read our previous story about Barrel Global for more background.

A fully customizable itinerary awaits, as guests arrive in Kentucky for a three-day “once in a lifetime” bourbon-making adventure under the careful guidance and curation of an esteemed bourbon distiller. During the deep dive into bourbon-making, retreat attendees receive a tutorial in the art, science, excitement of distillation and barreling – which starts with selecting a mashbill to create a taste profile suited to your palate, tasting the new mash and the distillate, and making the correct cut between heads, hearts and tails before proofing the liquid. Under the watchful eye of the head distiller, guests return to the distillery on their final day in Kentucky to fill their own barrels with distillate, seal them, check for leaks, and finally roll them into the rickhouse.

Once the barrels are proofed, the distillery partner stores them for the required aging in their on-site warehouses until they are at the desired maturation and ready for bottling. Although bourbon is notoriously a waiting game, the owners of these newly-minted barrels may determine their future use – from personal consumption and corporate gifting to launching their own mini bourbon brand or reselling the barrels on the open market.

“Bourbon distilling has captivated a global audience, and this experience allows retreat attendees to step into the highly coveted role of “distiller” for a day under the careful tutelage of a highly trained distilling expert while respecting the traditions, legacies, and expertise that these notable craftspeople bring to the industry,” Koutsakis continued.

Pricing for this group-centric activity is $35,000 dependent on group size and barrel yield, which includes 10 newly-distilled bourbon barrels with a completely bespoke mashbill, full participation in the distilling process – from mashing and fermentation to distilling and barreling, hotel accommodations, dinner, and a comprehensive bourbon tasting. Additional guests may be added for an incremental cost.

In partnership with Hopkinsville, KY-based Casey Jones Distillery, the inaugural Kentucky Bourbon Retreat launches this month and is aimed at corporate clients, the hospitality industry, families, and friend groups – making it a truly universal experience for legal drinking age consumers. While Barrel Global is rolling out the service with one distillery partner, the company will expand with additional experiences and partners in the months ahead.

Pop's Hot Take
The bourbon industry is witnessing unprecedented growth in brand diversity and the emergence of barrel brokers aiming to exploit the rising demand for unique bourbon experiences. Barrel Global sets a new standard with its Kentucky Bourbon Retreat, making custom distillation more accessible and affordable. This move will likely inspire similar innovations across the industry, as others aim to offer unique experiences alongside bulk barrel purchases. Already, we're seeing brokers adjust minimum order quantities (MOQ) to as low as a single barrel, but Barrel Global stands out by offering custom mash bills with an MOQ of just 10 barrels.

Regarding the whiskey itself, the quality remains an open question, particularly from Casey Jones Distillery, a relatively unknown entity for many. Prospective buyers should prioritize due diligence, requesting samples from Barrel Global, ideally across different mash bills and ages. Starting with a four-year sample is wise, progressing to older vintages to gauge the potential of your investment. Reconsidering your investment might be prudent if the younger whiskey doesn't meet your expectations.