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The Boathouse Blog

Bourbon with a Splash of Whitewater

bourbonPaul Arentsen, co-owner of Winding Waters River Expeditions, grew up in Louisville, KY and, by association, has bourbon in his blood. To honor his hometown’s truly American distilling heritage, we’ve invited a bourbon connoisseur along on one of our Hells Canyon whitewater trips. Jason Brauner, owner of Bourbons Bistro in Louisville knows more about Bourbon than most folks. And we’re excited he’ll be sharing his knowledge with us on our June 20-22, 2014 trip: Hells Canyon on the Rocks: A Bourbon Tour. The ideal vacation for bourbon lovers who savour outdoor excitement, this all-inclusive 3 day, 3 night rafting expedition explores 32 miles through the deepest river canyon in North America.

In the evenings, Jason will share his extensive knowledge of bourbon that he brings from his years of industry experience. He will give us an overall history of bourbon including bourbon tastings. There will be a smooth progression through each evening’s flight. Spaces are limited on this unique bourbon-lover’s vacation. For more information and registration, visit Hells Canyon on the Rocks: A Bourbon Tour or call us at 877-426-7238.

bourbon-transport-riverA Short Bourbon History: As the only native spirit to America, Bourbon deserves to be named the “True American Spirit”. Nobody knows for sure who first got the idea to make whiskey out of corn and good Kentucky water to make whiskey. But if corn and limestone-rich water were all it took, Bourbon would have been invented right then as well. But there’s more to Bourbon: it also has to be aged.

In the late 1700’s, Louisville, Kentucky was the epi-center of corn production and whiskey distilleries in the mid-west. To distribute whiskey to other regions, the barrels were generally shipped down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers to New Orleans and the like. By the time the whiskey reached its destination, aging had turned it an amber color and evened out the flavor so it was smoother, richer, and a whole lot more pleasing to the palate than un-aged whiskey. Through early advancements, Elijah Craig became known as “The Father of Bourbon”. He was the first to burn the inside of oak barrels, which enhanced the flavor of the bourbon.

Today, Kentucky still remains the home for quality bourbon. To learn more about this truly American spirit, join us on our Hells Canyon on the Rocks: A Bourbon Tour.

And want to learn more about the interesting history of bourbon? Here’s a nice article in Forbes India Magazine: The Interesting History of Bourbon Whiskey.