The Urban Bourbon Trail is about to get longer. As in, a lot longer.

“We have added eight new stops this year, all located downtown, which is especially exciting considering all of the bourbon excitement under way in Whiskey Row,” said Louisville Convention & Tourism Bureau communications director Christa Ritchie.

The cover of the new Urban Bourbon Trail passport.
The cover of the new Urban Bourbon Trail passport.

The new stops include:
•Bistro 301
•Down One Bourbon Bar & Restaurant
•Jockey Silks Bourbon Bar
•O’Shea’s Downtown
•Rye
•Sidebar at Whiskey Row
•Sway at Hyatt Regency Louisville
•Troll Pub Under the Bridge.

The criteria for becoming a stop on the Urban Bourbon Trail is that the bar or restaurant must have no fewer than 50 bourbons offered as part of their bar selection. Some have as many as 150. That’s a lot of bourbon.

The popular Urban Bourbon Trail is six years old and now includes 34 establishments around Louisville. Bourbon fans take their Bourbon Trail “passport” to a location to have a drink (it doesn’t have to be bourbon, but why spoil the fun?) and get a stamp. There are also downloadable electronic passports for smart phones, if you prefer to go digital.

Once the passport has at least six stamps, the holder earns the rank of official Bourbon Country Citizen. They’re awarded a special Urban Bourbon Trailblazer T-shirt and official Citizen of Bourbon Country certificate, which they can pick up at the Louisville Visitors Center.

The tourism bureau expects the Urban Bourbon Trail popularity to continue. To date, more than 8,300 people have completed the Urban Bourbon Trail, including people from all 50 states and 19 countries, including Australia, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, Japan and Finland.

“We just printed 50,000 copies of the 98-page passport,” Ritchie said. She noted that they’re available at all of the trail stops, as well as the Louisville Visitors Center at Fourth and Jefferson streets.

The new passport also features a special call-out to the six founding members of the Urban Bourbon Trail, who were on board when it all began in 2008: The Bar at BLU, Bourbons Bistro, Brown Hotel Lobby Bar, Maker’s Mark Bourbon House & Lounge, the Old Seelbach Bar and Proof on Main.

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Kevin Gibson
Kevin Gibson tackles the 3Rs — retail, restaurants, real estate — plus, economic development. He loves bacon, loathes cucumbers and once interviewed Yoko Ono. Check out his books, “Louisville Beer: Derby City History on Draft” and “100 Things to do in Louisville Before You Die.” He has won numerous awards for his work but doesn’t know where most of them are now. In his spare time, he plays in a band called the Uncommon Houseflies.Email Kevin at [email protected]