Just three and a half years ago, members of our Branch Distilling Committee first met with Bourbon Women about forming our branch. We never anticipated the success we would have – all because of our members and the Bourbon-loving women in the Northern Kentucky – Cincinnati metro region. Thank you!
Our branch has been busy. We held our official launch event – A Spirited Night – in May 2016, at New Riff Distilling, in Newport, Kentucky. Over 120 “Bourbon Women” attended this sold-out event and enjoyed cocktails from some of the best Bourbon bars in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati along with a presentation by Marianne Barnes, the Master Distiller at Castle & Key. That was quickly followed up by a very exclusive member’s-only trip to Maker’s Mark. Those lucky enough to snag a seat enjoyed lunch on the way to Maker’s, touring and tasting, a cocktail reception under the stunning Chihuly ceiling and speakers from the “Bourbon Women” that make-up Maker’s Mark.
In 2017, we held a “Give a Shift” fundraiser that was sponsored by Old Forester and benefitted the Anchal Project – a nonprofit social enterprise that addresses the exploitation of women around the world by using design thinking to create employment opportunities, services and products that support empowerment at the Hotel Covington in Covington, Kentucky. In November we hosted our Ghosts in the Barrel House: Meet the Spirits of Boone County Distilling Co. event which included a tour of Boone County Distilling Co. with owner Josh Quinn; tasting of their flagship products and a welcome cocktail, light bites and a gift shop discount
2018 proved to be a busy year as well, In February, we held our Fall in Love with New Riff event at New Riff Distilling in Newport, Kentucky. Bourbon Women and men had the opportunity to network with current and new friends and sample cocktails and light bites from favorite local establishments. Several attendees also elected to attend a very special optional VIP experience where attendees were treated to a unique food and spirits pairings featuring New Riff products. We then held our Sip & Spa: Relax. Drink Bourbon. Repeat event at The Woodhouse Day Spa in April. Members and guests were pampered while enjoying bourbon and bourbon cocktails. In June we held our Celebrate America’s Native Spirit with MGP event on National Bourbon Day. MGP, a leading supplier of premium distilled spirits, is the source of some of the finest vodkas, gins, BOURBONS and RYE WHISKEYS in the world. Members and their guests were treated to a welcome cocktail, a tasting of MGP brands, and savory light bites along with a presentation about MGP. In early October we community partnered with NKY magazine on the first-ever NKY Bourbon Festival Tasting Party. Guests sampled some of the most well-known bourbon brands, the best restaurants of NKY, and talked to experts and learned more about bourbon and its growing impact in our region. In December we hosted our third annual holiday “Sip & Shop” sponsored by Four Roses at Liquor City Uncorked in Covington, Kentucky. Each year Four Roses treats us to a visit by either Brent Elliot (Master Distiller) or Al Young (Brand Ambassador). Bourbon Women and men in attendance enjoyed a Four Roses 130th Anniversary-inspired Welcome Cocktail, Four Roses Bourbon Tasting, tastings of wines and beers and specialty gourmet foods from local and premiere vendors, and preferred customer discounts on wine and spirits. We were pleased to once again donate to a local women’s group – 2018’s beneficiary was Women Helping Women.
There’s more in 2019! In April we held our first derby-themed “Hats & Haute” event with national and Woodford Reserve. We learned how to make a Derby Mint Julep as well as how to make the Kentucky Oaks Lilly and Hotel Covington spoiled us with Derby bites. In June, several of us on the NKY/Cincy Branch Distilling Committee collaborated with Cork n Bottle on our first branch private barrel selection. We are proud to announce it is being released on Friday, July 19th at an Open House with Cork n Bottle. We hope you can join us, taste and buy a bottle. We are busy working on other events that may include partnering with the Kentucky Edge Bourbon Festival when they hold their inaugural event October 4-5, 2019 throughout Northern Kentucky and bourbon-centric educational opportunities. And, of course, we are beginning work on our fourth annual “Sip & Shop.”
Our Branch also holds regular “Meet & Neats” at local “bourbon enthusiast” establishments. So far, we’ve visited Papa’s Bourbon & Beer House, Wiseguy Lounge (both Metro locations!), Myrtle’s Punch House, Meritage, The Prohibition Bourbon Bar at Newberry Bros., The Globe, the Brown Dog Café, The Party Source and Smoke Justis. Our last Meet & Neat was held on May 16th at The Sapphire Room in Covington, Ky. At this free event Bourbon Women and their guests enjoyed networking and tastings from some rare “dusty” bottles. Where should we venture next?
Keep an eye on our Facebook page for more details on upcoming events. For more information about Bourbon Women Northern Kentucky/Cincinnati, please send an e-mail to: BourbonWomenNKYCincy@bourbonwomen.org.
Kay and Amy