Bardstown Bourbon Company has announced plans to purchase Owensboro’s Green River Spirits. The acquisition includes the historic Green River Distilling Co. in Owensboro, which is the 10th-oldest distillery in the state.
“The transaction will bring together two leading Kentucky bourbon producers into a strong, independent spirits company with a commitment to Kentucky whiskey,” the announcement said. “Bringing together the historic legacy of Green River and the modern bourbon experience at Bardstown Bourbon Company provides an enticing and distinguished selection of Kentucky whiskey for bourbon drinkers and visitors.”
John W. McCulloch founded Green River Distilling Co. in 1885, and it garnered international attention. But in 1918, a fire burned the facility to the ground. The team responsible for Green River Distilling Co. found the property in ruins, restored it, and began producing in 2016 as the O.Z. Tyler Distillery.
In September 2020, Green River Distilling Co. replaced O.Z. Tyler after a long-term rebranding effort. And earlier this year, the company launched its flagship Green River Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.
Bardstown Bourbon Company was founded by Peter Loftin in 2014 to offer custom distilling solutions to brands seeking scale or customization in the American whiskey market. Bardstown Bourbon Company’s branded whiskies are now available in 20 markets nationwide.
Bardstown Bourbon said it is one of the top 10 distilled spirits producers in the country, distilling more than seven million proof gallons annually.
“We’re excited to forge this new partnership, which brings together two world-class teams and expands the breadth of our portfolio and the number of customers served,” said Mark Erwin, CEO of Bardstown Bourbon Company. “Bardstown Bourbon Company was founded to honor the traditions and history of Kentucky bourbon while taking a wholly modern approach. The addition of one of the oldest distilleries in Kentucky allows us to offer a comprehensive assortment that showcases the state’s flagship industry.”
According to the release, Bardstown Bourbon “produces the highest-quality Kentucky bourbon and rye whiskey using some of the most sophisticated technology in the industry” and the Bardstown Bourbon campus “is the first Napa Valley-style destination on the famed Kentucky Bourbon Trail to combine distilling, culinary, and beverage expertise to create a modern, authentic bourbon experience.”
The sale also includes the acquisition of a production facility in Charleston, South Carolina. In addition to its flagship Green River Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Green River Spirits Company has a contract distillation business producing whiskey, rye, vodka, rum, gin, and flavored whiskey.