Whereas bourbon may be made in any American state, it’s simple that the spirit is inherently linked to Kentucky distillers. With limestone filtered mineral water and an abundance of oak timber, that are required for barrel growing old, the bluegrass state has very best situations for bourbon manufacturing and the proof is within the pudding. In 2021 Kentucky distillers broke the regional report for essentially the most barrels of bourbon crammed in a yr once they crammed virtually 2.5 million — the third yr in a row the entire topped two million barrels.
The uptick in bourbon manufacturing is probably going as a result of class’s immense development over the past 20 years on account of skyrocketing demand. The spirit’s manufacturing in Kentucky has shot up 250 p.c since 1999, and the business is at the moment present process a $5.1 billion capital funding marketing campaign that’s set to increase the business even additional. This contains multimillion greenback renovations at distilleries like Jim Beam and 4 Roses, and a $1.2 billion growth of Buffalo Hint.
Even if the overwhelming majority of bourbon manufacturing occurs within the state of Kentucky — a whopping 95 p.c — lots of the corporations that personal a number of the most recognizable names in bourbon are headquartered out of state. Within the case of 4 Roses, the dad or mum firm, Kirin, isn’t even primarily based in the USA and is as an alternative headquartered in Tokyo, Japan.
To complicate issues additional, a lot of your favourite bourbon manufacturers are literally owned by the identical dad or mum firm. Whereas Buffalo Hint in actual fact produces its namesake bourbon, the distillery — which is owned by the Sazerac Firm — additionally produces manufacturers like Eagle Uncommon and Van Winkle. Within the case of Jim Beam, one of many high promoting bourbons on this planet, the model is owned by dad or mum firm Beam Suntory, which additionally owns manufacturers like Knob Creek and Maker’s Mark.
To be able to navigate our method via the labyrinth of bourbon’s and their dad or mum corporations, VinePair produced this household tree to exhibit who owns what within the bourbon world. To make issues a bit simpler to make sense of, we’ve unnoticed independently owned manufacturers — not solely as a result of there are too many to suit on one web page, but additionally as a result of many supply fairly than distill their very own whiskey (though a number of the manufacturers on this graphic have, sooner or later, sourced juice from different distilleries).
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