Bourbon & Blues for Bourbon Heritage Month

As you may, or may not, know – September is Bourbon Heritage month and that means the Bourbon and Blues event in Winter Haven.  Sponsored by Main Street Winter Haven, it will be a night of Live Blues, Bourbon Tasting, Great BBQ, Beer and Cocktails. It is slated to be held  on September 21, at 6 PM.

There will be a silent auction, live blues, a bourbon tasting, BBQ, craft beer, wine, and a signature mocktail all included in the ticket. Premium bourbon selections also will be available for purchase. Hopefully some of them will be from right here in Florida.

When it comes to Bourbon whiskey the Sunshine State offers you a lot of options.  We have had the opportunity to visit some of these locations and they are fun as well as producing a great product.

   For example, the St. Augustine Distillery Company is a brand new business collaborative; a group of locals that share a dream. They have worked diligently to distill super premium, small batch spirits it better than anyone in the world – and are succeeding on a number of levels.

   They started by bringing some of the world’s best distilling experts to St Augustine — the oldest and coolest small city in America — then combine it with locally grown sugar cane, wheat, corn, and citrus. The notion was to develop a finer quality spirit than just about any other place in the world.

   While the business is new, the location is not. They operate out of St Augustine’s Historic FP&L Ice Plant. Built as part of St. Augustine’s first power and ice complex in 1907, owners have restored and brought it back to serve the community for the next century.

Locally produced in St. Augustine

   The Ice Plant is a contributing building to the Lincolnville Neighborhood on the National Register of Historic Places and was the first of it’s kind to make commercial block ice in Florida over 100 years ago. Today, it is helping us make Florida’s first bourbon and other fine craft spirits.

   When you visit St. Augustine, you need to budget some time to go through their tour. It is fun, informative and you get enough of a sample to stock up on their product before you leave

   Additional information can be forund at their website at

   On a family farm located just north of Destin, Florida is the Timber Creek Distillery. These folks are so far out into the woods they have to come back toward town to go hunting.

  Their vision is to take the best local fruits and grains from the Florida Pa  nhandle and turn them into the finest Craft Spirits.  They take great pride in hand making every batch and hand bottling every bottle.

   The Florida Panhandle and Gulf Coast are blessed with some fantastic local crops.  For their Whiskeys, they use local Red Soft Winter Wheat, local Yellow #2 Dent Corn, and local Florida 401 Black Rye.

Timber Creek

  The Timber Creek distillery is unique inasmuch as they use a custom designed pot still, “thumper”, and copper worm condenser to allow the bold favors of the raw ingredients to shine through.

   Find out more about their operation at

   The Winter Park Distilling Company was founded in 2010 by Paul Twyford and Andrew Asher. Both were raised in Winter Park. They were later joined by Andrew’s wife, Francesca, a transplant from Palm Beach County.

   Starting with just a handmade 50-gallon still and a few old recipes for whiskey, they established the Winter Park Distilling Company as the first and finest craft distillery in Orange County, Florida.

   Their Bear Gully Classic Reserve Bourbon is the very first craft bourbon made in Florida. A single barrel bourbon, it is crafted with a rich local corn mash and aged in a naturally heated rackhouse to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. In this thick, humid, summertime air our award-winning Florida bourbon gets its smooth and rich finish imbued with a proud Central Florida pedigree.

  They may be found at

  Those are just a few of the Sunshine State distilleries and definitely Florida Fun Zones. In addition to their stock, each also offers tours of their facilities.

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