American Bourbon ─ Beyond the Barrel

Bourbon barrels can have a second life to create some wonderful tasting Bourbon Barrel foods

Bourbon barrels can have a second life to create some wonderful tasting Bourbon Barrel foods

Recently we came across a Woodford Reserve campaign on Kentucky bourbon and found out that the barrels used to age bourbon can only be used once for that purpose.  That has provided an opportunity for some creative entrepreneurs to make some pretty wonderful bourbon infused food items.  Others merely go straight to the bottle and enhance their offerings  bourbonize your next happy hour with the unexpected options. Bourbon-barrels and their 2nd adventure:

1. BOURBON BARREL FOODS

We found Bourbon Barrel foods makes a range of amazingly interesting products

We found Bourbon Barrel foods makes a range of amazingly interesting products


Bourbon Barrel Foods’ small-batch soy sauce is microbrewed, giving it serious flavor. Fermented and aged in re-purposed bourbon barrels, this soy sauce emerges with a hint of smoke and mild sweetness of a fine Kentucky bourbon.

One of the only micro-brewers of soy sauce in the United States. The Bourbon Barrel Foods uses the same Kentucky-grown, non-GMO soy beans prized by Japanese soy brewers and miso-makers, the same limestone water coveted by the bourbon industry, and locally grown red winter wheat. In keeping with the company’s theme, the concoction is fermented in Woodford Reserve bourbon barrels. 

 Compared to that standard Soy Sauce, Bluegrass Soy Sauce is potent and concentrated, while adding a current of the tangy and the sweet, plus a trace of barrel char smoke.

Sometimes a product is so good that it blows straight through your conception of what it should be used for, and Bluegrass Soy Sauce is a perfect example. You can still use it for anything that would prompt you to reach for ordinary soy sauce, and a whole lot more besides.
— Richard Thomas
Bourbon Smoked Salt is pure, solar-evaporated, and domestically harvested from the Pacific Ocean 2.50 to $24.00 depending on the size

Bourbon Smoked Salt is pure, solar-evaporated, and domestically harvested from the Pacific Ocean 2.50 to $24.00 depending on the size

Bourbon Barrel Foods barrel-ages all kinds of things like bourbon-smoked sugar and Madagascar vanilla extract.
Aged in barrels that were once filled with some of the best bourbon, the single-strength vanilla has a gentle caramel
finish thanks to the spirit-soaked wood. It’s perfect for upping desserts like ice cream and bread pudding.  They also offer sea salt, peppers, chili powder, simple syrups - all Sooooo good!

Check out the options and recipes here

 

 

 

 

2. BENTON’S SMOKY MOUNTAIN COUNTRY HAMS

Allan Benton is an uncompromising artisan, armed with only his family recipe and a humble smokehouse, Allan has built a national reputation for his slow cured hams based on quality.  He cures the hams with a  rub of salt, brown sugar and red and black pepper —then ages the hams from 12 to 18 months, which produces a richly complex and intense flavor.  Enjoy this country ham with bourbon. The website may not be pretty, but the ham is awesome.  Hickory Smoked Country Ham Center Cut and Biscuit Piece Slices at $8 for 14 ounces an incredible deal.

VIDEO: Length 2:49 sec.  This interview captures the essence of southern family business pride and tradition.  Allan Benton is the god of bacon and slow cured hams. Since 1973, he has operated from a modest, green-painted cinder-block building just off Highway 411 in Madisonville, Tennessee. It’s a little spit of a town in the eastern part of the state back-dropped by the Smoky Mountains. Allan has gained nationwide fame among chefs and foodies. His bacon, ham and prosciutto are sacred and used in the kitchens of Thomas Keller, David Chang, and Sean Brock to name a few.

In case you never get the chance to vacation on the Kentucky bourbon trail, Art Eatables has a tasting tour with different truffles made with bourbon from the eight different members of the trail each marked with a button top to signify the bourbon used to infuse it.

Original Bourbon Truffle ™ –Creamy milk chocolate is the dominant flavor for a long while, but then the bourbon swells up aggressively, before eventually fading under a lasting chocolate finish. Features Jim Beam® white label 4 year bourbon

Original Bourbon Truffle ™ –Creamy milk chocolate is the dominant flavor for a long while, but then the bourbon swells up aggressively, before eventually fading under a lasting chocolate finish. Features Jim Beam® white label 4 year bourbon

Each two-bite truffle uses carefully-selected Belgian-style chocolate that accents the character of the bourbon featured (like Maker’s Mark, Jim Beam and Wild Turkey).  They melt in your mouth and safe to say you can serve these at any upcoming event - there won't be any left!  $18 FOR 8 PIECES

Made in the heart of Kentucky, the home of the Bourbon Trail, each of These bourbon infused truffles is made using rich chocolate, natural ingredients and the best Kentucky bourbon

Made in the heart of Kentucky, the home of the Bourbon Trail, each of These bourbon infused truffles is made using rich chocolate, natural ingredients and the best Kentucky bourbon

the bourbon barrel has a life beyond the bottle,  used to infuse foods with the great american bourbon flavor

 

4. BOONE CREEK CREAMERY

Boone Creek hand–makes Artisan Cheese.  They offer a cheddar cheese that has hints of fresh mint and Kentucky bourbon layered inside (perfect for those derby parties!).   As the first bourbon-infused cheddar of its kind, the cheese has a mellow, buttery flavor and subtle oak finish that sets it apart from other infused styles.

Kentucky Derby -Average weight 6 oz. A special treat from the Bluegrass state. Derby style cheese with a hint of fresh mint and infused with Woodford Reserve Bourbon.  

Kentucky Derby -Average weight 6 oz. A special treat from the Bluegrass state. Derby style cheese with a hint of fresh mint and infused with Woodford Reserve Bourbon.  

Boone Creek makes all of its cheeses by hand on a traditional Dutch lever press to protect the flavor and texture of the final product.  With names like Sassy Redhead, Blackberry Serenade, and Jumpin' Jack Java  you can guess each cheese has a unique taste.  They are all good from $10

5. COMMON GROUNDS BOURBON COFFEE

This is something completely unexpected - a bourbon flavored Artisan coffee.  Only sold in small batches when there’s a fresh bourbon barrel available from the local distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky.

Common Grounds employs a mix of unroasted green beans from around the world and ages them in bourbon barrels for over two weeks to trap the oaky aroma inside. The infused beans are then roasted to a specific heat level to produce coffee with slight citrus and honey notes and a robust whiskey finish. Quite a kick in the morning! 

Ordering notes: Availability is dependent on new barrel and availability is limited at any particular time. Coffee comes whole bean - but can you can request ground when ordering.