TEM 474 / 574 Group 2 Distillery tours

TORE and Maker's Mark


T.O.R.E. stands for Theme, Organized, Relevant, and Enjoyable. TORE was demonstrated at Maker's in a variety of ways. Maker's Mark has a few consistent and apparent themes in their distillery. The color scheme is obvious by their buildings, the black building with red shutters. Even the grounds are coated in black, but we know that to be coincidence from the Angel Share coming from the buildings. Another theme is the presence of artwork. The grounds and facilities are kept in pristine condition but there are also artistic installments around the campus that help in providing another aspect that tourists can be attracted to. From sculptures, to paintings, to old marketing advertisements, to the artist showcases they provide for viewing pleasure. For most, Maker's isn't the first distillery they have gone to, and as we were all exposed to, they can start to run together. The goal is to find what sets one place apart from another. Maker's artwork is a unique characteristic that made the tour more vibrant and hospitable.

Organization is also a component that was observable just in the layout of the campus and facilities. The buildings were separated and flowed in order to an extent. Once inside the buildings, there were divisions between the touristic walkways and the actual working distillery. Organization can also be present in other ways, an example of which being the tour "script" and talking points. By working in a chronological order, we were able to see first the history of the Maker's brand and then progress into the upcoming expansions for the facilities, the product, and the brand itself. This helps engage the visitors by capturing a visual story and providing a foundation for positive feedback from a good visitor experience.

Relevance is a harder aspect to observe, as it is so broad and vague, but I feel that it was portrayed through the periodic tie-back that Ben, the tour guide, made to how we would be affected. An example would be the difference in charring and how their selection of char 3 would be able to be tasted today through the strong base of spiced flavor. While the palate differs for everyone, it was a point where we could think "Oh, the specific char actually matters because it influences the taste of what I will be having in just a couple of minutes." It is another opportunity to engage the audience and prevent the information from being tuned out.

Enjoyable is the easiest part of this theory. It is a product of the previous aspects being tied together to ensure that the overall experience is a positive one. This enjoyment is secured through good themes, organized encounters, and relevant ideas. With the members of this group who have spoken about it, Maker's was our favorite because of the unique feeling we got from our tour guide. Ben gave us the side he normally gives tourists, but also a "behind-the-scenes" side where he could talk about what he felt from a tour guide's perspective to ensure the visitor experience. It was enlightening to hear the things that were challenging since we had only heard the positives for the past four days. It gave a sense of realness that we could associate with our experience.

Persuasive Communication Theory and Castle & Key

Castle and Key Distillery

This distillery is a little different in comparison to the others that we toured. This distillery wasn't even open to the general public as it was still under construction and will be for the next few months. The people at Castle and Key still did a good job on educating us on their process as well as the rich history that this property had.

The source factors for this distillery would be the various tour guides that we had as well as the other people that we met along the way while touring. Each of these people were able to give us information that others wouldn't be able to. Also, we wouldn't be able to get this information from just walking around the property itself. They took their time to explain each aspect about the buildings and who ran it before they took over. They also explained information about the owners and how they came about taking over this huge project. Our tour guides did a very good job with providing us with information. They were very educated on the bourbon process as well as the history of bourbon.

The receiver factors for this would be us as a group. We were receiving the information from the tour guides. Receiver factors of an audience are: gender, personality, and social status. For this situation everyone in the group had some sort of interest in bourbon. Whether they were someone who doesn't know much about it or its someone who knows a lot and wanted to know more specifics about the various distilleries. if you had no interest in bourbon or learning about it then you wouldn't have enjoyed the tour and it would have been pointless to them. It is important that they target a specific audience. This ensures that they attract the right people.

The channel factors for this distillery would be face-to-face interaction. We talked to the tour guides directly about anything we wanted to know. Face-to-face makes for a better experience. You get to see things that help you to understand what they are talking about as they are explaining it. In comparison to watching a video on the process which would be a lot hard to understand, you also wouldn't be able to ask any questions.

Message factors in this situation is the way they presented the information to us. Our tour guides for this tour were very enthusiastic about talking about their distillery. They used jokes and stories to keep everyone interested. With our tours we went on a lot so they started to become repetitive so its important that these tour guides mix things up a bit to keep the attention. A lot of times when someone goes to a distillery it isn't their first tour for the weekend. Some tour guides will learn this information and change their tours based on that.

Situational factors include environmental distractions and forewarning. For this tour there was a bit of forewarning because we were told that this distillery wasn't open to the public yet. We were told that they were still under construction at this point. Going in we knew not to expect to see what we saw at Woodford Reserve. For me this was interesting and I was excited to see what they had done and what they were planning on doing. This for us was a great opportunity for us to see where they are now and the go back later to see how far they go.

Persuasive Communication Theory Written by Desiree Gossett

Geist - Service and Peerless

Peerless Distilling Co.

Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tours

The Bourbon industry has grown drastically in the past decade and with it the Kentucky distilleries have flourished. Producing over 95% of the worlds bourbon the Kentucky Distillers’ Association crated the Kentucky Bourbon Trial and after the success of said trial the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft tour was created. The Craft Tour focuses on distilleries on a more micro level. It focuses on smaller distilleries that have begun to produce bourbon on a much smaller scale then the distilleries you see on the original Bourbon trail.

Advantage of the Craft Tour

The Craft Tour is different than just the Bourbon trail. These distilleries have been added to the selection of craft whiskies. The advantage of being part in the Craft Tour is that it gives the prospective of distillers who don’t stick out like the major brand and other distilleries. This type of tour seems mainly directed to true whiskey lovers and those who are passionate about not only bourbon but whiskey as well.

Peerless’ Competitive Edge

With a rich history Peerless has been on the map for some time now and as one of the few distilleries that was able to operate during the time of prohibition. People who are attracted to those historical attributes will certainly come to see a distillery with so much of that rich history. Peerless has a lot of advantages being so close to where the Bourbon trail is to “official” start.

When dealing with a smaller distillery it is easier to make every person matter and that’s what made the Peerless not just some other tour. Being introduced to the heritage and the background of the company by Corky Taylor made a big difference. It was introduced by a man whose family created the Peerless brand and that is not something you see in other distilleries on the Bourbon Trail meant for the Macro-Distilleries. This also made us realize that this wouldn’t be a Distillery that would be on the bourbon trial as a lager company.

There were a few things that fell flat in my expectations when touring Peerless. The tour defiantly started off great with Mr. Taylor giving us a background of where Peerless came from. The thing that wasn’t satisfactory was the tour of the distillery. It felt as if the tour guide wasn’t full prepared or trained to give a tour of such a facility. Certain questions were answered vaguely and that can turn out to bad in this industry. If this is the first tour you are to take and thing aren’t properly explained or if the tour guide rushed through the tour because the distillery closes soon then it gives a bad connotation to other distilleries.


Mindfulness and Wild Turkey

Wild Turkey Distillery Pics Posted by Desiree Gossett

Variety vs. Repetition: The tour at Wild Turkey had more repetition than variety in their tour. The way they showed us the different stops on the tour did not change much from stop to stop. At each stop on the tour the tour guide would explain to us what was happening in front of us and then asked if anyone had any questions. The only part of the tour that changed from this is when we got back on the bus and watch the Matthew McConaughey commercial on the way back to the visitor center. This communication factor of the tour would not be mindfulness because there wasn't much variety, it would be mindlessness.

Multi vs. Unisensory Media: At the Wild Turkey visitor center there was a wall that made a timeline of Wild Turkey's history. They also had artifacts that went along with the timeline for a visual aid. On the tour when we got to the cookers their was a display that had the different grains that they used. It was open so visitors could see and feel the different grains. Most of the tour was just viewing the different equipment making the tour unisensory media. The only part of the tour that used a different media was when we watch the Matthew McConaughey commercial. I would consider their tour and visitor center being more unisensory media.

Tradition vs. Novelty: The Wild Turkey tour was more of a traditional bourbon distillery tour where they show you the process of the bourbon and a little history that goes with it. There wasn't a time during the tour where I thought to myself that I got to see something that we don't get to see at other distilleries.

No Interaction vs. Question: During the tour the tour guide would often ask if anyone had any questions. Only a few times did someone ask a question and not everyone would hear that question. The size of the group they would take on the tour was much larger than any of the other distilleries and I think that had an impact on the visitors interacting and asking questions during the tour.

Interactive vs. Static Exhibits: On this tour it was all static exhibits, there wasn't a time were well could interact with the stops on the tour. There was one part of the tour that we could interact with the tour but the tour guide never encouraged the visitors to interact. This was the barrel that had their different grains in it. It looked like it was set up for the visitors to feel the different grains but we were never told we could.

Connection vs. No Connection to Visitors: On our tour I never felt like our tour guide made a connection with us. The tour guide just started the tour and didn't try to learn about the different people on the tour. I don't think we were ever asked if any of us had been to a distillery before Wild Turkey.

Overall I would say that the tour at Wild Turkey was more mindless than mindful because they didn't allow much interaction with the visitors. We went from stop to stop and were to told to look through a window and the tour guide explained to us what we were looking at. Also they didn't make the tour feel personal to us by not making connection with different visitors. That doesn't make Wild Turkey stand out in a good way from other distilleries that we went to.

Mindfulness and Wild Turkey Posted by Tonya Cocanougher

Interpretation and Frazier Museum



Created with images by Bradley N. Weber - "Kentucky Bourbon Barrels"

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.