Kentucky Distillers’ Association Welcomes Danville’s Wilderness Trace Distillery

December 5, 2013

For Immediate Release — December 5, 2013

DANVILLE, Ky. – The City of Firsts has a new milestone to add to its long history: Wilderness Trace Distillery opens this week as Danville’s first distillery and the newest member of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association.

Located near the historic Centre College campus, Wilderness Trace also is joining the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour® as the eighth stop on the new attraction that features the state’s growing micro-distilling industry.

KDA and member distillery executives and Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture James Comer will help inaugurate Wilderness Trace at a special grand opening Friday. Tours will begin Saturday starting at 10 a.m. with food and door prizes available.

“Wilderness Trace and its parent company, Ferm Solutions, have more than 10 years’ experience in fermentation and distillation techniques, making them a welcome addition to our organization,” said Rick Robinson, Chairman of the KDA Board of Directors.

“This new distillery is a natural extension of their core business and will allow them to showcase their expertise and knowledge,” said Robinson, Plant Manager at Wild Turkey Distillery in Lawrenceburg. “We proudly welcome them as a partner in our signature industry.”

Located at 445 Roy Arnold Avenue, Ferm Solutions is a long-time provider of advanced ethanol producing yeast strains and a leader in molecular and genetic engineering technologies. The company also is developing genetically modified yeast strains for improved fermentation.

The company has invested more than $2 million over the past two years and employs 13 people.

Owners Pat Heist and Shane Baker said tours will highlight the science behind the fermentation process and educate visitors on the art and craft of distilling. Brands will include Wilderness Trace Bourbon, Settlers Select Danville’s Rye Whiskey, Blue Heron Vodka and Harvest Rum.

“All of our ingredients will come from the Commonwealth,” Baker said. “From hand-selected seed to pure limestone filtered water, our spirits will have traveled less than three miles when they leave the distillery. It doesn’t get more local than that.”

Heist said, “To be Danville’s first distillery has great historical significance that we do not take lightly. We are honored to be part of Kentucky’s rich Bourbon history and thankful to the KDA for all its support. We look forward to being an integral part of their team and tour.”

Adam Johnson, Director of the KDA’s Kentucky Bourbon Trail Tour®, said Wilderness Trace will add a unique perspective to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour® with its focus on the science behind distillation.

“Every distillery is different, which is what makes the Kentucky Bourbon Trail experience so popular,” said Johnson, a Centre College graduate and Danville resident. “This will be a perfect match to Danville’s distinct tourism offerings.”

Danville is an Official Sponsor of the Kentucky Bourbon Trail® adventure.

The KDA created the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour® in 2012. Participating distilleries include Barrel House, Corsair Artisan, Limestone Branch, MB Roland, Old Pogue, Silver Trail and Willett. Go to for more information.

Wilderness Trace is the KDA’s 16th member and ninth craft distillery.

“Craft distilleries are an important and growing part of the state’s distilling industry and local communities,” said KDA President Eric Gregory. “We now have distilleries of all sizes in almost every corner of the Commonwealth, and each has a significant economic and tourism impact.

“We congratulate and applaud Wilderness Trace on its opening, and we look forward to working with them and our craft partners to secure the integrity of our industry and keep Kentucky the one, true and authentic home for Bourbon.”

For more information, contact: Eric Gregory, KDA President, (502) 875-9351 Shane Baker or Pat Heist, Wilderness Trace Distillery, (859) 407-8707

The KDA, a non-profit trade association founded in 1880, is the state’s foremost voice on spirits issues.

Members include Beam Inc. (Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark), Brown-Forman Corp., Diageo North America, Four Roses Distillery, Heaven Hill Distilleries, Inc., and Wild Turkey Distillery. Craft distillery members include Alltech’s Town Branch Distillery, Barrel House Distilling Co., Corsair Artisan Distillery, Limestone Branch Distillery, MB Roland Distillery, The Old Pogue Distillery, Silver Trail Distillery, Wilderness Trace Distillery and The Willett Distillery. Educational members include Distilled Spirits Epicenter.

The Kentucky Bourbon Trail®, the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour® and Bourbon Trail™ are trademarks/service marks of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association. Go to and for more information. Please drink responsibly.

Enjoy Like a True Kentuckian: Responsibly