This morning we stopped at McD's on the way out of town for coffee. Inside it is set up to look like a recording studio. Fun.
After we too I 65 towards Birmingham. I have not found a friend's address so.....About 2 hours into the drive we saw signs for Jack Daniell's Distillery. Well what could we do but turn onto hwy 50 and head to Lynchburg which proved to be almost 40 miles away....but to the east...mmmmmaybe a wee bit north. It was rolling mountains with lots of greens and russets. Some limestone cliffs showed through.
Lynchburg proved to be a quaint little town with an old-fashioned gas pump, old buildings from the 1800's, a few restaurants and lots of gift s
We turned left into a huge parking lot, walked across the road to the left and entered a white visitor center through beautiful gardens and grassy lawns. Inside with 11.35a tickets purchased we read the history of the distillery. We saw the original stones used to grind the corn and discovered the main differences between bourbon and whiskey. Barley is added to whiskey as well as the corn, rye, malt and yeast AND it is filtered one drop at a time through hard maple charcoal before it is aged in the white oak barrels. Filtering takes out the harsher aspects like corn oil, etc.
At 11.35a we joined Brian, an older jovial fellow to explore the distillery. We saw the springs in the limestone cave...again iron free water essential to whiskey production followed by where the mash is made and heated....vats 20 feet high. We watched the yeast work its magic. We followed along to watch the coopers in the cooperage make the oak barrels. We saw where Darrel and Tracey make charcoal out of hard maple trees rickets...2 cords of wood. We saw barrels aging. We saw the whiskey being bottled. We were then led to the Tasting Room....yes! Please!
We tried 7 different whiskies...Gold, Sinatra, single Barrel, Barrel Blend and 2 others I didn't like. The last was a rye whiskey blend. Smooth and definitely for sipping.
We had lunch in town sharing a 1/2 rib plate....yes it was that big.
We then visited a couple of shops to buy cigars and then left town.
It was 2.30p as we headed toward I 24 and Chattanooga Tn. We found ourselves creeping along the north of Chattanooga. It took 20 min. to go 2 kms between I 59 and I 27. Once on I 75 we sped along.
We are in a Super 8 just southeast of Chattanooga. We've ezten salads and settled for the night. It is 8p.