as you probably can deduce, we love the paducah bourbon society. it’s by far one of the coolest clubs in paducah, run by some very classy and palate-knowledgeable folks, and we love hosting the meetings when it comes our turn in the rotation. so when we learned this year’s holiday dinner celebration lacked both a venue and a menu, we thought freight house would be the perfect spot and offered up our services.
if you were lucky enough to attend, you know how incredible the whole thing turned out. if you missed out, here’s how it went down: the dinner was hosted in conjunction with the paducah bourbon society (naturally), maker’s mark, knob creek, and wagner wine & spirits, and featured a food and bourbon pairing from four different single barrel selections.
we opened the doors with red derby from knob creek. this 15yo bourbon was featured in an almond old fashioned…or neat if you are no frills kinda drinker.
the first course started with the wagner family knob creek rye single barrel, and was paired with quail, creamed onion, country ham, biscuits, and sherry maple gastrique. the wagner rye was actually from a historical occasion, as it was the first ever on-site rye barrel pick from warehouse k at the jim beam distillery. if you haven’t had a chance to try out “ryes up,” then you better phone a friend, because these bottles have been long gone. it’s also a good reason to make it a point to attend these things, as you never know what you might get to try!
the second course also featured a wagner family barrel select, this one from the fine folks at maker’s mark. for this course we paired the sweet wheat with new york strip, sunchokes, royal trumpet mushrooms with a whipped chestnut jus.
the third course featured chef sara bradley’s own maker’s mark private select barrel, which had a little backstory. if you have been watching this season of “top chef”, you saw the chefs hang out, eat, and drink at the maker’s mark distillery. during that time, the contestants also made their own barrel picks and had the opportunity to select the finishing staves for their respective selections for special “top chef” branded bottles.
chef sara was able to get her hands on some of these limited bottles, and debuted them during the third course of the dinner (see, you really should not miss out on these events!). she paired her uniquely finished bourbon with poached pear, gooey ginger bread, and sweet chai tea ice cream.
the sold out event was a heck of a time, full of great spirits both in personality and liquid form. we at the freight house take great pleasure in hosting the bourbon society meetings, and this “meeting of all meetings” was a great way to wrap up a great year in bourbon and get geared up for what’s to come for bourbon in the next year. quit saying you’ll go eventually and sign up already. you’re missing out.