Jim Beam Great Distillery BBQ Cook-Off

September 19, 2018

Hey, y’all!

On September 8th, I was honored to attend the 2018 Great Distillery BBQ Cook-Off at the Jim Beam American Stillhouse in Clermont, KY!


This is the second installment of this annual event; seventh generation Jim Beam Master Distiller Fred Noe hosted the day.

At the core of this event is camaraderie and community, something that I greatly admired.


Attendees included 18 four-person cook teams from The Bardstown Bourbon Company, Barton 1792 Distillery, The Glenmore Distillery, Heaven Hill Distillery, Independent Stave Company, Jim Beam® Brands, Maker’s Mark® Distillery and Wild Turkey Distillery, as well as select bourbon industry Master Distillers and hundreds of barbecue fans. Locally renowned Chef John Varanese, owner of Varanese and River House restaurants, was the event barbecue pit host.


As a Kentuckian, and a purveyor of the bourbon industry, I was in awe of the community. In all reality, these are competitors – but, they proved to me that, above all else, they are friends. Colleagues that can come together for a common cause – and that, y’all, is due my respect.


The Great Distillery BBQ Cook-Off not only celebrates a great American food – but, at its core, it’s philanthropic. It honors the efforts of Operation BBQ Relief®, a nonprofit consisting of volunteers from competition barbecue teams who provide hot meals to displaced families and emergency personnel in areas impacted by natural disasters. They are currently, for example, deployed in CA to provide relief to those impacted by the wildfires. I loved getting to hear about the organization from the local representatives; their passion was palpable!



During the day, I was so excited to try out some of Jim Beam’s cocktails and Fred’s, their onsite BBQ restaurant.


Brisket nachos, brisket tacos, pulled pork sandwich.


Bread pudding — yes, please.


Bourbon-infused ice cream = life-changing.

Thank you to the team at Jim Beam for a day of fun, food, and community! It was an honor and privilege to be a part of it.

As always, Happy Eating, Happy Traveling, Happy Living!

Y’all come back now, ya hear?

My best,


FTC: This is a sponsored post; however, all opinions are my own.


  • Reply
    September 21, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    That first pic of you is adorbs!
    I also need those nachos in my life’

  • Reply
    September 21, 2018 at 5:32 pm

    You had me at pork brisket nachos!!!! They looked incredible!! What a fun event!

  • Reply
    September 21, 2018 at 6:11 pm

    I am with Sam… omg those pork brisket nachos look amazing! I am so keeping an eye out for this next year!

  • Reply
    Jessica Goodpaster
    September 22, 2018 at 1:05 am

    I mean, those nachos look amazing! I had no idea this event existed, but I need it to check it out next time.

  • Reply
    September 22, 2018 at 2:44 am

    I’ve never heard of that charity before, but it sounds like a great mission. And what a fun event, too!

  • Reply
    September 23, 2018 at 11:19 am

    Everything looks so good! Wish I knew that was going on

  • Reply
    September 23, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    This looks like so much fun! Sign me up for the bread pudding!

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