4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Hangin' with the Colonel in Bardstown, KY

Bourbon and Southern charm a-plenty.

A bourbon tasting in Bardstown's historic Chapeze House with the Colonel(s).
A bourbon tasting in Bardstown's historic Chapeze House with the Colonel(s).

One of the most recognizable advertising logos in the world is Col. Harlan Sanders for KFC. This is pretty much the extent of what most people know about the Kentucky Colonels, though some have an idea involving mint juleps and the Kentucky Derby being vaguely connected.

Kentucky Colonels – the first one was named in 1813 – are named by the Governor of Kentucky for their service to the Commonwealth. The Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels is an important charitable organization in Kentucky, distributing more than 5,000 grants to worthy causes. And yes, they do like to throw a party at Derby, as it’s called by locals.

A Colonel among Colonels is Bardstown’s Col. Michael Masters. He is known as “The Host of Kentucky.” Col. Masters – a bon vivant going back decades – admits he is a character, and indeed he is. He’s kind of the Southern version of Dos Equis’ “Most Interesting Man in the World.”

Masters descends from the first settlers of Bardstown and of the Commonwealth, including Daniel Boone’s family. His many projects – including cookbooks, storybooks, Kentucky travel guides and corporate motivational speaking – bring acclaim to Kentucky’s hospitality, traditions and bourbon. He’s made appearances on the Food Network with Paula Deen and on the Travel Channel with Mark DeCarlo. His wife, Margaret Sue, is appropriately called “The Hostess of Kentucky.” She's very accomplished in her own right, both as a restorer of historic mansions and as a cook.

The nearest major airport to Bardstown is Louisville International Airport, about a 45-minute drive.

Col. Masters owns private cottages/bed & breakfasts where you’re the only guest, so feel free to wear whatever around the place. They’re large enough for 2-3 people and are reserved for adults only. Breakfast is continental (including the Colonel’s famous Southern pecan coffee) and left in the refrigerator so that you have the ultimate privacy. The cottages are within easy walking distance of the historic district, shops and Chapeze House. Comfy details you’ll find include almond-scented linens, kitchenware, a huge bathroom with candles and two-person jacuzzi, polished hardwood floors with Oriental rugs, multiple bedrooms and very high Southern ceilings.

Colonel Masters hosts private bourbon tastings at the historic Chapeze House. He teaches guests how to evaluate bourbons after they select a special flight to drink. The Colonel’s personal collection includes some of the rarest bourbons on the planet and private bottlings. He also hosts cigar revues on the veranda.

When you’re ready for something more substantial, spend the day with the Colonel and Margaret Sue at a cooking class. Choose from different menus to concentrate on, such as a Kentucky Derby breakfast, Kentucky sauces or Kentucky desserts.

The Colonel can also arrange cocktail parties with Kentucky delicacies or a grand Kentucky dinner. Colonel Masters will take great care of you.

As he puts it, “It’s a Southern thing, I don’t leave anyone hanging… Just remember, the drinking lamp is lit at six o’clock.” When I’ve asked him about what goes on at some of these shindigs, he says, “Colonel [yeah, I’m one too], I keep my counsel.” Apparently, what happens in Bardstown stays in Bardstown.

When you’re ready to check out the neighborhood and beyond, historic Bardstown has Southern charm and retains vestiges of its frontier heritage. It’s the bourbon distillery capital of the world. The area is home to several important religious centers, including the Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral – the first Catholic cathedral west of the Alleghenies – and the Abbey of Gethsemani, a Trappist abbey with a public visitor’s center and gift shop featuring its world-famous bourbon fruitcakes.

In nearby Loretto, see bourbon being made on the lovely historic grounds of Maker’s Mark. With tours seven days a week, you can red-wax dip your own commemorative bottle.

Take your memories home: Nelson County is one of Kentucky’s few wet counties. There’s a small, but well-stocked liquor store in town with rare vintage bourbons.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Triangle-shaped in Solana Beach

The “manicured grounds” add a pop of color to an exterior that’s otherwise black, white
Next Article

Little Italy Scavanger Hunt, Jason Mraz

Events September 26-September 29, 2021
A bourbon tasting in Bardstown's historic Chapeze House with the Colonel(s).
A bourbon tasting in Bardstown's historic Chapeze House with the Colonel(s).

One of the most recognizable advertising logos in the world is Col. Harlan Sanders for KFC. This is pretty much the extent of what most people know about the Kentucky Colonels, though some have an idea involving mint juleps and the Kentucky Derby being vaguely connected.

Kentucky Colonels – the first one was named in 1813 – are named by the Governor of Kentucky for their service to the Commonwealth. The Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels is an important charitable organization in Kentucky, distributing more than 5,000 grants to worthy causes. And yes, they do like to throw a party at Derby, as it’s called by locals.

A Colonel among Colonels is Bardstown’s Col. Michael Masters. He is known as “The Host of Kentucky.” Col. Masters – a bon vivant going back decades – admits he is a character, and indeed he is. He’s kind of the Southern version of Dos Equis’ “Most Interesting Man in the World.”

Masters descends from the first settlers of Bardstown and of the Commonwealth, including Daniel Boone’s family. His many projects – including cookbooks, storybooks, Kentucky travel guides and corporate motivational speaking – bring acclaim to Kentucky’s hospitality, traditions and bourbon. He’s made appearances on the Food Network with Paula Deen and on the Travel Channel with Mark DeCarlo. His wife, Margaret Sue, is appropriately called “The Hostess of Kentucky.” She's very accomplished in her own right, both as a restorer of historic mansions and as a cook.

The nearest major airport to Bardstown is Louisville International Airport, about a 45-minute drive.

Col. Masters owns private cottages/bed & breakfasts where you’re the only guest, so feel free to wear whatever around the place. They’re large enough for 2-3 people and are reserved for adults only. Breakfast is continental (including the Colonel’s famous Southern pecan coffee) and left in the refrigerator so that you have the ultimate privacy. The cottages are within easy walking distance of the historic district, shops and Chapeze House. Comfy details you’ll find include almond-scented linens, kitchenware, a huge bathroom with candles and two-person jacuzzi, polished hardwood floors with Oriental rugs, multiple bedrooms and very high Southern ceilings.

Colonel Masters hosts private bourbon tastings at the historic Chapeze House. He teaches guests how to evaluate bourbons after they select a special flight to drink. The Colonel’s personal collection includes some of the rarest bourbons on the planet and private bottlings. He also hosts cigar revues on the veranda.

When you’re ready for something more substantial, spend the day with the Colonel and Margaret Sue at a cooking class. Choose from different menus to concentrate on, such as a Kentucky Derby breakfast, Kentucky sauces or Kentucky desserts.

The Colonel can also arrange cocktail parties with Kentucky delicacies or a grand Kentucky dinner. Colonel Masters will take great care of you.

As he puts it, “It’s a Southern thing, I don’t leave anyone hanging… Just remember, the drinking lamp is lit at six o’clock.” When I’ve asked him about what goes on at some of these shindigs, he says, “Colonel [yeah, I’m one too], I keep my counsel.” Apparently, what happens in Bardstown stays in Bardstown.

When you’re ready to check out the neighborhood and beyond, historic Bardstown has Southern charm and retains vestiges of its frontier heritage. It’s the bourbon distillery capital of the world. The area is home to several important religious centers, including the Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral – the first Catholic cathedral west of the Alleghenies – and the Abbey of Gethsemani, a Trappist abbey with a public visitor’s center and gift shop featuring its world-famous bourbon fruitcakes.

In nearby Loretto, see bourbon being made on the lovely historic grounds of Maker’s Mark. With tours seven days a week, you can red-wax dip your own commemorative bottle.

Take your memories home: Nelson County is one of Kentucky’s few wet counties. There’s a small, but well-stocked liquor store in town with rare vintage bourbons.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Why did Faulconer get so much cash from farmers and oilmen?

San Diego looking to replace Patton Boggs as D.C. lobbyist
Next Article

Waste and Covid-19 missteps plague CoreCivic's border lockup

"We determined ICE paid more than $22 million for unused bed space"
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close