Pepper House

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Pepper House

Unread postby bourbonv » Sat Mar 22, 2008 7:43 pm

I arrived at the WEoodford Reserve Distillery about a half an hour early today for the Academy. Chris was already there and invited me to walk up to see the spring on the other side of the creek. We crossed the iron foot bridge and climbed the 150 year old limestone stairway to see where Oscar Pepper and James Crow got the water to make their whiskey. While up there we decided to climb on up to the Pepper house and take a look. I had never been up there before and did want to see the house so I am glad I made the long climb.

The house was like many other old Kentucky farmhouses - it had a log cabin core and many additions added to the structure over the next 200 years. It is in poor condition. It has been 4 years since tenent lived in the house and Brown-Forman would like to preserve it. There is just one problem - what do they do with it after they sink hundreds of thousands dollars into the structure.

They thought maybe a bed and breakfast, but that would involve additional security and employees to run the place and Brown-Forman really does not want to be in the bed and breakfast business. Using it for meetings would mean creating a better access to the distillery. Those stairs are steep and many of the stones are cracked and loose. They would hate to have to build a bridge across the creek for vehicle access and in bad weather, even an improved stari up that steep hill could be hazardous.

Anybody have any sugestions as to what to do with an old farmhouse?
Mike Veach
"Our people live almost exclusively on whiskey" - E H Taylor, Jr. 25 April 1873
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Unread postby Bourbon HQ » Sun Mar 23, 2008 12:31 pm

Let me live in it!


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Unread postby cowdery » Sun Mar 23, 2008 12:32 pm

Make it an American whiskey library and study center, where scholars-in-residence could stay while researching bourbon history. The only staff needed would be a gourmet chef, a housekeeper, and a masseuse. We...I mean, the scholars...would be required to man the bar themselves.
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Unread postby jdknaebel » Sun Mar 23, 2008 5:55 pm

Bourbon HQ wrote:Let me live in it!



Gayle,

If you lived that close to the distillery there would need to be security on the warehouses 24X7. :D

JD
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Unread postby Bourbon Joe » Sun Mar 23, 2008 8:41 pm

LOL
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Unread postby TNbourbon » Sun Mar 23, 2008 8:49 pm

Frankly, I think it ought to be refurbished and staffed for those who've proven their appreciation of bourbon by some tangible form -- such as, for example, long and frequent participation in online bourbon fora! (That doesn't necessarily rule out bourbon journalists, mind you...)
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Unread postby barturtle » Sun Mar 23, 2008 9:43 pm

Maybe it should become a private club for Bourbon Trivia Champions :D

OR Bourbon Hall of Fame members and their guests...
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Unread postby bourbonv » Mon Mar 24, 2008 10:00 am

Gayle would never make it up the hillside without rolling into the creek. It is a steep climb when sober!

I was thinking of maybe an office for their Woodford Reserve Stables. Place the retired racehorses in the fields around the house and have place where the stable members can come to visit. That would require an improved method of visiting the distillery such as better stairs down the hill, but it might be something to justify the expense of the restoration.
Mike Veach
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Unread postby bunghole » Mon Mar 24, 2008 10:14 am

Demo all the additions, and restore the log cabin core. Furnish it as it would have been when Oscar Pepper & family lived there. There must be some access road to the house since it has been rented out in the fairly recent past. Make the homestead part of the distillery tour.

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Unread postby Bas » Mon Mar 24, 2008 12:18 pm

I don't know how big it is but perhaps you can split it up in different sections.
1 as bar where you can taste all the good stuff. A little museum which has to be visited at first before you start to taste. :)
1 as a small library, as Chuck suggested.
All combined would make it more atractive to visit.
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