December 10, 2020
Explore our Web Experience & Discover Our Quintessential American Success Story
On December 13th, 1935, Heaven Hill Distillery filled its first barrel of Bourbon. The Shapira family had just opened the brand new Old Heavenhill Springs Distillery in Bardstown, KY. Four years later, Old Heaven Hill Bottled-in-Bond became the number one Bourbon whiskey in the state of Kentucky.
And now, 85 years and nine million barrels later, we’re proud to be America’s largest family-owned & operated distillery.
The story is, as we like to call it, a quintessential American success story. Five first-generation Americans were offered a unique business opportunity at the end of Prohibition in 1934: build a startup distillery in the heart of Bourbon country to craft newly re-legalized American Whiskey. No previous experience, no brand, and no stores of aged spirits. It required some startup capital, but more importantly foresight, experience, creativity, and plenty of hard work. And through patience, perseverance, and a commitment to quality, we’ve been keeping the American Whiskey tradition alive ever since.
The journey hasn’t always been a straightforward one: stopping production to aid the American effort in World War II, booms and ebbs in Bourbon’s popularity over the generations, a catastrophic fire that destroyed our original distillery… countless events have all shaped our growth. But our independence has always enabled us to adapt and continue to bring our fans the award-winning products they love.
To celebrate this special occasion, we’ve built an 85th Anniversary web experience featuring snippets of our history and a showcase of the people and principles behind our American Whiskey. We invite you to celebrate with us and discover the full story of Heaven Hill Distillery.