When is National Bourbon Day? Things To Know (2023)

Last Updated on November 5, 2023 by Lydia Martin

Every year, bourbon enthusiasts pay homage to America’s native spirit-bourbon. National Bourbon Day celebration can be a good excuse to dust off a fine bourbon on your liquor shelves and enjoy the odd tipple. 

But when is National Bourbon Day, and how should you celebrate it? Get your glasses ready because we’re about to tell you.  

Celebrating The National Bourbon Day

Bourbon Bottles

Bourbon has captured global attention because of its unique and fine whiskey flavor. Every year, people all over the country get to enjoy a glass or two to pay homage to the whiskey

Others try new bourbon-based cocktails for a change, go to Kentucky for a bourbon tour, and learn more about the bourbons in new charred oak barrels.  

When Is It Celebrated?

National Bourbon Day is celebrated every June 14, and on this day, people get to learn and appreciate the nation’s well-loved American spirit-bourbon. All bourbons are whiskeys, and not all whiskeys are bourbon, but one thing is clear: bourbon is an all-American whiskey

Bourbons can be produced anywhere in the United States [1] and not just in Kentucky, unlike Cognac, which should be from Cognac Region only.

National Bourbon Day’s Brief History

Woodford Reserve Double Oaked

Bourbon day is celebrated every year on the day the first time bourbon was distilled in the late 1700s. Some believe bourbon acquired its name to honor Bourbon County in Kentucky, where the corn used in most recipes is growing; others believed it was named after a street in New Orleans. 

In 1964 the US Congress declared bourbon a native spirit [2], and to be officially called bourbon, it should be made from a mash of at least 51% corn [3]. However, some use 70% corn, so it has the nickname corn whiskey. 

Other grains like rye or wheat and malted barley are fermented, distilled, filled, and aged in a new charred oak barrel for only two years minimum. 

How To Celebrate National Bourbon Day 

How To Celebrate National Bourbon Day 

Organize A Bourbon-Tasting Party

One way to commemorate bourbon day is by organizing your own bourbon tasting party. You can invite a few friends over and personally choose the bottle selection. 

Bourbon Day is the best time to try different brands – new and vintage bourbons. You can host tastings, discover, smell, and enjoy each flavor of the distilled spirit. 

Try Bourbon-Based Cocktails

Classic Bourbon Cocktail

Drinking bourbon-based cocktails like Bourbon Old Fashioned will always be a classic way. You can also try some bourbon Mint Julep- a must-have bourbon cocktail at the Kentucky Derby.  

Bourbon Manhattan, named after the city that never sleeps, is an iconic bourbon-based cocktail. Mix your favorite Kentucky bourbon whiskey with bitters, and sweet vermouth, then garnish it with orange peel and maraschino cherry. 

Visit The Bourbon Capital Of The World 

If you have the luxury of time or want to do different this time, why not visit the Bourbon Capital of the World in Bardstown, Kentucky? 

Most distillers in the town offer a bourbon tour where you can learn their history and access their distillery. Master distillers even let you taste the distinct flavor of their crafted bourbons.

Watch Neat: The Bourbon Film

Bourbon Old Fashioned Cocktail

There’s a full-length documentary on bourbon called NEAT: The Story of Bourbon released last 2018 that you can stream while savoring the flavors of the whiskey. NEAT dives and explores the colorful history and process of bourbon. If you haven’t watched it, now is a great time! 

Why Enthusiasts Love Celebrating It 

It’s All-American

Whiskeys can be made everywhere from Scotland to Brooklyn, but in 1964, Congress declared bourbon as America’s Native Spirit, so distillers should purely make it in America. 

While the US produces different exceptional beers and wines, you can trace their origin back and lead you to other countries or cultures but not bourbon. 

Bourbon Is Fairly Versatile 

Maker's Mark Whisky

Bourbon is a versatile liquor, and you can drink it neat, on the rocks, or as a cocktail. You can add a splash of water for the aroma to open up or use it as a substitute in whiskey-based drinks. 

Bourbon whiskies can make your night more special because there are different cocktail recipes you can try with distilled spirits. 

Bourbon Equates To Adulting

Note this: bourbon is the drink for real adult men and women. 

Most drinkers start with beer, wine, or vodka, but bourbon is a real adult drink, especially since it has high alcohol by volume content. It is accessible, can be expensive at times but surely a great spirit you can enjoy with friends and family in any events. 


Is September National Bourbon Month?

No, September is not National Bourbon Month. The US Senate passed the resolution in 2007, declaring that September is National Bourbon Heritage Month to commemorate the American spirit. 

When did National Bourbon day begin?

The National Bourbon Day began on June 14, 1789, when Rev. Elijah Craig first produced the bourbon. Most people credit Craig for inventing bourbon, so to remember the occasion, every June 14, bourbon enthusiasts celebrate the day. 

Final Thoughts

June 14 is National Bourbon Day, and it is the day when Rev. Craig first distilled bourbon. You can spend the day sipping bourbons, trying new cocktails, seeing a documentary, or stopping by a distillery. 

No matter what the plans would be on that day, drinking bourbon is the best way to enjoy the holiday. Raise your glasses and cheers! 



Lydia Martin

Lydia Martin hails from Redmond, Washington, where you’ll find some of the best cocktail bars and distilleries that offer a great mix of local drinks. She used to work as a bar manager in Paris and is a self-taught mixologist whose passion for crafting unique cocktails led her to create Liquor Laboratory. Lydia can whip up a mean Margarita in seconds! Contact at [email protected] or learn more about us here or feel free to give Lydia a tip.

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