Our Horse Neck Story
The Bourbon Trail is a bucket list item for lots of people. Especially for those who love Bourbon and want to experience the essence and the roots of Bourbon in the heart of Kentucky.
But a bucket list item can be dangerous thing. Most of the time it's a trip or an experience that you've been thinking about all your life. You finally do it, check it off the list and move on. But sometimes, that bucket list item you achieved, well, it becomes a thing. A thing that charts a new course in life or starts a new chapter. You never know.
That's what it was for the Five. The Bourbon Trail was something they had talked about doing over the years. They even attempted to go, unsuccessfully, on several occasions. Then they went. They went in the middle of a worldwide pandemic. It was not the ideal time to hit the Trail but the distilleries were still open, the tastings and tours went on and the Five got to experience the thrill of the Bourbon Trail. Check!
The most amazing thing that happened to the Five on the Trail was the discovery of a local drink, thanks to their friend Rick, who lives in Kentucky. "It's a Kentucky Gentleman," he declared as he handed each of us a plastic cup filled with his favorite "juice" as we climbed on the tour bus one sunny Saturday morning. The drink was a simple mix of Bourbon, bitters and a local ginger ale called Ale81. No one was sure why, but it was the tastiest, most unique drink we all ever tasted. Or so it seemed anyway. It could have been that is was 8:00 in the morning. It could have been that Ale81 is really a different kind of ginger ale -- not so sweet, a little more pepper and a little flat. Nonetheless, the Five were smitten. They discovered a drink that was really special. It wasn't more than 10 minutes later when one of the Five blurted out, "We should can this drink and sell it in Texas!" Those 10 words changed everything. Well, maybe not everything but it did chart a new course for the Five.
And that is the origin of Horse Neck. The story of a bucket list item that ignited an idea and it turned into a business. Go figure. Since that fateful trip, the idea for canning a single drink turned into a full line of Kentucky Bourbon beverages -- one of which has the same essence of that Bourbon and Ginger Ale drink the Five had on the bus that fateful day. They've worked hard over the past year on formulations and recipes, and developed a line of Bourbon beverages they are proud to serve and personally enjoy themselves, as Bourbon lovers.
And who's the Five? Kurt, Brian, Jim, Mark and Darren. They are just a life-long buddy group of guys doing life together in Texas, although only one of them is actually a Texan. The rest are from California, Louisiana, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma. But they have a love for one another based on shared values, shared faith and a shared love for a good idea, like Horse Neck.