Log Still transforms its historic distillery into the next generation bourbon destination

A new addition to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail just keeps on growing and offers much more than just bourbon.
Published: Sep. 5, 2023 at 10:48 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 12, 2023 at 10:29 AM EDT
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NELSON COUNTY, Ky. (WAVE) - A new addition to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail just keeps on growing and offers much more than just bourbon, and it’s also bringing a name that used to be well known to bourbon enthusiasts back to the forefront.

For Wally Dant, it’s good to be home at Log Still Distillery in New Haven.

“We have 350 acres here,” Dant said. “At one time, pre-prohibition, there were three distilleries on our property.”

Dant’s family ties to this land go back more than two centuries. He left his Nashville healthcare business to bring Log Still Distillery back to life with his two cousins, already putting north of $80 million into it.

“For us to come back here and be able to take over the old distillery and make it new again was pretty special,” Dant said.

The Dant family got into bourbon in 1836 when Joseph W. Dant made a still out of a poplar tree log. His seven sons all got involved in distilling too. There are six homes on the property people can rent for the night.

”My grandfather built this house in the 1930′s when his Dad owned the distillery,” Dant said.

All the homes have updated with pieces of family history.

A short walk away is this amphitheater that seats 2,300 and brought in acts like Little Big Town, Lady A, and Third Eye Blind.

”Having been in Nashville for 20 something odd years and knowing what great music and entertainment is in Nashville, I thought couldn’t we bring a slice of that to Kentucky to kind of nowhere,” Dant said. “In the tasting room, sampling some of the bourbon made here, we met Tim Holbert who lives down the street from Log Still Distillery.”

“If you would have told me when I was a kid a place like this was going to be out here, I would have thought you were crazy,” Holbert said.

It’s close to the Abbey of Gethsemani, which is how some of their spirits got their name.

”The road that leads here is literally called Monk’s Road,” Dant said.

On the property, there’s also an event space that can be rented. There’s a room for the groomsmen to get ready, and the bridesmaids as well.

Preparing the food is chef David Danielson, who recently left Churchill Downs. He’s getting the menu ready for the restaurant now under construction.

”You come in, experience modern southern cuisine,” Danielson said. “It will be more upscale than any type of meat and three you might have seen in Arkansas, Nashville.

Dant expects to employ 125 people by the time everything is up and running back in bourbon and back home.

J.W. Dant Whiskey is still around, it’s now owned by Heaven Hill. Log Still Distillery neither owns nor has any affiliation with ‘J.W. Dant’ distilled spirits.