Kentucky State University students to benefit from new Castle & Key and Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild release

Kentucky State University students to benefit from new Castle & Key and Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild release

Kentucky State University students will benefit from the new Castle & Key and Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild release called The Un-Told Story of Kentucky Whiskey: Chapter 1. 

Money from the sales of the new release will benefit students in the Kentucky State University distilling program as part of the Diversity in Kentucky Distilling Scholarship. 

“As distillers and admirers of American whiskey, it is our responsibility to share the history of how the spirit came to be,” Will Arvin, co-founder of Castle & Key, said. “We are honored to have partnered with the Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild to amplify these untold stories and to launch this important scholarship fund. Our hope is to amplify the diverse history of our industry and to support a more equitable future for prospective distillers.”

Castle & Key will only release 425 bottles of Chapter 1. The Diversity in Kentucky Distilling Scholarship offers students of color $5,000 awards (for up to two years) to pursue distilling education and work in Kentucky.

Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear was on hand at the unveiling event. 

“It was an honor to join the Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild's limited release of The Untold Story of Kentucky Whiskey, Chapter 1, highlighting the contributions of African Americans that led to the creation of America's spirit – bourbon,” Beshear said via his official Twitter account.

Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton was also in attendance and declared Nov. 13 as Black Bourbon Guild day in the city. The event also featured remarks from the first Black woman chemist at Brown and Forman, 90-year-old chemist Elmer Lucille Allen. Allen was recently profiled in American Whiskey

“We’re proud to release this bottle to you today. With this bottle, this is just Chapter 1. This is the foundation of our organization, which is getting African American history in front of everyone. This goes way back and we’re just getting started,” Robert Beatty, founder and board member of the Black Bourbon Guild, said at the event. 

Michael Adams Jr., a Kentucky State alumnus and vice president of the Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild, also provided remarks. 

“The Castle & Key Untold Story Series of Kentucky Whiskey is not just American heritage within a bottle. This special release rightfully connects African American contributions to that very Americanism going back to the dates of slavery,” Adams said. “Make no mistake about it, this project boldly confesses a truth that most have been reluctant to merely utter aloud. Our organization is proud to work with such a courageous, forward-thinking, and fair organization as Castle & Key.”

Click here to learn more about Kentucky State University’s distillation science offerings.