Businesses send employees to Bourbon training to help advance cu - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Businesses send employees to Bourbon training to help advance customer experience

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The duties of managing a restaurant in Louisville are endless and having knowledge of Bourbon is high on that list.

"Our guests want to know everything about Bourbon, from distilling to history to how barrels are made. We put ourselves in a better position to recommend the right Bourbon for our guests," said TJ Oakley, General Manager at Bristol Bar and Grille.

To better serve his customers, Oakley furthered his Bourbon education. He's now an executive bourbon steward who trains and certifies workers.

The restaurant has 20 Bourbon certified employees on staff, the most in town.

"It gives us an edge in the sense that we have staff in place that can really talk to our customers and help them select the perfect Bourbons, tell them about the history. But also to take that training to the rest of the staff and really help us build strong bourbon program,” Oakley shared.

Stave and Thief Society is a quarterly operated class at the Distilled Spirits Epicenter.

From limousine drivers to hotel concierge, businesses from different genres want Bourbon certified employees.

The crash course provides an abundance of knowledge that can be shared and taught to fellow staff members.

We worked very closely with the Kentucky Distillers Association and with professionals in the Bourbon and hospitality industry. We talk about the history as it pertains to Bourbon culture and then we get into the science of the production,” said Stave and Thief Society director Colleen Thomas.

It's an authentic Bourbon experience that's strengthening the service of local businesses.

Newly trained experts say they feel confident and prepared to answer bourbon-related questions from locals and tourists around the world.

"This is the only Bourbon certification program that is recognized by the industry. Our students turned experts can go out into the world and can pretty much handle anything," said Thomas.

The next class at Stave and Thief will take place on Nov. 2, 2015. To learn more about how to register, click here.

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