The Bourbon Trail at Disney Springs
All good things must come to an end, and the best good things tend to end sooner than we’re ready to say goodbye (think Christmas morning, ice cream cones, and summer). Speaking of summer, my favorite season is finally here, just before we all went snow-crazy. Its timely debut isn’t the only welcome change; the warm weather also brought us a brand new tasting that’s just been announced at Disney Springs and its geared for whiskey enthusiasts with a palette for food and beverage pairings! Warning: do not forget that all good things come to an end before we’re ready to say goodbye…the new Bourbon Trail is here through June 17th only. Get yourself to Disney Springs asap to try some of these tantalizing new offerings!
It’s normally tough for me to get excited about new 21+ beverage announcements from Walt Disney World since they’re always way too beer-focused. But a Bourbon Trail? That I can get behind! There are 18 stops located along the Bourbon Trail, and although it is not recommended that you try all 18 in one or two days, each spot has a drink worth stopping in for. Enough talk about the new walk, let’s get sipping!
If you’re ready to take on the Bourbon Trail, your first stop should be at the Disney Springs Welcome Center. It’s here that you’ll pick up a handy map of the Bourbon Trail that highlights each of the restaurants participating and their location along the trail. Once you have your map and have perused the potential stops, you’re ready to dive into your first drink! With 18 options to choose from and limited vacation time to fit it all into, you’ll want to read on for our must-try destinations on this whiskey walk.
Whiskey Without the Frills and Fluff
Pulling on stiff clothes and strapping into wedge sandals reminds me way, way too much of my everyday routine to want to bring dressy clothes with me on vacation. From the moment my airplane goes wheels-up, I’m in shorts and t-shirts from sunup to sundown, and it’s nearly impossible to get me to wiggle into nice clothes for a nice dinner during the trip, let alone for a night of bourbon tasting! I’m all about being casual and if you’re like me and looking to relax with your bourbon, make your first stop Raglan Road. They are featuring a drink called The Gold Cup that includes both Bulleit Bourbon and Jameson Black Barrel Irish Whiskey that sounds like it’ll be a whiskey-soaked take on a mojito with lime, mint, and cucumber being the telling ingredients. I’ll be indulging in their drink for sure, but my main reason for stopping here first is to fill up on their Dub Schpuds food pairing. We’ll all certainly need a filling layer of potato wedges in our bellies to cushion the ensuing bourbon adventures.
This casual walk along the Bourbon Trail would be incomplete without a stop at the Polite Pig. Raking #1 in both laid-back atmosphere and selection of bourbon (just look at that bar!), you can choose from dozens of bourbons any day of the week at this popular spot. I would recommend sampling one of their reserve whiskeys instead of their featured Trail drink as the whiskeys here are so good, they don’t need any fancy additives.
House of Blues is a great stop for lively atmosphere and late night eats, and their contribution to the Bourbon Trail is making the restaurant more popular and electric than ever! Featuring Knob Creek Bourbon, St. Elder, lemon juice, strawberry, and rhubarb bitters, the Fine and Mellow is the perfect drink to choose towards the end of your Bourbon Trail. As the name implies, the drink is smooth, sweet, and goes down a little too easily to resist the urge to order a second. Try not to fall into the trap, though, because we’ve got one more stop to make!
I’m always in the mood for ice cream at the end of a night out. Fine you caught me…I’m always in the mood for ice cream! Your stomach is probably getting full, so why not combine your last drink with dessert for an outrageously delicious drink/dessert double whammy! D-Luxe Burger has got you covered with their Smoked Bourbon Gelato Shake. Vanilla gelato, Knob Creek Bourbon, chocolate sauce, hickory smoke, and milk get whipped together before being poured into a generously sized cup and topped with a piece of house-fried bacon.
The Fancy Bourbon Trail
Although I might not pack the clothes to match, I won’t be skipping the restaurants and bars that would probably prefer me to be in dress-code! My first stop will certainly be Paddlefish for a glass of Southern Sangria. Peachy notes compliment the Medely Bros. bourbon whiskey and floating seasonal fruit beautifully. Ask to be seated on the outdoor deck upstairs for a great waterfront view of both Saratoga and Disney Springs!
Enzo’s Hideaway is one of the newest additions to Disney Springs and they’re smartly getting in on the Bourbon Trail action at its height of popularity. Enzo’s Bourbon Swizzle sounds like it’s right up my alley featuring ingredients like Bulleit Bourbon, lemon juice, ginger and fresh muddled mint sprigs. No outdoor seating here, but the theming of this prohibition-era speakeasy is remarkably done and worth checking out!
You’re probably hungry at this point on the bourbon trail, and it can be tempting to stop off for a quick snack at any of the carts located throughout Disney Springs, but resist the urge long enough to stop at Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar. Their featured dish is the Snakebite Sliders that come in an order of 3 and will definitely fill up your belly before hitting the final stop. Their featured bourbon drink is a spiked coffee, though I would recommend one of their whiskey-laden specialty cocktails instead! Peruse the menu, they’ve got plenty to choose from!
Those heels and tuxes are probably feeling a little uncomfortable after all of that walking and eating, so sit down at the dockside bar at The Boathouse to wrap up the evening with an Orlando Pride. Old Forester Bourbon is mixed together with the restaurants’ homemade blackberry citrus puree and sounds like one of the most refreshingly relaxing drinks on the entire Bourbon Trail! What do you think? Which drink are you most excited to sip? Let me know in the comments!
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Special thanks to Maria Salerno for writing this article: Hiya pal! I am a NYC-based writer/musician thrilled to be bringing you all things Disney! I’m a WDW Annual Passholder, so you can find me in the parks regularly throughout the year. In addition to being a Disney Parks loving girl, I’m also a Disney toy and merchandise collector, a runDisney enthusiast, and Disney music and movie aficionado. You can follow me on Instagram: NYCtoAP and find me on YouTube: NYCtoAP. Thanks for reading, hope to see ya real soon!