Beam is the country's best-selling bourbon. Watch a film about the Beam family, take the 90-minute tour through the factory and warehouses, and then converge on the distillery's high-tech tasting room to sample the wares. Tours depart every half hour from 9:30 to 3:30pm Monday to Saturday (no tour at 11:30am or at 12:30pm), and from 12:30pm to 3pm Sunday. Reservations are a good idea, especially on weekends, but you must book 48 hours in advance.
If a tour isn't in the cards, the onsite bourbon bar pours flights and cocktails. In addition to the namesake hooch, Beam makes Knob Creek (good), Knob Creek Single Barrel (better), Basil Hayden's (velvety) and Booker's (high-proof enlightenment), which is best described as damn smooth with rocket boosters.
There's a definite corporate vibe at the American Stillhouse, but the pretty pastoral setting makes up for it. Beam has a smaller facility, the Urban Stillhouse, in downtown Louisville.