Scout and Scholar Brewing Co. Review | Bardstown, KY

 My wife and I traveled to Kentucky for the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. We spent the majority portion of each of our days on vacation in Kentucky driving to different bourbon and whiskey distilleries to take tours, view the grounds, and taste the bourbon. 

That was a ton of fun and we don't regret a moment of it, but we reached a point where we needed a break from the taste of liquor. We also love breweries, and beer just sounded more refreshing at that time.

While we were hanging out at Limestone Branch Distillery in Lebanon, KY, we met a tour guide named John who drives for a tour company called Mint Julep Tours. We had seen their Mint Julep tour buses all over as we traveled through the area in Kentucky. We figured that these tour guides had probably seen all of the best parts of the area and would be able to give a very good recommendation.

We started chatting with John about the area and other things to do while we were there. John was really friendly and very knowledgeable. He recommended that we visit a cooperage tour (where they show how bourbon aging barrels are made - we never ended up making it to a cooperage tour). He recommended a restaurant called The Rickhouse and another called Mammy's Kitchen & Bar (we did make it to both of those).

When we asked him specifically about breweries with good beer that also served food, without any pause, he immediately recommended Scout and Scholar.

He said that they were a fairly new place that brews really good beer and serves delicious food. That sounded like just the type of place we were looking for, so we made plans to go there.

We wanted to eat there, so we decided to go there for supper. It happened to be raining really hard as we were trying to get there. It was raining so hard it was hard to see the road. We navigated slowly through downtown Bardstown to their brewery location which is just a block or so off the main street in town.

That area was almost completely parked up. There is a city parking lot across the street from the brewery which would hold a lot of cars, but unfortunately it was full. All of the convenient street parking nearby was taken, so we had to park a couple blocks away and run through the rain to the restaurant.

The building and the sidewalk outside were all made of bricks, which is a look I really enjoy.

We stepped inside and out of the rain to find a packed house. We put our name in for a reservation for a table, but in the meantime were told we could order drinks at the bar.

We read through their huge beer selection and each decided on a brew. I ordered our two beers and also placed an order for an appetizer, a soft pretzel with cheese! That is a pretty standard appetizer order for us at breweries. Breweries seem to have the best pretzels.

We were able to find a standing only table in the front half of the building where we could drink our beers and wait for our pretzel. The place was pretty big inside! The same brick aesthetic I noticed outside was the theme inside. Their were several large screen TVs and a long series of tap handles for the beer.

We were in the taproom half of the brewery, but there was also a second half of the restaurant that was separated by a wall. In addition to the indoor seating, there is a large and beautiful outdoor patio, but unfortunately the rain made that space unusable.

I ordered the Kolbier Cream Ale, and my wife ordered the Intangipale American Pale Ale. We always trade sips of each others' beers to increase the number of beers we can try. We both really enjoyed both beers.

Our pretzel came out from the kitchen and we devoured it. It was one of the better pretzels I think I've ever had, but it's possible that's just how hungry we were. Either way, well worth ordering!

Before long we were notified that our table was ready. We were seated at the edge of the dining area where we could still see into the taproom. Our table was directly against a big window that let us see into their brewing area. We could see their large stainless steel brewing vats and some of the used whiskey barrels they used to age some of their beers in.

We read through the menu and had a hard time choosing what to order. Everything sounded so tasty!

I ended up going with the KY Grassfed Beef Burger which came with bacon pepper jam, cheddar cheese, aioli, and an onion ring. I got their Truffle Tots as a side.

My wife is vegetarian, and it can be hard to find something substantial to eat at lots of restaurants because so many of the dishes include meat. She decided to make a meal of side dishes. She order Mexican Street Corn, Smoked Cauliflower, and Potato Salad.

To go with our meals we ordered another round of beers. This time around I ordered a Palms New England IPA and my wife ordered the Hip, Hip, HEFE! Hefeweizen.

The service was very friendly, and our food and drinks came back very quickly. Out of all of the food and drinks I just named, I would recommend them all. They were all very good.

I think my favorite thing was the Truffle Tots. It is so unique, and I just love the taste of truffle.

My wife's favorite was the Smoked Cauliflower. If you have never tried them (they are becoming more popular and you can find them at lots of breweries and restaurants), they are a lot like a vegetarian chicken wing. They are crispy and meaty from being fried or baked, and they are usually slathered in the same sauces the regular chicken wings use.

They are a great option for any vegetarian, but also just for anyone that enjoys food. While I eat less meat than I used to, I am by no means a vegetarian, and I love cauliflower wings.

The rain outside had stopped by the time we were finished at Scout and Scholar, so we decided to take a walk around the block to check out the rest of downtown Bardstown. It was late enough that most of the shops were closed, but it was still a very worthwhile stroll just for the view.

I really enjoyed my visit to Scout and Scholar, and if we lived nearby we would go there often. If you are in the area I think you should give it a try. I would highly recommend the place!

If you are interested in the meaning behind the name 'Scout and Scholar', there is a page on their website that explains it. Very briefly, Bardstown was originally established by the Bard brothers (William and David). One brother worked as a land surveyor and originally drew up the plans for the city of Bardstown - he is referred to as "Scout". The other brother studied Theology and became a minister - he is the "Scholar" part of the name.

In case you happen to be reading this - Thanks for the great recommendation, John!!


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