and WIN!

If you’d like to strike Kentucky gold and win yourself a hamper of fantastic Jim Beam Straight Kentucky Bourbon, read on. There’s a host of stuff you didn’t know about Kentucky – and are unlikely to ever need other than in a pub quiz night or a Trivial Pursuit evening with friends:

Did you know?

Abraham Lincoln, Muhammad Ali and George Clooney all hail from the state – which was the 15th state proclaimed in 1792, in what ultimately became the United States.

It’s where that global fried chicken empire originated, the one with the secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices – which is also the second largest food franchise in the world with more than 22 000 outlets in 150 countries globally.

The first weekend in May is always circled in red on the calendar because that’s when millions of dollars of horseflesh thunders down the track at Churchill Downs in Louisville, while folks sip on mint juleps. It’s the Kentucky Derby, held every year since 1875.

Then there’s bluegrass music, and Fort Knox, allegedly the safest and most secure place in America, where gold reserves used to be kept.

It’s also where Jim Beam Straight Kentucky Bourbon hails from. Created in 1788 by Jacob Beam who was looking for a way to use up some of his corn after a bumper harvest. (That’s maize or mielies to South Africans.) Jacob used his daddy’s whiskey recipe to distill his excess corn, coming up with a sweeter kind of whiskey-bourbon – but it took seven years before the first batch was sold.

Over the centuries not much has changed. Jim Beam made it through world wars, Prohibition and more by sticking to its well-loved recipe. It contains a minimum of 51% corn for that sweet, grainy flavour; it’s aged in brand new charred oak barrels – never less than two years in oak; and it’s never higher than 80 proof – or 40% alcohol by volume.

The result is a golden caramel bourbon with sweet vanilla oak and spice flavour that shines through, no matter how you choose to drink it; mixed or straight up.

To win one of six Jim Beam hampers, subscribe below