A Road Trip Down Kentucky’s Bourbon Trail

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WHEN I WAS YOUNG, I thought having kin in Kentucky made me interesting. At home in Brookline, Mass., between our visits to my grandparents, aunts and cousins in Louisville, Ky., the most exotic thing around was my dad and his occasional bourbon. Today, the spirit’s distinctive scent-a mix of vanilla, caramel and butterscotch-still reminds me of his most relaxed times: When he came home early from work and had a Maker’s Mark with a splash of water or made mint juleps for Kentucky Derby-viewing parties.

So, a few months…