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Classes are filling up fast. If you are a bar, pub, restaurant or a group of people that would like to benefit from this certification class on a Wednesday or Thursday evening email us at with you Name, business name, contact information and group size as well as address. We can open up for you group during the week or depending on group size bring the training to you.

Register to Become A Certified Bourbon Steward


Many people claim to be bourbon experts. Did you know there’s a certification program to prove it? This is an in-depth training program for the world of American whiskey. Holy Ghost Distillery is proud to have all our staff and tour guides as Certified Bourbon Stewards.  Wine has Sommeliers. Beer has Cicerones. And now, bourbon has Stewards. So you know your Tennessee whiskey from bourbon, and you can categorize your bourbons by mash bill. But do you know enough to be certified in bourbon? Now you can find out. Launched in late 2014, the Holy Ghost offers the world’s only industry-recognized bourbon certification program.

HGD is the first distillery in Pennsylvania to become a Stave & Thief Society Establishment Member! We are certified as an Executive Bourbon Steward to hold the Certified Bourbon Steward classes. You can register on our website for this exclusive class. Our hands-on classes are $175.00 and includes all the study materials, On-Line test code, Sensory Training with Executive Bourbon Steward, and lunch. Participants will train hands-on distilling education, and blind sensory training. Participants will enjoy industry lectures and bourbon tastings. This event concludes with the certification testing. The Certified Bourbon Steward membership through HGD is for bourbon enthusiasts from all walks of life. This in-depth program is designed so that once you’re a Bourbon Steward, you’ll be able to discuss America’s native spirit both confidently and accurately, as well as be able to make recommendations to friends, family, and others based on their individual taste and preferences.

At the end of the class you will have a standard base of bourbon knowledge in order to be able to proficiently discuss bourbon, to educate and advise consumers & patrons about the spirit, and to distinguish basic product profiles. This certification level provides concentrated training designed for front-line hospitality such as servers, bartenders, concierge and retail, but can also be valuable knowledge to enhance a consumers appreciation & enjoyment. Learning outcomes are designed to enable the participant to discuss bourbon confidently and accurately in a conversational manner, as well as assess the consumer’s preferences and make recommendations based on the consumer’s taste to enhance the consumer/customer experience. Certified Bourbon Stewards must pass an online exam as well as a sensory evaluation facilitated by an Executive Bourbon Steward.

LEARNING OUTCOMES – You will be able to:

  1. list the standards of identity for whiskey and for bourbon and be able to identify the differences between the two distillates.
  2. explain the basic science of the distillation process.
  3. define and explain the different bourbon classifications and Bottled in Bond, and be able to identify bourbons belonging to each class.
  4. identify heritage brands and which distilleries produce them.
  5. identify basic differences in proof, age and mashbill in a blind sensory evaluation.
  6. build a flight of 3 bourbons demonstrate the relationship among the products, and describe their characteristics and nuances.
  7. understand the distillation and aging aspects of bourbon.

Upon successful completion and passage of the on-line exam and sensory exam or a score of at least 80% you will be certified and receive Lifetime Membership in the Stave & Thief Society as well as their society lapel pin that visibly designates you as a Bourbon Steward. You will also be listed to our website and wall of fame as a Certified Bourbon Steward via Holy Ghost Distillery.

Note: Lunch is provided with the class. When registering, please let us know of any dietary restrictions. All participants MUST be at least 21 years of age. Price is per person and good on the date and time you selected at time of purchase. If you are unable to make the date & time you selected, you can transfer to anyone (over 21). Date and/or time substitutions are not available.