A new whiskey competition originally scheduled for Louisville in January will not take place as planned.
The North American Bourbon and Whiskey Competition, announced in November, was supposed to debut Jan. 17-18, with a concurrent public tasting event for 100 people.
But organizer Tom Fischer said this week that won't be happening. Fischer said he is working to reschedule an event for later this year and expects to announce details in coming weeks.
"I still plan on hosting and having a competition in Kentucky," Fischer said. "Stay tuned for great things to come, which will be announced on Bourbonblog.com very soon."
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Meanwhile, the event's original website says the competition will take place in March in Broomfield, Colo., under the auspices of Wine Country Network, operated by Christopher Davies.
Originally, Fischer and Davies were partners in the whiskey competition, which was to be a Kentucky-based showcase for bourbons, whiskeys, moonshine and related spirits. But they have split.
Davies said Wednesday that judging will take place during the existing Denver International Spirits Competition in March.
About 50 patrons who bought tickets to the tasting event have been refunded their money, he said.
Davies blamed Kentucky's liquor laws, saying that the state's Alcoholic Beverage Control Department "threatened to send agents to the event."
"We found that Kentucky ABC laws were a little more complicated than originally planned," he said. "We will look at coming back once we really know what we're doing. We don't want to break the law. ... It's very disappointing to us but we didn't want to fly in the face of the ABC."
According to Kentucky ABC spokeswoman Holly Mullins, there was no application for a sampling, or test-tasting, license.
"The person requesting information about this was advised that the event could not be conducted as advertised but was told how the event could be conducted lawfully under Kentucky law," she said in an e-mail. "ABC enforcement officers are frequently detailed to events and venues where there is alcohol available as part of their normal job duties."