Education is near and dear to our hearts. We love to get down to the nitty-gritty of how to best enjoy different spirits, but also how they’re made and where flavors come from.

Our educational services are two-fold. On one hand, we teach the general public how to develop their senses and alcohol beverage knowledge with sensory training sessions. On the other hand, we teach industry experts about things like quality control and sensory aspects of brewing and distilling. We’ll be adding more and more classes, so visit this page often to see what’s new.

[Classes/courses are listed below and application details are provided after the last class/course listing.]

Find a class.

  • Irish Whiskey Experience – MARCH 2022

    Date: Thursday, March 17–Saturday, March 19

    Time: 9:00 - 5:00 pm

    Location: Lexington KY

    The Irish Whiskey Experience - NOW 2022 (From postponed 2020). Now to be TAUGHT BY THREE LEADING EXPERTS IN THE FIELD FROM THE EMERALD ISLE. An Exam from the Whiskey School completes the program. A few folks are still signed up to carry this over. This will be a compact overview by esteemed members associated with the Irish Whiskey Industry including Ireland's Whiskey School program. Updated Brochure - button link appears below! Contact us for more information or to be placed on our Newsletter List for updated announcements. This will be a full (intensive) 3 day course (3rd day concludes after the exam - see brochure for details). We are so delighted that our fellows Niall and colleagues will be visiting KY and have offered to teach the course here in KY. They will issue a test and a certificate of completion for this course. Originally to be taught by a duo act - outstanding fellows - the team now a trio. Make it a triple crown. The Mezcal course is to be offered March 21st-22nd, therefore, also just after the Beam Conference (14-16 March) and the Irish Whiskey Course postponed from 2020 in the same one and a half week period - March Spirited Madness as we are calling it. If at all interested let us know ASAP as classes fill very fast at BDES/BDAS. Slàinte Mhath

  • GIN 2022 NOW ON! MAY 16-19th 2022


    Time: -

    Location: Lexington KY With Some Online Content - Two Splits: 2 Days Beginner/Intermediate Plus 2 Days Advanced

    POSTPONED NO MORE - NOW 2022. MAY 16-17th the Two Day Beginner/Intermediate. Then 18-19th the Advanced Portion of our Program, Only 16 seats per session. Stay for just two days or all four. Reserve early as each section can only house 16. . OUR THIRD RUN GIN EXPERIENCE - A COURSE THAT HAS BECOME WELL KNOWN WORLDWIDE AND TAUGHT BY FOUR INTERNATIONALLY RECOGNIZED EXPERTS. The First Two Days - Beginner - Intermediate. Second Two Days - Advanced. Taught by Molly Troupe and Tom Anderson (US Distillers) with Gary and Tony as the sensory side show. And by Britain's Classy Gent - Jamie Baxter (Iron Bru-Builder of Many Distilleries in the UK and now Europe) and a Rugged New Zealander from Australia - Marcel Thompson (author of Still Magic and one who relates Gin to Rock Music). And find out what wacky things Tony has been doing and can do with gin formulations - your head will be in a spin at his gyratory machine motions. Contact now recommended if at all interested in our extended though THREEPEAT OFFERING. Many of those who attended in 2018 and 2019 expressed great comments on quality of this course with fun and knowledgeable gin experts. It just keeps getting better and better - ginuinely. UPDATED BROCHURE WILL APPEAR SOON.


    Date: Monday, March 21–Tuesday, March 22

    Time: 9:00 - 6:00 pm

    Location: Lexington KY

    Renowned, and world class agave and mezcal/tequila expert, Ana Guadalupe-Valenzuela-Zapata is coming to Lexington in March to teach a course and to deliver her Lecture/Sensory Experience program at BDAS, and to talk at the 3rd Annual UK Beam Institute Symposium (14-16th) in March. This will be a full (intensive) 2 day course. We are so delighted that Ana will be visiting KY and has offered to teach the course here in KY. Make it a triple crown. The Irish Whiskey course we had on postponement from 2020 is now on in the same timeframe - week and a half as the Beam Conference (March 17-19th). However if at all interested let us know ASAP as classes fill very fast at BDES/BDAS. Brochure link below.

How to Apply for a Course or Class at BDES

Read through the course and classes details that we offer here.

Fill in a form  form and submit to us.  or

A quick video video clip shows the enrollment process. We will evaluate, taking into account the date received, the application.

Course placement is on a first come first served basis and usually limited to 18 persons maximum.

An invoice will be issued, based on details supplied, to cover the class deposit (non-refundable unless the class is postponed or cancelled).

A deposit, once received, will reserve your placement. About one month before the course or class starting date we will issue you with a final payment invoice. Once that payment is received you are set for that course or class.

No refunds are offered at that time – however, if you cannot attend an event/class/course for any reason, you may send someone else along in your place or you may apply 75% of the course fee to a future offering.

Classes in Lexington or On The Road

For more on classes contact Gary at or Tony:

We run classes and courses in Lexington and Tony Aiken and Gary are often invited and on the road to teach courses at breweries and distilleries. Contact us for more information.