Buzick Construction was founded in 1937 by Cliff Buzick, who first visited Bardstown, Ky., as a distillery equipment salesman. Upon discovering that many of his customers didn’t have anyone to install the equipment he was selling them, Buzick moved his family from Louisville to Bardstown and opened a construction business to meet the need.
In 1941, Buzick Construction finished construction on their first barrel storage warehouse for the Fairfield Distillery. From then on the company became and remains the “go-to” builder for barrel warehouses, and maintains working relationships with many distilleries that go back to the start of the company.
When Cliff’s son, Donald, took over the company, he expanded the clientele to commercial businesses in addition to distilleries. The size of projects Buzick Construction built increased and diversified to include manufacturing plants, churches, and banks; all the while their relationship with the bourbon industry remained as strong as ever.
In 1975, Tom Blincoe, Donald’s son-in-law, joined the business. After working on local projects for a few years, in 1977 he moved with his family to Shelbyville, Tennessee to oversee the continuing job of building barrel storage warehouses for Jack Daniel’s Distillery, a distillery in Lynchburg that Buzick has had a relationship with since the 1940s. Tom oversaw the construction of 39 warehouses, completed in 1982.
In 1991, when Maker’s Mark needed a barrel storage warehouse, Tom wanted to find a better method of construction than building by hand. A system was developed that allowed the “heavy lifting” to be done with machines and equipment, making the construction process faster, safer and more economical.
Since 2000, Buzick Construction has erected over one million barrel storage spaces for the Kentucky bourbon industry. Also recently Buzick has participated in construction or modifications to visitors’ centers and bourbon tours for many distilleries on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, including Heaven Hill, Four Roses, and Jim Beam.
Buzick is by no means a small construction company anymore, but with the third and fourth generations at the helm the family enterprise continues to take pride in maintaining a reputation for quality and integrity. Cliff Buzick’s original commitment to give “quality work on time” remains at the forefront of the company’s mission.
“I spent the first half of the summer of 1954 (the first year of operations at Maker’s under the Samuels flag) preparing engineering drawings for a new kind of barrel warehouse – one with a raised center aisle. Of course Buzick Construction would be building it. This was my first encounter (other than on a social basis) with Founder and Owner, Cliff Buzick. He very politely showed me how screwed up my drawings were (I was only 14 at the time), and together we fixed the drawings so that I did not end up looking like a total fool. That first barrel House would hold 4,200 barrels and was to last us a very long time as dad embarked on his retirement hobby … Maker’s Mark. We were wrong, so Buzick built us another barrel house followed by another. And then when the Wall Street Journal ran a flattering article on Maker’s the pace picked up and Buzick was building us a new House nearly every year.
Here we are in 2015 and Dad’s little hobby has become an international sensation. Surprised us all. But what has not changed over these 60 years is that we still depend on Buzick Construction and all their wonderful people to make sure we have the very best resting spots for our very special bourbon. We are indeed a very satisfied 60 year customer.”