Thousands of dollars’ worth of bourbon was stolen from a popular Louisville karaoke bar just before Kentucky Derby weekend, according to local news network WLKY. Matthew Farley, owner of NoraeBar, discovered that several bottles and a cash box were missing from the establishment upon opening on April 28.
The alleged thief took about $3,000 worth of spirits in the early hours of the morning, as Farley tells WLKY. He refers to the theft as a “surgical strike,” noting that the trespasser entered through the front door by popping open the door’s crash bar from the outside.
Security camera footage shows one man entering the establishment soon after 3 a.m. Though they did take several bottles and a cash drawer, the latter was luckily empty, as Farley says he does not leave money in the register overnight.
“[The alleged thief] had very good taste. He stole a bottle of something called King of Kentucky. The street value is probably about $1,600 on that bottle,” Farley said. “He stole something called Van Winkle 12-year, a very famous name, of course. I’d say that’s probably worth $700 to $800 or greater.”
King of Kentucky is a limited-release single-barrel bourbon created by Brown-Forman. It typically retails for upwards of $2,000 on the resale market, according to Wine-Searcher. Pappy Van Winkle, beloved among bourbon-collecting circles, is similarly difficult to find and notably expensive.
At least the bar’s owner seems to be maintaining some humor through the incident. The business shared photos from the break-in on Facebook, urging customers to “come buy stuff the legal way and tip our staff” to support the general manager who “has been running around all day trying to resolve this nonsense.”
The Louisville Police Department hasn’t yet made an arrest in the case but is said to be reviewing surveillance video.