Updated: Jun 19, 2020
Score: 8.6 / 10
Distillery: Wild Turkey
Type: Kentucky Straight
A couple of months back we were recording a bonus episode of our podcast Po It Up where I challenged my girlfriend to a blind taste testing. The rules were simple, choose a random pour of whiskey from the 140+ bottles that I have in the house and the other person has to nose it, drink it and try to correctly identify what it is.
For my GF, I chose Lagavulin 11 Nick Offerman Edition. I don't have a ton of peated scotches so it narrows down the selection significantly. She nosed the glass and immediate knew it was a peated Scotch, she then tried it and noted it had a lot of fruit, then guessed correctly on the first try (very impressive). Then came my pour - it was a dark amber, smelled sweet and definitely tasted like a bourbon. Unfortunately (and fortunately) I have a TON of bourbon on the shelf from all sorts of different distilleries. I conducted a thorough nosing and tasting, but still had no idea how to narrow it down. Thinking I was getting bamboozled I guess Redspot 15 Irish whiskey since it is Marsala cask finished and shares a lot of similar notes (vanilla, brown sugar, apricot) to bourbon. Wrong. Okay how about Elijah Craig store pick? Wrong. Next up, Buffalo Trace store pick? Wrong. Okay how about Heaven Hill 6 BiB or Even Williams BiB (desperate now). Wrong. I finally gave in and asked for more hits, but was still stumped. In the end my girlfriend was cracking up and she told me that I was drinking Wild Turkey 101.
Long story short, while it's not generally regarded as one of the best whiskey brands.... it was much tastier than I remember and inspired me to revisit the Wild Turkey line. Next time I was at my local Total Wine, I picked up this bottle of Rare Breed for $46 and cracked it open for this review.
Nose: peach, pepper, cinnamon, rhubarb
Palate: oily and easy to swish, drinks under its proof. Tons of sweet sugary cinnamon that coats the tongue. Notes of peach, dried apricot and apple surface after the initial sweetness. Almost a crave-able spice throughout the drinking experience.
Finish: moderate with toasted oak and orange rind. Very well rounded and clean - mildly tannic and juicy.
S+ Sensational - The Pinnacle (9.5+)
A - AXEceptional (astounding) (9-9.5)
B - bravo (step aBove average) (8-8.9)
C - competent (7-7.9)
D - disappointing (6-6.9)
F - flush it down the toilet (fail) (5.9 below)
Notes: Availability? Common. Pretty easy to find so.... give'em the bird! (Not sure if those commercials are on anymore). Definitely not a "Rare" Breed.
So easy to drink at 116.8 proof. Almost drinks like a holiday mulled wine with the cinnamon and fruity flavors. Very impressive pour.