Wild Turkey’s Russell’s Reserve has a special place in SWC’s heart, as both the Kentucky Straight Bourbon and Rye versions offer a decent pour for a decent price. Say no more. Well, I will say a bit more. I should really stop using that line.
Today’s selection is a new expression in Big Russ’s signature series, as we are looking today at a Single Barrel. This non-chill filtered, 55% ABV selection is barreled from the middle of rick houses for balance, and is comprised of 75% corn, 13% Rye, and 12% malted barley. The bottle’s label also received a face lift, which obviously means it will be really great. One more note while I have you here: this selection continues the Wild Turkey tradition of low entry proof into the barrel in order to ensure minimal water is added before bottling. If memory serves me correctly, and it always does, this is Russell’s way of giving you something that has changed very little from the barrel to bottle. I love that about Russ. Yes, I call him Russ.
This is a fairly good whisky, but does have its minor flaws. The notes of grape lollipop we encountered are odd in a bourbon, and not particularly enjoyable, but can be overcome. Like so many big, classic style bourbons, this one relaxed with time, much like me.
Nose- Classic bourbon vanilla/butterscotch, rosemary/herbs, hint of rye/spice, grape/blackberry in the background. Rich nose.
Taste- Hint of grape lollipop, caramel, vanilla, rye/pepper notes.
Finish- Short, leather. Barrel char and drying. Wood and toffee.
Comments- Reminded us of Eagle Rare, a nice classic style bourbon with a nice nose. We’re not quite convinced it is worth it’s price (close to $60), but not much to complain about.
SWC Rating – 84/100
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