Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit is the true wildcard of the current Wild Turkey and Russell’s Reserve deck. One could argue that it’s solely because of its single barrel nature. I’d disagree with that and counter with Russell’s Reserve Single Barrel as an argument. While RR Single Barrel can vary in profile, it does so more typically with subtle nuances and secondary notes. Kentucky Spirit, on the other hand, can be as simple as an everyday bottle of Wild Turkey 101 – OR – it can take you down memory lane with dollops of old 80’s and 90’s Turkey notes … that funk – that leather – that spice! At $45 it’s a bonafide gamble, but if you’re a true Wild Turkey fan like me, you just have to roll the dice.
Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit – KSBW at 101 proof – no age stated (rumored at least eight years) – bottled 8/8/2011 from barrel #7, warehouse F, rick #1 – distilled by the Austin, Nichols Distilling Company, Lawrenceburg, KY
Tasted neat in a Glencairn after a few moments rest …
Color: deep amber
Nose: (rickhouse funk bomb) warm funky vanilla, old leather, maple, tobacco, musty oak, caramel, baking spice, hints of blood orange
Taste: (chewy mouthfeel) creamy vanilla, butter, molasses, musty oak, leather, rickhouse funk, faint herbal/floral notes
Finish: near-perfect in warmth and duration, sticky sweet & subtly spicy with fading musty oak
Overall: In general, this is a solid bottle/barrel and certainly more complex than the everyday modern WT 101 NAS profile. My only problem is that the nose is notably heavy on rickhouse funk (almost too forward and dense in its presence) and ultimately creates imbalance. The taste however, is very good, with plenty of notes reminiscent of 80’s and 90’s Wild Turkey. And the finish … near-perfect for this whiskey. I’d possibly buy another bottle if found again, or even better, search for another from a different barrel around the same time. I’m giving this Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit a respectable B.