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Wild Turkey Rare Breed Barrel Proof Bourbon Review

About my last post... I may have said I go for Kentucky Spirit before I reach for a Rare Breed. Well I did so because yesterday was a little on the hotter side and I had lower proof on my mind, but today cooled off marvelously here in New England. As such, my penchant for barrel proof bourbon seems to also have come back and I found myself looking at a bottle of none other than... Rare Breed! I have done a Head-to-Head of these before, but thought I'd give Rare Breed a shot at redemption yet again after bad mouthing it while ogling what was already in my glass!


Company on Label: Wild Turkey

Whiskey Type: Bourbon

Mash Bill Percentages: 75% Corn, 13% Rye, 12% Malted Barley

Proof: 116.8°

Age: NAS (formerly known to be a blend of 6, 8 and 12 year old bourbons)

Further identification: This is one of the newer labels (likely purchased in 2020)


Nose: Oaky to start with some nice citrus zest. Silky cherry. Vanilla bean with high intensity. Herbal greens; almost verdant like a summer forest. Intense zesty spices churning up from the depths. Limoncello and chocolate, delicious aromas. More herbal and zesty post sip. Level oak says it is just the right age for me. A new, lighter, dusty oak is starting to come through now. The herbals & lemon zest continue to be the highlight of the nose which I absolutely adore as very few things can pull off a quality limoncello profile. Oh near the bottom of the glass as things warm up from the heat of my hand is where this starts to get really interesting. Rich milk chocolate and marshmallow turn this into a beautiful sweet dark candy bouquet. I don't want to finish it now for fear of this smell going away. It took the better part of an hour to get here but it's so fun to see things evolve like this.

Palate: Lemon shaved ice first and foremost. Cherry sundae drizzles. Caramel forward on a solid sweet yet slightly spicy mouth coating. Very oak forward with more of that limoncello experience from the nose transferring. Molasses is on the thinner and sweeter side, maybe closer to a maple glaze with brown sugar. Vanilla extract is punchy and powerful now. Just a hint of cracked, empty peanut shells is present. Definitely drinks closer to a Warehouse E Russell's Reserve pick. Lovely palate profile, but is lacking somewhat in the linger and finish category. Larger sip produces large oak notes, cherry hots and cinnamon sparkle. This sip does reveal a fairly solid linger of marmalade over lightly toasted bread. Last sip is a wave of caramel, molasses, earthy herbs and allspice. Solid pour!


Rating: 4/5

Yeah, this is a solid pour too - but definitely in a different way than last night's Kentucky Spirit pour. This drinks far more similarly to a good Russell's Reserve pick as I mentioned above, and as-such, I stand by my ranking from the Head-to-Head post. Cheers!



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