Wild Turkey 101 Review
Wild Turkey 101 is one of those Bourbons that probably brings back memories of adolescent parties fueled by cheap booze and even cheaper beer. Typically resulting in a skull smashing hangover the following morning and a sworn pact (never upheld) with ones self to never drink again. If your first introduction to WT101 was anything like the above scenario (and it certainly was mine) then it's probably time to revisit and give this Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey another chance.
WT101 is produced by the Wild Turkey Distillery located in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. A few things that make WT unique are the use of only 2 mashbills (Bourbon and Rye) and a very low barrel entry proof. Entry proof refers to the proof of the whiskey before it enters the barrel for aging. Using an entry proof under 125 (legal limit) ensures that the spirit is not diluted before entering the barrel and/or when bottling. Wild Turkey uses an entry proof of 115 which has actually been increased over the years from 107 and 110. The lower entry proof supposedly results in a more flavorful whiskey.
Paid: $25 before tax , 1 Liter bottle
Age: NAS - WT website states that WT101 is a "marriage of primarily 6, 7, and 8 year old bourbons."
Mashbill: 75% Corn/13% Rye/12% Barley
Pour: 1.5 oz neat Scottish Glencairn
Nose: Vanilla, apples stewed with brown sugar, dried orange peel, ripe peaches, candied almonds, bread pudding.
Palate: Caramel, cinnamon, stone fruit, honeycrisp apples, graham crackers, oak
Finish: Nice warm finish with some light baking spices and white pepper. Red apples. Not too dry and not too sweet. Very smooth for 101 proof.
For under $30 a bottle this is a solid pour with some fantastic flavors. The sweet caramel and vanilla coupled with the orchard fruits really stand out. Wild Turkey has a distinct flavor profile that seems to carry across their Bourbons and even into their Ryes. Ive picked it up in the 101 Bourbon, Kentucky Spirit, Rare Breed WT-03RB and the 101 Rye.
About 20 years ago WT101 sported a 8 year old age statement and is supposedly very good. However, these bottles are highly sought after and command a price to match. However, even without an age statement the blend of mostly 6, 7, and 8 year old bourbons take this a notch above most Bottled in Bond expressions. The additional years in the barrel seem to tame the heat from the higher proof, allowing for more complex flavors and aromas. I don't know why this Bourbon gets a bad rap especially when the juice in the bottle is far superior to any of the cinnamon whiskey that is all the rage now.
- Mark @ Entry Proof