I managed to snag a Russell’s Reserve 13 Year yesterday and immediately got a fellow Turkey fan to agree to come to a blind that evening. We pit this against Moonshine’s Cheesy Gold Russell’s Reserve pick, the Single Cask Nation Wild Turkey 10 Year and as a sort of wild card Russell’s 2003. After the Turkey blind I sat down to write some more detailed tasting notes.
Age: 13 years
Nose: Vanilla extract, oak, baking spice, and cherry notes with a very slight proof sting.
Taste: Vanilla cream, caramel, warm spice, rich oak and subtler cherry. Very nice, very viscous mouthfeel.
Finish: Long balanced finish with lingering warm spice and sweet caramel.
This was amazing. Every note hit just right, the proof was present but in a good way, the sweet notes took the lead but didn’t overwhelm the spice and oak notes. If I had to nitpick the mouthfeel was only very nice and didn’t wow me like everything else did.
It reminded me a bit of the Master’s Keep 17 Year Bottled in Bond with the sweet and cherry notes but lack of proofing down and chill filtration elevated this above the 17 easily. It was more refined than the Single Cask Nation Wild Turkey 10 and had a much better nose though the brown sugar notes on the palate of the SCN are hard to beat. I gave this the edge in the blind but it was close.
This release was really impressive especially after the Russell’s 2003 let me down a little bit. I’m already hunting for a backup and won’t stop there. I hope we continue to see age stated, barrel proof, ncf releases from Wild Turkey because this was a winner.
TL;DR: Possibly my favorite modern Wild Turkey
4 Stars - Extraordinary whiskey: An all time favorite
You can also follow me on Instagram(@atxbourbon) for more whiskey content!