Willett Family Estate Bourbon Cipher

I recently realized that I have far more open bottles of Willett Family Estate Single Barrels than I do written reviews so it’s time to change that. In addition to sample mountain I am now trying to work my way through my open Willetts as well!

I got this bottle almost 2 years ago in a charity event run by Bob’s Lake City Liquor who somehow got two barrels of Willett Family Estate Bourbon! This is the younger and lower proof of the two and is the wheated mashbill from Willett. I’ve been savoring the bottle but it recently hit the half way mark so it’s time to start hitting it. I got this via a combination of buying a ton of chili for a food bank and of course getting lucky in the raffle.


Willett Family Estate Bourbon Bob’s Liquor “Cipher”

Age: 6 years

Proof: 120.8

Mashbill: Wheated


Nose: Sweet cherry, honey wheat bread, caramel and faint spices. No proof sting.

Taste: Stronger fruit notes, less bread and more baking spice. Some oak and caramel notes as well. Great viscous mouthfeel and very nice proof integration until the very end.

Finish: Long and hot with both baking spice and proof sting along with more sweet wheat bread and subtle, fading caramel


I don’t know that I’ve ever had cherry jam but I suspect the nose of this Willett would be pretty close to cherry jam on honey wheat toast. The palate and mouthfeel a great too but the burn on the finish is just a little too hot and the grain/bread notes are just a little too prevalent for this to get the 4th star and live up to Highway Kind, my favorite 6 year wheated Willett. I’d gladly grab a replacement for this bottle if I thought there was even a remote chance of finding one at a semi reasonable price but that seems unlikely.

Overall these wheated Willett single barrels tend to remind me of the things I like from Weller picks and Four Roses picks rolled into one bottle. I can’t wait for the them to get a little older and in a crazy dream world a little more available.


TL;DR: Excellent whiskey, worth the retail price and all the chili cans. A little too young and hot for the 4th star

3 Stars - Excellent whiskey: I would be willing to hunt down a bottle



You can also follow me on Instagram(@atxbourbon) for more whiskey content!