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Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit

Average score from 3 reviews and 10 ratings 85

Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit

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Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit

So. Another layover, another delay, another Duty Free shop in JFK this time, and £12 later I'm the proud owner of a liter bottle of Wild Turkey 101, the souped-up ABV version of their standard run model

Crack her open and pour a good sized measure.A lot of phenolic alcohol on the nose (rubbing alcohol for the churlish) but tempered with lots of vanilla candy scent. Nice.

I don't care how jaded or wizened your tastebuds are, you swirl a 50/50 solution of ethanol/water around your mouth and the fire alarm is going to be clanging for the first few sips- and so it is with the 101 Wild Turkey. A fiery slug it is, but you get used to it. Mouthfeel is rather astringent as a result- it puckers you up.

Flavour is heavier on the 'black coffee' sourness than many of the other bourbons I've had in the cabinet. The phenol of the alcohol comes through quite strong- almost banana-ry in the initial taste. That's probably the best way of putting it together- Initially sour with that sharp 'banoffee' flavour, pushing out to coffee scents with an almost floral undertone, then finishing with the astringency of alcohol and black coffee.

But the strength of this is unrefined and at the forefront. Swap out to a 40% proof bourbon of even standard quality (I used Benchmark as my benchmark, without intending on a pun), then the former seems smooth and mellow in comparison. The sharp power stomps around your mouth all the way down the glass. It's unrefined but almost effervescent with it.

Now, all that said, there's none of that 'musty' rankness one endures with Jack Daniels drunk neat to worry you hear, which is nice.

Aftertaste has much of the same vanilla heavily candified as the nose did- which is truly pleasant and long.

In a hipflask on a cold day this would be a wonderful alternative to the more common domestic alternatives.

And for the perverts out there- me included- this makes a spikey and sour addition to Pepsi or Coke. Yeah, go burn your wicker effigy of me for suggesting it. See if I care :D

I'll finish the bottle but I can't seem me returning to it- the way the extra strength has been managed is unbalanced. There's more enjoyable, smoother, bourbons out there for the same folding.

Are you reviewing 101 or Kentucky Spirit? To an WT fan, like me, 101 is the standard bottling. The 81 is for those who don't really like bourbon. WT 101 is the bourbon I always go back to drink, as its has all the flavors I love, especially caramel and spice. It don't find it rough at all, as long as you add a bit of water. I've never gotten any "rubbing alcohol" from WT, but have from Old Forester and others.

It's interesting that you mention black coffee, as I find I really enjoy drinking it from my coffee cup with a bit of ice. Chilled mocha bourbon! Yum!


Wild Turkey's Kentucky Spirit is the Single Barrel version of its 101 proof/50.5% ABV bourbon. The reviewed bottle from barrel # 73 was bottled on April 16, 2009. The reviewed bottle has been open for 3 years and is 95% full, and preserved with inert gas for the previous year

Nose: mellow deep sweet maple, natural caramel, rye baking spices of cinnamon/cassia, nutmeg, and cloves, floral perfume of roses and carnations. This is a very aesthetically pleasing nose

Taste: the palate flavours are in this case not as robust as are the flavours in the nose. This particular barrel is pleasant but lacks punch and "oomph". This is quite decent, but rather understated, and that is the reason this bottle sat 95% full for three years in my cabinet. A typical bottle of vatted standard Wild Turkey 101 has more pizzazz than does this single barrel # 73 product

Finish: a very decent, but somewhat lacklustre continuation of an OK palate

Balance: this is the 50.5% ABV Bourbon analogue to the mildest Speyside malt you have ever encountered. I was profoundly disappointed when I first opened this bottle, because it showed me nothing new or exciting from Wild Turkey, which is a distillery which I otherwise like quite a lot. This whiskey is nicely balanced, for sure, but there just isn't enough excitement here to want to drink this often. 50.5% ABV bourbon should not be a shrinking violet. This barrel # 73 is. I have to think that other Single Barrels of Wild Turkey, aka Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit, are more potent than this one is

I appreciate this review Victor. I've considered picking this one up a couple of times, but after reading this I'm more inclined to sample a glass before I do...

With regard to Wild Turkey however, I'm very impressed with my bottle of Russell's Reserve Single Barrel which I opened a couple weeks ago. A very nice bourbon it has proven to be indeed.

@CanadianNinja, yes I would take a bottle of Wild Turkey Rare Breed any day over this particular bottle of Kentucky Spirit. The Russell's Reserve Bourbons and Ryes are also both very nice. And Wild Turkey 101 Rye (if they ever release any more of it) is my favourite "everyday" rye.


This is one of the best bourbons i have had yet and i am going to list the single barrel info: bottled 9-9-12, Barrel No.29, Warehouse M, Rick:L. The nose is Warm, with caramel,vanilla, citrus, a touch of butterscotch, spice but not much and a dry leather that i find to be fun to smell reminds me of my grandfathers cowboy boots. The palate: Very Smooth with a slight alcohol bite not much though, i get the caramel and butterscotch, with a citrus feel to it and something that i would describe as spiced rock candy but i dont think that is right. The Finish: Is dry, pleasant, with a sweet taste that mingles with the spice that i felt earlier, very dry and inviting i would recommend again and it was well worth it i heard this barrel got a great review on the bourbon bible but i dont know if that is true. While not perfect it is close enough to perfection to me.

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