My Department Chairperson and friend; a highly refined, educated man of fine tastes has been trying to influence me toward supping Single Malt Scotches. In return, I have been retorting with my tastes for Bourbons of all types. More importantly, we have been revealing our local super-secret suppliers of our favored liquors. My esteemed colleague recently directed me to a seller of Scotches in the local area to examine their selection and perhaps purchase one to further his temptations away from my native drink to those of the Picts. I drove there after work, on my way to evening classes and was very impressed by their selection of Scotches. I was even more impressed, though, by their selection of Bourbons and excellent prices on their sale items. Neglecting the advice to purchase a Scotch, I was wavered toward their sale of Wild Turkey 101 in the 1.75 bottle for $23. I could not walk away from a sale so generous so I took two home. Indeed, I would have taken more home if I had the cash to do so.
Well, it has been some time since I have taken any Wild Turkey 101 into glass. I consider Wild Turkey 101 proof to be the archetypal American Bourbon; made the strength of our forefathers and with the wonderful sour mash and corn odors that perfume the room with their honest, straightforward, no nonsense permutations and a taste the runs from sweet to peppery. It has just enough rough edges to bring to mind Fredrick Jackson Turners "Frontier Theory" and just enough aftertaste to remind of of the richness of the Kentucky hills and lushly wooded Appalachian mountains of its origin.
I have been drinking so many highly refined Bourbons of late that I have come to neglect and thus forget the pleasure of the bite and rasp of what is one of the great, albeit pedestrian Whiskeys of our time. Perhaps it is that essential Americanism of my persona but I like a Whiskey that can stand up to a mixer, can be drunk neat or with ice and still delivers on the goods, at 101 proof for a reasonable price. The fact that this Whiskey is available all over North America, without the bother of hunting and delving into stores or Internet to hunt it down is a massive plus.
I am sorry to report that I burst the excitement of my esteemed friend when I mentioned to him that I visited his select shop but walked away with, what he referred to as "...pedestrian Bourbon and branch drinking liquor that can be found anywhere..." We had a good laugh at my expense as I reckon he is right. I can find pleasure in the lowest Bourbon and joy in the best there is to offer but I am most comfortable in the middle of road most of the time. Now to go back and get the rest of those 1.75 bottles to add to my stash!