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  1. #1
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    Wild Turkey Russell's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    John Hansell mentioned this in passing on his blog, and I recall seeing a COLA for this product a while back, too.

    I'm very curious as to what their thinking is with this product. Obviously I'm excited that there is another high proofer in the WT stable, but it's sad to see yet another age statement go away. An increase by 20 degrees of proof will probably make this a better pour that the current age stated 90 proof RR-- think for sake of comparison, of Basil Hayden vs. OGD 114. But I'm still worried for the long term. Wild Turkey has not done very well with the quality of their NAS products over time: look at the arc of Rare Breed and Kentucky Spirit over the several years. My advice is that if this new Russel's Reserve is any good, we should bunker the hell out of it, because five years from now we'll be desperately looking for more of the initial release.

    And while I'm a big fan of bourbons in the 107 proof and above range, no one was clamoring for the RR to be raised to 110. 101, yes, and ten years old, yes....

    Speaking of Rare Breed, I'm curious as to how the new RR will relate to RB. We know that RB is supposedly a mingling of 6, 8, and 12 year old bourbon, and while lately it seems a little heavier on the 6 and 8 year old, it's still a nice profile and well balanced due to the age ranges involved. What is the aim with the new RR, I wonder: a generally older tasting profile?

    Also speaking of Rare Breed, a trip over to the TTB online turned up this little nugget: a new Rare Breed label. No more batch numbers, it appears (which I think we all agree were meaningless once the WT-03Bs hit), but also higher proof at 111.1. I wonder if the higher proof is due to the inclusion of more older whiskey (yeah, right) or higher distillation proof or barrel entry proof (much more likely, I think). I wonder if and when this one will actually hit the market.
    Life's too short, and there's too much good whiskey within reach.

  2. #2
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    I don't think this new RR small batch is meant as a replacement for RR10/90, I think that it is an additional label.
    Jim

  3. #3
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by HighInTheMtns View Post
    I don't think this new RR small batch is meant as a replacement for RR10/90, I think that it is an additional label.
    My guess is the opposite: a replacement for the current WTRR... dropping the AS so they can use younger distillate. I think the WTRB will remain a NAS barrel-proof.

    Admittedly, this is driven partly by my despair over what has happened to WT in recent years.
    Last edited by jburlowski; 10-11-2012 at 14:44.
    John B

    "Drinking when we are not thirsty and making love at all seasons… that is all there is to distinguish us from other animals."

  4. #4
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    I would be interested to try a 110 proof RR. My own experience with the 90 proof RR bourbon, and RR rye was a bit of a disappointment. It's almost like drinking Canadian whisky. It's not bad, but it's not really good either.

  5. #5
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    WT certainly doesn't have enough aged barrels from either poor planning or inadequate production from the old facility. With more competition than ever they will have to figure ways to keep themselves visible till they get caught up in another 6 to 10 years. Anyone have any idea how much of their age stated 8 year and 12 year is being exported by them? What a shame.
    Thad

    BTOTY-2011

  6. #6
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by jburlowski View Post
    My guess is the opposite: a replacement for the current WTRR... dropping the AS so they can use younger distillate. I think the WTRB will remain a NAS barrel-proof.
    .

    I bet you are right.

    I have stated elsewhere a wile back, distilleries either give us low proof and high age or high proof and low age. Looks like tried it one way now they're gonna try it the other. Plus, with a NAS it frees up them to put younger whiskey in the mix.

  7. #7
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by Brisko View Post
    Also speaking of Rare Breed, a trip over to the TTB online turned up this little nugget: a new Rare Breed label. No more batch numbers, it appears (which I think we all agree were meaningless once the WT-03Bs hit), but also higher proof at 111.1. I wonder if the higher proof is due to the inclusion of more older whiskey (yeah, right) or higher distillation proof or barrel entry proof (much more likely, I think). I wonder if and when this one will actually hit the market.
    I would be super-dooper shocked if they were screwing with entry proof. I find it hard to believe that the Russells would be on board with that. The marketing for the product has been stupid but I doubt Jimmy would let the Italians monkey with the entry proof which is one of WT's distinctives.
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  8. #8
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    Quote Originally Posted by Josh View Post
    I would be super-dooper shocked if they were screwing with entry proof. I find it hard to believe that the Russells would be on board with that. The marketing for the product has been stupid but I doubt Jimmy would let the Italians monkey with the entry proof which is one of WT's distinctives.
    The Italians ain't the Schapiras. Who knows what kind of jive they're making the Russells do? Hell, look at the Rye81.

  9. #9
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    Re: entry proof, I will try to find the post but I am almost certain that I read that they raised their entry proof by a few degrees. Like from 108 to 114 or something (those numbers are strictly out of my ass, but you get the idea). And, no, I'm sure the Russel's weren't at all happy, but what can they do? With the new facility they should be in great shape in a few more years, assuming they don't alienate thier clientele too badly in the interim.
    Life's too short, and there's too much good whiskey within reach.

  10. #10
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    Re: Wild Turkey Russel's Reserve 110 proof (NAS), and a Rare Breed surprise

    They dropped the AS and raised the proof. We don't know yet if this is a net gain or loss. If it isn't a replacement, which it might not be, then its a big gain!

    I like the current RB. I'm thinking about making room in the bunker for some more. I'm pretty sure I saw Chuck report somewhere here that proof off the still and entry proof were slightly up in recent years. That would explain the higher bottling proof.

    One last comment, If they stopped chill filtering the stuff, nobody would be complaining. We need to on this issue! No more chill filtering!

 

 

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