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  1. #1
    Administrator in exile
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    BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    Wow, what an exciting finish to determine this months BOTM. We started with six quality contenders and it was so close the winner had to be determined by a run-off. And after the dust had settled and the others had packed up and gone home, Wild Turkey Rare Breed was left standing, proudly earning the title: Straightbourbon.com Bourbon of the Month

    Let's hear what you have to say!

    Sound Off

  2. #2
    Connoisseur
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    Jul 2005
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    Mentor, Ohio, USA
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    837

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    Last night I just finished a bottle of batch W-T-01-99. This was 108.4 proof. Most people who know me know I enjoy most of the Wild Turkey family, the regular 101, the older Russell's Reserve, my personal favorite Kentucky Spirit and forever I've loved Rare Breed. This bottle was everything I like about Rare Breed. It was full flavored, having some maple, vanilla and sugarcane in both the nose and the palate, the palate then moved to oak and a slightly bitter sting that was a wonderful counter point to the sweet maple. The finish was more of the same flavors mixing and lingering on the tongue for quite a while. Fortunately I have another bottle from this batch in the closet!!

    Ken

  3. #3
    Enthusiast
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    Nov 2004
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    Frankfort, KY
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    292

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    I just poured a glass of WTRB 108.2 proof Batch WT-03RB. Very smooth and well balanced.Even if it wasn't Baker's, this is an excellent choice for BOTM! Very enjoyable!

  4. #4
    Connoisseur
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    Oct 1999
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    Sweden
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    867

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    This is the only WT available in Sweden and only as a special order item - until around a year ago we also had the 8yo 101 proof but it has now been withdrawn.

    I tried it yesterday (W-T-01-99, 108,4 proof) together with Russellīs Reserve (101 proof) and the 12yo (newer version) and I have to say that it came out somewhat disappointing in comparison. Good, no doubt, but not as exciting as I remember it.

    There are probably two reasons for this unexpected letdown :

    1. The bottle in question is at least 1 ― years old and nearing itīs end.

    2. Tasting three WT:s in a row could, even with a bit of water added, be an exhausting affair for the tastebuds and the Rare Breed was, due to itīs proof, the last in line.

    Anyways, I tried to order a new bottle today. It was temporarily out of stock and I was told that I had to wait with my order until September 9th.

    Guess Iīll have to restrain myself til then.

  5. #5
    Enthusiast
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    May 2004
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    Sherburne County, Minnesota
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    389

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    I was never crazy about th WT-01-99 batch, and find the newer WT-03RB batch much more to my liking. Here's hoping you get some from this batch, and find it as enjoyable as I have found it to be.

  6. #6
    Connoisseur
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    Oct 1999
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    Sweden
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    867

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    Here's hoping you get some from this batch, and find it as enjoyable as I have found it to be.
    This is perhaps the major disadvantage with special order items, i.e. thereīs no chance in the world that you are allowed to specify a certain batch.

    The guy I spoke to, however, claimed that all Rare Breed in Sweden was gone and that they were waiting for a shipment from the US, which means chances are good that it will be a different batch.

  7. #7
    Enthusiast
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    Mar 2004
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    virginia
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    441

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    Last night I just finished a bottle of batch W-T-01-99. This was 108.4 proof. Most people who know me know I enjoy most of the Wild Turkey family, the regular 101, the older Russell's Reserve, my personal favorite Kentucky Spirit and forever I've loved Rare Breed. This bottle was everything I like about Rare Breed. It was full flavored, having some maple, vanilla and sugarcane in both the nose and the palate, the palate then moved to oak and a slightly bitter sting that was a wonderful counter point to the sweet maple. The finish was more of the same flavors mixing and lingering on the tongue for quite a while. Fortunately I have another bottle from this batch in the closet!!
    Tasting for notes is not our forte, but, as WT Rare Breed was BOTM, we thought we'd give it a go. We also have the WT-01-99 108.4 proof bottling. Not sure how long this has been sitting on the shelf here, probably 18-24 months. It was about 3/4 gone, but we really can't remember the last time we poured. We think we poured most of it in the first few months of having it, then let it sit except for a small pour here and there. Up front, we didn't have negative preconceptions about it; quite the opposite. Heck, I (Dave) consider(ed) myself a Rare Breed fan. Our impressions tonight:

    Dave - Nose: Honey/lemon/other citrus with a hint of oak; after a few minutes, something floral.

    Mouth: initially at full proof, all bite, too much even to begin characterizing flavors, nothing really "big" like one would expect from a higher end premium bourbon at high proof; after water, light caramel with a buttery tongue coating - pleasant.

    Finish: Warm, fairly fleeting caramel again with a slight burn.

    Tina - (opinion coerced, she was very reluctant to give her impressions) Nose: Caramel and oranges.

    Mouth: Very different than expected based on nose - biting, spicy, peppery.

    Finish: Too hot.

    Overall, both of us were underwhelmed, especially at the current price of $38 in VA. Can't really see replacing this bottle anytime soon. Will probably use the last of this bottle to do a blind tasting with WT 101 and RR 101 to see if we get humbled, or if our impression is correct that RB is NOT the best WT value or even straight out taste to our palates.

    No offense meant to those who love it. Frankly, I was REALLY surprised at my impressions. I expected them to be much more like the quote above. Maybe my taste buds are off today. Then again, Tina is never wrong!

  8. #8
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    I tasted the same bottling recently. I found it very good, with an interesting "old bourbon" nose reminding me of the odd pre-Pro whiskey I've tasted. I wonder if it might derive, not from No. 4 barrels but the blending of three ages since the old-time whiskey, at least the medicinal straight whiskey, probably was a compound of complex origins. The taste was not quite as good as the nose: the youngest whiskey in the mingling obtruded and I got some clear barnyard notes in some sips; did anyone get that as well? Still, overall it was satisfying.

    I tend to agree that for the price, there are others I would choose first but also I think you are paying for the extra proof.

    Gary

  9. #9
    Connoisseur
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    Jul 2005
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    Mentor, Ohio, USA
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    837

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    Overall, both of us were underwhelmed, especially at the current price of $38 in VA. Can't really see replacing this bottle anytime soon. Will probably use the last of this bottle to do a blind tasting with WT 101 and RR 101 to see if we get humbled, or if our impression is correct that RB is NOT the best WT value or even straight out taste to our palates.

    No offense meant to those who love it. Frankly, I was REALLY surprised at my impressions. I expected them to be much more like the quote above. Maybe my taste buds are off today. Then again, Tina is never wrong!
    You know, Dave, I find this all the time (I expect it's ONE reason I'll never be a professional taster). I have never(?) had a Bourbon that, at least once during the bottle didn't taste just terrible. It's me. I don't know if it's something I ate or what, but I'm used to it now. One of the 'growth' things I've realized recently, I now take several days to decide what I think about a Bourbon.

    Enjoy,

    Ken

  10. #10
    Virtuoso
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    Apr 2005
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    1,394

    Re: BOTM, 9/05: Wild Turkey Rare Breed

    I've never grown fond of Rare Breed, preferring basically any other Turkey product that comes to proof (100+). However, that opinion was based just on one bottle.

    I have had an opened WT-01-99 for at least 3 years that I come back to every few months. It may have gotten better during that time, and has almost certainly lost many of the more gentle notes by now. It never grew on me, but I've never sought out another bottling to confirm that it wasn't just that one, as the standard 101, the 12yr, or most of all the 101 Reserve that Mr. Russell has been picking out especially for me and 50,000 of his other closest friends has always satisfied (and if 50,000 Elvis fans can't be wrong, neither could 50,000 Jimmy fans). Now that it will be only 90% of what Mr. Russell intended, maybe I'll give Rare Breed another try.

    By the way, what whiskey WILL be 100% of what Mr. Russell intended?

    Roger - Jimmy never done me wrong - Hodges

 

 

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