Wild Turkey Master's Keep Unforgotten, the newest release in the annual limited-edition series, was inspired by a fortuitous and unexpected co-mingling of young rye and mature bourbon released more than a decade ago. Master Distiller Eddie Russell has resurrected the memory of that release, Wild Turkey Forgiven, with the release of Master's Keep Unforgotten, a high proof, extra-aged variation of the harmonious blend of straight bourbon and rye whiskies. The unconventional and complex liquid serves as a testimony to Eddie's experience and the legacy of Wild Turkey as one of the few Kentucky distilleries that have remained dedicated to the art of making rye whiskey, alongside its renowned bourbons.
The idea to marry straight bourbon and rye whiskies of Wild Turkey Distilling Co. was born in 2010 when a crew member accidentally mixed a batch of young rye with a barrel of mature bourbon. Upon tasting the co-mingled whiskeys, Master Distiller Eddie Russell realized he had something very special on his hands. Rather than discard the serendipitous mistake, the Distillery celebrated it, bottling the whiskey for a limited time, and fittingly naming it Forgiven.
The award-winning Master's Keep series was first launched in 2015 with Master's Keep 17 Year and was inspired by Eddie Russell's desire to push the boundaries of traditional Wild Turkey bourbon making, by experimenting with aging techniques and finishes. At 105 proof, Master's Keep Unforgotten is made from some of the oldest rye ever released by Wild Turkey and is characterized by unmistakable notes of fresh fruit – flavors rarely exhibited in such mature liquid. The extra aging time in rye casks honors the storied history of American rye production, while offering a distinct experience that is sure to surprise and delight.
"Twelve years ago, I tasted the result of the distillery mishap that would become Wild Turkey Forgiven and was amazed. It was unlike anything I had ever tasted before, and I knew we had stumbled upon something special," says Wild Turkey's Master Distiller Eddie Russell. "Master's Keep Unforgotten pays homage to this happy accident, perfected with a secondary rye barrel aging in our pre-prohibition Rickhouse B – the favorite of my father, Master Distiller Jimmy Russell."
Staying true to the spirit and distilling traditions that have defined Wild Turkey for the last 80 years, Unforgotten honors the storied history of American rye production through a bourbon lens. On the nose, the magnificent marriage of 13-year-old bourbon and 8- & 9-year-old rye is fruit-forward with notes of caramel and oak. On the palate, the flavor profile consists of a swirl of caramel, dried fruit, and sweet oak - complemented by notes of dried fruit, honey, black pepper, and baking spice from the 8- and 9-year-old ryes on the finish.
With a suggested retail price of $200, Master's Keep Unforgotten will be available for a limited time at select retailers.
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