Wild Turkey Master's Keep Revival Bourbon Review Header

Wild Turkey Master’s Keep Revival

In Bourbon Whiskey Reviews by Lee Stang1 Comment


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Master’s Keep Revival is made from a blend of Wild Turkey Kentucky Straight Bourbon aged 12-15 years before finishing in at least 20-year-old Oloroso Sherry casks, hand-selected by Master Distiller Eddie Russell. The result is a one-of-a-kind, 101 proof sipping whiskey …. An homage to a bourbon pioneered by Jimmy Russell, it’s a must own for the serious whiskey collector.
– Wild Turkey
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Wild Turkey Master's Keep Revival


  • DISTILLER: Wild Turkey
  • MASH BILL: 75% Corn | 13% Rye | 12% Malted Barley
  • AGE: 12 to 15 Years. Finished in hand-picked 20 year old Oloroso Sherry Casks from Jerez, Spain
    • YEAR: 2018
  • PROOF: 101 (50.5% ABV)
  • MSRP: $149.00
  • BUY ONLINE: Drizly.com

NOSE: Chocolate Cherries | Oak | Spice | Hint of Vermouth

TASTE: Red Fruit | Oak | Spice | Hint of Grape

FINISH: Slight spice on the tongue gives way to a mix of cocoa powder and cherries ending with a hint of grape. A nice warming of the chest.

SHARE WITH: I would share this with anyone who enjoys a good bourbon especially those who like wine finished bourbons. While the sherry finish is very subtle it is discernable and enjoyable.

WORTH THE PRICE: I purchased this bottle myself so obviously I believe it is worth the price. Some searching may bring you to a price lower than MSRP.

BOTTLE, BAR OR BUST: If you are a fan of the Wild Turkey Master’s Keep releases I would go for a bottle. If you haven’t tried this series then I always recommend trying something new at a bar. It might be a little hard to find however given the limited release.

OVERALL: I received a bottle of the Wild Turkey Master’s Keep Decades Bourbon this past Christmas and thoroughly enjoyed it. So much so that I have already finished it. When the Wild Turkey Revival became available, I purchased it almost immediately. I am sure this bottle will empty as quickly as well. While I have tasted Wild Turkey products in the past and the first rye whiskey in my collection was the Wild Turkey 6 year old rye, I  never had much if any in my cabinet until about this time last year when I started trying different releases and I realized what I had been missing. I now have several different releases. Our Bourbon and Banter 5th Anniversary Trip to Wild Turkey sealed the deal. (Read about it here: Wild Turkey: The Best Private Barrel Trip Ever.)

On the nose this is immediately identifiable as a Wild Turkey product. The sherry finish is not overwhelming and helps produce notes of red fruit and a hint of vermouth. Some chocolate and oak mix in.

On the palate, there is first a burst of oak and spice followed by red fruit. The sherry notes only come through slightly but provides a great taste.

The finish starts with a burst of spicy pepper which develops into a cocoa powder tongue covering that fades into a hint of grape. A very nice warming as you sip.

I found that it took a few pours for me to come up with my tasting notes. I found it complex and an excellent bourbon. The sherry notes are subtle and not overwhelming as some sherry finished bourbons can be. A great Wild Turkey release. This is a “stunning revival.”  It’s still in the stores. I may have to get another bottle.

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Wild Turkey Master's Keep Revival Background Info

Third Expression in Award-Winning Series of Rare Kentucky Straight Bourbons Dips into the Archives for Inspiration

LAWRENCEBURG, KY (June 12, 2018) As innovation continues to define the whiskey category, a retrospective look into the Wild Turkey® archives served as inspiration for the iconic spirit brand’s latest release. On the heels of his first two heralded special releases, Wild Turkey Master Distiller Eddie Russell introduces the highly-anticipated third U.S. expression in the award-winning Master’s Keep series—Master’s Keep Revival.  As the newest expression in the super premium series, Master’s Keep Revival features Wild Turkey Bourbon aged 12-15 years and finished in 20-year-old Oloroso Sherry casks.

With a nod to his father’s 64-year legacy as a Bourbon sage and distilling legend, Master’s Keep Revival is inspired by the limited-release Wild Turkey Sherry Signature; a product Jimmy Russell introduced in the early 2000’s that featured sherry-infused, 10-year-old Bourbon finished in an Oloroso sherry cask. Eddie used the Sherry Signature taste profile to guide him to older Bourbon that, after resting in sherry casks, brought out top notes of fruit that blended perfectly with the vanilla and caramel of Wild Turkey. Eddie’s “revival” of Sherry Signature was the impetus for the name —a fitting tribute for the dynamic father & son distilling duo who collectively have 101 years of experience between them.

It was important to Eddie that he specifically use sherry casks that had held liquid for at least 20 years to pull through a richer flavor with stronger notes of fruit. To secure casks directly from the source, Eddie traveled to Jerez, Spain in search of the perfect barrels. To Eddie’s surprise, this was a lot harder than he imagined. While he found a surplus of three to four-year-old casks, anything older than four years was extremely scarce. However, Eddie’s persistence and determination to secure these precious barrels led him to someone with a stock of a few hundred.

“Master’s Keep Revival is a Bourbon I am proud to put my name on,” said Eddie Russell. “Jimmy and I have our healthy differences in how we drink Bourbon and how we make Bourbon, but I really enjoyed being able to take something my father created decades ago, which was maybe a little ahead of its time, and put my own stamp on it for today’s Bourbon connoisseurs and treasure hunters. I think it will be a nice addition to any collection.”

With the Master’s Keep series, Eddie has pushed the boundaries on the age limits of Bourbon, producing some of the oldest whiskeys Wild Turkey has ever released. The first launch of the series, Master’s Keep, was a 17-year-old bourbon aged in stone and wooden warehouses. Its sequel, Master’s Keep Decades, also showcased how Eddie is able to create exceptionally balanced whiskies from liquid aged far beyond what is normally Wild Turkey’s sweet spot of 8–12 years. Both whiskies received high praise from Bourbon bible Whiskey Advocate – having awarded Master’s Keep a score of 91 points and Master’s Keep Decades a score of 94 points, while also naming Decades the third best whiskey release of 2017.

Made from a blend of whiskies aged 12 to 15 years and finished in Oloroso Sherry Casks, Master’s Keep Revival is a 101 proof (50.5% alc. /vol.) Kentucky Straight Bourbon with a nose of cherry pie, raisins, citrus, nuts and a touch of oak. It delivers soft and creamy hints of spice and sweet tropical fruits, balanced with long and lingering notes of honey, spice and dried apricots. With only 1,600 cases and available for a limited time nationally and at the Wild Turkey Visitor Center in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, Wild Turkey Master’s Keep Revival retails for $149.99.


About the Author
Lee Stang

Lee Stang

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Lee’s bourbon journey started with one mistaken gulp of bourbon and coke as an eight-year-old. While bourbon was always part of his life, Lee followed a beer, wine path for the most part until a bartender poured him a taste of Buffalo Trace about ten years ago. It was at that point Lee’s love of bourbon really took off. Not only does Lee enjoy a good pour of bourbon but he is more than willing and excited to talk about it. Lee believes that bourbon, and for that matter all spirits, is enhanced by the experience of good company, good conversation and good bars. The combination leads to great stories. Say hi to him when you see him. Lee lives in Leesburg, VA, with his wife, best friend, and drinking partner, Patti. You might find her having a bourbon as well. Both Lee and Patti like to read mystery thrillers and travel. Most likely the travel leads to visits to new bars.

Comments

  1. Lee—— an interesting review of this Wild Turkey release….I will be “on the spy” for the opportunity to sample.

    Frankly, the price point of this MKR is a little north of my usual bourbon budget. While you have likely tried Wild Turkey’s Rare Breed, I must tout this release as my “go-to” pour. The cask-strength (116.8), tempered by about ten minutes of mild dilution of an ice ball, results in a perfect sip. The price point of $45-50 is also something I can afford as a regular occupant of my bar.

    Bottom’s up!

    Gary

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