Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye Review [In Depth]
Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye
Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye Details
Distillery: Wild Turkey
Type & Region: Rye, Kentucky, USA
Alcohol: 56.1%Composition: 51% rye, 37% corn, 12% barley Aged: NAS Color: 1.1/2.0 on the color scale (burnished)
From the Wild Turkey website:
“Crafted in one of the few distilleries to remain dedicated to the art of rye whiskey, Rare Breed Rye is a blend of non-chill filtered rye. It is barrel-proof, meaning that it’s uncut, bottled directly from the barrels at the proof it is reached in those barrels. It is sister to award-winning Rare Breed bourbon and the first permanent super-premium rye in the Wild Turkey family.”
wild turkey rare breed rye overview
In 2020, we finally got Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye. While this is far from Wild Turkey’s first attempt at rye whiskey, for some reason this is the first time they have released it under the Rare Breed label. Up till now, they’ve had Wild Turkey Rye 81 / 101 proof, Russell’s Reserve 6 year and Single Barrel ryes, and the 2019 Wild Turkey Master’s Keep Cornerstone Rye.
As an FYI, I bought and use these Glencairn glasses for everything (they’re the best): Glencairn Crystal Whiskey Glass Set of 6, Set of 4, Set of 2, or just one. Full transparency, this is an affiliate link, so I may earn a commission if you buy this or something else from Amazon.
wild turkey rare breed rye smell
Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye starts off with white sugar, pineapple, citrus, licorice, and anise followed by fennel, rosemary, thyme, roasted oak, cinnamon, vanilla, and just a little bright strawberry shortcake. At times, parts of it come together like pineapple drizzled in orange syrup, a fragrant addition.
After swirling, I smell candied pineapple, citrus, licorice, and anise with darker honey, fennel, caraway seed, roasted oak, toasted vanilla, and some rosemary and thyme earthiness, as well as a little bit of strawberry fields dessert. The brighter fruitiness, tropical character, and pineapple-forward traits remind me a lot of Kooper Family Rye, also a nice-smelling rye whiskey.
wild turkey rare breed rye taste & aftertaste
Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye is loaded with citrus, licorice, pineapple, honey, and anise followed by lighter roasted oak, cinnamon, thyme, and fennel with some caraway seed rye breadiness. It starts sweet followed by a small surge of herbal and vegetal notes, with the oak remaining generally subdued. That combination of flavors and oak presence makes me think that this is about 5-6 years old.
Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye Rating
Wild Turkey Rare Breed Rye smells and tastes quite good, providing a well-balanced and enjoyable experience that’s primarily sweet and herbal, and less vegetal and earthy.
The downside is that it doesn’t stand out in any way; and as the list of very good to exceptional rye whiskey grows, Rare Breed Rye will likely get lost in the shuffle, although the Wild Turkey name will always grab people’s attention.
This is a solid rye whiskey with a household name, and maybe that’s good enough. Honestly, I really expected more from this rye given how much I like Wild Turkey Rare Breed Bourbon.
Meet the Author: Alex
I have far too much fun writing about whiskey and singlehandedly running The Whiskey Shelf to bring you independent, honest, and useful reviews, comparisons, and more. I’m proudly Asian American and can speak Cantonese, Mandarin, and some Japanese.
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