How we do, what we do — and where we do it — are equally important when it comes to making bourbon right. Our master distillers have over a century of experience making Kentucky Straight Bourbon the right way, The Wild Turkey way.
For 75 years, we’ve been making our whiskey at the top of Wild Turkey Hill in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. It’s where spirited tradition and devotion to our craft come together to yield an unparalleled lineup of bourbon.
OUR WILD TURKEY ESSENTIALS
Our water comes from the Kentucky River and is naturally filtered through limestone, removing iron and other impurities.
We’re still using our original yeast strain – proprietary to Wild Turkey – which has informed our bourbon’s signature flavor for over 60 years.
Wild Turkey is one of the few distilleries to never put a genetically modified grain in our bourbon.
Not everyone makes a big deal about char – the burn inside American White Oak barrels used to age bourbon. But only a No. 4 “alligator” char, the deepest available, can produce our bourbon’s signature amber color and bold flavor. Others might be content with a No. 1, 2 or 3 char; but it’s something we can never compromise on. And, we use No. 4 char across all of our bourbons and ryes, giving each one our distinctive flavor.
We never pour a drop of Wild Turkey until it’s aged at least five years – often six or eight or more. Of course, we only have to age it two years to call it a straight bourbon, but we’re not big fans of doing the minimum. Even our tin-clad wooden rickhouses have stood the test of time; they allow maximum interaction between wood and bourbon, and they’ve been doing it since the 1890s. When we put “Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey” on our label, it’s because our bourbon earned it.
To taste Wild Turkey from start to finish, it comes down to these four qualities.
Bourbon’s color tells you a lot about its age. You’ll notice Wild Turkey has a deep auburn color because it’s aged longer in barrels with the deepest char.
Breathe in the bourbon. And then add a drop of water to release more flavor notes and breathe it in again. You’ll smell undertones of deep vanilla and oak, with traces of citrus and toffee on top. As Jimmy Russell will tell you: you can smell more flavor than you’ll ever taste.
Take a sip and breathe it in. You’ll notice the Wild Turkey 101 is rich with vanilla and caramel with notes of toffee and light smoke.
A great bourbon lingers on the tongue. Wild Turkey is known for its long, rich, and full-bodied finish.