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Distilled by Wild Turkey and aged for 10 years, this bourbon goes on to be finished in 14-year Appleton Estate rum casks. It's bottled at 53% ABV. This is the 2023 chapter of the annual Master's Keep release, a limited-time offering from the brand that embraces experimentation. Will 2023 be the best yet? Let's find out
Rich and fun with a pleasant amount of oak — more than I was expecting. Ripe fruits, brown sugar, some tobacco and pleasant oak. Less fruit and funk than anticipated, and that's just fine. This is definitely bourbon first, rum second to start.
Rich on the palate. There's plenty of oak here once again, laced with caramel, baking spice, ginger, dry tannin and an apple butter note. The Jamaican character swoops in, bringing tropical fruits, mango, papaya, pineapple and some banana. It's present but nuanced and rests behind the initial flavors of the bourbon.
Long finish. Bourbon and rum sit on an equal footing here, sharing fruity funky tropical notes from the rum and bold, oaky bourbon notes filled with baking spice.
This isn't close to my favorite Master's Keep, but it's probably the most daring finish in the series to date. Bourbon drinkers aren't often rum drinkers, so this has the potential to fall on a great many deaf ears. That said, those with the interest (and adequately deep pocketbooks) to explore it stand to taste one of the best rum-finished whiskeys I've had from the American whiskey arena.