Master’s Keep Revival is Wild Turkey‘s third U.S. release of the Master’s Keep lineup. We previously reviewed the 17 Year and Decades, which received numerous accolades including being named #3 on Whiskey Advocates Whiskey of the Year awards. Both were quality bourbons, and so we have high hopes for this third U.S. release.
This past year, Wild Turkey released another version of Master’s Keep in Australia called 1894, which was a 90 proof blend of 6, 11 and 13 year old bourbons. We haven’t gotten to try that one, but from some of the reviews we may not have missed much (thanks rarebird101.com for handling that one for all of us).
This release, however, is different, not only in terms of the previous Master’s Keep releases, but also from Wild Turkey’s historic approach. Revival is a sherry finished whiskey. That’s right, Wild Turkey took 13 to 15 year old whiskey, and finished (i.e., aged them longer) in 20 year old Oloroso Sherry casks. Most of Wild Turkey’s whiskeys are not finished whiskies. In 2004, Wild Turkey released an export only sherry finished (and “enhanced”) bourbon, which is the only other finished whiskey from Wild Turkey that comes to mind.
Nose: An initial bouquet of fruity sweetness; pipe tobacco; a slight medicinal/metallic note; fig and raisin; brown sugar; toasted almond; a hint of dry oak spice. (4/5)
Palate: Chewy fruit; vanilla; caramel; raisin; fig; toasted almond; leather and tobacco; apple skins. Unlike most Wild Turkey, this has more sweetness than spice, and very little if any heat even at 101 proof. Even though the flavors are chewy, there still feels like some of the flavors are watered down. (3.5/5)
Finish: Medium, but slowly fading giving the impression of something maybe longer. Fruity; chewy caramel; almond; vanilla; brown sugar; dried fruit; very faint pepper and other baking spice. No heat here either, but also the same watered down feeling. (3.5/5)
Overall: Its very good. Not great, but very good. While it is chewy (even on the finish), there are aspects throughout that still feel diluted. I feel like I could get more out of this if it weren’t proofed down to 101. With all that said, Wild Turkey pulled this off better than I thought they might. (3.5/5)
Value: This is an expensive bottle at around $150, but throughout the experience I feel as though I’m enjoying something more premium than a standard offering bourbon. Its fairly rich and complex, and well married. I won’t rush out to buy another, but I’d certainly consider it if my bottle starts to run low. (3/5)
“While it is chewy (even on the finish), there are aspects throughout that still feel diluted.”
Scott is a co-founder of Flight Club and a frequent writer and reviewer on the Club’s blog.