Wild Turkey, the iconic American Bourbon brand from Kentucky, announces its launch of a new variant in India as part of an ever-growing global expansion. The award-winning Wild Turkey portfolio has been a praised whiskey available in Australia, Japan, and other countries within Asia-Pacific, including India, and has now officially released its new variant in India, Wild Turkey 81. Increased by just one proof from the standard release Turkey, Wild Turkey 81 is characterized by the bold, authentic full-bodied flavor and is aimed at the Bourbon drinker set on blending the spirit in cocktails.
"Introduction of our premium American bourbon in our India portfolio makes it much stronger. A perfect serve to kick starts the evenings, Wild Turkey 81 is the choice for consumers looking for easier drinking options without losing the big flavors and is expected to become the preferred choice for bourbon connoisseurs," says Ashutosh Rajput, country manager, Campari India.
A lot has changed since the first batch of bold Wild Turkey was made several generations ago. But Wild Turkey hasn't. The iconic brand, led by father and son Master Distiller team Jimmy and Eddie Russell, still make real Kentucky Straight Bourbon the same way.
Wild Turkey 81 Proof was crafted by Eddie Russell, the son of the Wild Turkey master distiller Jimmy Russell, to experience the true bold flavor of Wild Turkey at an approachable ABV. The elder Russell has historically sworn by the level of 101 proof (50.5% alcohol) that has been the hallmark of Wild Turkey whiskies. The younger Russell has argued for a lower proof spirit that would appeal to younger drinkers, with their tendency toward mixing, and succeeded with the "81."
Using a mix of aged six, seven, and eight-year-old whiskies (much older than what's typical for its price point), he created a Bourbon that shines through concoctions, especially when used in cocktails. It's high rye mash matured in heavily charred casks provides big flavor at a more approachable ABV than 86.8 or 101. Tasted neat, it demonstrates the iconic Kentucky bourbon flavors that are the result of generations-old processes. Wild Turkey "81" exhibits the full-frontal signature corn mash that is the hallmark of all Wild Turkeys and long, rich, full-bodied character that comes from aging in #4 alligator char American oak barrels.
While Prohibition caused whiskey to fall from favor for decades, Wild Turkey was among the few distilleries to remain dedicated to the craft – which continues to this day. "Wild Turkey was one of the few legacy distilleries that remained loyal to crafting authentic Kentucky bourbon even as vodka and gin became the new, hot thing," said Eddie Russell, Master Distiller. "Wild Turkey's heritage was built on family values, a love for whiskey-making, and an endless search for bold flavors," shares Russell, who celebrates his 40th anniversary at the historic distillery this year. "Wild Turkey 81 embodies the tools, techniques and tradition that my father handed down and is a classic offering that exemplifies of our shared love of bourbon. Jimmy instilled in me the most rewarding lessons for success in work and life—passion and discipline—and I'll always be grateful to him for setting me on this path four decades ago."
Through the years, Jimmy and Eddie's yin and yang approach has catapulted The Wild Turkey Distilling into an innovation think tank while staying true to the bold spirit at the heart of the brand. Jimmy, known famously across the globe as "The Buddha of Bourbon" taught his protégé son Eddie the ropes of making bourbon the old-fashioned way, while encouraging him and his distilling cohorts to rise to modern consumption trends in American Whiskey - experimenting with age statements, aging techniques and barrel placement, evident in both older and newer marks.
An amber-bronze hue, Wild Turkey 81 starts with a fragrant aroma of honey and caramel and kicks off on the palate with the trademark Wild Turkey sweetness, then transforms in notes of maple and vanilla finishing with a sharp, toasty finish. The whiskey is available at select retailers in India at an MRP of Rs 2623* per 750 ml bottle.
* The price mentioned is indicative and varies by city