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Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non-Chill Filtered Review: A Connoisseur’s Delight

thewhiskylady - 2023-05-22
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Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non-Chill Filtered Review: A Connoisseur's Delight

As a whiskey enthusiast, I recently had the chance to taste Wild Turkey’s Rare Breed Bourbon, specifically the Non Chill Filtered version. Wild Turkey, a well-established bourbon distillery, produces this bold and flavorful bourbon that combines dense sweetness, earthy notes, and a unique cinnamon bun twist. It impressed me not only with its flavor profile but also with its rich, dark intensity.

Introduced in 2017, this version of Rare Breed features a 116.8 proof, and while the profile may change batch to batch, the overall character of the bourbon remains consistent. In my sample, I discovered an alluring blend of earthy rosemary and caraway seed alongside notes of cinnamon, burnt oak, and that distinct cinnamon bun aroma. As the bourbon developed over time, the flavors seemed to evolve and deepen, making the tasting experience even more enjoyable.

Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non-Chill Filtered Reviewphoto source:

I also had the opportunity to compare this Non Chill Filtered Rare Breed Bourbon with its Chill Filtered counterpart. Although the differences were subtle, I found that the Non Chill Filtered version had a richer flavor that was ultimately more satisfying to my palate. This unusual offering from Wild Turkey has certainly earned its spot among my list of top bourbons, and I’m eager to try more expressions in the future.

Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Overview

Product History

The Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon is an impressive release by the Wild Turkey Distilling Co., located in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. This particular bourbon boasts an uncut, non-chill filtered process, which sets it apart from its chill filtered counterpart. It is a blend of six-, eight-, and twelve-year bourbon, offering a unique and delightful taste. As a sister product to the Rare Breed Bourbon and the award-winning Rare Breed Rye, this special bourbon maintains a strong connection to its roots in the distillery’s dedication to crafting high-quality rye whiskey.

Price Range

When it comes to pricing, the Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon can be found at a reasonable price point, depending on the market. For example, in Japan, I discovered that it is priced at approximately $46 for a 1-liter bottle, making it an attractive option for bourbon enthusiasts who appreciate quality without breaking the bank. The price may vary slightly based on the location.

I’ve also seen this bourbon offered at a slightly different price in some instances, so it’s essential to keep an eye out for the best deals. For example, I stumbled upon a batch from March 2018, priced at $36. This is an excellent find, given the quality of the bourbon. So, make sure to look for the best price depending on your location and the availability of this special release.

Tasting Notes


Upon nosing Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon, I pick up a complex and inviting scent. There’s a prominent oakiness that provides the foundation, accompanied by warm cinnamon and caramel notes. As the spice and sweetness mingle together, I notice hints of clove and citrus, punctuating the aroma and adding a refreshing touch. There’s an underlying presence of rye spice and tobacco that rounds out the bouquet nicely, setting the stage for the flavors to follow.


As I taste this non chill filtered bourbon, I’m welcomed by a rich and robust flavor profile. The oak and spice notes from the aroma are even more pronounced on the palate. Bold cinnamon, caramel, and a touch of toasted toffee create a delightful sweetness that complements the spice. Fruit notes emerge, with apple, orange, and a hint of chocolate adding to the complexity. Rye spice becomes more prominent, followed by some tobacco and leather undertones, while a touch of honey keeps everything in balance.


The finish on the Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon is long and satisfying. The warmth from the barrel proof lingers, creating a pleasant heat that remains throughout. I’m left with a lingering dryness, owing to the oak and charred oak flavors, and some minty freshness that helps to cleanse the palate. By the end, notes of Campari, citrus, and black pepper tie everything together, concluding the experience on a memorable note.


All in all, I’d give Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon a solid rating. With its rich flavors, delightful balance, and complexity, this bourbon stands out among other barrel proof bourbons such as Elijah Craig Barrel Proof and Maker’s Mark Cask Strength. The packaging is also respectable, and the experience is only enhanced when enjoyed from a Glencairn glass. However, this spirit might not be for everyone, as its boldness and heat could prove challenging for some. But for those who can appreciate the nuances and depth of this craft, it’s an experience not to be missed.

Mixing and Pairing

Best Mixers

Best Mixersphoto source:

Given its earthy notes of rosemary and caraway seed, along with flavors like roasted oak, cinnamon, and licorice, I find that the following mixers complement it well:

  • Ginger ale: Adds sweetness and a bit of spice, enhancing the whiskey’s earthy and herbal flavors.
  • Tonic water: Its bitterness balances the dense sweetness of the bourbon while letting the flavors shine through.
  • Simple syrup and lemon juice: Combines to form a classic whiskey sour, accentuating the licorice notes.

Cocktail Suggestions

Cocktail Suggestionsphoto source:

Here are some ideas for cocktails featuring this fantastic bourbon:

  1. Old Fashioned: The timeless drink allows the complex flavors of the bourbon to shine, with a touch of sweetness to emphasize the earthy notes.
  • 2 oz Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Garnish with an orange twist
  1. Rosemary Revival: A twist on the classic whiskey sour with fresh rosemary to enhance the herbal notes of the bourbon.
  • 2 oz Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon
  • 3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 oz rosemary simple syrup
  • 1 rosemary sprig for garnish
  1. Caraway Collins: A refreshing highball that brings out the caraway seed flavor.
  • 2 oz Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon
  • 5 oz club soda
  • 1/2 oz caraway-infused simple syrup
  • Garnish with caraway seeds and a lemon wheel

Food Pairings

Food Pairingsphoto source:

Considering its earthy and spicy character, along with a viscous and oily texture, Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon pairs well with a variety of foods. Here are my suggestions:

  • Barbecue: The smokiness and sweetness of barbecue complement the roasted oak and licorice flavors in the whiskey.
  • Cheese: Strong, aged cheeses like blue cheese or sharp cheddar will enhance the whiskey’s complex character.
  • Dark chocolate: The rich, bitterness of dark chocolate pairs nicely with the bourbon’s dense sweetness and herbal notes.
  • Meat dishes: Hearty meat dishes such as steak or roasted lamb highlight the bourbon’s mashbill, which likely includes a higher ratio of corn, and its high barrel entry proof, which contributes to its intensity.


After trying the Wild Turkey Rare Breed Non Chill Filtered Bourbon, I must say that I am impressed by its richness and complexity. This bourbon is full of dense sweetness, earthy rosemary, caraway seed, cinnamon bun, burnt oak, cinnamon, and more. As my glass continued to sit over time, I noticed the flavors evolving and becoming more intricate.

One surprising aspect of this whiskey was its earthy character, which I believe comes from the oak barrels used for aging. The combination of these earthy notes with the sweetness of cinnamon buns created a unique and enjoyable drinking experience.

As a blend of 6, 8, and 12-year-old bourbons, the Rare Breed Bourbon showcases the mastery of Wild Turkey’s distillers. The whiskey is bottled at cask strength (116.8 proof), which allows the depth and nuances of its flavors to truly shine in each sip.

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