I’ve never really been a huge drinker of any kind, but in particular, spirits have never been my forte. I have always found them to have a bit too much ‘smack in the face’ flavour unless of course they are mixed with a cola drink, in which case, I would much rather simply drink the cola.
All this changed on Tuesday evening when I attended an event where Wild Turkey teamed up with famed Australian artists and Burgers by Josh to inspire Aussies to ‘do things your way’. Packed with celebrities, artists and sports people, this event introduced me to a few things – 1. Ways of drinking a spirit (Wild Turkey) that was super enjoyable, 2. Ways of using Wild Turkey as a delicious cooking ingredient, 3. The very quirky and trendy Whitehart Bar, and 4. The amazing Hot Potato Band!
On arrival, guests were greeted with a glass of Fresh Apple, which is Wild Turkey topped with refreshing freshly squeezed apple juice. This drink certainly was refreshing and got those taste buds prepared for a great evening ahead. Apple juice has never been my ‘thing’, it’s ok, and I enjoyed the drink, but when I tasted the second drink of the evening I couldn’t get enough and kept going back for more…and more… Gold Rush – WOW – Wild Turkey 86.8 Bourbon, Lemon Juice and Honey Syrup, shaken and garnished with a fresh lemon wedge – absolutely perfect for my tastebuds – simply delicious, enough zing and sweetness without being overpowering on either taste sensation, and of course, the Wild Turkey, perfect with this flavour combination.
Guests on Tuesday were amongst the first to experience the new signature cocktail, the Wild Turkey Kentucky Firebird – a smoke-infused drop that enhances the bold flavours of real bourbon. The specialty cocktail sees each glass live-smoked with American oak woodchips before combining the sweet and bitter hints of Grand Marnier, Cinzano Rosso, Maraschino to balance the unique flavours of Wild Turkey 101. These were a great ‘hit’ with the crowd, a bit strong for my tastes, but they were going down a treat with everyone else. Also a hit with everyone was watching these drinks being made with talented bar tenders drawing a crowd of onlookers each and every time they put together one of these cocktails (which was often!)
Famed burger king and passionate foodie pioneer Josh Arthurs, from Burgers by Josh, also teamed up with Wild Turkey to create an original bourbon-themed menu for the evening that put ‘wild’ at the heart of the experience. Kick-starting another revolution in burgers by combining his signature Americana style including The Wild South Cheeseburger with Wild Turkey Bourbon, peach and BBQ sauce, and Smoked Turkey Wings with sticky Wild Turkey Bourbon marinade.
Three generations of the Russell family have been creating Wild Turkey, the finest example of American bourbon for over 100 years through their own traditional distilling process. The Distillery for is located in Lawrenceburg Kentucky, situated next to the Kentucky River. The famous Wild Turkey brand name first came about in 1940 when distillery executive Thomas McCarthey took a few warehouse samples on a Wild Turkey hunting trip with a group of friends. The following year, his friends asked him for “some of that Wild Turkey whiskey” and the brand was born.
Wild Turkey is distilled and put into new oak barrels at a much lower alcohol volume than most other bourbons. This results in a much richer flavour, as less is cooked out during the production process. Ageing in the highest quality new American oak barrels with the heaviest char available (the Number 4 “alligator” char), imparts a smooth flavour and deep amber colour to the whiskey. Wild Turkey is one of the only brands on the market that implements this process of ageing to creating premium Bourbon.
The launch of The Wild Turkey Way follows the announcement of Academy AwardsTM Best Actor winner and authentic Texan native, Matthew McConaughey, joining the Wild Turkey team as Creative Director to tell the story behind the Master Distillers.
The Sydney events will launch a unique gallery of artwork featuring ARIA award-winning musician turned artist Bertie Blackman; maverick street artist and sculptor Will Coles; and multidisciplinary star Nikolaus Dolman. The Melbourne events celebrated the work of skateboarding icon and artist Gareth Stehr; pioneering female street artist Klara; and urban artist Adrian Doyle. Each piece of art has been crafted onto the Wild Turkey White Oak barrel lids and represents each artist’s interpretation of an uncompromised approach to life.
Nicole Stanners, Marketing Director of Wild Turkey says, “It takes time to craft good bourbon and we are proud of our uncompromising approach to quality and unwavering dedication to the authentic distilling process. We are excited to bring this same spirit to these events to celebrate passionate individuals who have done things their way to inspire others.”
Further events will be held at Whitehart in Melbourne on the 9th, 16th and 23rd of May and at the Annandale Hotel in Sydney on the 12th, 19th and 26th of May.
To be a part of The Wild Turkey Way event series, visit www.facebook.com/wildturkey. Follow the Wild Turkey Way at #wildturkeyway