54.8% ABV (109.6 Proof), 750 ml, Finished in Madeira Casks
BLACKENED X WILLETTKentucky Straight Rye Whiskey Finished in Madeira Casks is the inaugural release in the BLACKENED®Masters of Whiskey Series, the collaboration of Master Distillers Rob Dietrich of BLACKENED® and Drew Kuslveen of Willett Distillery. A marriage of low rye and high rye whiskeys selected by the distillers from the Willett Family Estate Reserve with an average age of 6.5 years, finished in Madeira casks for up to 14 weeks.
Using the proprietaryBLACK NOISE™ finishing process, each batch of whiskey is blasted with its very own Metallica playlist, selected by Drew and Rob, and sequenced by Lars Ulrich. The low frequency sound waves force the whiskey to penetrate deeper into the barrel, extracting more caramel, honey and vanilla flavors from the wood. The result is a magnificently balanced whiskey, robust in flavor and ideal for sipping neat, on the rocks, or in a classic cocktail.
The complexity of the whiskey balances perfectly, gracing the nose with hints of sweet rhubarb, brown sugar, corn husk, cigar box, and vanilla. The first sip liberates the palate with notes of buttery caramel, earthy mint, and fresh-cut hay, rolling into a superb finish with vanilla, cinnamon butter, and dark walnut.
Nose – Sweet rhubarb, brown sugar, corn husk, cigar box and vanilla
Palate – Buttery caramel, earthy mint and fresh cut hay
Finish – Long and smooth finish with vanilla, cinnamon butter and dark walnut
Master Distiller & Blender Rob Dietrich / BLACKENED: “We couldn’t think of a more impactful first release for the series than a collaboration with Willett Distillery,” said Rob Dietrich, BLACKENED’s Master Distiller and Blender. “I wanted the first expression in the series to be a rye, and as a huge fan of Willett and everything they produce, I felt it was the obvious first choice. I couldn’t be more honored to work with Drew and the great team at Willett Distillery. Our connections to Dave brought everything full circle, and when I was working with Drew and the Kulsveens, it was almost like being welcomed back. I’m extremely excited by what we’ve accomplished, and I hope our fans and the whiskey enthusiasts of the world will enjoy this whiskey as much as Drew and I have!”
Master Distiller Drew Kuslveen / Willett Distillery: “We are thrilled to congratulate Rob and the BLACKENED team on this inaugural release of what will certainly be a unique series of whiskeys,” said Drew Kulsveen, Willett Distillery’s Master Distiller and Chief Operating Officer. “Frankly, I have had a good time collaborating with Rob on this project. We realized early on that we both shared a vision for the flavor we hoped to achieve in the blend and we are eager to share what we have come up with.”
Lars Ulrich / Metallica: Metallica Co-founder and Drummer, Lars Ulrich said, “The original idea with BLACKENED was to create something new, exciting, and unique that connected with both our fans and whiskey enthusiasts — something that stood on its own and was hopefully respected. The next step was to expand on BLACKENED's foundation, to push the possibilities of the marriage of music and whiskey even further. When we visited Willett Distillery in 2019 and saw the passion and craftsmanship that goes into every drop they produce, we knew we had found kindred spirits. Teaming up with the Kulsveen family to kick off the Master… Series with Willett was the natural next step in BLACKENED’s evolution."
The 11-track playlist for the BLACK NOISE™ process was chosen by both Rob Dietrich and Drew Kulsveen and sequenced by Metallica Co-founder and Drummer, Lars Ulrich.
The full playlist includes:
For Whom The Bell Tolls
Master of Puppets
Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
Dyers Eve (Remastered)
Broken, Beat & Scarred
The Thing That Should Not Be
Of Wolf and Man
Collections: Rye Whiskey Spirits Whiskey
Bottle Size: All bottles are 750ML unless otherwise noted.
21 and Over: Adult Signature Required
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