In 2008, a single barrel of Willett Pot Still Reserve was on sale for the first time. Around 2015, it was clandestinely transformed into a limited edition bourbon. Although the Willett Distillery started the process of resuming distillation operations in 2012, after a lengthy hiatus, the Willett Pot Still Reserve is still sourced from an unnamed distillery or distilleries in Kentucky. Willett has not commented on whether or not their own distillate will be added to willett distillery, nor have they set a timeline for this.
The bourbon contained in this bottle dates back to the 1925 harvest.
Summer fruits, most notably ripe cherry, and a touch of citrus blend with vanilla and dry oak, and the whole thing is topped off with a vanilla creaminess. The richness of honey and a faint aftertaste of buttered popcorn linger in the background. Very simple in composition, yet the combination of aromas provides just enough depth to make it interesting and hold your interest.
Honey and caramel, when combined, provide a rich, sugary flavour that pairs nicely with savoury, spicy, and tangy accents. Even though it has a very light mouthfeel, the bourbon is able to express just the perfect amount of strength to captivate its audience.
A burst of rye spice comes to a climax in the outset, and is followed by a little dusting of cinnamon. Traditional flavours like vanilla and caramel are there, but the buttered popcorn flavour is back, too. A delicious, spicy flavour lingers on the tongue and makes even the final drops of the drink enjoyable.
In 2008, willett bourbon was released to the public as a single barrel product; at the time, its age was estimated to be between eight and ten years. However, at that era, high-aged whiskey was easily available, bourbon prices were consistently low, and the current demand was only an illusion.
Probably in response to the growing demand for Native Spirit of america, the company began producing small batches of its bourbon around the year 2015, although few consumers were aware of the change. The key feature that sets this brand apart, however, is unchanged and has very little to do with bourbon’s taste. Willett Reserve’s glass decanter design, which mimics a copper pot still, is partly responsible for the brand’s enormous success. To add insult to injury, it is believed that the bourbon was not made using the usual pot still but rather a column still, which is the most prevalent kind of still utilised in the manufacturing of bourbon.
Willett Distillery has maintained a modest size despite global distribution and a stable of recognisable brands. Because of this, the “small batch” labelling on Willett’s products is accurate in the sense in which the term “small batch,” a widely used but unregulated marketing phrase, is intended. Unlike other makers, whose small batches might comprise as much as 200 barrels, each Willett batch is said to have just around 12 barrels.