Wild Turkey’s Jimmy Russell is the longest-serving, active Master Distiller of a major whiskey brand in not just Kentucky, but all of North America. To honor his father and their dynamic personal and professional relationship, Eddie Russell created a limited-edition mingling of 13- and 16-year-old whiskies, called Wild Turkey Diamond Anniversary.
It will be available exclusively from May to August in the Wild Turkey Visitor Center and then nationwide in late summer, Wild Turkey Diamond Anniversary Edition has an SRP of $124.99.
This year is actually being called the “Year of Jimmy Russell” as Jimmy is a living legend among the Kentucky distilling community. Marking 60 years in the industry this year, the integrity he has brought to the bourbon trade remains unparalleled and is reflected in every bottle of Wild Turkey. Wild Turkey tells BourbonBlog.com No other American Master Distiller in history has reached this milestone.
As BourbonBlog.com was among the first to tell you about the new Wild Turkey Visitor Center when construction started in 2012, this new, 9,140- square-foot, state-of-the-art Visitor Center is now officially open to the whiskey-drinking public today. This $100 million+ investment by Gruppo Campari thoroughly modernizes and expand the distillery experience.
A grand opening of the Visitor Center tonight officially announced that Wild Turkey declares 2014 the “Year of Jimmy Russell” in honor of his landmark 60th (celebration pictured below).
“Last year, our Visitor Center was housed in a tiny 1,000-square-foot house from the 1800s and we still saw a 16 percent spike in visitors to Wild Turkey Hill,” said Jean-Jacques Dubau, President and CEO of Campari America. “With our gleaming, new architectural masterpiece, we finally have a Visitor Center worthy of Wild Turkey’s legacy, as well as an outstanding calling card for Kentucky’s Bourbon industry”
Visitor Center Experience
Designed as an architectural and spiritual centerpiece for the whiskey, which has more than a 100-year legacy on Wild Turkey Hill, the Visitor Center is a new destination for bourbon lovers and Wild Turkey fans across the globe. The distillery expects to welcome approximately 80,000 guests this year, up from the previous 62,000 in 2013.
With stunning views, the structure features a mélange of natural wood materials, including Rough-cut Ash, Cypress, Douglas Fir, Yellow Pine and American White Oak, that seamlessly blends into its environment. As a clever nod to the brand’s beloved turkey icon, the exterior wood siding pattern was inspired by the display plumage of a wild turkey, while the vegetation surrounding the building is part of a wild turkey’s natural habitat.
Massive glass windows peer down on the majestic Kentucky River, giving visitors a chance to drink in the Commonwealth’s spectacular beauty, while also sampling some of the world’s finest whiskies. The wood, steel and glass structure was the brainchild of De Leon & Primmer Architecture Workshop, a Louisville, Kentucky-based firm selected to helm the project. The Wild Turkey Visitor Center is a recent recipient of an HD Award, honoring excellence in design.
From portfolio tastings in the Angel’s Share room to the Wild Turkey Wall of Fame, guests can sip and savor Bourbon seven days a week while receiving an historical indoctrination into one of the oldest distillery operations in Kentucky. Exclusive keepsakes in the gift shop include recent, limited-edition products allowing visitors to bring a taste of Kentucky home with them wherever they may live.
Guests of the Visitor Center will also benefit a good cause as Wild Turkey will donate $1 from every Visitor Center ticket sold to its charity partner – The Boot Campaign, a national non-profit dedicated to showing tangible appreciation of our active military by providing assistance for the challenges troops face when returning home.