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Willett Pot Still Reserve Straight Bourbon Whiskey Review

by Jim Casey
Willett Pot Still Reserve Straight Bourbon Whiskey Review
(photo by Outsider)

There’s no denying the allure of Willett Pot Still Reserve Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Even when you’re not in the market for the bourbon, spotting its distinctive bottle on the shelf beckons you to come closer à la the Song of the Sirens. With its sleek neck and exaggerated base, the glass decanter—reminiscent of an old copper pot still—looks like it should contain some sort of magic potion. Impractical? Yes. Beautiful? Yes.

Let’s see if the bourbon from Batch Number 22C01 really is magical.

At a Glance

  • Distillery: Not Stated (Made in Kentucky)
  • Bottled: Willett Distillery
  • Location: Bardstown, KY
  • Style: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
  • Age: Not Stated
  • Proof: 94
  • MSRP: $45
  • Website | Instagram
(photo by Outsider)

Willett Pot Still Reserve: What We Say

Noselight alcohol, damp corn, citrus zest, cocoa
Palatevanilla, oak, lemon grass, smoked cherry wood, cinnamon
Finishmedium, warm citrus, herbal vanilla, light mint
What You Can Expect to Pay$50-$70+
Buy It: Now, Soon, Later, NeverLater (unless you’re itching to display a beautiful bottle)
Outsider Rating79/100

The nose opens with light alcohol and sweet, damp corn. It’s almost musty, like the paper of an old library book. After letting it breathe for few a minutes, citrus zest emerges with a waft of unsweetened cocoa. It’s interesting, yet neither overly inviting nor off-putting. On the palate, vanilla and oakiness are forefront, followed by the emergence of lemon grass. The mouthfeel is rather thin, but chewing reveals a hint of smoked cherry wood and cinnamon. The medium finish is slightly herbal, with notes of vanilla, warm citrus, and light mint—like the last sip of a Whiskey Smash cocktail.

Willett Pot Still Reserve won’t knock your socks off, but it does enough to merit keeping one of its show-stopping bottles atop your bar at all times.

(photo by Outsider)

Recommended Sip

Neat. Or, if you’re in the mood for a cocktail, drop a couple ounces of Willett Pot Still Reserve into your next Whiskey Smash.

If You Like Willett Pot Still, Try

(photo by Outsider)
  • Old Bardstown Bonded
  • Distillery: Willett Distillery
  • Location: Bardstown, KY
  • Style: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
  • Proof: 100
  • MSRP: $22

Pound for pound, Old Bardstown Bonded is one of the best bourbons on the market. While Pot Still Reserve may have the superior bottle, Old Bardstown has the superior juice—with notes of toffee, cherry, and mint chocolate—at a fraction of Pot Still’s price. OBB is Willett’s best-kept secret.

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