The Willetts arrived to America in the late 1600s and settled in Maryland.
Roughly 100 years later they moved to Nelson County, Kentucky, where John David Willett (b. 1841) became master distiller and one-third owner at Moore, Willett & Frenke Distillery. His descendants purchased farm on the outskirts of Bardstown in 1935 and moved operations there. From the early 1980s the company operated as Kentucky Bourbon Distillers and focused on bottling and distribution, distillation was resumed in 2012. Willett Family Estate Bottled Small Batch Rye comprises whiskey distilled on site. Despite its young age, the whiskey barely falls into straight whiskey category, it has plenty of character. It is bottled in small batches and at natural strength.
Nose: grassy and herbal, forest floor, pine needles, apples, peaches, caramel, buttered rye toast and charred oak.
Palate: lemon grass, bunch of dried herbs, pine needles, toffee, caramel, banana bread, baked apples, dash of pepper and oak.
Finish: fairly long, with notes of mixed herbs, eucalyptus, milk chocolate, caramel and mint.