Metallica Unveils Blackened x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye 11

Right this moment rye whiskey, tomorrow the world? Metallica-backed whiskey model Blackened is making its first foray into Kentucky with a brand new rye in collaboration with cult craft distillery Willett. Blackened x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye 11 combines the prowess of a longtime distiller with the revolutionary “sonic enhancement” approach that was pioneered by the late, nice Dave Pickerell, one of many model’s founding companions. The discharge is the primary in Blackened’s new “Masters of Whiskey” collection, which can function collaborations with different distillers sooner or later. It’s additionally the primary rye for the model.



Pickerell was a good friend of the Kulsveen household, which owns and operates Willett; he even lent experience once they have been beginning to distill again in 2011. The partnership with Metallica got here a number of years later. When Blackened was launching in 2018, the Kulsveens welcomed Pickerell again to the distillery to shoot a promotional video, and later opened their doorways to the band, giving them a behind-the-scenes tour, providing them dinner and sharing cigars.

Michael Persico

What’s so particular about Blackened x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye 11

Although Pickerell handed away in November 2018, his successor, former Stranahan’s grasp distiller Rob Dietrich, has continued the connection, working with Willett grasp distiller Drew Kulsveen to craft this new launch. Blackened x Willett marries two straight ryes—one with a high-rye-content mashbill, the opposite with a decrease proportion of the grain—chosen from Willett’s Household Property barrels, ranging in age from 4 to eight years outdated.

After marrying—mixing the whiskeys collectively to type a balanced entire—the rye was then positioned into madeira casks for a end of as much as 14 weeks. Like Blackened’s core American whiskey, which blends bourbon and rye from numerous states, this end was undertaken utilizing the model’s proprietary Black Noise course of. Pickerell developed the innovation particularly for Blackened.

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