Austin Nichols began operations in 1855 as a wholesale grocer specializing in the sale of teas, coffees and spirits. In 1869, the Ripy family founded a distillery on what is now known as Wild Turkey Hill in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky; Austin Nichols purchased the distillery in 1971. Wild Turkey got its name in the 1940s after a distillery executive brought a private supply along with him for a wild turkey hunting trip with friends. They liked it so much that the next year they asked him to bring along some of that same "Wild Turkey" bourbon. He honored his friends' good taste by turning their nickname into a legendary brand. Wild Turkey uses a differentiated process whereby the bourbon is distilled at a low proof to seal in its flavors. Very little water is added to Wild Turkey, resulting in a full-flavored authentic bourbon taste similar to what one would get straight out of the barrel. Wild Turkey is a genuine drink with a sought after "burn" that comes from its high proof, an attribute fundamental to the brand and critical in maintaining its authentic bourbon characteristics.
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