Metallica Launches Blackened 'Masters of Whiskey' Series

An aged straight rye blend sourced from Kentucky's Willet Distillery was seasoned to 11 Met staples and deep cuts.
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BLACKENED x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye 2 _ Photo Credit Michael Persico

The hits from Metallica's Blackened musically-seasoned booze brand keep on coming, this time in the form of the an inaugural "Masters of Whiskey Series" release. 

The very metal "Black Noise" aging process conceived by the band and late whiskey wizard Dave Pickerell remains the same. Whiskey gets pummeled by riffage from Metallica's decades-spanning discography while finishing. 

BLACKENED x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye  5 _ Photo Credit Michael Persico

But for the first in the new series of intoxicating collaborations, Blackened Master Distiller Rob Dietrich teamed up with Drew Kulsveen of Bradstown, Kentucky's Willett Distillery to marry high ryes featuring spicy and robust flavors with sweeter, earthier low ryes. The oldest whiskey features an age statement of 8 years, with the average age being 6.5 years.

Their final rye blend was then imparted with dark fruit notes, overtones of honey, and hints of caramel and cinnamon while finishing for 14 weeks in ex-Madeira casks, the name referencing a heat-treated fortified wine made on Portugal's Madeira islands. 

BLACKENED x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye  6 _ Photo Credit Michael Persico

The finishing period is also when Blackened x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey took its thrashy sonic bath. Dietrich and Kulsveen chose the following 11 tracks featuring hits like "Enter Sandman" as well as deeper cuts like "Dyers Eve," while Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich took charge of sequencing duties. 

  1. For Whom The Bell Tolls
  2. Master of Puppets
  3. King Nothing
  4. Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
  5. Dyers Eve (Remastered)
  6. Broken, Beat & Scarred
  7. The Thing That Should Not Be
  8. Atlas, Rise!
  9. Of Wolf and Man
  10. One (Remastered)
  11. Enter Sandman
BLACKENED x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye _ Photo Credit Michael Persico

Here are the official tasting notes: 

  • Nose: Sweet-simmered rhubarb and brown sugar butter, corn husk, vanilla bean, cigar box, and ripe fig.
  • Palate: A mouth-warming symmetry of buttery caramel and earthy mint, with a degree of raspberry sweetness from the Madeira cask-finish, balancing with the rustic notes of fresh-cut hay from the high rye and rolling into a white pepper, cinnamon butter, and walnut finish.
BLACKENED x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye 8 _ Photo Credit Michael Persico

Bottled at 54.8 percent ABV, Blackened x Willett Kentucky Straight Rye Finished in Madeira Casks will be available in major retailers across the U.S. for $139.99. Visit the store locator here to find it.