Alexa and Google Assistant can not only help you learn the differences between bourbon and whiskey, but voice assistants can also guide you through tasting wild turkey on your Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatible devices.
Although the tasting is usually done at a distillery, with a guide who has in-depth information about the alcoholic beverage, also guiding you on what to look for. Wild Turkey took this experience and designed an option that allows Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant to walk you through these steps through a new Alexa skill and Google routine.
As I am an avid scotch and whiskey drinker – and alcohol and technology usually don’t mix together – I was very eager to try the new experience. Keep in mind that the Wild Turkey skill is for adults only, and Alexa and Google Assistant will even ask for your birthday to make sure you meet the requirements.
Wild Turkey provided us with an Amazon Echo Dot to help with our tasting.GearBrain
How does competence work?
The Wild Turkey Tasting Skill is a guided tour on a smart speaker or smart screen, which leverages the Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant voice platform. You are fed tips from the legendary Russell Clan, the master distillers of Wild Turkey. Wild Turkey Master Distillers Jimmy and Eddie Russell, some family members and also Matthew McConaughey, Creative Director of Wild Turkey, share their knowledge of the history and heritage of the brand, as well as personal stories about the bottles of Wild Turkey that you will taste during your guided tour. .
For our review, Wild Turkey sent us an Amazon Echo Dot to use for skill testing, along with five bottles of their bourbons and whiskeys that are part of the tour, including their flagship 101 Bourbon, 101 Rye, Longbranch, Rare Breed and Kentucky Spirit. The bottles are not sold as a curated collection but are available for purchase individually.
5 bottles of wild turkey with ice and water for our tasting hosted by AlexaGearBrain
Wild Turkey Rye 101 is a dark colored, medium finish spicy liqueur that is typically used to make whiskey manhattans and sours, but you can drink it neat or on the rocks if you prefer. Rare Breed is a cask-proof bourbon with a bold taste, high alcohol content, a long, sweet finish, and respectable berry. Kentucky Spirit is an 8 year old, very smooth, single barrel bourbon and the first single barrel bourbon to hit the market. It tastes great on the rocks, if you are a single malt scotch drinker. The last bourbon we tasted was Longbranch, an 8 year old Kentucky bourbon that was distilled in Texas Mesquite casks. Actor Matthew McConaughey worked with the Russell’s to create this unique Kentucky bourbon, which the actor says has three acts: smell, taste and finish.
For each bottle, Alexa offered a guided tasting. If you’ve never been to a whiskey or bourbon tasting before, the normal process is for the distiller to tell you a little bit of information about what you’re going to drink. Then they will ask you to pour the whiskey into a glass, smell it and then sip it to understand the palette. Finally, the distiller should tell you what to look for when tasting or sipping the whiskey. At this point, you are also asked to try to understand the finish, which is how long the taste lasts in your mouth. For the Wild Turkey skill, Alexa will walk you through each of these steps with notes from Master Distillers Jimmy and Eddie Russell. You can learn more about how bourbon is made and how to drink it. In some cases, Alexa will also ask you if you want a wild turkey cocktail recipe.
Keep in mind that for tasting you can do it with or without the bottles, and the experience is the same if you are using a device compatible with the Google Assistant.
Google smart screens help you track your wild turkey tasting.GearBrain
Wild Turkey Tasting Skill Performance
The tasting of Wild Turkey is well thought out, offering great insights into each of the bottles of Wild Turkey. It’s also easy to set up and use, regardless of which smart speaker or smart display you’re using. To start tasting, first activate the wild turkey tasting skill in your Alexa app by asking Alexa to turn on the wild turkey tasting. (For devices with the Google Assistant, you say “Hey Google, talk to Wild Turkey Tasting,” then enter your date of birth.)
With Alexa, you will hear how the tasting will take place, as well as the questions you can ask during the tasting. Along with the five-bottle tours of Wild Turkey, you can also ask Alexa or Google Assistant questions about whiskey in general, the history of Wild Turkey, and the type of glassware to use for drinking whiskey or bourbon from the Kentucky.
To actually start tasting, you say “Alexa, start tasting”. She will ask you which guided tour you want and you will name only one of the bottles. Alexa can only guide a tasting of the five we mentioned, but the company is considering adding more.
One issue we had with our tasting was with Alexa’s wake-up call. As you know, Alexa is always listening, and as people were talking to each other during the tasting, the voice assistant would get confused and get stuck in a loop asking us the same question. We ended up telling Alexa to start over. To prevent this from happening you really need to be aware of what you are saying in the room with Alexa active, and instead we think it would be helpful if you could pause Alexa and then start tasting when you are ready.
We tested the Fun Facts section of the skill, but found it to be limited, giving us only one fact and not several at a time. You have to constantly ask for a new one, and they are limited.
Our favorite feature during the tasting, however, was hearing from the Russel and McConaughey family. Their commentary added a nice element to the tasting, but we so wish there were longer stories and more facts. Most of the tastings I attended included great stories about whiskey, the distillery and the people who drink it. We know the company is striving to improve its skills.
Bottles of wild turkey are available for sale.GearBrain
The Alexa skill is free and is available on the Alexa app. For devices compatible with the Google Assistant, you don’t need to download a routine. Instead, just say “Hey Google,” then ask to start a wild turkey tasting. Wild Turkey bottles are available for purchase individually on Drizly, ReserveBar and MiniBar.
Overall, Wild Turkey and Amazon Alexa / Google Assistant have done a good job creating a virtual skill for bourbon / whiskey drinkers. The tasting is an immersive experience, with first-time bourbon or whiskey drinkers getting great ideas on how to drink bourbon, the history of Wild Turkey, and information about each of the bottles of Wild Turkey – even. if you never taste a drop. Another cool feature we love is that it’s not just for owners of Amazon Alexa devices, but also works with Google Assistant.
We look forward to Wild Turkey adding more bottles to the line. A tour of some of their premium bourbons and whiskeys would be great, as would the addition of stories from the Russell Clan and their Creative Director. We would also like to see a music feature added to the tasting, something to listen to while you chat about what you’re drinking.
Decades of wild turkey GearBrain
Whether you’re hosting the tasting at home – or on a Zoom call with friends – just make sure you stay quiet while Alexa talks, as the voice assistant can be confused by interruptions. Hopefully Wild Turkey finds a wake-up call to interrupt the tasting so you can talk and drink with your fellow whiskey buddies.
- Easy installation
- Informative for first-time bourbon drinkers
- Works on Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatible devices.
- District Alexa easily with groups
- Only five bottles have guided tours
- Need a pause word for Alexa