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Archive for the ‘Extras’ Category

#Top100CanadianWhisky – #88 J.P. Wiser’s 35 Year Old

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 28, 2017

John Philip (J.P.) Wiser, purchased a distillery in Prescott Ontario in 1857, and began to produce Wiser’s Whisky.  In fact, it may have been J.P. Wiser who first used the term “Canadian Whiskey” on a whisky label when he introduced his spirit to the World at the Chicago’s World Fair in 1893. From the beginning J.P. Wiser established his brand as a quality whisky with high standards of production.

Recently, J.P. Wiser’s released their oldest production Canadian Whisky, J.P. Wiser’s 35 Year Old. The whisky is part of their new Northern Border Collection and is constructed from a mix of well aged corn and rye grain whiskies (predominantly corn). The spirit was released with remarkably little fanfare across the country just before the Christmas gift giving season.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: J.P. Wiser’s 35 Year Old Whisky

“… Then some lovely deep smells of maple began to build with vanilla and lush baking spices (cinnamon, brown sugar, with hints of both nutmeg and cloves.) Nutty almond impressions began to give way to marzipan and alongside were fruity smells of canned apricots and marmalade. As the glass sits the rich aroma continues to deepen …”

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Note: As indicated earlier, I will not be creating a posting for every whisky in my countdown on this website; but I am going to try to highlight every Canadian spirit that I have not reviewed previously.

To follow the countdown list on a daily basis, you should follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter) using the hashtag #Top100CanadianWhisky. Alternatively you can view the  list as it grows by viewing my Reveal Page:

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated at least weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

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Posted in Awards, Canadian Whisky, Extras, Whisk(e)y, Whisky Review | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

#Top100CanadianWhisky – #91 Shelter Point Artisanal Single Malt Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 25, 2017

The 10th spirit revealed in my Rum Howler 2017 Top 100 Canadian Whiskies Countdown is Shelter Point Artisanal Single Malt Whisky which is distilled in small batches on Vancouver Island (British Columbia).

To make their single malt whisky, Shelter Point uses a single grain approach, and the Canadian barley used for distillation is grown right on their own family farm (in Oyster River) and never blended with other grains. The water source is the spring water that comes from the mountain-fed aquifer directly beneath the Island.

Perhaps the only things that aren’t sourced locally are the oak barrels, which were sourced from Kentucky bourbon distillers, and the massive copper pot stills which came from Scotland.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Shelter Point Artisanal Single Malt Whisky

“… The nose contains a light punky corn scent which indicates fresh bourbon barrels used to age the spirit. Alongside the corn I notice maple and wood spice, some musty burlap, almond and a few tinges of sour fruit. There is an herbal tinge in the air which hints at anise and licorice as well as a few hints of mint and menthol …”

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Note: As indicated earlier, I will not be creating a posting for every whisky in my countdown on this website; but I am going to try to highlight every Canadian spirit that I have not reviewed previously.

To follow the countdown list on a daily basis, you should follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter) using the hashtag #Top100CanadianWhisky. Alternatively you can view the  list as it grows by viewing my Reveal Page:

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated at least weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

Posted in Awards, Canadian Whisky, Extras, Single Malt Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review, Whisky Review | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

#Top100Rums of 2017 – #90 Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 23, 2017

Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast Pumpkin Spiced Rum has just begun to appear on store shelves throughout North America. Building upon the success of last year’s release of Captain Morgan Cannon Blast (see my review here), Captain Morgan is adding a new Limited Edition Spiced Rum to the shots category with their brand new Pumpkin Spiced Rum, Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast Limited Edition Pumpkin Spiced Rum, the first pumpkin spiced rum offering to ever hit shelves

Here is a link to my review for the Rum Howler #90 Rum of 2017:

Review: Captain Morgan Jack-O’Blast Pumpkin Spiced Rum

“… The aroma from the glass is very nice. I let my wife have a nice sniff, not letting her know what was inside. She immediately smiled and said my rum reminded her of her pumpkin spiced chai tea that she loves. I guess you could say that Captain Morgan nailed it …”

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To follow the countdown list on a daily basis, you should follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter) using the hashtag #Top100Rums.

Alternatively you can view the list as it grows by viewing my Reveal Page:

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Rums of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated at least weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

Posted in Awards, Extras | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

#94 Canadian Whisky: Stalk & Barrel Single Malt

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 22, 2017

Still Waters proudly proclaim themselves Ontario’s first Micro-Distillery. They commenced operations in the fall of 2009 and produced their first new-make spirit just two months after they received their custom German-made pot still. In 2014, the Still Water’s Distillery began bottling their first batches of their own 100 % Hand-Crafted Canadian Single Malt Whisky an I was able to sample and review the whisky from their first two casks. (See here and here)

According to the information on the Still Waters Website their Single Malt whisky is:

“Made from 100% Canadian two-row malted barley. We mash, ferment, and distill by hand in small batches in a copper pot still. Our whisky is aged in ex-bourbon casks on site for a minimum of three years. Each barrel is bottled individually as a single cask offering in individually numbered bottles, offered at either cask strength or at 46% alc./vol. No additives nor colouring and no chill-filtering.”

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Stalk and Barrel Single Malt 

“… The initial nose is full of wood and grain spice with additional cigarette tobacco, dusty chaff, indications of almonds and some sweet and sour fruit …”

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Note: As indicated earlier, I will not be creating a posting for every whisky in my countdown on this website; but I am going to try to highlight every Canadian spirit that I have not reviewed previously.

To follow the countdown list on a daily basis, you should follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter) using the hashtag #Top100CanadianWhisky. Alternatively you can view the  list as it grows by viewing my Reveal Page:

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whisky of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated at least weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

 

Posted in Awards, Canadian Whisky, Extras, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review, Whisky Review | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

#100: Kicking Things off with Stalk and Barrel Blue Blend

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 16, 2017

The Rum Howler Top 100 Canadian Whisky Countdown kicks off with a brand new whisky from Barry Bernstein and Barry Stein own and run the Still Water Distillery.

#100 Stalk and Barrel Blue Blend

“… The nose is rye and corn forward with hints of anise and a few touches of sour fruit. Dusty sandalwood spices follow with clear impressions of vanilla and almond. I noticed some hints of canned fruit (peaches and apricots) and a building sweetness …”

Of course you can follow the countdown on Twitter  (#Top100CanadianWhisky) or check in on my Reveal Page which will be updated about once per week.

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017

Enjoy the Countdown: Chimo!

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Note: As indicated yesterday, I will not be posting every whisky in my countdown here on the website, but I am going to try to highlight every Canadian spirit that I have not reviewed previously. (Rum Howler on Twitter)

Posted in Awards, Canadian Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Oh My: The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 15, 2017

Tomorrow, I will begin to reveal my largest ever round-up of Canadian Whisky, The Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017.

That’s right, the best 100 Canadian Whiskies in the nation!

When I published my first such list for Canadian Whisky in 2013, I was only able to include 25 spirits. Even then, I remember one person commenting on my website that they didn’t even know that there were 25 different Canadian Whiskies. Things have really changed. Most major distilleries in Canada have broadened their whisky portfolios by added new whisky brands. We may have lost some brands (for example Highwood Distillers have recently discontinued their Century 21 Reserve and Lot1525 Reserve); but many more brands have been added. In addition to the new brands available from Canada’s major distillers, we have had a sudden influx of new Micro-distillers (some like Shelter Point in British Columbia are not so micro) across the Country who in the last few years have began to market and sell their whisky regionally and across Canada.

As well as being the largest such list I have ever compiled, this list is also current. All of the Whiskies on this list are available in Canada at this time. I have also tasted and reviewed all of these whiskies within the past three years. Most of the reviews were based upon full bottle samples provided to me by industry; however, in order to include many of the new regional whiskies, and the new spirits from our young Micro-distilling industry, I also have included whiskies which I tasted and reviewed based upon the samples and tasting notes I generated as a juror for the 2017 Canadian Whisky Awards. (Davin De Kergommeaux does a great job with these awards, and last year in particular he did a fantastic job in discovering new Canadian Whiskies for the judges to rank and score.)

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Unlike other years, I am not planning to reveal every whisky with a front page posting (I will be revealing each whisky one at a time on Twitter instead.) However, I will be providing a front page post whenever the countdown reaches a whisky which I have either not reviewed before or a whisky whose character has changed such that a new review is needed. Additionally, when I reach the final 25 to Canadian Whiskies in early December, (just before Christmas), I will reveal those best spirits in a daily countdown as I have in years past.

This means that to follow the entire list on a daily basis, you should follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter). And then in December follow my postings here of the Rum Howler Blog.

Another easy way to follow the countdown is to view the list as it grows by viewing my Reveal Page:

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Canadian Whiskies of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated at least weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

This is my largest Canadian Whisky Countdown ever, I hope you all enjoy it!
( PS: use the hashtags  #Rumhowler  #Top100CanadianWhisky)

 

 

Posted in Awards, Canadian Whisky, Extras, Whisky Review | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Introducing: The Rum Howler Top 100 Rums of 2017

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 14, 2017

Yesterday (on Twitter) I kicked off my annual Rum Howler Rum Countdown which is better than ever with a full 100 rums counted down from #100 to #1.That’s right, 100 wonderful Cane Spirits..

As well as being the largest such list I have ever compiled for the spirit we call rum, this list is also current. I have also reviewed and/or re-tasted each of these rums within the past three years. All Rum reviews were based upon bottle samples either purchased by myself or provided to me by industry. I should mention as well that all of the spirits on this list are available in North America at this time.

Unlike other years, I am not planning to reveal every rum with a front page posting on my website, instead I have begun the Countdown on Twitter (#Top100Rums). However, for those who are regular readers of mine, once or twice a week I will introduce one of the drams from the list with a full review for you to enjoy. When my daily Twitter Reveal brings me to the Top 25 Rums of 2017 in early December, (just before Christmas), I will reveal the best 25 Rum Spirits available in North America with daily postings here on the Rum Howler Blog. (The Best rum Review Website in the World!)

Just some of the great rums of 2017

This means that to follow the entire list daily, you will need to first follow me on twitter (Rum Howler on Twitter). And then in December follow my postings here on my website.

Of course you may also follow the countdown by visiting my Reveal page.

The Rum Howler – Top 100 Rums of 2017

The Reveal Page will be updated weekly through September, October and November and then daily in December.

This is my largest Rum Countdown ever, I hope you all enjoy it!
( PS: use the hashtags  #Rumhowler  #Top100Rums)

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

An Interview with Allen Smith (Mount Gay Rum)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on May 29, 2017

I would like to welcome Allen Smith, Master Blender at Mount Gay Rum Distillery to my website. I was offered an opportunity to sample his newest creation, the Mount Gay 1703 Old Cask Selection (see review here) and to follow-up my tasting sessions with an interview to learn more about Mount Gay Rum.

I will be forthright and admit I am not an experienced journalist so rather than conducting an oral interview over the phone, I submitted a list of questions via email to Allen and after a few weeks he sent them back with his responses. The interview covers a range of topics from the Micro-Distilling Industry to the Cocktail Revolution, as well as general questions regarding his Mount Gay Rum and of course the Mount Gay 1703 Old Cask Selection Rum.

The entire interview has been posted in the Industry Interviews section of my website and you can access it via the following link:

Interview with Allen Smith: Master Blender – Mount Gay Rum Distillery

I hope you enjoy the Q & A with Allen Smith where he not only reveals some of the secrets behind his latest creation, Mount Gay 1703 Master Select Rum, he also indulges me by revealing his favourite cocktail, the previously posted Black Storm.

Chimo!

 

 

 

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The Hansen Distillery

Posted by Arctic Wolf on March 19, 2017

Head Distiller Kris Sustrik

On January 26, 2017, I attended the VIP Launch Event for the Hansen Distillery, a brand new Craft Distiller situated here in Edmonton. The small distillery is located in Edmonton’s West End (17412 111 Ave NW), and the launch included a small tour of the distillery as well as an evening of cocktails made from Hansen’s craft spirit.

The Hansen Distillery has an unlikely history that began in the midst of the Great Depression when Carl and Amanda Hansen began to make moonshine in Southern Alberta. As I learned at the VIP event, this wasn’t about running ‘shine across the border to make tons of money off Prohibition, this was about keeping their farm and feeding a growing family by providing a little hooch for local socials and dances. Apparently Amanda made the moonshine, and Carl made it available to the local community. When World War II ended, the Depression was over as well, and Carl and Amanda left moonshining behind to go back to farming full-time. Of course they continued to distill the odd batch here and there for family occasions, and the recipe Amanda created was handed down to her children, and then to her grand children, and finally all the way to great-grandchildren, Kris and Shayna Sustrik. Kris and Shyna have decided to relaunch that family tradition and together they built the new Hansen Distillery here in Edmonton Alberta.

Border Crossing Rye Spirit

For more complete information about the Hansen Distillery you can follow this link to read about the launch event and my subsequent my tour of the facility.

The Hansen Distillery Tour

and if you are interested in how their spirit tastes, here is a link to my review of their Border Crossing Rye Spirit (a 100% locally Alberta-grown, un-aged white rye).

Review: Hansen Border Crossing Rye Spirit

“… The nose is very interesting with scents of mushy banana and plantain rising alongside zesty citrus notes and fresh spicy rye grain. Grilled zucchini and pineapple are hinted at as well …”

Please enjoy both the distillery tour and my Border Crossing Rye review which incidentally includes a great signature cocktail designed especially for the rye spirit called the Green Card.

Chimo!

Posted in Canadian Whisky, Distillery Tour | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on The Hansen Distillery

2017 Rum Howler Awards for Rum

Posted by Arctic Wolf on January 13, 2017

rh-winner2017

This past year was a busy time for the Rum Howler as I not only wrote and published many new reviews, I also spent a great deal of time re-examining many of the rum spirits which I had previously reviewed. This work was done with the aim of providing my readers with specific lists they could use to help them choose the appropriate rum for their particular needs.

During the past year I examined and ranked all of the Spiced Rums I owned. I also built cocktails all year round to determine a ranking of the 50 Best Mixing Rums (a few internet trolls are unhappy with that term; so if you like, you can call them the ‘Best Young Cocktail Rums‘) I have tasted as well. Finally, I also combed through my reviews and determined what I believe are the 50 Best Rums of 2016.(Admittedly there is overlap in these three lists.)

Rum Old Fashioned

Rum Old Fashioned

All this work done throughout the year meant that for this year’s Rum Howler Awards, I had the luxury of having already compiled the necessary lists which recognized the best rums in various categories:

To determine my Rum Howler Award Winners, I merely had to examine these lists, determine which of the rums on each list had been tasted at some point in the past two years, and then select the best spirit for each of my categories.

It is time for me to bring forward my 2017 Rum Howler Awards Winners. These are the spirits which have risen to the top and provided me with my greatest enjoyment.

Here is a link to my 2017 Award winners for the excellence in the production of Rum:

The 2017 Rum Howler Awards – The Year in Rum

Posted in Awards, Extras, Rum, Rum Reviews | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »

 
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