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Archive for the ‘Whisk(e)y’ Category

Review: Great Plains Brandy Cask 18 Year Old

Posted by Arctic Wolf on June 4, 2020

Great Plains Craft Spirits are located in Calgary, Alberta. They are a small company which sources special whiskies for blending and finishing. The intent is to offer to the marketplace limited edition bottlings which feature custom blending and cask finishes. These whiskies can be quite rare with batches as small as two barrels as well as larger projects (up to this point) of up to twenty-four barrels.

I was recently sent a bottle of the Great Plains Craft Spirits Brandy Cask 18 Year Old Canadian Whisky to review. I had previously encountered the spirit when I judged it in a blind format for the 2020 Canadian Whisky Awards (CWA). I remember going back to this particular whisky sample after the reveal as it had made quite an impression on myself during the judging process. In fact, it made an impression on all of the judges, and was one of the award winners being named as the CWA Best New Whisky of 2020.

Here is a link to my latest review of what I have found to be an outstanding Canadian Whisky:

Review: Great Plains Brandy Cask 18 Year Old

“… The cask strength nature of the bottling is immediately apparent as the nose is full of heated fire, fine oak spices, and wonderful aromas of corn and grain. A mouth-watering combination of vanilla, butterscotch, orange peel and almond climbs into the air alongside. The impulse to steal a sip before more completely examining the nose is strong …”

Please enjoy my review, Chimo!

 

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

Review: Canadian Club Apple Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on April 12, 2020

Canadian Club has once again expanded their flavoured and Spiced whisky line-up as they recently introduced Canadian Club Apple Whisky. The new flavoured whisky is apparently produced by blending Canada Club’s flagship brand, 1858 Canadian Club Canadian Whisky with a hand-crafted apple liquor. According to the advertising:

Fresh, crisp apple aromas meet flavours of cinnamon and hints of caramel on the palate then roll to a smooth, sweet finish. Serve neat or on the rocks with Dutch apple pie.

Canadian Club Apple Whisky is bottled at 35 % alcohol by volume.

Here is a link to my review:

Review: Canadian Club Apple Whisky

“… The initial nose is lightly sweet indicating some added sweetness (probably from the blended liqueur) and so it takes a little time before the apple scents can break free from the sweetness. Once they do though, it is a nice crisp green apple scent that greets the breezes above the glass …”

Please enjoy my review of this new flavoured whisky from Canadian Club.

Chimo!

 

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Review: Alberta Premium 20 Year Old Canadian Whisky 

Posted by Arctic Wolf on April 4, 2020

Alberta Premium is a brand of Canadian Whisky made in Calgary, by Alberta Distillers Ltd. (owned by Beam-Suntory). The Whisky was released in the fall of 2019 along with a companion release Alberta Premium Cask Strength (reviewed here). Alberta Distillers own the oldest distillery in Western Canada. The distillery is famous for its rich 100 % rye grain whiskies which are bottled under the Alberta Premium label. They also sell bulk 100 % rye whisky to other brand owners.

As indicated Alberta Premium is famous for its 100% rye grain whisky, although it should be pointed out that the brand has also featured releases such as Dark Horse which were not made from 100% rye grain. In the case of the Alberta Premium 20 Year Old, the grain blend is not disclosed on the label. Rather than stating unequivocally that the whisky is a 100 % rye grain whisky, the label instead makes the statement that the whisky is Canadian Rye Whisky, and the display box the whisky arrives in states that it is 100 % Canadian Rye Whisky. I might be splitting hairs here, but terminology is important. All Canadian whisky which features a rye forward flavour profile can properly be called Canadian Rye Whisky whether or not rye grain is the dominant grain, and stating that a whisky is 100 % Canadian Rye Whisky is not the same thing as stating that the whisky is 100% Rye Grain Canadian Whisky.

Unless it is specifically indicated in an unequivocal manner, I think it is best to assume that Alberta Premium 20 Year Old is a blended grain whisky.

Here is a link to my full review:

Review: Alberta Premium 20 Year Old Canadian Whisky 

“… I began to notice the rye and fine oak spice building now accompanied by lots of dusty grain and straw. Sour fruit and canned apricots begin to unravel from the rye and I also notice a lightly floral or perhaps herbal flair with hints of mint, licorice, and citrus followed by punky caramel corn, leather and pungent baking spices …”

Please enjoy my review of this new whisky from Alberta Premium.

Chimo!

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Review: Forty Creek Double Barrel Reserve Canadian Whisky (Lot 271)

Posted by Arctic Wolf on March 23, 2020

This past December, I noticed that Forty Creek Double Barrel Canadian Whisky had undergone a change. At least the bottle had changed. It was no longer sold in the typical tall sleek bottle which Forty Creek uses for all of their Special Edition Whiskies. It was now sold in the medium tall cylindrical bottle typical of their production whiskies. The change made sense as Forty Creek Double Barrel has for quite a while now been in regular production and probably belongs in the main line-up rather than in a bottle which identifies it as a special release whisky.

There was another more significant change though, the whisky is now almost half the price that it used to be ($39.95 in the new bottle vs. $69.95 in the old bottle). The significant price change begs the question, have the contents changed as well making this a less expensive whisky to produce?

So I reached out to the Campari team here in Alberta and asked them about the changes to the bottle and price. I was told that so far as Alberta team knew the whisky was that same as always, but they had no objection to giving me a sample bottle so I could judge for myself.

Here is a link to my review of the new Double Barrel from Lot 271 with tasting notes:

Review: Forty Creek Double Barrel Reserve (Lot 271)

“… The breezes bring a nice combination of maple and fine oak spice into the air. This is accompanied by rye grain and spice and some light vanilla, almond and canned apricots. As the glass breathes grassy tobacco and baking spices join in as the almond turns to marzipan,and hints of orange liqueur can be found …”

Please enjoy the review which also includes two serving suggestions, the 1794 Cocktail and The Blinker.

Chimo!

 

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Review: The Forager Botanical Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on March 15, 2020

Recently Forty Creek Distillery (owned by the Campari Group) released The Forager Botanical Whisky. It is sort of a Gin meets whisky spirit made with a light, yet complex Canadian whisky which has been infused with wild sourced Canadian Botanicals.

According to the back of the bottle the spirit is made from Canadian Whisky and these natural botanicals: Juniper Berries, spruce tips, mugwort, Labrador Tea, Sweet Fern.

Looking at the botanical list, you can see why I made the reference to gin as Juniper is the foundation of the piny spirit. The other botanicals should be leaving their mark as well. Spruce tips have a resin-like flavour with hints of menthol and citrus. Mugwort has been used in as a bitter flavouring for meats and beverages since ancient times. Labrador tea is an herbal tea which (according to wikipedia has been a favorite beverage among Athabaskan First Nations, and Inuit people for generations. Sweet Fern is another herbal tea ingredient with a slightly bitter resin-like flavour which apparently was consumed by early North American settlers and may well have been used by indigenous First Nations peoples much earlier.

Here is a link to my full review with complete tasting notes:

Review: The Forager Botanical Whisky

“… the nose brings both whisky-like scents of vanilla, butterscotch, almond and fine wood and grain spices, but also a mild impression of juniper. Their is a vague impression of licorice and angelica, which might be associated with the other botanicals or perhaps an association conjured in my mind by the gin-like juniper scent …”

Please enjoy my review which includes my suggested serving, Maureen of the Pines.

Chimo!

 

Posted in Canadian Whisky, Flavoured Whisky, Whisk(e)y | Tagged: , , , | Comments Off on Review: The Forager Botanical Whisky

 
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