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Posts Tagged ‘100 % Rye’

2019 Rum Howler Favourite 20 Canadian Whiskies: #11 – Alberta Premium

Posted by Arctic Wolf on December 12, 2019

Alberta Premium is a brand that doesn’t get a whole lot exposure outside of my home Province. It’s not that the brand is unknown, Jim Murray did name it the Best Whisky in Canada for about five years in a row in the mid to late 2000’s; but after that initial hype died down the brand has sort of settled back into the rear view of the consumer’s consciousness.

And that is a pity, as Alberta Premium was, for the longest stretch of time, one of (if not the only) 100% pure rye grain production whiskies in the entire world. The recent rediscovery and popularity of the rye grain is largely because of the Alberta Premium brand.

I think the reason why the brand gets so little love, is the terrible bottle (and label) which houses the whisky. The entire presentation screams bottom shelf and retro 70s.

Frankly, whenever I grab a bottle to pour for friends who have never tried the spirit, I am greeted with dismay as they believe I have chosen a sub par economy brand to share instead of some of my good stuff. My explanations of the quality within usually falls on deaf ears, and this reinforces the fact that if ever there was a spirit in need of an image change, it is Alberta Premium.

Despite all of this, I almost always have a bottle on hand. Although there are now quite a few other 100 % rye grain whiskies being sold right now. For myself this is the original, and because of its enormous versatility, it is my favourite 100 % rye whisky.

Here is a link to my review:

Review: Alberta Premium 100 % Rye Whisky

 ” … The breezes above the glass bring me the scents and smells of a fruit-filled rye with additional notes of vanilla. Fine oak spices and a touch of citrus zest mingle within the fruity rye smells …”


Note: We are just past half way through my list of favourites. Understand, these are ‘favourites’ which does not necessarily the ‘best’ Canadian Whiskies. Economy and versatility have played an enormous role in my choices this year. The wonderful cocktail I suggested at the conclusion of my review of Alberta Premium illustrates just how versatile this economy whisky is.  And it has all that versatility without sacrificing flavour.

Posted in Canadian Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisky Review | Tagged: , , , | Comments Off on 2019 Rum Howler Favourite 20 Canadian Whiskies: #11 – Alberta Premium

2019 Rum Howler Favourite 20 Canadian Whiskies: #14 – Crown Royal Northern Rye

Posted by Arctic Wolf on December 9, 2019

Crown Royal Northern Rye took the world by storm when it was introduced in released in 2015. The main reason for this was that World renowned whisky guru, Jim Murray (in one of his most controversial selections) declared the Northen Rye to be thebest whisky in the entire world that year.

Jim Murray’s declaration cause a stampede of consumers to rush to their favourite liquor store in order to buy a case before it ran our. It did run out, but only temporarily as Crown Royal quickly ramped up production to meet the demand. Since 2015, it has remained a staple of my home bar:

Here is a link to my review:

Review: Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye Whisky

“… I sense a stronger underlying oakiness within the spirit as fine wood spices rise into the air and the merry little breezes above the glass are tinged with crisp spicy rye notes as well …”


Posted in Canadian Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on 2019 Rum Howler Favourite 20 Canadian Whiskies: #14 – Crown Royal Northern Rye

Rum Howler 2016 Top 50 Canadian Whisky Countdown: #10 Canadian Club Chairman’s Select

Posted by Arctic Wolf on December 15, 2016

rum-howler-top-50-2016Canadian Club Whisky is now the oldest (and probably the most influential) Canadian Whisky brand in the world.  It is found in over 150 countries, with sales in Canada that are unmatched by any other premium whisky brand. In 2014, Canadian Club (owned by Beam Suntory) launched a new 100% rye grain whisky, Canadian Club Chairman’s Select – 100% Rye. 

sam_2659It is of course produced exclusively from rye grain, distilled (and almost certainly aged) in Calgary by Alberta Distillers Ltd (who are also owned by Beam Suntory). The Chairman’s Select is aged in American Oak (bourbon barrels), cut to bottling strength (40 % abv) and then bottled in Walkerville Ontario, the home of Canadian Club.

Here is a link to the 10th best Canadian Whisky of 2016:

#10 Canadian Club Chairman’s Select – 100% Rye

“… I am delighted by the impressions I receive in the air above the glass. As it should be, the Chairman’s Select 100 % Rye whisky is very rye forward with lots of fine peppery wood spice dancing with that rye in the breezes. Melded into the spicy rye is a lovely light sweetness of butterscotch with a gentle sweep of vanilla and a few bits of almond. I also receive strong impressions of freshly harvested grain fields with dusty chaff blowing in the wind and lots of fresh straw lying in the windrows …”

Stay tuned as the countdown continues tomorrow with the Number 9 Canadian Whisky.



* You may follow my 2016 Canadian Whisky Countdown by bookmarking this link:

The Rum Howler – Top 50 Canadian Whiskies of 2016

Posted in Awards, Canadian Whisky, Extras, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Review: Alberta Premium 100 % Rye Whisky

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 8, 2016

Alberta PremiumAlberta Distillers Limited (ADL) own the oldest distillery in Western Canada. It is situated in Calgary Alberta and has been producing spirits in the same location for well over 60 years. The distillery is part of the Beam/Suntory portfolio.Alberta Premium is the flagship whisky of Alberta Distillers Limited (ADL), and according to the Beam/Suntory Brands website:

This whiskey is made by Alberta Distillers in the heart of Canada’s rye-growing country where cold barren winters give way to an abundant crop of the finest rye. Made by blending two aged whiskies, one of which is aged for flavor in used bourbon casks. Then, after blending, it is aged some more. Alberta Premium is aged for 5 years. The slow aging in cold temperatures preserves the natural rye spice.

I was recently given a bottle of Alberta Premium by a guest at one of my tasting events and I thought I would revisit my review of this 100 % Canadian Rye Whisky.

Here is a link to my new review:

Review: Alberta Premium 100 % Rye Whisky

 ” … The breezes above the glass bring me the scents and smells of a fruit-filled rye with additional notes of vanilla. Fine oak spices and a touch of citrus zest mingle within the fruity rye smells. As I allow the whisky to breathe, some nice smells of butterscotch and maple come forward and the overt fruitiness gains momentum. I receive impressions of canned apricots and pears from the glass, and  I also sense a light touch of almond in the breeze …”

Please enjoy my review of this fine 100 % rye whisky which tastes better now than it did 6 years ago when I first reviewed it.


Posted in Canadian Whisky, Whisk(e)y, Whisk(e)y Review | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Review: Alberta Premium 100 % Rye Whisky

Dennis’ Cocktail: Whoa Dennis!

Posted by Arctic Wolf on September 7, 2016

I mentioned two days ago that my good friends Ally and Dennis just got married, and that I was honoured to have been asked to design/recommend the signature cocktails for the reception and banquet. Earlier this week I shared Ally’s Cocktail, the Bluebird of Happiness, and today I am going to share with you Dennis’s Cocktail, Whoa Dennis!

Dennis is a huge fan of both Rye Whisky and Dark Caribbean Rum. He is also very fond of both Lemon and Grapefruit Juice, and earlier this year I happened upon a recipe put together by Lally Brennan and Ti Adelaide Martin ( In the Land of Cocktails) (with the assistance of Ted Haigh (Dr. Cocktail)) which seemed ideal for my purpose. Their recipe Whoa Nellie! seemed ideal as it combined all of the ingredients Dennis loved with a small hit of sweetener and a few dashes of Fees Cocktail Bitters.

Whoa Nellie SAM_2398

Whoa Dennis!

I needed to make only one very small change. All of the suggested constructions for the Brennan and Martin Cocktail I found online called for American Rye Whiskey, whereas I knew that Dennis (and  I too) preferred Canadian Rye Whisky. So I invited Ally and Dennis over, and I made him the cocktail with a particular rye whisky that Dennis is extremely fond of, Alberta Premium 100 % Rye Whisky.

Whether this one change (which perhaps isn’t really a change at all) warranted a renaming of the cocktail is open to debate. But when Ally insisted, I agreed that the cocktail could be renamed for one day.

Whoa Dennis!

1 1/2 oz Rye Whiskey (Alberta Premium 100% Rye)
1/2 oz Dark Rum (Coruba Dark Jamaican Rum)
1/2 oz Orange Liqueur (Cointreau)
1/3 oz Grapefruit Juice
1/3 oz Lemon Juice
a few dashes of Bitters (Fees Cocktail Bitters)
1/3 oz Sugar Syrup
Grapefruit Twist

Add the ingredients into a metal shaker with plenty of ice
Shake until the outside of the shaker begins to frost
Strain into a cocktail glass
Garnish with a twist of Grapefruit

Please Enjoy Responsibly!

And if  you are interested in more recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for my mixed drink recipes!


Please note: I took this oppertunity to revisit Alberta Premium Rye Whisky and my new review will publish tomorrow.


Posted in Cocktails & Recipes | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Dennis’ Cocktail: Whoa Dennis!

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