View Full Version : Two Canadian greats

04-23-2010, 19:55
I've been on a Canadian kick lately and thought I'd post some recent experiences for those who care.

The first whisky is Century Reserve Lot 1525 (formerly known as 15+). This is a wheat-based rye whisky out of Calgary, Alberta from the Highwood distillery, who also produce Centennial 10 year old. Highwood produces a very clean spirit with no apparent colour or flavour added. This whisky is no exception. It comes across very subtle but given a bit of time and a splash of water it is very rewarding. The 1525 actually refers to the age, between 15 and 25 years. This comes across in the nose as light milk chocolate and in the mouth with vanilla and hints of butterscotch. There is no real complexity or explosion of flavour; this whisky is all about the creamy texture and warm tingle on the tongue. Very laid back but the more I drink it the higher it moves on my list of top Canadians. At $32 it is more than a fair bargain; even better on sale for $25!

The next whisky is perhaps less of a bargain, but even more distinctive. It is Forty Creek John K. Hall Double Barrel Reserve from the Kittling Ridge distillery in Grimsby, Ontario. This stuff goes for $59 usually but I got it on sale for $44. It is a blend of pot-distilled rye, corn, and malted barley, aged 6-15 years (I think) before being blended and aged a further 2-3 years in first-fill bourbon casks. Imagine, a pot-still Canadian blend!

The mosy surprising aspect of this whisky is its fruitiness, like a dry brandy. You also get the promised toasted walnut on the nose. It is warm on the tongue, fairly light-bodied compared to Century Reserve. The fruit flavours hit you at the back of the tongue. There is also a buttery quality to it. It finishes on warm spice notes. Overall a smooth, tasty and distinctive Canadian whisky. It demands some time and attention to tease out all the flavours, though. It is not instant fulfillment.

So there you go, two Canadian greats.

Dramiel McHinson
04-25-2010, 19:02
Megawatt, your tasting notes make a fella thirsty for Canadian whisky. I wonder if we'll see any way down here in Bama? :yum:

04-26-2010, 00:39
I can attest that the Forty Creek Double Barrel reserve is very nice Whiskey.

04-26-2010, 14:44
For interest's sake I picked up a little bottle of Forty Creek Barrel Select in order to compare to Double Barrel. I have not been the biggest fan of this whisky but it is starting to win me over. It has some of the same flavours and aromas, particularly the spices and toasted nuts, but has a distinct wine aroma from the sherry casks. It comes across more honied in the mouth, and there is considerably more burn than in the Double Barrel. Having Double Barrel right after, I notice some surprising citrus and wood/sawdust flavours. Both great whiskies but Double Barrel is in a different league.

I just wish I got around to picking up the Port Wood Reserve while it was available.

04-26-2010, 14:47
Another interesting comparitive note: I like to nose whisky straight from the bottle, where the wood tones are concentrated. Barrel Select reminds me of wine gums; sweet, slightly sour, fruity, winey. Double Barrel smells like a Big Turk bar tastes! If you haven't tried Big Turk, believe me when I say that this is a good thing.

04-26-2010, 16:13
I find the Forty Creek Port Wood to be a disappointment, FWIW. The Double Barrel is a much better whiskey.

05-08-2010, 17:22
I just wish I got around to picking up the Port Wood Reserve while it was available.

You lucky Ontarians. That release was never available out west in Alberta!