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  1. #1
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    Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Alberta Premium and 25 yr old are a 100% rye whiskeys...yet they taste nothing like an American Rye....why is this? Is it the barreling? Aging? Rye variety? This is not a blended rye..it states 100% on the label.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alberta_Premium

  2. #2
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Completely different animals, really. Canadian whiskey is like blended scotch. They use some flavorful, rye-based whiskey to flavor a nearly-neutral corn base whiskey. And it's aged in used bourbon barrels. American straight rye is made from a mixed grain mash, typically 51% rye, 39% corn and 10% malt, distilled out at about 140 proof and aged in new barrels.

    Alberta may use nothing but rye grain, but they still make some of their whiskey in pot stills at low proof, for flavor, and blend it with a rye-based nearly neutral whiskey. It's still a blend, even though the only grain used is rye.

  3. #3
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Interesting, 100% rye but rye + rye neutral spirit.....I wonder what the ratio is.....I would like to see a Canadian whiskey with a high % rye whiskey ratio. The Alberta is a very nice gentle whiskey....a version with a really full rye spice flavor would be nice to have too.

  4. #4
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    how much is the Alberta? i used to think i liked canadian whiskey (as a mixer)....but now, as a neat freak, i am curious.
    HUP!

  5. #5
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    If I recall.....about $25-9? Very reasonable.

  6. #6
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Has anyone tried these?

    http://www.highwood-distillers.com/highwood.html

    Centenial 10, 15 Year Plus Century Reserve, Century Reserve 21

  7. #7
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jono View Post
    Has anyone tried these?

    http://www.highwood-distillers.com/highwood.html

    Centenial 10, 15 Year Plus Century Reserve, Century Reserve 21
    I've tried the Centennial 10 and Century Reserve 15. Both are very clean, smooth whiskies. Not at all overly sweet like some Canadians. The wood really shows on the 15 because the base spirit is so clean. Decent stuff but just don't try having it after drinking Scotch or bourbon, because it will probably taste like water by comparison.

    I read that Alberta Premium blends a double-distilled rye at 190 proof with a single distillation at 130 proof. I have no idea what the ratios are.

    Jono, how do you find the Canadian rye compares with its American counterparts? I've never tried an American rye. It's interesting because Americans consider straight rye the "real stuff", whereas it can be composed of 49% non-rye ingredients. I guess the difference is that it must all be distilled below 180 proof (or is it 160?).

  8. #8
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Megawatt View Post
    ...It's interesting because Americans consider straight rye the "real stuff", whereas it can be composed of 49% non-rye ingredients. I guess the difference is that it must all be distilled below 180 proof (or is it 160?).
    BT's ryes come off the still at 135 proof.
    I can't remember the max allowed.

    Having all of the distillate coming off at a comparatively congener-rich proof is the big difference.

    Incidentally, all the 100% rye straight whiskies Ive had were pretty...rich. But then, they're mostly quite young as well.

    Roger

  9. #9
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rughi View Post
    BT's ryes come off the still at 135 proof.
    I can't remember the max allowed.

    Having all of the distillate coming off at a comparatively congener-rich proof is the big difference.

    Incidentally, all the 100% rye straight whiskies Ive had were pretty...rich. But then, they're mostly quite young as well.

    Roger
    It's also true that most Canadian whiskies commonly referred to as "rye" contain a very small percentage of rye. Alberta Premium and Alberta Springs are two exceptions.

    It's funny because Canadian whisky is called rye but very few bottles actually say "rye whisky" on the label. I guess it's just easier to say than "Canadian whisky".

  10. #10
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    Re: Canadian Rye and American Rye - difference?

    You can apply most of what you know about blended scotch to Canadian, except as to the grains used. Alberta is the only Canadian distillery that uses rye exclusively. In most of the rest, rye is just used for flavoring, the base is corn.

    Likewise, American straight ryes follow essentially the same rules as bourbon, except for the grains used. They have to distill out at less than 160 proof (although 130-140 is more common), be entered at less than 125 proof, and be aged in new, charred oak.

 

 

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