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  1. #61
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Yes American-style, you are certainly right that Masterson's, plus Jefferson's rye apparently, are Canadian-sourced and aged in new charred oak, that is why it is okay to call them straight rye in the States. That practice though to release a whiskey made like that as a straight (not blended with other whiskeys) is an American one, in Canada they have not done this for generations. Generally in Canada, my understanding is the straight-type whiskey made in-house is used only for blending and generally too it won't be aged, or 100%, in new charred barrels, they often use in Canada (whether for the "straight" or blended products - let's call Lot 40 straight for present purposes) a mix of barrel types extending to reused bourbon and new (uncharred) oak barrels. Masterson's is an exception since you can buy it in Canada now, but it was sold in the States first and has an American theme on the packaging. In other words as I see it, Canadians don't see this kind of whiskey as something in general to release on its own (in Canada), that is an American practice.
    Last edited by Gillman; 03-02-2014 at 11:55.

  2. #62
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillman View Post
    Yes American-style, you are certainly right that Masterson's, plus Jefferson's rye apparently, are Canadian-sourced and aged in new charred oak, that is why it is okay to call them straight rye in the States. That practice though to release a whiskey made like that as a straight (not blended with other whiskeys) is an American one, in Canada they have not done this for generations. Generally in Canada, my understanding is the straight-type whiskey made in-house is used only for blending and generally too it won't be aged, or 100%, in new charred barrels, they often use in Canada (whether for the "straight" or blended products - let's call Lot 40 straight for present purposes) a mix of barrel types extending to reused bourbon and new (uncharred) oak barrels. Masterson's is an exception since you can buy it in Canada now, but it was sold in the States first and has an American theme on the packaging. In other words as I see it, Canadians don't see this kind of whiskey as something in general to release on its own (in Canada), that is an American practice.
    From what I understand, Lot 40 is a blend, of 90% unmalted rye and 10% malted rye. While it tastes, of course, nothing like it, I wonder if the proper comparison is to pot-still based Irish whisky.

    I've only recently discovered this stuff, and I'm hooked. The rye bread up front is huge, but the overall feel of the sip and swallow is sweet creaminess. It's an amazing contrast, and the best rye I've ever tasted.

  3. #63
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    The mash bill is as you describe but that is not (as such) what makes a whisky a blend. A blend is composed in part of a bland whisky distilled out at a high proof. Lot 40 is apparently an all-pot still whisky, i.e., all distilled out at a low proof and therefore not a blend in the usual sense.

    The mix of malted and unmalted cereals in Lot 40 can be analogized to an Irish single pot still whiskey but then you could say the same of a bourbon.

    Gary

  4. #64
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillman View Post
    The mash bill is as you describe but that is not (as such) what makes a whisky a blend. A blend is composed in part of a bland whisky distilled out at a high proof. Lot 40 is apparently an all-pot still whisky, i.e., all distilled out at a low proof and therefore not a blend in the usual sense.

    The mix of malted and unmalted cereals in Lot 40 can be analogized to an Irish single pot still whiskey but then you could say the same of a bourbon.

    Gary
    Thanks for the clarification, Gillman. Interesting stuff, Canadian whiskey. I had assumed that Lot 40 represented a blend (two separate whiskeys blended together) rather than a mashbill (a recipe for a single whiskey). I know that "blended scotch" is exactly what you describe - malt whiskey blended with (I think the term is) grain neutral spirits. Lot 40, I believe, includes no grain neutral spirits, which is why I was thinking of an Irish pot still - based whiskey, containing malted and unmalted barley.

  5. #65
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzhead View Post
    Thanks for the clarification, Gillman. Interesting stuff, Canadian whiskey. I had assumed that Lot 40 represented a blend (two separate whiskeys blended together) rather than a mashbill (a recipe for a single whiskey). I know that "blended scotch" is exactly what you describe - malt whiskey blended with (I think the term is) grain neutral spirits. Lot 40, I believe, includes no grain neutral spirits, which is why I was thinking of an Irish pot still - based whiskey, containing malted and unmalted barley.
    I think your off just a little on the Scotch. Canadian whiskies do the blend with grain neutral spirits, at least most do, where as a blended scotch uses grain whiskys made from grains other than barely. The difference being that the grain whiskys are distilled and then aged just like the malt spirit, though I'm assuming they tend to use their oldest barrels for the most part. This is to meet the minimum age requirement of 3 years, something that is required of blends and single malts alike. Any age statement you see on a blended scotch whisky applies to all the spirits inside, not just the malt.

    Otherwise you seem right on, Lot 40 is not made in the classic sense as they don't use that high proof whisky combined with flavoring whisky (thats what they call it right, flavoring whisky?) just the good stuff. Dang, now I kinda want to get pick up another bottle....

  6. #66
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Just a bit of clarification:

    American blended whisky is made up of whisky blended with GNS, Canadians do not use GNS.

    Blended Canadian whisky uses the same type grain whisky as used in Scotch and is also aged a minimum of three years.
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  7. #67
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    I think I see where the confusion lies. I was equating Gillman's description of "bland whiskey distilled at a high proof" with my description of "grain neutral spirits" It appears they are not the same thing. A "straight" whiskey under U.S. law has to be distilled to no more than 80% ABV. Stuff distilled at higher proofs becomes the "bland spirit" Gillman describes, and under Scottish law (as per my perusal of wikipedia) grains can be distilled to approximately 93 - 94 percent ABV, which apparently produces a more or less neutral spirit. But that's not as high an ABV as true grain neutral spirit can be.

    So I guess then that Lot 40 is blended straight rye pot-still whiskeys, malted and unmalted.

    Does that make it unique? Are there any other Canadians made this way of a blend of straight rye "flavoring whiskeys" only? There's an excellent American rye I've had recently that sort of compares, with a baseball-bat-upside-the-head whallop of rye bread but still balanced. It's High West's Double Rye, which is a blend of two year and fifteen year straight ryes. They do another blend called Rendezvous Rye, which I'll have to try to find next time I'm in Maryland.

  8. #68
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    From what I understand, Lot 40 is not two whiskeys blended, rather, it is one whiskey, distilled out at a low proof (under 160) whose mash bill is composed mostly of raw (unmalted) rye with some malted rye. In this respect it is like Irish pure pot still especially as the latter is aged in reused barrels. It is also like bourbon except that, i) bourbon is aged in all-new charred barrels, ii) bourbon is entered in barrel at maximum 125 proof and I doubt Lot 40 is.

    GNS and the part of Canadian whisky blends that is the bland part distilled out at high proof are to all intends and purposes the same thing except that the latter must be aged at least 3 years. It is true GNS can be higher in ABV than Scots grain whisky but the difference in flavour is probably minimal especially after aging.

    The key to a Canadian blend, IMO, is that part of the whisky, usually the greatest part, is distilled out at a high proof: it is aged GNS basically. The blending can be done at the beginning of the maturation period or the end from stocks of each whisky type separately aged. I hope this clarifies everything.

    Gary

  9. #69
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Thanks, Gillman! I guess the bottom line is that Lot 40 is not conventional Canadian rye whiskey. Although I can discern, or at least it pleases me to think so, that it retains a whiff of difference as compared to a good American rye (I compared it the other day with of a bit of my last Van Winkle Family Reserve) that makes for a Canadian signature. Could be the sense of creaminess that dresses the rye up in its Sunday (punch) best.

    Another Canadian I've enjoyed recently, actually finished the sucker off embarrassingly fast, is Collingwood. The Nestles Quik of whiskeys, Canadian Mist put through the Lincoln County process, and served in a Zippo. Oh, but I love it so.
    Last edited by Jazzhead; 04-13-2014 at 10:56.

  10. #70
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    Re: Lot 40 2012 Edition

    Jazz I believe Collingwood is another stand along whisky that is not blended. At the end of maturation in oak casks it is finished for awhile in maple wood barrels but not mixed with any other whisky. Very, very far from Canadian Mist though it comes from the same distillery.
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