Great Canadian Whiskies For You To Enjoy


Would you like to start exploring the intriguing Canadian whisky world beyond the half-empty bottle of Dad’s Black Velvet?  Here are five excellent examples for you to check out which show what can be created using wood, yeast and grain in the land of hockey:

JP Wiser Rye Whisky

JP Wiser Rye Whisky

According to Pernod Ricard, the parent company, this is Canada’s No. 1 selling whisky.  It just made its entrance in the U.S. this fall.  The distiller Livermore says about this dominant rye blended whisky: “I believe this is what Canadian whisky was like in 1869.  The technology has changed, of course, but it has a classic balance of sweet and spicy.”  It has a tropical nose, with hints of lemon, caramel and oak.  The palate has a light sweetness to it, that is balanced with lemon, toffee and black pepper.  Also, there is a more corn-based 18 year expression and new Spiced Vanilla that emphasizes the whisky’s existing vanilla with just a touch of flavoring.

21 Year Collingwood

21 Year Collingwood Canadian Whisky

American rye and bourbon fans know how difficult it can be to get a hold of a long-aged expression, and how incredibly expensive it is after you do manage to locate it.  If you like age, Collingwood could be just what you are looking for.  It is new to the U.S. and comes via Brown-Forman.  The Collingwood is aged in old bourbon barrels.  It is then finished at Ontario’s Canadian Mist Distillery in toasted maple wood.  This 100% rye whisky is incredibly smooth and dazzling on the palate with its notes of red peppercorn, dried fruit and citrus.  Like many of the older expressions, it is a one-time opportunity.  Once it is gone, it really is gone.  The upside to the Collingwood is its $70 price tag is much more affordable than American ryes that are comparable.

Pike Creek

Pike Creek Canadian Whisky

Here is another handcrafted expression hailing from Livermore (a majority of Canadian whiskies are produced by nine distilleries).  The Pike Creek is a fine blend of whiskies that have been aged for eight years on average inside first-use bourbon barrels.  Then it is finished inside old port casks to give it added richness and depth.  The whisky has a deep brown color.  Toffee and oak dominate on the nose, along with nice, light floral overtones.  It is lightly sweet, round and rich on the mouth, with a peppery, clean and long finish.  You could sip this all day long against another non-peaty single malt.

Crown Royal 2012 XR

Crown Royal XR Canadian Whiskey

Crown Royal is a favorite of yours.  It is a solid go-to, so there is definitely wrong with your preference.  Step your game up today with XR.  Andrew MacKay, the master blender, has created this second expression in the Extra Rare (XR) brand.  It is definitely a winner.  It has blended from remnants that are rye-heavy from the now-closed Lasalle Distillery.   It’s another, once it is gone, it is gone deal.  However, for Crown Royal fans it is definitely worth it.  Incredibly rich and smooth, notes of toffee, bitter chocolate, brandy, raisins and dried apricots are emphasized.

Lot 40 2012 Release

Lot 40 Rye Whisky

This is another classic Canadian whisky new interpretation from Livermore.  It is based on a recipe from the 19th century.  This 100% rye whisky is equated by Livermore to pepper for its go-to sensibility in addition to its spicy kick.  It is the kind of warm and bracing spirit that you can imagine 1940’s newspaper men slugging, without the kerosense afterburn or mule kick to your chest.  It is aromatic instead, with notes of dried fruits and caramel.  On the palate it is fruit-driven and spicy, along with the requisite warmth and spicy, bready and long finish. Click here learn more about Lot 40 Canadian Rye Whisky.