Thursday, May 23, 2013

O Canadian Whisky -- 191 lbs (-38) [9X]

Until I developed a taste for whisky/whiskey, it all tasted pretty much like gasoline. But now it amazes me how different scotch, bourbon, and Canadian whisky are from one another, and how well each holds together as a category despite plenty of variety within. It turns out that national regulations are largely responsible for this cohesion--the UK requires scotch to be made from at least some malted barley, the US requires bourbon to be made from at least 51% corn, and Canadian whisky must "possess the aroma, taste and character generally attributed to Canadian whisky". That last one may seem too self-referential at first, but Canadian whisky is historically a blend of two primary components that give it a distinctive, yet mild taste: a very light "base" whisky made primarily from corn, and a heavier "flavoring" whisky high in rye. This general character is found in all of this month's bottom-shelf Canadian whiskies, with only subtle variation between them. R&R is the mildest, if not a tad watery; Black Velvet has a feint pepper kick at the end, which is a bit stronger in the less-sweet Black Velvet Reserve 8y; and Canadian Mist is somewhere in the middle with a well-balanced, hearty flavor. Canadian whisky gets bonus points for mixing well with coffee (like bourbon but unlike scotch) *and* being good straight-up when you want something slightly less sweet than bourbon (but not as good as pricier scotch).

[+] What I Consumed Since Last Post ...

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