Archive for January, 2011

So What Exactly is the Flavour of Real Canadian Rye Whisky? – Canadian Whisky News

So What Exactly is the Flavour of Real Canadian Rye Whisky?

Follow as it Goes on the Road to Find Out


With notebooks at the ready, eager to try whatever was placed in front of them, fifteen malt whisky aficionados gathered recently at Victoria’s Grand Pacific Hotel to taste a range of classic Canadian rye whiskies. Their goal? To identify the flavours rye grain contributes to Canadian whisky.


The session began with tasters synchronizing their palates with a brilliantly well-balanced and rye-rich Canadian blended whisky, Crown Royal Fine De Luxe from 1963. Most notably, this whisky, in addition to the luxuriant corn-derived mouthfeel, showcases the full range of typical rye spices – cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger; – the breadth of undefined fruitiness; sweet floral notes bordering on pansies, violets, and lilacs; and an almost fragile brittleness found only in Canadian rye. Great rye supported by great corn and barley whiskies.


Deconstructing Canadian rye then began with WhistlePig Rye, a fine example of unmalted Canadian rye. No other grains are used to make WhistlePig so the flavour is 100% unmalted rye. It’s a big whisky, exhibiting typical rye flowers, and fruits, but especially rich in rye spices including cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon. WhistlePig is a hugely voluptuous whisky that, frankly, is just a little bit rough around the edges and in need of some balancing corn or barley to broaden its palate. But here are found the typical unmalted rye nose and palate: spices first, with fruit and flowers continually poking their heads through. So rye, it seems is all about spices, fruit, and flowers.


To get a full appreciation of the effects of malting on rye grain, the tasters next sampled Lot 40 from Corby Distillers. Lot 40, which has been off the market since the late 1990s, is distilled in a copper pot still at Hiram Walker’s plant in Windsor using malted and unmalted rye. Yes, Lot 40 is spicy, but rather than the dominant spiciness of WhistlePig, Lot 40 exhibits more fruity and floral notes, expressing, most particularly, large and delightful aromas of lilacs and spring flowers. Sweet and rich, on the palate it tastes more than anything, like rye bread. Malting, it seems brings out the flowers.


Armed with this new-found information the group next sampled Wiser’s Legacy, a new whisky, released in 2010, but based on a century-old original J.P. Wiser recipe that incorporates both malted and unmalted rye. Wiser’s Legacy demonstrates the blender’s art at its zenith, with its enormously broad palate featuring the full rye whisky spectrum. Legacy displays unmalted rye spices directly front and centre, but also showcases the fruitiness and the floral notes that the process of malting brings to the fore.

So what else did these tastings and discussions reveal about Canadian rye? In Canada, “rye” has been synonymous with “whisky” for several centuries. Rye is the defining flavour of Canadian whisky. North Americans drink more Canadian rye whisky than all other whisky styles combined. And rye flavours can also be extracted from oak. Oh yes, and speaking of flavour, in the right hands a little rye can go a long, long way.

But will this tasting session be repeated? Not exactly. However, will present a similar tasting in Toronto on May 14 at The Spirit of Toronto held at Roy Thomson Hall. The organizers have already lined up some very spectacular vintage Canadian ryes to tantalize your tastebuds. See you there?

For full details of the Victoria rye tasting session and to read reviews of Wiser’ Legacy, WhistlePig Rye, and Lot 40, visit 


Jim Murray’s Whisky Swirl ~ Friday, February 4, 2011 At The Fairmont Empress – Whisky News

Photo credit Jen Steele

Photo credit Jen Steele The Victoria Whisky Festival


Jim Murray’s Whisky Swirl ~ Friday, February 4, 2011

The Whisky Guru and author of “The Whisky Bible”, Jim Murray, is returning to The Fairmont Empress for another amazing Whisky Event from 6pm – 9pm. During this inspiring 3 hour event you will have the opportunity to taste the world’s best whiskies, blend your own whisky and interact directly with this iconic man. Tickets are $95 or $76 for Friends of the Empress.

All prices noted exclude taxes and gratuities. Friends of the Empress privileges apply to all events unless otherwise stated. For reservations and information, please call (250) 389-2727 or

The Dalmore Astrum 40yo – Scotch Whisky News


The adoration of a new constellation.

Astrum is the Latin word for constellation. As the stars glint and gleam in the night sky so will The Dalmore Astrum shine with an unmatched brilliance among whiskies.

Set to cask in 1966, The Dalmore Astrum, spent most of the ensuing four decades in American white oak casks before being transferred for a final 18 month flourish to 30 year old Matusalem casks from Gonzalez Byass.

Just 500 bottles are available worldwide. Each bottle and its priceless contents are proudly protected in a bespoke, high gloss black lacquer box, making The Dalmore Astrum a true star among malts.

For further enlightenment, please visit or email

Availability varies by market.

‘Super Pour’ at Universal Whisky Experience Las Vegas March 18th & 19th 2011 – Scotch Whisky News


Super Pour

Awaits you at the “NTH”

Super Pour

The mission of Universal Whisky Experience is to provide ultra-premium, luxury whisky enjoyment experiences. In order to ensure this level of experience, we are pleased to include your choice of one (1) pour from a range of ‘Super-Premium’ whiskies, valued at $300.00 per pour and above, in the cost of each ticket.

Dalmore Astrum (40yr) – New release for 2011, Highland Park (40yr), Glenfarclas 1966 – Single Cask exclusive to ‘Nth 2011’ show, Glenglassaugh (40yr), Glenrothes – John Ramsey (Limited release), Dalmore Aurora (45yr) – New release for 2011, Laphroaig (21yr), Ardbeg 1974 single cask, Glenfarclas (50yr) – “family cask”, Scotch Malt Whisky Society Cask  No. 1.124 (39yr) – Speyside (Very rare bottling), Benriach (40yr), Glenfiddich (40yr), Yamazaki 1984, Gold Bowmore 1964, Balvenie (40yr) – New release for 2011, The Glenlivet Cellar Collection 1964, Gordon & Macphail – Strathisla 1963

The list of available super-premium whiskies will be finalized as the 2011 Show date approaches. Please check regularly for updates.

Visit for tickets and quote code VF135890 for a 15% discount off show tickets (not including masterclases).

WhiskyCast Publishes Episode #301 – Scotch Whisky News


Canadian whisky seldom gets its fair share of credit, since many whisky drinkers perceive it as something best mixed into a cocktail. While that’s certainly an acceptable way to drink it, there are many Canadian whiskies that can hold their own when compared to any whisky from around the world. Davin de Kergommeaux of Canadian shares some of the history behind these unique whiskies and a few recommendations in this episode. In the news, new whiskies from Cooley, Highland Park, Buffalo Trace, Bowmore, and much more…

Visit WhiskyCast at



IT’S the winter solstice today (December 21), so it’s serendipitous that BenRiach is launching two exciting new products bearing these inspirational names.
Launched on the shortest day of the year, BenRiach Solstice, with its connotations of re-birth and celebration, is a perfect malt for the midwinter, a 15 year-old heavily-peated port while BenRiach Horizons is a 12 year-old triple-distilled malt – a new and original product line which has never been done before by BenRiach.
The bottling strength for both 70cl bottles is 50%. Both are cased in a rigid gift box and a limited quantity is available worldwide.
Marketing Manager Kerry White explained: “These are two incredibly exciting new products to be savoured on cold winter nights.
“Unusually for a Speyside distillery, we distil whisky from both styles of malted barley, non-peated and peated, enabling us to capture the defining taste and aroma of peat reek in a few special bottlings.
“BenRiach Solstice is one such expression. Distilled from heavily-peated malted barley, the whisky has been matured in ex-bourbon barrels before being finished in Aged Tawny Port pipes sourced from Portugal’s Douro region. The overall maturation period, across both styles of wood, is a minimum of 15 years.
“Horizons, the 12 year-old triple-distilled BenRiach, is one of the most unique whiskies to be released by the distillery. Traditionally, most single malt whiskies are distilled twice, but during the late 1990s BenRiach experimented with some limited production runs of triple-distilled whisky, and we have allowed the whisky to mature for a minimum of 12 years before giving you the opportunity to sample the fruits of our labour.”
Kerry added: “Triple-distilled means the raw spirit produced comes off the still at a higher alcohol strength, and the whisky is more fruity and floral than a traditional double-distilled BenRiach – quite different in character, and certainly a rarity amongst single malt whiskies.
“Originally matured in ex-bourbon barrels, the triple-distilled BenRiach has been allowed to finish in Oloroso Sherry casks, and has derived a number of distinctive flavours and aromas specific to the sherry casks.”
For more information and stockists, go to or contact 

(WI published this originally on December 23rd, 2010 and is reproduced here in support of the product arriving in the market place)



Loch Fyne Whiskies Stocks BenRiach 12yo Horizons – Scotch Whisky News


Loch Fyne Whiskies has Stocked a new item, ‘BenRiach Horizons’

BenRiach Horizons 12yo
Triple Distilled
50% abv
£46.50 inc vat
£38.75 ex vat

A limited edition, triple distilled BenRiach.

Appearance: Bright lemon gold.

Nose: Roasted almonds and Brazil nuts. Hot, freshly buttered scones smothered in clotted cream. Sweet heather honey adds an extra luxurious contribution.

Palate: Vibrant and wonderfully fresh. Huge nutty characteristics right from the start including peanuts, Brazil nuts and hazelnuts. A slice of sweet creamy oak and honey brings balance to the equation.’

Best regards,
Loch Fyne Whiskies and visit Loch Fyne Whiskies at


Loch Fyne Whiskies Stocks BenRiach Solstice 15yo – Scotch Whisky News


Loch Fyne Whiskies has stocked a new item, ‘BenRiach Solstice’

BenRiach Solstice 15yo
Heavily peated, Port finish
50% abv
£48.90 inc vat
£40.75 ex vat

A limited edition, heavily peated, Port finished BenRiach.

Appearance: Rich ruby-rose with a luscious pink burst.

Nose: Rich wood smoke with ladles of sweet peat. Home made raspberry jam and spiced fruit shortcake. Spicy and big.

Palate: Massive peat and wood smoke flavours partner a base of soft red fruits and autumn spices – cloves and cinnamon specifically. Very bold and intense characteristics.’

Best regards,
Loch Fyne Whiskies and visit Loch Fyne Whiskies at


Release of WhiskyCompanion 1.06 for Android Devices – Scotch Whisky News


January 2011

Release of WhiskyCompanion 1.06 for Android devices

Today WhiskyCompanion announced the release of WhiskyCompanion ver. 1.06 for Android mobile devices.

WhiskyCompanion for Android is a complete whisky (or whiskey if you prefer) guide for the curious amateur as well as for the experienced collector.

The App comes with detailed information and pictures of more than 2.300 whiskies (rye, malts, single malt, cask strength, blended, etc.) from 211 distilleries in 18 countries.

The pre-loaded data for whiskies and distilleries can easily be changed, or the user can create new whiskies and distilleries supported by own camera pictures or pictures uploaded to the phone.

Whiskies might be found through countries, regions or distilleries. The app also has full text search functionality for whiskies making it very easy to find your favorite whisky in the massive list.

As more data (content) is published, new countries, distilleries and whiskies will be added to the central database that can easily be downloaded to the app’s database. These updates will not affect modified user data in the phone’s database.

Notes from distillery visits can be added to each distillery, and detailed comments and tasting notes (classifications) may be added to the whiskies. All distilleries visited and whiskies tasted and rated will then be available in the “My Whiskies” section. This section also includes a wish-list for whiskies.

Most of the distilleries have map-location for integration with Google Map. When clicking on a distillery location, Map will launch, and this can easily be switched to Street-View. It is then possible to virtually walk around the distillery.

The app is available as an introductory offer at NOK 17,50 (US$ 2,95) on Android Market.

For more information please search Android Market for “whisky” or “WhiskyCompanion”, or visit

A few screenshots of the app are shown below:



Loch Fyne Whiskies Stocks Four New Items, ‘Dalmore Rivers Collection’ – Scotch Whisky News


Loch Fyne Whiskies has stocked four new items, ‘Dalmore Rivers Collection’

4 special bottlings to help raise funds for the great salmon rivers of Scotland. These are released for the 2011 fishing season.


Each is £42.00 inc vat / £35.00 ex vat

Dalmore Dee Dram 2011 Add to Cart

Dalmore Spey Dram 2011 Add to Cart

Dalmore Tay Dram 2011 Add to Cart

Dalmore Tweed Dram 2011 Add to Cart

Best regards,
Loch Fyne Whiskies

Visit Loch Fyne Whiskies at

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