Proof: 88.8 proof / ABV: 44.4%
Age: Non-age stated
Distillery: Hiram Walker and Sons Distillery, Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Blend: Some variation of corn, rye, barley, and wheat whiskies.
Retail Pricing: About $45 CAD
Availability: Generally easy to find in Canada. I don’t believe it’s distributed in the U.S.
I feel like Gooderham & Worts releases are Dr. Livermore’s little “experiments”. Or maybe they’re a showcase of the incredible flexibility the Canadian whisky style offers distillers. Take for example, Four Grain. It’s a blend of wheat, rye, and barley whiskies that have been pot distilled and column distilled plus another column distilled corn whisky for a total of seven different whiskies. Seven! These whiskies were then aged in both new (90%) and used oak barrels (10%) before being mingled together to create this product. You’d never really see something like this in bourbon. Well, kind of. I mean, there are four grain bourbons, but those grains are mashed together before being distilled. There are bourbons “finished” in used barrels, but of course they cannot start there (or really be called bourbon any longer according to the legal definition some say, but that’s another argument). Anyway, the broad definition of Canadian whisky allows for a bit more creativity, in my opinion, and I think that’s why I continue to poach their rare bottles every time I go to British Columbia.
Sensibles: The nose is very sweet and mild, composed entirely of molasses, honey, vanilla and corn. The taste is medium-bodied and again quite sweet with flavors of maple syrup, caramel, and butterscotch obscuring a slight hint of rye spice. The finish is medium-length, warm, and full of cereal grains resulting in a nutty, bready aftertaste that will certainly surprise the average bourbon drinker.
Value: My biggest gripe with this release and some of the other Canadian whiskies continues to be the proof. I think I’m looking for a bite that’s just going to be hard to come by as many releases are 80-90 proof and I’m all about that 100-110 proof range. The 35-year J.P. Wiser’s is 100 proof and Gooderham & Worts Eleven Souls is 98 proof…perhaps one day I’ll work up the courage to open those Canadian ‘unicorns’ (is there such a thing?). This whisky is really unique and has lots of flavor otherwise. Definitely worth a try if you’re traveling up north and come across it.
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