Canadian Whisky News ~ “Canadian Whisky Awards Banquet, Taxes, and My Book Tour” – Canadian Whisky News

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Mark Your Calendars

8th Annual 

Canadian Whisky Awards Banquet

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Hotel Grand Pacific

Victoria, British Columbia

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It’s that time of year again. Join your hosts, Heather Leary and I in Victoria B.C. to celebrate the best Canadian whiskies in the world. We would love to have you with us as we announce the top winning whiskies of the year. Tickets for the gala banquet and awards presentation may be purchased for $65 from James Burrough at the Hotel Grand Pacific. Your ticket includes music, entertainment, a gala awards ceremony and a full hot and cold buffet.

Reach James by e-mail at

jburrough@hotelgrandpacific.com

The Canadian Whisky Awards help keep the world talking about the very best Canadian whiskies.

Winners will be announced at the ceremony and through major press across Canada and the U.S.

We hope to see you in Victoria.

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CTV Montreal’s Mutsumi Takahashi talks Canadian whisky.

Warm Welcome for Canadian Whisky

Second edition 

A whirlwind tour from Montreal to Vancouver to promote the second edition of Canadian whisky: The New Portable Expert made no fewer than 44 stops. Strong attendance at tastings, dinners, media events, a non-fiction literature festival, book stores and book signings confirm what we already know: Canadian whisky is having its moment.

Massive thanks to the whisky brands that made sure we had plenty to pour and talk about at each stop, to all who came out to chat and sip, and to Penguin Random House for ensuring every detail was taken care of.

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Redblacks star Henry Burris quarterbacks a CTV session about Canadian whisky.

Escalator Tax Encourages Bootlegging

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Anecdotal evidence suggests moonshine is making a a comeback in Canada. And it’s not the fun and often tasty white spirit some of Canada’s microdistillers are bottling to help keep the cashflow positive.

My experiences this year point to more and more off-the-grid distillers converting potatoes, apples, even deer feed into alcohol which they share with friends and sell surreptitiously. It’s profitable, and becoming more so as taxes drive the price of legally made spirits ever higher.

In my travels across Canada this fall I have been offered boot-leg spirit in four provinces. Occasional encounters in the past have become a deluge this year.

While I agree that as a luxury, alcoholic beverages should contribute more to the treasury than necessities, research shows that alcohol consumption is not “elastic.” As prices go up, consumption does not decrease, people just seek less expensive alcohol.

This unintended outcome is something legislators should keep in mind when determining how much to tax alcohol. Declining legal sales should not warm the hearts of health authorities or anti-alcohol advocates. They just as likely mean that more people are turning to illegal and unregulated sources. This not only reduces tax revenues, but puts people’s health at risk.

Automatic tax increases are not like automatic pay raises. At some point people are going to find ways to stop paying them.

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Strong range of fall releases

Canadian whisky has been attracting a lot of notice this year with Canada 150 special releases. While the scrumptiously flavourful Canadian Club 40 year old and the Northern Border Collection Rare Releases got most of the attention, there have been some stellar new whiskies from other producers as well.

Forty Creek Heritage, the latest in Forty Creek’s tradition of special fall releases is a dazzling throwback to the long-lost and much-lamented Forty Creek Three Grain. It’s rich silky texture brings a broad and carefully balanced range of fruits, flowers, nuts grains and barrel notes to the long and lusty palate. A must have.

For Crown Royal lovers in Ontario (and collectors around the globe) the world’s best selling Canadian whisky has a special new bottling called Blender’s Select. Well worth a trip to the LCBO, or of you live outside the province, a road trip.

Sour mash just leaps out of the bottle when you open another Ontario exclusive – Collingwood Double Barreled. Breaking the Canadian whisky mould, Double Barreled is made using a typical bourbon mash bill, with all the grains blended and then fermented together. It takes Canadian whisky flavours in a welcome new direction.  Highly recommended.

Wiser’s brilliant master blender, Dr. Don Livermore continues to stand Canadian whisky on its ear with his latest, Wiser’s 15. According to Dr. Don, this whisky reminds him of Wiser’s Deluxe 10 year old, another whisky we’ve long wanted to see revived. Good work, Doc!

And Canada’s microdistillers have joined the ranks of noteworthy new releases with Lohin McKinnon’s Wine Barrel Finished Single Malt, distilled and matured in Vancouver. Add to this Shelter Point Double Barreled Single Malt whisky and it has been a fall of spectacular new Canadian whiskies.

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And speaking of whisky books…

The updated Canadian Whisky: The New Portable Expert is now in stores and with on-line sellers. This new, updated edition includes a visitor’s map showing every whisky distillery in Canada (over 40  of them!), over 100 new tasting notes with a birdwatchers’ checklist so you can tick them off as you sample them, coverage of Canada’s burgeoning microdistillery sector, new chapters on whisky flavours and how to taste them, and numerous updates throughout.

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/canadian-whisky-news-canadian-whisky-awards-banquet-taxes-and-my-book-tour-canadian-whisky-news/

KWM Whisky Advent 2017 Day 16 – The Balvenie 14 Year Caribbean Cask – Scotch Whisky News

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KWM Whisky Advent 2017 Day 16 – The Balvenie 14 Year Caribbean Cask 

Evan is taking a spin at the Advent Blog today, in his words: 

Balvenie is one of the two major Speyside distilleries owned by William Grant Sons. It is typically one of the top 10 best selling Scottish Single Malt Brands worldwide – but the distillery’s production and sales are dwarfed by another William Grant Sons operation that goes by the name Glenfiddich. You could say that Balvenie gets overshadowed by the giant that is its neighbouring sister distillery Glenfiddich, but then again which distilleries in Scotland aren’t?

The Balvenie distillery still operates its own floor maltings on site – though it is only responsible for up to 15% of the malt needed for its own production. The house whisky profile is typically well-rounded and honeyed in style. Hints of peat can sometimes be found, but typically not in amounts great enough to keep it from being a crowd-pleaser.

Both as a distillery and as a brand, Balvenie has enjoyed a great deal of success over the past half century – due in no small part to a gentleman named David Stewart. David is the Malt Master at Balvenie who has played a large role in making this single malt as sought after as it is to this day. He was one of the first to experiment with cask finishing with the introduction of the venerable Balvenie 12 Year Old Doublewood in 1993. In 2017 David marked his 55th year of service in the whisky industry with William Grants.

Cask finishing plays a role in much of the of the current lineup for Balvenie including today’s Advent Whisky – the Balvenie 14 Year Old Caribbean Cask. Originally matured in ‘traditional oak casks’ before being transferred to barrels that previously held Caribbean Rum. Bottled at 43% ABV. 

Balvenie 14 Caribbean Cask – 43% – Evan’s Tasting Note: “Nose: Fruity and floral with honey drizzled on top. Peaches and cream, oatmeal with brown sugar, baked apples, pears and even cherries, vanilla, honey roasted almonds and light wood spices. Palate: Smooth and rich. Honey roasted almonds again, apple turnover, poached pears, preserved peaches in syrup, milk chocolate, angel food cake and a gentle, warming spice. Finish: Tangy rum notes, oak and honey on the fade. Comments: Big, rich, and round but so very, very approachable. No real rough edges on this one, just smooth to the point that you wonder where all of the liquid in the bottle went…” $107 for 700ml – or – $10 for 50ml

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/kwm-whisky-advent-2017-day-16-the-balvenie-14-year-caribbean-cask-scotch-whisky-news/

KWM Whisky Advent 2017 Day 16 – The Balvenie 14 Year Caribbean Cask – Scotch Whisky News

IMG_20171215_1720469

KWM Whisky Advent 2017 Day 16 – The Balvenie 14 Year Caribbean Cask 

Evan is taking a spin at the Advent Blog today, in his words: 

Balvenie is one of the two major Speyside distilleries owned by William Grant Sons. It is typically one of the top 10 best selling Scottish Single Malt Brands worldwide – but the distillery’s production and sales are dwarfed by another William Grant Sons operation that goes by the name Glenfiddich. You could say that Balvenie gets overshadowed by the giant that is its neighbouring sister distillery Glenfiddich, but then again which distilleries in Scotland aren’t?

The Balvenie distillery still operates its own floor maltings on site – though it is only responsible for up to 15% of the malt needed for its own production. The house whisky profile is typically well-rounded and honeyed in style. Hints of peat can sometimes be found, but typically not in amounts great enough to keep it from being a crowd-pleaser.

Both as a distillery and as a brand, Balvenie has enjoyed a great deal of success over the past half century – due in no small part to a gentleman named David Stewart. David is the Malt Master at Balvenie who has played a large role in making this single malt as sought after as it is to this day. He was one of the first to experiment with cask finishing with the introduction of the venerable Balvenie 12 Year Old Doublewood in 1993. In 2017 David marked his 55th year of service in the whisky industry with William Grants.

Cask finishing plays a role in much of the of the current lineup for Balvenie including today’s Advent Whisky – the Balvenie 14 Year Old Caribbean Cask. Originally matured in ‘traditional oak casks’ before being transferred to barrels that previously held Caribbean Rum. Bottled at 43% ABV. 

Balvenie 14 Caribbean Cask – 43% – Evan’s Tasting Note: “Nose: Fruity and floral with honey drizzled on top. Peaches and cream, oatmeal with brown sugar, baked apples, pears and even cherries, vanilla, honey roasted almonds and light wood spices. Palate: Smooth and rich. Honey roasted almonds again, apple turnover, poached pears, preserved peaches in syrup, milk chocolate, angel food cake and a gentle, warming spice. Finish: Tangy rum notes, oak and honey on the fade. Comments: Big, rich, and round but so very, very approachable. No real rough edges on this one, just smooth to the point that you wonder where all of the liquid in the bottle went…” $107 for 700ml – or – $10 for 50ml

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/kwm-whisky-advent-2017-day-16-the-balvenie-14-year-caribbean-cask-scotch-whisky-news/

Ralfy Publishes Whisky Review #705 – Scotch Whisky News

Ralfy Publishes Whisky Review #705 – Scotch Whisky News

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Ralfy tries out a new camera with . ralfy review 705Glen Marnoch 29yo single malt @ 40%vol:

 

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/ralfy-publishes-whisky-review-705-scotch-whisky-news/

Ralfy Publishes Whisky Review #705 – Scotch Whisky News

Ralfy Publishes Whisky Review #705 – Scotch Whisky News

ralfy-crown

Ralfy tries out a new camera with . ralfy review 705Glen Marnoch 29yo single malt @ 40%vol:

 

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/ralfy-publishes-whisky-review-705-scotch-whisky-news/

Blair Athol 22yo 1995 at The Whisky Barrel – Scotch Whisky News

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Blair Athol 22 Year Old 1995

Single sherry cask bottled November 2017 by Hunter Laing Co. for the Old Malt Cask. Sweet sherry notes, oranges, shortbread and caramel notes. Blair Athol 22 Year Old 1995 vintage Highland single malt Scotch whisky. Single cask sherry butt #14455 bottled November 2017 by Hunter Laing Co. for the Old Malt Cask series. 328 bottles.N. Oranges, green herbs and buer shortbread. P. Caramel, fresh tea and liquorice. F. Long with caramel and a hint of pepper. Blair Athol Distillery was established in 1798 in Pitlochry and with footprints in four centuries it is one of oldest working malt whisky distilleries in Scotland. Purchased by Arthur Bell Sons in1933 it is the spiritual ‘home’ of Arthur Bell’s range of blended scotch whisky complete with distillery visitor centre and Blair Athol Distillery tours. Although a large proportion of Blair Athol’s malt whisky cascades into blends, Bell’s to be precise, independent bottlings of Blair Athol single malts feature in the popular Connoisseurs Choice and Signatory Vintage ranges

Buy – £84.10

TWBXmas

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/blair-athol-22yo-1995-at-the-whisky-barrel-scotch-whisky-news/

Blair Athol 22yo 1995 at The Whisky Barrel – Scotch Whisky News

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Blair Athol 22 Year Old 1995

Single sherry cask bottled November 2017 by Hunter Laing Co. for the Old Malt Cask. Sweet sherry notes, oranges, shortbread and caramel notes. Blair Athol 22 Year Old 1995 vintage Highland single malt Scotch whisky. Single cask sherry butt #14455 bottled November 2017 by Hunter Laing Co. for the Old Malt Cask series. 328 bottles.N. Oranges, green herbs and buer shortbread. P. Caramel, fresh tea and liquorice. F. Long with caramel and a hint of pepper. Blair Athol Distillery was established in 1798 in Pitlochry and with footprints in four centuries it is one of oldest working malt whisky distilleries in Scotland. Purchased by Arthur Bell Sons in1933 it is the spiritual ‘home’ of Arthur Bell’s range of blended scotch whisky complete with distillery visitor centre and Blair Athol Distillery tours. Although a large proportion of Blair Athol’s malt whisky cascades into blends, Bell’s to be precise, independent bottlings of Blair Athol single malts feature in the popular Connoisseurs Choice and Signatory Vintage ranges

Buy – £84.10

TWBXmas

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/blair-athol-22yo-1995-at-the-whisky-barrel-scotch-whisky-news/

RARE CASK SOCIETY: WHISKY ART PROJECT: FIRST RELEASE ‘TYGER’ – Australian Whisky News

TigerTiger

RARE CASK SOCIETY: WHISKY ART PROJECT: FIRST RELEASE ‘TYGER’

Project #1, Batch #1 – ‘Tyger’

Rare Cask Society is proud to announce our First Whisky Art Project:  “Tyger”

“Tyger is hidden in the long grass, laying low, paws tighten the earth, his crimson eyes are on his prey, he will not miss.

You can sense it, but you can’t tell what it is, something is hidden, in the air.  Is it fear?

You hear a sound, nothing.  Must be just a silly rabbit, lots of them around.  No, it can’t be, and suddenly your eyes meet, how long has he been waiting, watching, those eyes tell a story, a message, that I will not escape the one and only Tyger”

About the Art

We are very proud to have Datsun Tran (see his Biography below) partner with us at Rare Cask Society. His original painting ‘Tyger’ was painted exclusively for the RCS Whisky Art Project #1, based on his tasting and imagination of the Whisky as ‘dark and dangerous’ given the high alcohol content.  His painting ‘Tyger’ is the first Whisky Art Project, and portrayed on each of the limited 100 bottle release. As a fellow and avid single malt whisky lover, his appreciation for our first release is evident in the expression of this original artwork on each bottle.

About the Artist:

Datsun Tran is a South Australian multidisciplinary visual artist who has worked in radio, theatre, comics and animation.

Tran’s work has varied in style and subject matter over the past 15 years, and while it has primarily featured the natural world, the work is about us, the human story.  His work has explored themes of conflict, utopia and personal identity.

Tran has exhibited all over Australia, North America, Asia and Europe.  He has had over 25 solo and group shows, exhibited in over 30 art fairs and has been a finalist in over 20 art prizes.

Follow Datsun for his latest artwork on Instagram:  datsuntran

About the Whisky

Very Limited production of 100 bottles at 66% ABV cask strength.  Single Cask.  Non-chill filtered Single Malt Whisky.  We have purchased the last remaining cask from a closed distillery in South Australia, aged 5 years in American Oak Port Casks.

Tasting notes:

Colour: Enticing dark sticky caramel laced with honey.

Nose:  Maple syrup with candied pecans. Oak, subtle spices and dried orange peel.  Delicate, sweet Christmas pudding.

Palate:  Butterscotch, cognac soaked raisins and a touch of marzipan.  Soft syrupy and luxurious mouthfeel that starts dangerously warm but is soon comforting.

Finish: Very long and lingering finish.  Perfect with a cuban cigar.

Release date: 1 December 2017, 5:00pm AEST.

Bottles are selling out quickly: We are excited to advise that all 100 bottles from this closed Distillery are now held in Melbourne, hand-numbered and ready for despatch before Christmas. Each bottle comes in its own custom-made, velvet lined RCS gift box.

For all enquiries: whisky@rarecasksociety.com

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/rare-cask-society-whisky-art-project-first-release-tyger-australian-whisky-news/

RARE CASK SOCIETY: WHISKY ART PROJECT: FIRST RELEASE ‘TYGER’ – Australian Whisky News

TigerTiger

RARE CASK SOCIETY: WHISKY ART PROJECT: FIRST RELEASE ‘TYGER’

Project #1, Batch #1 – ‘Tyger’

Rare Cask Society is proud to announce our First Whisky Art Project:  “Tyger”

“Tyger is hidden in the long grass, laying low, paws tighten the earth, his crimson eyes are on his prey, he will not miss.

You can sense it, but you can’t tell what it is, something is hidden, in the air.  Is it fear?

You hear a sound, nothing.  Must be just a silly rabbit, lots of them around.  No, it can’t be, and suddenly your eyes meet, how long has he been waiting, watching, those eyes tell a story, a message, that I will not escape the one and only Tyger”

About the Art

We are very proud to have Datsun Tran (see his Biography below) partner with us at Rare Cask Society. His original painting ‘Tyger’ was painted exclusively for the RCS Whisky Art Project #1, based on his tasting and imagination of the Whisky as ‘dark and dangerous’ given the high alcohol content.  His painting ‘Tyger’ is the first Whisky Art Project, and portrayed on each of the limited 100 bottle release. As a fellow and avid single malt whisky lover, his appreciation for our first release is evident in the expression of this original artwork on each bottle.

About the Artist:

Datsun Tran is a South Australian multidisciplinary visual artist who has worked in radio, theatre, comics and animation.

Tran’s work has varied in style and subject matter over the past 15 years, and while it has primarily featured the natural world, the work is about us, the human story.  His work has explored themes of conflict, utopia and personal identity.

Tran has exhibited all over Australia, North America, Asia and Europe.  He has had over 25 solo and group shows, exhibited in over 30 art fairs and has been a finalist in over 20 art prizes.

Follow Datsun for his latest artwork on Instagram:  datsuntran

About the Whisky

Very Limited production of 100 bottles at 66% ABV cask strength.  Single Cask.  Non-chill filtered Single Malt Whisky.  We have purchased the last remaining cask from a closed distillery in South Australia, aged 5 years in American Oak Port Casks.

Tasting notes:

Colour: Enticing dark sticky caramel laced with honey.

Nose:  Maple syrup with candied pecans. Oak, subtle spices and dried orange peel.  Delicate, sweet Christmas pudding.

Palate:  Butterscotch, cognac soaked raisins and a touch of marzipan.  Soft syrupy and luxurious mouthfeel that starts dangerously warm but is soon comforting.

Finish: Very long and lingering finish.  Perfect with a cuban cigar.

Release date: 1 December 2017, 5:00pm AEST.

Bottles are selling out quickly: We are excited to advise that all 100 bottles from this closed Distillery are now held in Melbourne, hand-numbered and ready for despatch before Christmas. Each bottle comes in its own custom-made, velvet lined RCS gift box.

For all enquiries: whisky@rarecasksociety.com

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/rare-cask-society-whisky-art-project-first-release-tyger-australian-whisky-news/

ROCK TOWN SORGHUM WHISKEY NAMED TO PRESTIGIOUS TOP 100 SPIRITS OF 2017 LIST – American Whiskey News

Rocktown

ROCK TOWN SORGHUM WHISKEY NAMED  TO PRESTIGIOUS TOP 100 SPIRITS OF 2017 LIST

Little Rock, AR – (December 7, 2017) – Rock Town Distillery is pleased to announce it’s Sorghum Whiskey has been named one of the top 100 spirits of 2017 by Wine Enthusiast Magazine. The full list can be found on Wine Enthusiast’s website by clicking this link:

Top 100 Spirits of 2017

Rock Town’s Sorghum Whiskey was distilled from a mash of 91% Arkansas grown red sorghum grain and 9% malted barley in summer of 2015. It was aged in new charred 15 gallon white oak barrels for 17 months.

“This is quite an honor”, said Phil Brandon Rock Town’s founder and head distiller. “The sorghum whiskey received a 93/100 rating, but it’s even more exciting to be named to the top 100 list”.

From Wine Enthusiast, the list is “reflective of what’s going on in the spirits industry, where innovation is shaking things up. A banner number of small and craft distilleries were purchased by larger entities over the course of 2017—arguably, a nod toward the innovation and nimbleness these smaller players bring to the market, as well as the increasing demand and appreciation for such products.

Going forward, all these new entrants may represent a thorn in the side to legacy spirits producers. But for consumers, it means that we will likely have even more varied and exciting options to choose from than ever before. That’s a prospect worth celebrating. So raise your glass, filled with any of these finest spirits reviewed this year.”

ABOUT ROCK TOWN DISTILLERY
Rock Town Distillery produces the award winning Arkansas Bourbon, Arkansas Single Barrel Bourbon Whiskey, Arkansas Hickory Smoked Whiskey, Arkansas Rye Whiskey, Arkansas Lightning, and Rock Town Vodka which are distributed to 15 states and the United Kingdom, Canada and Taiwan. Winner of the 2015 US Micro Whisky of the Year Award in the 2015 edition of Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible.

Rock Town Distillery, Arkansas’ first legal distillery since prohibition, is located in downtown Little Rock at 1216 E 6th Street, Little Rock, AR 72202. The distillery is open for tours 7 days a week. To find out more please visit www.rocktowndistillery.com

About Wine Enthusiast Magazine
Wine Enthusiast’s approach to wine and spirits is accessible and unpretentious, and enjoyed by novices and experts alike. Published 13 times per year, the magazine’s audience is at nearly one million strong. The magazine and its Buying Guide with more than 300,000 ratings and reviews make up the most comprehensive database in the industry available for free online at www.WineMag.com.

Rock Town Distillery
1216 E. Sixth Street
Little Rock, Arkansas 72202

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2017/12/rock-town-sorghum-whiskey-named-to-prestigious-top-100-spirits-of-2017-list-american-whiskey-news/