Sunday, December 5, 2010

Global Tippler – Canadian Whisky

I have confession to make; I'm no expert on Canadian whisky. Historically, Canadian whiskies are blended and very easy drinkers, e.g. Crown Royal, Canadian Club. A relative of mine gifted me a bottle of Crown Royal, purple felt bag and all. The box, bag and bottle sit in the back of the bunker unopened. I was reading some reviews of drinkers and the theme is smooth and easy……yawn….boring. I don't mean to sound like a snob but a blended whisk(e)y at 80 proof is just too darn light; no wonder it's smooth and easy, it has no chutzpah.

Dave Pickerell's brainchild Whistlepig, while Canadian, is anything but smooth and easy. At 100% unmalted rye and 100 proof it is brazen and vibrant. Aged for 10 years in new oak barrels, this whiskey (which is spelled with the extra "e" even though it's Canadian) is bottled in Vermont. This is a unique product because it's 100% rye which is typically used for blending in Canadian whiskies. American rye by comparison is at least 51% rye with the remaining mashbill made up of corn and about 5% barley. Bottling something like this was a bold move and maybe somewhat risky but Dave hit the ball out of the park on this one.

Color: Moderate golden hue.

Nose: Mint/Wintergreen. Wow! Undertones of honey vanilla, citrus

Entry: Blast of spice and sweetness. Amazing flavor profile. Distinguishing

Finish: Long and lingering. Wonderful

Whistlepig will retail for about $70 and I would typically shy away from something in this price range but I'll go out on a limb and say get a bottle if you're a lover of Rye whiskey. This one will not disappoint. Let's hope that Dave's Whistlepig is not a one hit wonder but will be something that remains an amazing offering.

Name: Whistlepig Straight Rye Whiskey

Distiller: Provenance unknown but listed as Whistlepig Farm Distillery

Availability: Limited markets

Price: High

Size: 750ml bottle with cork stopper

Next stop, we head across the pond and stop off in Ireland. Sláinte!


  1. I have some of this as well and can't wait to try it!

  2. In a word delicious. This is available all over the nyc market, but I believe it is only in a couple of other places. If you get a chance, definitely pick up a bottle. My wife loves it. Multiple dinner party guests have loved it. It just doesn't present with the kind of bite you would imagine from 100 proof and 100% rye. Almost time to pick up bottle #2!

  3. Man we agree mightily on this one. It's expensive for sure, but what a fantastic whiskey. Fantastic post and tasting notes.

  4. Thanks Jason and appreciate you stopping by.