"More than just a fancy bottle." That should be the slogan for this whisky. The bottle is indeed striking, befitting a fine cognac more than a mid-priced Canadian rye. Fortunately, the liquid inside doesn't disappoint.
This is a blended whisky from Highwood Distillers in Alberta. The age statement on the bottle is "15 Years Plus", as some of the whisky is aged as long as 25 years according to the website.
For this tasting I poured some into a Glencairn Canadian whisky glass, with a few drops of water. The medium golden hue attests to the lack of added colour. Water opens up the nose nicely. A bit boozy, if you will, but also some pleasant vanilla, caramel, and dried leaves. Quite typical of a Canadian rye (this one is wheat-based rather than corn-based).
Good medium body on the palate. A light sweetness of hard caramel candy, becoming drier and slightly vegetal. Exceedingly smooth and pleasant. A bit of spice mid-palate and slightly bitter on the finish, which is rather short. I think I prefered the flavour undiluted, as water seems to enhance the bitter aspects somewhat.
This is a different style of Canadian whisky, with clean, uncluttered aromas and flavours. Many might find it too mild or lacking character. Fans of Canadian whisky should appreciate it for its smoothness and unique, leafy-sweet flavour.
If anyone else has opinions of this whisky, I'd love to hear them!