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Wiser's Very Old 18

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Wiser's Very Old 18

Postby Holysinner » Sat Mar 06, 2010 1:05 am

I opened a bottle of Wiser's Very Old 18 last weekend, and found it just ok. The nose and palate were pleasant, but I was getting an overwhelming flavor of Elmer's glue on the finish. I'm tasting it again this evening, and when first poured in the glass, I also get acetone on the nose. Fortunately this has essentially disappeared after about 5 minutes. Sadly, the glue on the finish is still there.

N: Butterscotch, damp soil
P: Cereal grains, pound cake, yoghurt
F: Elmer's glue

I'm not even sure I'm using the right term to describe how the Elmer's glue flavor arrives, as I don't taste it on the tongue. Rather, it's a powerful flavor at the back of the mouth after swallowing. If I keep my mouth closed and breath through my nose, no glue flavor. But if I breath through my mouth after swallowing the whisky, pow, there it is.

I know a few people here have tried this whisky, so what do you think? Is there a chance I've gotten a "bad bottle" - seems unlikely as it has a screwcap rather than cork - or is this whisky just not for me?
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Re: Wiser's Very Old 18

Postby The Third Dram » Sat Mar 06, 2010 2:06 am

Wow! :o

I've imbibed both the release you cite (labelled "Very Old") and the newer one (entitled "Limited Reserve"), and have not discerned any off notes on the finish. As regards the latter version, my tasting notes read, "Bittersweet oak-laced rye surges right through to the extended finale."

I know I'm stretching here, but is it possible the bottle you purchased somehow experienced very poor storage conditions, and that this factor altered the flavours?
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Re: Wiser's Very Old 18

Postby Holysinner » Sat Mar 06, 2010 3:09 am

Thanks for weighing in, TTD, much appreciated.

I bought this particular bottle at Spec's downtown store in Houston when I visited there over Christmas. I buy a lot of bottles from Spec's stores in Austin and haven't encountered any problems, and I believe our Houston friends here purchase a lot from Spec's too. That doesn't mean a stray bottle or case couldn't have been stored improperly, but it isn't par for the course from this retailer.

I am contemplating trying to return this bottle, but as the purchase was made more than 3 months ago - and I haven't seen Wiser's 18 in Austin Spec's stores - that may not be possible.

I'm also wondering if it's just me. I know Canadian whiskies are termed Rye even when there's little rye in the mashbill, but it could be that I'm just unaccustomed to the flavors they offer. I did taste a straight rye American whiskey recently - Sazerac (baby Saz) - and it didn't really work for me. I got kind of a vegetal sourness from it, though nothing like the acetone and glue flavors I'm getting in this Wiser's. I haven't had any off notes in the various bourbons I've tried, though.
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Re: Wiser's Very Old 18

Postby Holysinner » Thu Mar 18, 2010 3:40 am

Spec's was good enough to exchange the Wiser's 18 for a bottle of Baker's Aged 7 Years (none of the Austin Spec's carry Wiser's 18), even though it was purchased 2.5 months ago and two drams down. Good customer service, I say!
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Re: Wiser's Very Old 18

Postby The Third Dram » Thu Mar 18, 2010 3:55 am

Glad to hear it, HS. :thumbsup:
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Re: Wiser's Very Old 18

Postby Bruichladdict » Sat Mar 20, 2010 11:57 pm

Holysinner,

I am a big fan of Wiser's 18, and not many other Canadians, with the exception of Forty Creek Barrel Select and Alberta Premium 25 yo. I do find that the solvent (acetone) aroma you speak of is common in many Canadian blends...I suppose it comes from the column still grain neutral that makes up 80% of the blend. It does fade, as you say, to leave butterscotch and vanilla aromas.

Let us know how the Baker's turns out...I had a chance to buy some last week in Florida, but it was just too pricey!
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