You may think anything other than Scotch, bourbon, or rye isn’t worth your time. But, it’s time to think again. Canadian whiskey has been making its mark for some time, and it isn’t going anywhere.
Here are some key facts about Canadian brown spirits, including brands you might want to try with a couple of whiskey stones.
What Makes Canadian Whiskey Different?
First of all, Canadian varieties are usually spelled the British way, without the “e.” Second of all, it’s created the same way as Scotch and American liquor. That means it’s mashed, fermented, and distilled in the same way.
What’s the difference? Canadians make some unique blends. They mix grains to come up with a unique golden liquid that is somehow a cross between American rye and Scottish grain whiskey. Here are other major quantifiers:
1. It’s Almost Always Blended
Most Canadian whiskey is blended. Each grain, whether it’s corn, barley, wheat, or rye, is distilled on its own (unlike American bourbon). Then, the resulting liquors are blended in various ways.
Granted, blended types aren’t the only ones available. There are lots of companies who make single malts, but, as a rule, blended liquor is most common.
For good blends, try brands like Wiser’s, Pike Creek, and Alberta Distillers. The latter, in particular, is a staple brand that many will recognize.
2. They Call It Rye, No Matter What
No matter what’s in the whiskey glass, Canadians will always call it “rye.” While at least some rye is in most Canadian blends, they’ll call it rye even if it’s not a dominant flavor.
However, a new trend in Canada is creating rye whiskey that’s made with no other grain. One brand that does it well is Lot 40. A higher-end option is Collingwood, which is made at the oldest continuously operated distillery in the country.
3. Canadians Keep Up with Trends
You may think Canadian blends are old-fashioned, but that’s not true.
Sure, established brands have been making their blends the same way for a long time. However, plenty more are keeping up with trends in the whiskey world.
This includes everything from spiced liquors, straight rye, and small batches. Still Waters Distillery, for example, is a noted small-batch purveyor. If you want spiced varieties in your whiskey glass, try Spicebox or Windsor. Spicebox, in particular, uses spices like nutmeg and cinnamon along with flavors like vanilla, pumpkin, and hot pepper.
Canadian Rye Tastes Great in Your Whiskey Glass
If you haven’t considered Canadian brown spirits, it’s time you gave them a whirl. You’ll find a lot to love, especially if you tip some into your favorite glass with a couple of whiskey stones for the perfect chill.
For more excellent accompaniments to go along with your favorite bottle or glass of liquor, check out our selection