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The Alberta Distillery was founded in 1946 near Calgary by Frank McMahon and Max Bell. The first was an oil tycoon, the second a newspaper magnate, both knew nothing of distilling. So they attracted George and Henry Reifel who were successful brewers and distillers in Bristish Columbia prior to Prohibition. Today, Alberta Distillery is owned by Fortune Brands (Beam Inc) and a large portion of the production is shipped to the US for bottling. Let us try their Alberta Permium 30 Year Old.
The nose is very aromatic with a lot of vanilla, peppers and rye, wild flowers (mostly violets and roses), a lot of oak and some woodsmoke. Then some breakfast cereals and dark chocolate emerge. This is very appetising.
Silky soft and nevertheless robust, that is the best way to describe the palate. A light bitterness from the oak. All kinds of dark fruits are supported by a plethora of spices. This is what you would call a rye driven whisky. Vanilla and honey are present, as is some liquorice. Something dusty gives it a nice depth. The violets return in full force.
While the finish is rather short, sweet and drying, it remains very spicy which is a good thing.
Well, this was nice! If it were bottled at a higher strength, this might even be one of the best Canadians I have tried. And not even 50 EUR for a 30 Year Old blend? Wow. Merci, Jean-Francois, pour envoyer ce whisky à la Belgique.