Whisky Connosr

Canadian Club Reserve Aged 9 Years

A Bunch Of Canucks - Part I

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@talexanderReview by @talexander

14th Apr 2013


Canadian Club Reserve Aged 9 Years
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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I'm not sure why I'm doing this (no, seriously - I have no idea why the hell I'm doing this), but my next few reviews are going to be on Canadian whiskies. Why? Well, I've got a bunch here that I haven't written on, and some at the LCBO that I'd like to try (though I don't have my hopes up). So the next few reviews will feature standards, a couple of Frankenwhiskies, and a few older impossible-to-find treats.

While not the standard Premium, the CC Reserve 9 Year Old is replacing the previous 10 Year Old (which is still available, if you wish to contrast and compare). Like the Classic 12 Year Old, the packaging is improved with more elegant and consistent labelling. Why the change in maturation? One suspects that they were running out of older stocks, hence the whiskies being bottled one year earlier. Or did they actually do some experimenting and found they preferred the 9 to the 10? Who can say.

The labelling boasts that the whisky is "triple aged". What does that mean? Simple. It's math. Canadian whisky must be aged for at least three years to be called whisky. This one is nine years old. 3 x 3 = 9. Therefore, "triple aged." I mean, seriously? And like most Canadian whisky, it is matured after the various grain spirits are blended.

The colour is medium-dark copper - a little lighter, I think, than the 10 Year Old, but not that much. The nose is sharp rye grain, loads of caramel and vanilla, and mint. A bit of maple syrup (and no, this is not a maple whisky!) Cloves and pecan pie. Classically Canadian, though a little too sharp on the nose. Water brings out the rye, which is nice, and smooths out that sharpness.

On the palate is toffee, vanilla, spices (pepper, cinnamon) and tons of oak. Surprisingly hot in the mouth - not as smooth as you might expect. Water smooths things out a bit - the whisky definitely improves with a little water.

The finish is long and has a bit too much of a burn to it, developing into caramel apples and oak, but is a little fuzzy. Although the finish is a let-down, the whisky is a solid standard Canadian, though not very distinctive, except for the stronger rye flavours (it has more malted rye than the standard CC). I think it has more rye than the 10 Year Old as well - some months ago I tasted them side-by-side with a friend, and we both agreed that the 9 was an improvement over the 10 (which is a letdown). Makes for a good go-to Canadian.

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