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Canadian Mist Collingwood

Average score from 6 reviews and 7 ratings 77

Canadian Mist Collingwood

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Canadian Mist Collingwood

This whisky is aged in white oak barrels and finished with toasted Maplewood mellowing. The whisky is blended together and then put in a marrying vat for nearly a year with toasted Maplewood staves, to mellow the whisky. Distilled by Canadian Mist in Collingwood.

Nose: Fresh cut wood (green), brown sugar, light floral and fruity rye, a bit earthy and candy-like...maple syrup and caramel. Integrated is a light floral note, perhaps peonies. A very enjoyable nose. An odd part is that there is a note of pear which I find typically in Scotch and not Canadian whisky, which does make for an intriguing addition as well. There’s also orange peel, green grapes, and some berry notes – raspberry in particular- which I notice more clearly the farther my nose is from the glass. Oak is also in the background ever so slightly. The one thing I don’t love is that the rye sometimes seems a bit misplaced in the nose which doesn’t help it, and there’s a sour, meaty note coming from, I assume, the corn...85%

Taste: Quite sweet, the fresh wood from the nose comes in and gradually heats up with some rye flavour and spice before being covered for a second by sweet, syrupy wood notes before finishing with rye spice once more. It does a decent job of going with the theme but I wouldn’t object to more complexity. I like the combination of the sweet and the spicy in this whisky – there’s not too much of either for me but they’re both distinctly there. It’s pretty easy drinking too. 77%

Finish: Dusty and spicy rye, framed with a bit of sweetness from the maple. It fades slowly into a more oaky, dry finish. Quite pleasant – I like the changing nature of the finish and the final result is good. 80%

Intrigue: Decent, and quite approachable (if not too sweet). This is a fabulous mixer (if not a bit pricy for what it gives), and it survives ok as a sipper. 80%

Weighting the nose 25%, taste 35%, Finish 15%, and Intrigue 25% the overall grade is 82.

*I realized I would never have time to upload all my Canadian whisky reviews to connosr properly, so I've been importing the tasting notes in bulk to expand the whisky base on connosr. For more info on the whisky (with similar tasting notes), see my post at whiskywon.wordpress.com/2013/09/…


This whisky is formulated for the American market, though it is produced in Canada. It is bottled in Kentucky (Canadian Mist is owned by Brown-Forman), and even bottles purchased in Canada say "imported from Canada". It is produced at Collingwood, a city a few hours drive north of Toronto and the destination of many vacation-ers. The whisky has an age statement of "36 months" - the minimum requirement for Canada...and it tastes fairly young.

Nose: Fruit comes nicely off the nose, with some white grape, granny smith apples, and gooseberries. A bit of this “whitish” fruit is similar to that found in Collingwood, the premium brother to this whisky also produced at the same distillery. Fairly light, with younger corn aromas and yet a reasonable dose of oak. It’s a bit spirity, and has a bit of a meaty character, which detracts a bit. Vanilla, as usual, comes out increasingly as the glass sits. It has a bit of a spicy edge (which doesn’t meld too well with the harshness of the nose), though it doesn’t resemble clear spices to me. 75%

Taste: Still a decent amount of fruit, with some young corn flavours and rye spiciness coming in with more force than noticed on the nose. There is some movement, as the palate starts largely with fruit and moves towards more oak, maple, cedar, and vanilla near the end, with a bit of spice. It tastes quite young, which lends some harshness and raw-ness which doesn’t help the effort. Because I get many of the harsher, young notes, and still a decent amount of wood, I wonder if they blended some old whiskies into a generally young whisky blend to give some backbone. There’s also a really interesting flavour, that is reminding me of plain greek yoghurt, interestingly enough! At the end, there’s a bit too much undue bitterness – but it doesn’t detract as much as it might. Overall, as well, it is a bit sweet. 73%

Finish: The flavour continues on the palate after swallowing, but is a bit flat and fairly quickly fades off to a bit of bitterness, but doesn’t die out for some time. The finish is fruity, but a bit darker than the nose and the finish with some earthiness and a bit of rye spiciness. 73%

Intrigue: One thing I like about this whisky is that there’s a bit of movement – the nose is light and fruity, and the palate goes a bit heavier and darker until, I find, the finish is the darkest and heaviest of all. However, it’s a bit raw and unpleasant – despite some promising elements of light fruitiness and some decent bourbon notes on the nose. 73%

Weighting the nose 25%, taste 35%, Finish 15%, and Intrigue 25% the overall grade is 74.


Collingwood Whisky is made at the Collingwood, Ontario distillery, owned by Brown Forman. Collingwood, Ontario is a very nice tourist town with good fishing, skiing, and a variety of other outdoor activities. The reviewed sample is courtesy of @Pudge72. I am uncertain how long the bottle had been open when I sampled the whisky, but I believe it to be less than one year

Nose: sweet, with orange, lemon, wine, maple, and even some pear. This is a very Canadian-style whisky nose, i.e. sweet, fruity, winey, old wood. Score 21/25 all whiskies; 21/25 within the Canadian genre

Taste: very sweet from the gitgo, sweet lemon, maple, with some spice from rye coming after. Score 20/25 all whiskies; 21/25 Canadian only

Finish: stays sweet...and cloying. Plenty of wood, not of great quality, and some adequate spices from rye. Score 19/25 all; 20/25 Canadian

Balance: for me, Collingwood is just too cloyingly sweet, which destroys balance. Collingwood has enough flavour, and the grain flavours are good, but the other components are just ok under the avalance of honeyed sweetness. Score 18/25 all whiskies; 19/25 Canadian

Summary scores: 78/100 all whiskies; 81/100 Canadian whisky category


Collingwood is a fairly unique whisky in that it is blended with staves of toasted maple wood floating on top. So it's not like staves of different oak as part of the barrel (like Compass Box's Spice Tree), but just slabs of wood floatin' around up there in the tank. Hey, why not?

This comes to us from the Canadian Mist distillery in Collingwood, Ontario. Which also happens to be the home of the biggest Elvis festival in North America (a special place, indeed!) My understanding is that they distill their own corn and barley spirit, but rye spirit is imported in from Early Times in Kentucky. Both distilleries are owned by Brown-Forman, which also owns its own cooperage in the US. So the barrels that Collingwood is matured in are made to order at the cooperage, toasted and shipped to Canadian Mist to be filled. While the matured whiskies marry in a stainless-steel blending tank, the maple wood staves are tossed in. And so you have Collingwood.

The colour is a golden caramel. On the nose, buckets of vanilla, tropical fruits, raspberries, marzipan and loads of honey and caramel as well. There is some complexity here but it is a little too overwhelmed by the wood. Water brings the fruit forward.

On the palate, you are first hit with raspberries and blackberries - this is surprisingly fruity! Citrus and grapefruit pith stand out above the typical caramel and vanilla. But combined they are a little too sweet for my taste. Smooth but a little too smooth. Water doesn't seem to do much to the palate except give it a slightly oilier mouthfeel.

The finish is a little dusty and rye-like, though fairly short. While I appreciate the complexity of this whisky, it is simply a little too sweet for me (and makes an extremely sweet Manhattan). My biggest complaint, though, is the packaging - the bottle is a large flask-shaped container with an unwieldy plastic cover that you have to pop off before you unscrew the cap. Looks cool on the bar but awkward to pour.

Very nice detailed review, @talexander. I have tasting notes on this from a sample from @Pudge72. Pudge likes this better than I do. "This is just too sweet for me" sums it up for me. I see that you said the same thing. I am not sure I got anywhere near the number of flavours in it that you did. Someday I will post that review.

Hey, I've spent a week in Collingwood...what time of year is that Elvis festival?

It's in late summer - next year it is July 24-27. It's a total blast! Long Live The King.


Collingwood Canadian whiskey is a fine bang-for-the-bucker with a mild but unique flavor profile. It’s distilled at the Brown-Forman Canadian Mist distillery in Ontario, with the same mashbill and blending process as their eponymous whiskey: a base spirit distilled from corn and malted barley is blended with a rye spirit after each has had a three-year rest in oak barrels.

It’s the extra twists and turns from this point through which the standard Canadian Mist evolves into Collingwood. It’s given a bit of extra cask maturation (although the distillery is a bit coy as to exactly how much extra), then transferred to stainless steel marrying vats to which toasted maple wood staves have been added. The result is mellow and delicate, yet somehow devoid of much maple influence. This is not necessarily a drawback.

Neither bold nor challenging, Collingwood is a bit too tame for my palate. But there’s certainly nothing here to dislike, so it makes for a decent evening-starter before moving on to the stronger stuff. Tasting notes based on a new bottle. I’ll return to it in a few months’ time and add some notes to the comments if any drastic changes take place.

Nose: Floral, fruity, and very quiet. It’s so soft, in fact, that this may be the first whisk(e)y I’ve nosed with nary a trace of alcohol sting. Like a bouquet of roses that’s been lightly sprayed with some vanilla and caramel. Other aromas are so fine and fleeting as to defy positive identification, but I think I get some shortbread cookies, rye grain, grapes, bananas, and a fresh-opened roll of Five Flavors Life Savers candy. Quiet, yes, but with enough going on such that it’s never boring.

Palate: Smooth, sweet, floral, and a bit grainy. Maybe (finally) a touch of maple after a long wait. The tartness of some dark fruits (cherries, sour apples, grapes) is balanced with some tea and tobacco. A little pepper-and-cinnamon kick adds the only slight touch of heat in the entire experience.

Finish: A quick blast of fruits, flowers, and pepper that quickly subsides, although it takes a fair amount of time to disappear completely. The final fadeout is a bit too bitterly floral, but it’s subdued and takes a long time to arrive.

I can recommend this whiskey, if only because it’s reserved enough to offend no one. The flavors may be low-keyed, but they’re tasty and plentiful. Much has been made of Collingwood’s unique bottle, which one might mistake for a five-year supply of after shave. I think the folks at Brown-Forman knew what they were doing here. Heck, if I owned a distillery, I might be tempted to use a unique, even ugly, bottle (filled with great whisky, of course). The result would be exactly what’s happening with Collingwood: it’s got people talking about it.


Bottled by Canadian Mist Distillers in Collingwood, Ontario, Canada. Aged in white oak barrels and finished with toasted maplewood mellowing.

Ian, can you give me a few tasting notes on the Collingwood? I managed to spend a week in Collingwood, Ontario this past April and never bothered to tour the distillery. At the time I don't think that this whisky had yet been released. I was thinking only of their Canadian Mist line when passing up the opportunity to drop by the distillery. The attraction was not strong.

@Victor I was offered a little dram of this when I was in a liquor store in Florida. I found it very sweet with huge hints (if you can call them that) of maple and honey, but all in a kind of subdued way. I remember finding it quite smooth and thinking it was a good value, but that was almost a year ago now so I think I'll have to give it another go soon.

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