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Canadian Rockies 10 Year Old

A sign of changing times, I hope...

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@hunggarReview by @hunggar

9th Dec 2013


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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  • Brand: Canadian Rockies
  • ABV: 40%

This is a reasonably new release entitled “Canadian Rockies.” There are two expressions from this brand, a 10 yo and a 21 yo. This is the 10 yo.

I was excited to find a sample of this at my local booze peddler here In Taipei. It’s one of the only Canadian whiskies (outside of Black Velvet and Canadian Club) sold in Taiwan. As a Canadian living in Taiwan, it seemed like a no-brainer; I had to try it! I don’t know why any of our top shelf whiskies have yet to find a footing in Asian markets, but I hope they do soon. In the meantime there’s “Canadian Rockies,” which was produced at Alberta’s Highwood Distillers exclusively for the Taiwanese market. Nose: Ginger, rye, lemon, musty cedar, hay, and orange bitters. There’s also a vegetal note here. Faint vanilla. With time, soft honey and ginger ale come through.

Palate: Light, watery mouthfeel. A fleeting wave of vanilla quickly comes and goes. Vegetal. Some stinging ginger notes give this a bit of a kick. Cocktail bitters, lemon, big grapefruit.

Finish: Short finish, with a light, citrus, grapefruity note lingering. There’s also some gentle vanilla and soft rye that linger. I get something of a vodka-like aftertaste from this.

This isn’t great, but it’s a good effort. The Canadian whisky website describes it as a ‘refreshing’ dram. Yeah, ok, I get that. It’s light, soft, and watery. But it simply doesn’t have enough flavour or intensity to be dubbed a ‘sipper,’ and I don’t really get the finish. The faint vodka taste is a bit off-putting.

Either way I applaud the entrepreneur who is trying to introduce the style here. Apparently it’s a local Taipei bar owner who’s trying to broaden the appeal of Canadian whiskies. The 10 yo isn’t great, but it’s cheap. Perhaps this was calculated. Perhaps he only intends to use the 10 yo for mixing, and market the 21 yo for sipping. With its Canadian flavour profile, it certainly could add something new to the cocktail scene here in Taiwan. Why? Because out here bourbons are rare, quality bourbons are rarer still, and rye is impossible to find. As a result, cocktails are generally quite lackluster here. Hopefully not for long. Hopefully Canadian Rockies is a sign of changing times.


CanadianNinja commented

Unfortunately, the situation is very similar for Canadian whiskies here in Japan. Other than Canadian Club and Crown Royal, there really isn't a lot of Canadian whisky to be found here. Occasionally I come across a bottle of something out of the ordinary, but by and large when it comes to choosing a Canadian dram here in Japan… it's CC or Crown Royal : (

6 years ago 0

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