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Gooderham & Worts 1832 Decanter (1948 Tax Stamp)

Happy 150th, Canada! - Part VIII of XIII

2 597

@talexanderReview by @talexander

24th Jun 2017


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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  • Brand: Gooderham & Worts
  • ABV: -1%

I bought this at the same Waddington's / LCBO auction I got the Carleton Tower. Distilled at the long-closed Gooderham & Worts distillery (once the largest distillery in the world, it's now a mixed use site with condos, shops and restaurants with much of the original buildings and cobblestones intact), this is called the 1832 Decanter to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the distillery (I presume it was bottled in 1958). According to the inside of the box the decanter rests in, G&W won gold medals in Paris (1878) and Antwerp (1885). The gorgeous decanter is modelled on 19th century glassware, and has a red tassel around the neck (apologies for the poor photo). The tax stamp says 1948; presumably that is the year of distillation of the youngest spirit in the bottle (the insert says the youngest spirt is 10 years old, while some whiskies blended in are as old as 35 years!) No ABV is given. Unfortunately, half the cork disintegrated when I opened it! Guess I'll have to quaff the rest tonight, mixing it with Coke (um, just kidding).

The colour is a medium amber. Deep, rich oak on the nose, with vegetal notes (wet forest floor, cooked cauliflower), mint, marzipan, dark chocolate, cinnamon and plums. Big charred wood smoke. Like a very old single grain scotch. A tiny drop of water brings out more herbs and rye grain. Full of age in barrel, and age in bottle, I could nose this all night. Stupendous complexity and blending craft.

Similar notes on the palate, with more chocolate (milk this time), blueberry, wet campfire, dark caramel, vanilla pods and baking spices. Thick mouthfeel. Creamy. Those vegetal notes on the nose are here as well in perfect balance with the sweetness and spice. Unbelievably rich. Water ups the volume on the spice and rye. Seriously, I'm dying here.

The medium-length finish is chalky with oak, dark rye bread and light balsamic. No joke, this is one of the greatest whiskies I have ever tasted in my life. It's classically Canadian, but each note is so elegant and in perfect harmony with every other note. I swear, this will absolutely knock you off your feet. Extremely old and rare when it was bottled, it is of course even harder to find now.


Nozinan commented

A 97! Sounds like a blast. When are you having us over?

5 years ago 0

newreverie commented

There are now two Canadian whiskies ranked 97 points on connosr. Both of them are Gooderham and Worts. May I make two suggestions. 1. When you uncork my G&W lot4, pull the cork vertically and do not twist. I've had a few of my bottles break the cork. I tried to grab a bottle that looked like it had a good cork for @paddockjudge 2. Poor some of this into a sample bottle for me!!!!!

I hope my bottle can live up to the standards set by this batch 60 years ago.

5 years ago 0

talexander commented

@Nozinan - mid July?

@newreverie - yes, I always pull, not twist. The cork in this 1948 was seriously hanging on by a thread - one touch and it disintegrated...and I'll save a sample for you.

5 years ago 0

Robert99 commented

@talexander 97 is very impressive. I have difficulties to deal with the cooked cauliflower unless you are talking about their gentle light smell and not the smell of the pot they were cooked in. I am half joking, it is just that it isn't an association I would have thought possible: cooked cauliflower and a 97... Interesting.

5 years ago 1Who liked this?

talexander commented

@Robert99 That's the magic of whisky - disparate aromas and flavours that you wouldn't think work, actually end up working.

5 years ago 0

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