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J. P. Wiser's 23 Year Old Cask Strength Blended

Big Fat Wiser's

9 688

@talexanderReview by @talexander

23rd Apr 2020

1

  • Nose
    23
  • Taste
    21
  • Finish
    22
  • Balance
    22
  • Overall
    88

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

The latest Wiser's in Corby's annual special release is their first cask strength, at a fat 64.3%, a blend of corn and rye whiskies that have matured for at least 23 years (to celebrate their Master Blender's twenty-three years at the distillery). Let's try it next to last year's 35 Year Old (50%) and the standard Wiser's 18 Year Old (40%).

The colour is a pale gold. One the nose the corn is very apparent, with buttered popcorn, hot caramel and marzipan. Then the rye shows up with freshly sawn pine and pencil shavings. Fruity with green apple skins; also heather, vanilla pods and cinnamon. Wood smoke as well. Water really opens it up with even more smoke, leather and tobacco. It's a lovely nose, elegant yet also with some oomph.

Hot on the palate with more caramel, cinnamon hearts, chili pepper, heaps of vanilla and lots of oak. Thick mouthfeel. Dark honey. With water it's a bit spicier, and with more wood. Not as well balanced as the nose, unfortunately - it is a bit one-note.

The long finish is tobacco, mouth-drying oak, more pencil shavings and a touch of mint. Definitely an essential purchase given how few cask-strength Canadians are bottled, though this doesn't come anywhere close to Cadenhead's legendary bottling of Indian Corn whisky distilled at Potter (long since closed). Now the compare-and-contrast: last year's 35 Year Old release has a smoother nose and a more balanced palate (though at 50% it still has quite a bit of power); and the 18 is overall much gentler (not a bad thing, the 18 is always a treat). Though for me it doesn't quite reach the heights of the 18 or 35, it is a unique and more-than-worthwhile dram.

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6 comments

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

I am humbled by the things you can smell and taste. Looking forward to exploring this more and preparing a review...maybe for Canada Day.

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

@talexander
talexander commented

@Nozinan One of the things I do to reference notes while I'm tasting is to picture the "Whisky Wheel" in my head - think about broad flavour categories (fruit, oak, medicinal, herbal, floral, etc) and see if any elements fall into those broad categories - and if so, can I narrow them down further. It's like I'm mentally picking apart and filing different notes into different folders.

3 months ago 4Who liked this?

Astroke commented

This is the best Canadian Whisky I have had to date. I will be starting my long term bunkering of this as soon as stocks start to dwindle.

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

@Astroke should you not start the bunkering BEFORE stocks start to dwindle?

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

Astroke commented

@Nozinan There seems to be quite a bit of the 23 left, so no need to panic. Too be honest I should not be buying anything right now but I am weak :)

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Megawatt
Megawatt commented

Nice review. I can almost smell/taste it. Your reviewing method is somewhat similar to mine: start with broad flavour and aroma categories and try to narrow it down from there. I also try a sort of free-association technique, where i try to clear my mind and catch the first few things which pop up while nosing and tasting.

2 months ago 1Who liked this?

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