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Wiser's 35 YO 2018 Release 50%

Spirit of Toronto 2018 - Review #2

4 889

@NozinanReview by @Nozinan

13th May 2018

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  • Nose
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  • Taste
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  • Finish
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  • Balance
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  • Overall
    89

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

One week ago I was at Spirit of Toronto. At the Wiser's masterclass I was also able to come away with a quarter ounce of the 35 YO in a small vial brought for specifically such a purpose. I have @paddockjudge to thank for helping me to get that ½ oz bottle fully filled.

Last year’s Wiser’s 35 YO was considered excellent, and while I have enjoyed it a few times, $165 was too pricy for me to indulge, and I have not had a bottle of my own to review. This year’s release was rumoured to have been cask strength, but after experimenting with this in Victoria, Dr. Livermore felt it presented better at 50%, same as last year. Same ABV, but this time it will lighten your wallet by $200.

This expression, which, from what I understand, is mostly corn with just a little rye to flavour it, is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes. I’m using a Highland glass for this 15 cc pour.


Nose: 22/25

Delicious rich caramel on first sniff after covering. I get rye spices and a little fruitiness. Sweet syrup. This is a very nice, warm nose.

Taste: 22.5/25

Oaky tannins, vanilla with some caramel. Less sweet, more spice on the palate than on the nose. Very rich mouth feel.

Finish: 22/25

Quite long, lots of tannins.

Balance: 22/25

The nose has less oak than the palate, but overall it’s a tasty, well-balanced whisky.

Score: 88.5 /100


I would probably describe this as a really good example of typical Canadian Whisky. Unlike Dissertation, Union 52 and Last Barrels, and to a lesser extent Legacy, this is more typical in the way it is created, only older.

This is excellent Canadian whisky. I would have loved to taste it at cask strength.

I can't see myself spending $200 for a bottle (and I have to admit being a little miffed at the 20% price hike over a single year), but it's a matter of priorities, and for those who can afford it and love this genre, I predict it will sell out quickly.

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8 comments

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@Nozinan Your reaction at last year edition expressed mine as well. I tasted the Wisers 35 at your house, thanks to @Talexander generosity, and I prefered it to CC40, but $165 was a big price for a whisky style that is not my favorite (when corn whisky is the main flavor). What makes it interesting for me was a light herbs note, does the 2018 has it to?

3 months ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge commented

@Nozinan, This is a brilliantly crafted whisky. An 89 score from @Nozinan for a Canadian whisky would be a 95 score from many other reviewers.

I tried the component parts at cask strength, they are excellent. My own version, blended at the distillery, featured 30 YO whisky. I can't say I enjoy the cask strength more. I bottled my creation at 50% abv. This takes water well, very well.

3 months ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

@paddockjudge No doubt your creation is even better, if your performance was consistent with your usual results...

I don't deny the quality of the crafting of this expression. I'm absolutely sure that you can appreciate its nuances in ways my palate simply can't.

I scored this 89, but I suspect that 2 years ago I would have scored it a bit lower. I'm slowly learning...

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge commented

@Nozinan, the distillery edition of this whisky is superior to mine. Knowing Legacy was blended in the ratio of 2:1 (corn:rye), I blended mine in the ratio of 4:1 in an attempt to allow the wonderful character of the long-aged corn whisky to shine through, also included a small fraction of new oak aged barley whisky. The Distillery release is more like a 10:1 ratio... and it is the correct ratio! Absolutely brilliant, a stunner!!

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@paddockjudge Thanks for the info. As I was implying, I prefer whisky with more rye in it but it is a great corn whisky. I also have to admit I had some palate fatigue when i tasted both Wisers 35 and CC 40. One of the reason I don’t like Corn whisky as much as you is precisely because the sweetness saturate my palate very fast and I have then difficulties to taste anything else. On the other hand, that sensibility to sugar allow me to appreciate dryer whiskies.

About the Wisers 35, do you have that herb note I had?

3 months ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge commented

@Robert99, I get a green apple note and the closest I get to "herb" is mint; however, you could stretch that to be interpreted as dried, chopped sweet basil.

3 months ago 0

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@paddockjudge Thanks for the answer. It has been too long since I had it, but I was not referring to mint. Anyway that was a faint one, so... Let just drink it and enjoy it!

3 months ago 0

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