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J.P Wiser's Legacy

Spices galore...

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@hunggarReview by @hunggar

1st Jun 2015

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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
    87

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Wiser’s Legacy has over the past few years grown enormously in popularity. So much so that it’s become the unofficial benchmark for Canadian quality and affordability in the whisky community. Well, that’s more than enough to stoke my interest. I’ll admit I’m sometimes skeptical of Canadian whisky. Within the whisky world, we’re late bloomers, and there are still plenty of duds out there. But things are changing, and more premium whiskies with better productions are slowly creeping onto the scene. I’ll be comparing this to my other prized Canadian, Corby’s Lot No. 40, which is in fact a component in the Legacy. This bottle has been open for 10 months.

Nose: A bit malty, a bit grainy, with good balance between sharpness and softness. Rye, orange oil, cinnamon, caramel, lemon tart, honey, ginger, dill, apple cider, and faint oak.

Palate: I like this thick, silky mouthfeel. Pencil shavings, vanilla, cream, maple wood, rye, banana, and charcoal.

Finish: Long and dry, with what we scholars refer to as a shit-ton of spices. Woodspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, black peppercorn, mustard seed, ginger, anise, and faint cumin. We quickly move in to molasses, maple, charcoal, grain, rye, pencil shavings, menthol, oak, banana, and unsweetened orange juice.

Thoughts: This is quite different from Lot No. 40, which is admittedly simpler. By contrast this is a broader, heavier, more layered, and more sophisticated. For that reason I can appreciate why it’s the poster child for Canadian quality, although I actually prefer the Lot 40. I find it more balanced and charismatic.

The pros easily outweigh the cons here. For starters, the spices are intense, vivid, and relentless. A lot of sharp flavours to explore, most of which don’t stem from the rye (Lot No. 40 being the rye content). Maybe not an every-mood whisky, but this can and will give you a swift kick in the ass in the most delightful way possible. Another pro is the smooth sweetness and gentle texture which help to calm all that oak and spice; no doubt the work of a quality corn whisky.

HOWEVER, as mentioned above I don’t find this to be a consistently balanced whisky. The component parts are all absolutely lovely, and the final result is mostly a harmonious culmination of those parts, but not always. At times I find it to be over-oaked, and at times I find it generally uncoordinated. Usually there's no problem, but it's a minor shortcoming that I notice on occasion

Still it’s a fine ambassador for our particular style of distillation and production, and an excellent example of the direction Canadian whisky can and should take. So yeah... good stuff. Try it!

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3 comments

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

I tried it at my epic tasting with @paddockjudge et al. At the same session we used his recipe to recreate it. I have to say I liked what we made a little bit more... I think Connosr has a member who could become a master blender...

4 years ago 0

@hunggar
hunggar commented

@Nozinan, yes I remember you guys discussing your homemade Legacy. Does it have less bite without the virgin oak influence? Very cool idea, something for me to try someday!

4 years ago 0

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