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Wiser's Spiced

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0 965

@talexanderReview by @talexander

9th Jan 2013

0

  • Nose
    16
  • Taste
    16
  • Finish
    17
  • Balance
    16
  • Overall
    65

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

For some reason, on the day my girlfriend flies back to her hometown of Vancouver, I decide to review this lacklustre dram (which does not improve my mood!) Wiser's Spiced is their entry into the Canadian Frankenwhisky category (i.e. Revel Stoke, Gibson's Grey Cup, Dark Horse, etc) - this one is spiced with vanilla and who knows what else.

Wiser's is perhaps my favourite Canadian distiller, with the excellent Legacy and 18 Year Old (which I'll have to quaff a bit of to cleanse my palate after this). I also like their Small Batch and even their De-Luxe is a solid basic Canadian rye. Not to mention their recent release Lot 40, which is a fantastic straight-up rye.

On the nose, vanilla (duh), maple fudge and Mackintosh toffee. A slight hint of rye in the very background but otherwise not much grain (nor spice, despite the moniker). Water tames the vanilla a little, which is welcome.

On the palate we have artificial vanilla and, representing the spice, pepper. Cloying and syrupy, with a liqueur-like mouthfeel. Sweet in a manufactured candy-floss way. Water softens it, which is an improvement.

The finish is medium length and a little chalky. Surprisingly, slightly herbal. By any comparison with other whiskies, Canadian or otherwise, this is pretty terrible, on a similar level as Tap 357. Obviously this is meant as a mixer (i.e. if you like Vanilla Coke, but don't have any, dump this one in) but even still, it should be able to stand on it's own to some degree, no? I know you are thinking,"What did you expect?" But hey - I tried it so you don't have to.

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9 comments

@Victor
Victor commented

@talexander, one of the greatest services we can do in these reviews is to give others the 'heads up' about some of these less than artistic products. I would have been shy about sampling anything named Wiser's Spiced on principle, but now I know that if curiosity gets the better of me that it will be with a very small dram of it indeed. Thanks for posting the review.

8 years ago 0

@Pudge72
Pudge72 commented

I had contemplated picking up a bottle as a mixer for my egg nog, in lieu of rum...didn't get around to it, maybe next year.

IMHO, the Canadian whiskey industry is doing a great disservice to itself by not marketing/shelving these whiskies (Tap 357, Crown Royal Maple, Spicebox, Wiser's spiced) for what they are...liqueurs, and nothing more.

8 years ago 0

@talexander
talexander commented

I would completely discount the entire Frankenwhisky category were it not for Alberta Premium Dark Horse (which has to be included as sherry is actually part of the product), which is very good. I think it's important to try these things. As I used to always say to others in my industry, "You don't know a good movie if you don't also watch bad movies." @Pudge72, this may actually be really good in eggnog! After all, that's what these products were created for, not for sipping neat or with a splash of water to compare alongside single malts and premium whiskies.

8 years ago 0

@Pudge72
Pudge72 commented

Thanks for confirming my potential eggnog application...a must purchase for Xmas 2013.

One reason I guess that most of these bottles are on the whiskey shelf at the LCBO is that the makers do bottle these at 40%+ (some exceptions, like Spicebox).

8 years ago 0

@talexander
talexander commented

Revel Stoke: 45%. Wiser's Spiced: 43%. Alberta Premium Dark Horse: 45%. So a few of these are actually higher than 40%.

Most liqueurs are bottled at around 35%. Spicebox is 34.8% and Black Velvet Toasted Caramel is 35%. Hey, only in Canada could those still be called whiskies! But they are liqueurs, absolutely.

Obviously, in Canada it's all very loose and fancy-free (much like our sexual mores, parliamentary procedures and medical coverage). On one hand, you could say it results in shitty whisky and an inferior product. On the other hand, hey it's Canada! Anything goes! Whoo-hoo!

8 years ago 0

@YakLord
YakLord commented

So, why are we criticizing the Canadian products in this category(Gibson's 100th Grey Cup, Tap 357, etc., etc.), and not Jim Beam Red Stag, Jack Daniel's Honey, or Wild Turkey American Honey, which continue to advertise themselves as whiskies? Both sides of the border are equally guilty...that, and Revelstoke is, I believe, produced by an American company (out of Minnesota), which just uses Canadian whisky as its base ( see Davin's review here: canadianwhisky.org/reviews/…).

8 years ago 0

@talexander
talexander commented

@YakLord No question, they are guilty parties too - I hate Jack D's Honey as well as Red Stag, more than the Canadians. Gibson's 100th Grey Cup is actually good. And thank you for the Revel Stoke review, I didn't realize they were yet another example of American ingenuity profiting from Canadian whisky-making!

8 years ago 0

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge commented

@talexander, thanks for "taking one for the team." I didn't have this on my radar. I'm embarrassed because tonight I couldn't bring myself to pick up a Centennial 10 yr old, while cradling a box of Masterson's, and you were potentially putting yourself in harm's way with Wiser's Spiced. I'm extremely pleased with AP Dark Horse and Gibson's Grey Cup 100th Anniversary Ltd Edition (I did grab one of these, it was sporting a 50ml Glennfidich neck-tie), especially pleased by the price.

8 years ago 0

@talexander
talexander commented

@paddockjudge, I would say those are the flavoured whiskies I most enjoy. Soon I'll review the CC Dock 57 - stay tuned.

8 years ago 0

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