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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.