J.P. Wiser's 18yo Canadian Blended Whisky
Question: Does it taste like Maple syrup?
My wife recently returned from Canada for a work trip and brought me a bottle of whisky. I know, she's a keeper. I know. This year she started bringing me bottles when she travels. So I got a great travel exclusive Kavalan earlier this year, and recently this bottle.
Now apparently the conversation in the store went something like this (I know the short of it, not how the conversation actually went.):
Wife: "Hello, I'd like get a bottle of Canadian whisky for my husband. He really likes his whisky and is quite a snob."
Vendor: "Okidoki Ma'am, what kind of whisky were you thinking aboot?" (Yes, lame joke, but had to be done.)
W: "Well he really likes single malts."
V: "We don't have any single malts ma'am."
W: "Right. So what would you advise?"
Enter the J.P. Wiser's 18 year old Canadian Whisky with half the label in French.
Funny fact: If you buy this bottle in Europe (Yes you can.) the label is different.
First of all, there is no French on the label. Secondly: The label clearly states it is a blended whisky.
(Which is supported by the vendors statement in the quick airport shop conversation: They did not have any single malts for sale there.) In Canada this means it can contain corn, rye, barley and wheat. In this case, the blend contains almost only corn whisky aged on ex-bourbon casks.
The color is a warm amber, almost like a cup of tea, going towards chestnut. A waltz around my glass showed a very liquid whisky with almost no lines. (This should have warned me, but I was blinded by the number 18 in age.)
On the nose: The first sniff threw me back. I made a rookie mistake of sticking my nose straight into the glass. I think I was expecting something soft and sweet like the Glenlivet 18 Batch Reserve. instead I got a nose full of paint thinner. A second, more careful, sniff released hints of caramel, honey, bergamot, maple syrup (yes) and hints of oak and leather. I loved the nose.
Taste: Sharp and tingly from the spirit, hints of toast and spices. Seems to get more fruitier towards the end, but stays real sharp.
Finish: Short and bitter like roasted hazelnuts.
I expected more from an 18 year old, but then again, it is a corn whisky. Different sharpness of alcohol I guess. After getting to know the bottle, I now enjoy it, but our first meeting was a bit of a disappointment for me.