Forty Creek Double Barrel Reserve Canadian Whisky
What the Distillery Says:
Notes from John Hall, Whisky Maker
A few years ago, I had the opportunity to purchase some outstanding bourbon barrels from Kentucky. These barrels are excellent for ageing whiskies because they are “seasoned”. This means most of the fresh harsh oak tannins have been removed and what remains is all the good stuff, such as the softer oak tannins, wood vanillas, sugars and the toasty, smokey, spicy aromas, as well as the caramelized flavours from the heavy charring of the inside of the barrel.
After ageing my rye, barley and corn whiskies in their own special barrels, I decided to bring them together as a meritage, and placed the three whiskies into the bourbon barrels. This double barreling allowed the whiskies to hang out together and take on the subtle qualities offered by the bourbon barrels to enhance the finishing of the whisky.
Forty Creek Double Barrel has a wonderful golden roasted aroma filled with deep vanilla notes and highlighted with toasted spice, pecan and walnuts. There is a caramelized creaminess to the flavour with a rich spice that lifts it off the tongue. The finish is very smooth, mellow and extra long.
What Gary Says:
Nose: Soft, maple syrup, bit of burning leaves over freshly baked oatmeal raisin cookies, rich with a hint of malt.
Palate: Creamy mouthfeel, syrupy sweet (but not viscous), maple candies, butterscotch, vanilla ice cream.
Finish: Moderately long and wet.
Comments: I prefer the nose on this over the Forty Creek Confederation Oak (I thought they were similar, but this one was much more rich with a bit more character). On the palate, this one crosses the “too sweet” line for me. Again, nothing off-putting unless you don’t care for sweet whiskey (but if that is the case, you’re likely not a big fan of most Canadian whiskey, eh!) If you like that sorta thing (maybe a big fan of Crown Royal?), this might be right up your alley! It certainly has more complexity, and is quite drinkable.
Rating: Stands Out
What Richard Says:
Nose: Slightly burnt caramel creams washed down with a vanilla malted milkshake.
Palate: Rich sweetness reminding me of vanilla fudge and toffee crisps. Cherry syrup, Frangelico, and Kahlua round out the palate.
Finish: A bit spicy with mild wood notes.
Comments: This whiskey is put together like their standard Barrel Select and then finished in ex-bourbon barrels instead of sherry barrels. It’s more of a vanilla forward version of that whiskey. It’s very pleasant and easy to drink. If you like lighter, sweeter whiskies then I would recommend giving this a try.
Rating: Stands Out