This whisky is aged 12 years, and was recently rebranded (I think last year) to”small batch” with a new bottle (remind anyone of Knob Creek?) and description (in quite small lettering). It is barrel blended, that is, unaged spirit from different batches and perhaps recipes are blended together before being put in a barrel – in line with other Canadian Club whiskies. It is distilled in a pot still, at Hiram Walker Distillery in Windsor. My bottle was from batch C12-054, and, although I have heard of batch variation, I have not tasted this frequently enough to comment on it.
Nose: Quite a compact, almost dark aroma. Maple, some cedar, slightly creamy, and even touches of light smoke, cola, some oaky earthiness characteristic of Canadian Club which I just love, a bit of light, fresh banana which, in combination with the creaminess, is a bit like a banana split. Dark rye bread, light orange, and some light toffee are also present and vanilla grows in weight as the whisky sits. 25.5/30 (85%)
Taste: Fairly sweet, with honey, maple, caramel, oak, rye bread, brown sugar, marmelade, malt and some spices on the finish. The palate is very enjoyable, and is a bit creamy and thick. The sweetness slowly builds until there is a lovely vanilla flourish at the end of the palate which leads into the finish very nicely. 26.5/30 (88%)
Finish: Slightly drying with some touches of dark rye bread, vanilla, a bit of oak, a touch of nutmeg and very light clove, and some light oaky earthiness (like you might expect from mossy and moist oak), with, unfortunately, a touch of slightly nagging bitterness. 16.5/20 (83%)
Conclusion: I do quite enjoy this, and it fits nicely in the Canadian Club Range. It’s very enjoyable – I like the profile, sweetness, and spice. 17/20 (85%)