45%, @angels_portion, admitting i'm wrong, angelsportion, bakery, bible, black hole, c.s. lewis, canada, canadian club, canadian whiskey, christian, confession, fascism crown royale, j.p. wiser's, legacy, lutheran, michigan liquor control commission, quebec, review, rye, scotch, second coming of christ, signs, the last day, theology, thoma, tolkien, Whiskey, whisky, zoo
I feel like I’ve been sucked into a star-consuming black hole and have ended up in some sort of alternate universe.
Here I am again with a dram of Canadian whisky in hand and I’m not disappointed. What the heck?
Seriously, what’s going on? The second coming of Christ has to be near, and with that, the fabric of space and time is beginning to fray. And although Christ said that the day and hour is unknown and indiscernible to all, that it would come upon the whole world as a thief in the night, still, I thought I knew the end time signs pretty well—wars and rumors of wars, the moon turning to blood, earthquakes. I don’t remember reading anything in the Scriptures about Canadian whisky suddenly becoming good.
Well, it takes courage to do any number of things in this world, but in my opinion, it takes a much more powerful courage to admit when one is wrong. So here goes…
Canada, you were wrong for hiding these things from us—at least us folks in Michigan.
Okay, that wasn’t much of an apology, was it? Let me try that again.
Hey, you. Yeah, you, the Michigan State Liquor Control Commission, why aren’t you jerks letting this stuff through? You’re wrong for doing this to us. It’s another one of your ungodly displays of fascist ignorance. Well, the truth always manages to find the light of day, doesn’t it? You should be ashamed.
Yeah, missed it again.
One more try.
I was wrong. Indeed, there are good Canadian whiskies out there.
But not Crown Royal. Sorry. I don’t care what the infamous whiskey authors say. Crown Royal—in any of its forms—is most appropriately served with a formaldehyde chaser, some Vicodin, and a teetering desire to go on. The same goes for Canadian Club. I just haven’t been able to find joy in that black bottle of drain leavings. I suppose I might at some point. My experience with Canadian Club has been extremely limited.
Perhaps I’ll get a few samples and be forced to choke down the need for another apology. We’ll see.
In the meantime, I can’t thank my friend George enough for sending these little gems to me. He has opened my mind to one fact in particular—that J.P. Wiser’s is picking up the slack for the mass producers and is actively working to convert guys like me to the possibility that there may be better things just over the national border which lies only a few clicks north of my home. The Legacy edition is certainly a perfect example of their diligent evangelism.
An easy sniff from the glass draws up and into one’s mind an early morning scene in no significant bakery in Quebec, just before sunrise, as the rye breads are being taken from the oven, set on the preparation table, and given a slight glazing of butter and a dash of cinnamon. And just to test the worthiness of one, the artisan behind these splendid loaves takes a quick nibble and discovers that the barely-singed oak boards used for letting the dough rise before baking has crept into the recipe, and it has brought along with it other fanciful aspects from previous designs, delicacies such as almond cakes and crème brulee.
The medium finish burns the tongue, but only a little. A drop or two of water and the bread cools enough to highlight the sweeter contours of the almond cakes.
Now, don’t get your hopes up. I’m listening, trying, and considering, but I’m not a convert to Canadian whiskies just yet. The only image that comes to mind to describe it is that I’m sort of like C.S. Lewis walking along with J.R.R. Tolkien to the zoo. All along the way, Tolkien used that time to talk with the atheistic Lewis. He didn’t become the world-renowned apologist and well-beloved author instantaneously. Instead, after a great many conversations, Lewis simply noted one day that he began his walk to the zoo with his friend as an unbeliever and by the time they arrived at the gates, he was a Christian.
I’m now quite interested, and with that, I’ll continue to walk with you. I can promise you that.
George, elPolako said:
I am ready to take your arm and walk together to the country, just north of you. Country of maple syrup, hockey, polar bears on the street (sic!) and whisky.
Rev Joel Kuhl said:
If you get a chance to try Forty Creek out of southern Ontario, I am particularly fond of their Copper Pot for just a general evening sip. Worth a try! And thanks for your fantastic reviews… always an enjoyable read!
Tom Fahey said:
I am Canadian, and I agree wholeheartedly with your opinion of Crown Royal. As noted by Rev Joel Kuhl, Forty Creek Copper Pot Reserve is definitely worth trying. In fact, I would recommend ANY Forty Creek expression over Crown Royal, especially one of the ten annual special releases. Unlikely that you will be able to find a bottle in Michigan. Binny’s in Illinois stocks Forty Creek. If you can get to Windsor, ON, the LCBO outlets there are well stocked with Forty Creek product.
I have been perusing your blog, and I agree with you that a fine Scottish single malt is the preferred dram. I am expanding my scope and searching out examples in the bourbon range, but selection here in Ontario is somewhat limited. I do like my Canadian whisky, though. For an excellent site on all things Canadian whisky, head over to Davin de Kergommeuax’s “Canadian Whisky” http://www.canadianwhisky.org.
J.P. Wiser’s Legacy is indeed a very fine example of good Canadian whisky. Corby Distilleries has released some excellent whisky in the last few years – Lot 40, Pike Creek, Wiser’s Red Letter, Gooderham & Worts, J.P. Wiser’s 18. If you listen to Mark Gillespie’s WhiskyCast, check out Episode 625, Jan 22, 2017. Mark interviews Dr. Don Livermore and they discuss some of the new whiskies slated for release this year.
There are also some new small distilleries making a go of it (even with the Prohibition-style era rules and regulations Ontarians live under). Look for Still Waters Distillery Stalk & Barrel Single Malt and 100% Rye. Dillon’s 100% Rye. Alberta Premium (source for quite a few rye whiskies bottled in the USA) is another 100% rye grain whisky. I still have some of the 30 year old released in June of 2012 (sold for C$50).
2017 should be an exciting year for Canadian whisky.
Crown Royal is basically lighter fluid. Utter trash that had good marketing in the ’70s and ’80s and so is now looked at with nostalgia by some. CC is just your standard rail liquor… CC & ginger ale is basically Canada’s Jack & Coke.
As recommended above, Forty Creek is quite good, and though as Ontario man it pains me to say it, Alberta Premium is substantially better.