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Caribou Crossing Single Barrel Canadian Whisky (750ml)
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- ABV 40%
New Canadian whiskies are a rarity in Australia. This one arrives with an unusual pedigree, succintly explained by Davin de Kergommeaux, a certified Malt Maniac and trained sommelier who has been enthusing about whisky as an independent commentator for more than a dozen years - in particular, Canadian Whisky. Visit his website at http://www.canadianwhisky.org. Here's Davin's introduction...
"Caribou Crossing is the first single-barrel Canadian Whisky produced by a major whisky company since the 19th century. That was the time when people would arrive at Canadian distilleries with jugs to be filled straight from the barrel. The now infamous Bush Pilot’s, from the late 1990s, was also bottled one barrel at a time, a fact that contributed to its legendary status among the whisky cognoscenti. Caribou Crossing Single Barrel, from the Sazerac Company/Buffalo Trace, now advances this concept further, drawing its very best whisky from an inventory of over 200,000 barrels produced for it by several prominent Canadian distilleries.
For Caribou Crossing, Sazerac’s Master Blender Drew Mayville selected the most mature and flavour-rich of these barrels and oversaw the bottling of each individual barrel. Each barrel has its own unique subtleties so identifying each barrel with a number on the package would help whisky lovers find bottles from different barrels and be able to compare them. Since this is single-barrel bottling, there are no laser codes on the bottle to help the more obsessive find different batches.
“Our goal was to put forth the highest-quality whisky available and to give consumers a new way to look at Canadian Whisky,” Mayville said when he introduced Caribou Crossing earlier this year. “We are very proud of the end result and hope these new products will foster a greater appreciation among consumers for what Canadian whisky can be.” If market acceptance is any indication, Mayville seems to have achieved his goal quite nicely. Not only has Caribou Crossing won accolades from prominent whisky writers, it has sold well enough that a second batch was soon required to replenish empty shelves".
And Davin's thoughts on the whisky? In short, "Creamy vanilla, a dusting of rye spices, bursts of citrus and a veritable tsunami of fresh-cut wood. Soft Corn. Very Highly Recommended.5 stars".
Bottled in Kentucky, Caribou Crossing comes beautifully packaged in a 'Rock Hill Farms' style decanter bottle with a Blanton's-type wax sealed stopper.
Tasting note: Burnished copper / brass appearance. Appealing bouquet includes notes of charry oak, toasted marshmallow and vanilla. Time in the glass draws out more cocoa and distinct spicy rye. Entry is silky, leading into a light to medium bodied profile of vanilla, sweet cereals and drying oak. Exceptionally soft. A touch of spice and rye emerges on the finish. Overall quite delicate and definitely drier than most Canadians. Mild aftertaste of toasted marshmellow. 40% Alc./Vol.
Other reviews... For those of you who think Canadian whiskies are thin and bland, you might want to give this whisky a try. No, it’s not a new concept in Canadian whisky, like Forty Creek. It’s still very much a “traditional” Canadian whisky. But, when compared to most traditional Canadian whiskies, it richer, creamier, and velvety smooth. The flavors are straightforward—primarily vanilla, with some crème brulee, toasted marshmallow, tangerine, peaches & cream, and gentle rye spice—but they are clean and well-balanced. A delicious, lighter-style whisky just in time for warm weather. Two additional notes: This is single barrel whisky. There’s no way of identifying the cask, as far as I know. I’m hoping that all the barrels taste as good as the one I have, but I just wanted to make you aware of this. Advanced Malt Advocate magazine rating: 93 points. - John Hansell, www.maltadvocate.com