About Canadian Spirits

Without question, the most famous spirit from Canada is whiskey. Canadian whiskies, often made from rye, are elegant and lightly spicy, and although they may not rank as highly as single malt scotch, there are some examples that are of exceptional quality.

Vodkas are becoming more of a factor in Canada, which should come as no surprise, given the quality of the river and lake water used in production. Yet there are many other notable spirits produced in Canada, ranging from bitters to orange liqueur to aged brandies. The spirits industry in Canada is relatively small, but the products are well worth the search.
Top Picks for Canada
Gran Gala
Orange Brandy Liqueur
Copper color. Aromas of orange peel and clove, cinnamon candies, spiced honey cake, and amaretto with a syrupy, lively, very sweet fat body and a peppery, interesting, brisk cotton candy ice cream, birthday cake, fruit punch, and black pepper and mace finish. All manner of sweet and spice collide in this fruity liqueur.
94 points $19.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Montreal Dry Gin
Clear color. Citrusy aromas and flavors of cucumber soda, celery salt, baking spice, and melons and mango with a satiny, crisp, dryish light body and a captivating, medium-length juniper and citrus marinated olives finish. Savory combines with spice in this versatile gin.
94 points $38.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Clear color. Aromas of sports drink, honeyed lime and kiwi, and bread crust with a round, bone-dry medium body and a warming, captivating, medium-length violet, plum sauce, Nicoise olive, and wax paper finish. A pleasant vodka with umami notes to complement vermouth.
94 points $39.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Aylesbury Duck
Clear color. Bright, creamy, buttery aromas of fresh granola in cream, caramel fondant, and nougat with a glycerous, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, amusing, medium-length praline, vanilla cream, and raisin bran finish. A delightfully smooth and creamy vodka that is a pleasure to drink.
94 points $24.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Gran Gala
Brilliant dark amber color. Rich, fruity, citrusy aromas of baked orange, honeyed nut brittle, and brown spices with a supple, lively, off-dry medium-full body and a hot, interesting, long chocolate orange peel, pepper, and cane sugar syrup finish. A delicious and vibrant orange brandy liqueur that will be great in cocktails or after dinner.
94 points $21.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Last Mountain Distillery
Honey Cinnamon Liqueur
Golden yellow color. Attractive aromas and flavors of cinnamon stick, honey, clove, and candied ginger with a soft, bright, moderately sweet light-to-medium body and a tingling, medium-long finish with suggestions of peppered nuts, sandalwood incense, turmeric, and endive. A very delicate, elegant, and balanced cinnamon liqueur.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Lot No. 40
Canadian Whisky
Brilliant golden amber color. Toasty aromas and flavors of chocolate graham cracker, cedar pencil shavings and eraser, roasted nuts, and spiced fruits with a silky, fruity medium body and a tingling, intricate, maple fudge, vanilla, sweet and peppery spices, and oak spice finish. A rich, substantial Canadian whisky with nice layers of bold grain and wood driven flavors.
93 points $39.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
J.P. Wiser’s
18 Year Old Canadian Whisky
Golden amber color. Buttery, toasty aromas of caramel buttercream and latte with a silky, bright, dryish light-to-medium body and a sleek, appealing, honeyed grain, spiced roasted pistachio, gravel, and pepper dust finish. A nice combination of buttery flavor and mellowness for easy sipping.
93 points $69.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
J.P. Wiser’s
"Red Letter" 2015 Edition Canadian Whisky
Brilliant gold color. Aromas and flavors of toasted coconut, chocolate toffee, and vanilla buttercream with a silky, bright, fruity medium body and a layered, long creme brulee, sweet and peppery spices, cola float, and cedar finish. A rich, well-oaked Canadian whisky with lots of character.
93 points $73.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Prince Igor
Extreme Vodka
Clear color. Delicate, clean, citrusy aromas of porcelain, pepper, and dried citrus with a velvety, crisp, dryish light-to-medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length sweet cream, powdered sugar, and minerals finish. Great texture and balance with an elegant style.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab