About Canadian Whisky

About Canadian Whisky
Canadian Whisky is made primarily from corn or wheat, with a supplement of rye, barley, or barley malt. There are no Canadian government requirements when it comes to the percentages of grains used in the mash bill. Unlike Bourbons, they are aged, primarily in used oak barrels. The minimum age for Canadian Whisky is three years, with most brands being aged four to six years. Virtually all Canadian whiskies (except the pot-distilled malt whiskies of Glenora in Nova Scotia) are blended from different grain whiskies of different ages. Bulk Canadian Whiskies are usually shipped in barrels to their destination country where they are bottled. These bulk whiskies are usually bottled at 40% ABV (80 proof) and are usually no more than four years old. "Bottled in Canada" whiskies generally have older components in their blends and are bottled at 43.4% ABV (86.8 proof).

Canadian whiskies, as with their American cousins, originated on the farm. These early whiskies were made primarily from rye. In time most Canadian distillers turned to corn, wheat, and other grains, but Canadians continue to refer to their whisky as "Rye" even though the mash bill for most Canadian Whisky is now predominantly a mix of corn, wheat, and barley, with only a modest proportion of rye for flavor, which results in a lighter-bodied spirit.

Top Picks for Canadian Whisky

Caribou Crossing Single Barrel Canadian Whisky
89 points
$49
Amber color. Aromas and flavors of candied walnut, butter pecan ice cream, and caramel drizzled brioche with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length finish displaying notes of hot buttered rum, cinnamon toast, allspice, and apple chips. A rock solid, round and mild Canadian Whisky with great concentration and texture.
Royal Canadian Small Batch Canadian Whisky
88 points
$19
Best Buy
Amber color. Aromas of bruléed orange, caramel latte, spiced pecans, and vanilla bean with a supple, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, interesting, breezy pink peppercorns and milk chocolate finish. A highly mixable Canadian Whisky that hits all the right notes.
88 points $19 Best Buy
Bearface One Eleven Series Oaxaca Agave Spirit Blended Whisky
87 points
$49
Pale gold color. Smoky aromas and flavors of grilled meats, dark grilled pecans, grilled citrus, maple syrup, nutmeg, and raisins with a supple, crisp, dry light body and a warming, captivating, medium-length finish conveying shades of baked apples. A totally unique Canadian Whisky with a smoky-sweet style; endless cocktail possibilities.
Seagrams V.O. Gold Canadian Whisky
86 points
$16
Golden amber color. Aromas of spice cookies, caramel drizzled pecans, raisins, and dried cherries with a supple, prickly, dry light-to-medium body and a peppery, medium-length oak and marzipan finish. A tingly Canadian Whisky for casual highballs.
Canadian Club 1858 Canadian Whisky
86 points
$12.99
Best Buy
Amber color. Aromas and flavors of dried fig, hint of vanilla, and caramelized nuts with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity light body and a hot, brisk finish. A mild and approachable Canadian whisky for all manner of mixed drinks.
86 points $12.99 Best Buy
Ellington Reserve 8 Year Old Canadian Whisky
86 points
$15.99
Golden amber color. Aromas of cinnamon swirl toast, candied fig, pressed flowers, honeyed apples, serrano ham, and pecan pie with a round, bright, fruity medium body and a smooth, cheery cola, rum-raisin, sherry glazed spiced nuts, minerals, and granola in cream finish. A very smooth and mild Canadian whiskey that will play well in cocktails, shots and as a winter warmer from a flask.
86 points $15.99
Bearface Triple Oak Canadian Whisky
85 points
$39.99
Golden amber color. Aromas of vanilla candle, smoky leather, orange sherbet, and fruit punch with a satiny, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a seamless, interesting, medium-length toasted brioche with caramel and cinnamon finish. A vanilla-laden, smoky Canadian whiskey with a great sense of richness.
85 points $39.99
Caribou Crossing Single Barrel Canadian Whisky
85 points
$49.99
Amber color. Aromas of french toast, orange creme, circus peanut, and cedar shavings with a coarse, crisp, fruity light-to-medium body and a tingling, brisk dark rum and cigarillo finish. A whiskey that will appeal to rum drinkers.
85 points $49.99
Signal Hill Canadian Whisky
85 points
$39.95
Dark amber color. Aromas and flavors of brioche french toast, maple syrup, jamaican rum, apple-cinnamon muffin, pumpkin custard, pecan pie, and granola with a round, bright, fruity medium body and an appealing, medium-length finish. A super-smooth Canadian whiskey packed with big sherry notes and lots of sweet sippable character.
85 points $39.95
Signal Hill Canadian Whisky
84 points
$35
Golden amber color. Aromas of ethanol, brown sugar, carob, and raisin bread with a lean, soft, dry light body and a tingling, brief toast and dried apricot finish. A mixable Canadian whisky.