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

Collingwood Double Barreled Canadian Whisky
93 points
$28
Golden amber color. Aromas and flavors of cream of wheat with brown sugar, grilled corn, and dried figs and dates with a velvety, crisp, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, intricate, medium-long finish that shows notes of crusty pumpernickel loaf, cinnamon roll, and brown butter. A rich and nuanced Canadian Whisky to take seriously.
Forty Creek Barrel Select Canadian Whisky
92 points
$19
Best Buy
Medium amber color. Aromas of maple syrup, shortbread cookies, and molasses with a slightly chewy, crisp, fruity medium body and a silky, compelling, medium-length roasted walnuts, sweet banana pie, ’nilla wafers, and oak finish. A rich Canadian Whisky that hits the spot; drink neat, in cocktails or as a shooter.
92 points $19 Best Buy
Forty Creek Lot 1867-F Confederation Oak Reserve Small Batch Canadian Whisky
92 points
$64
Amber color. Aromas and flavors of chewy caramels, sticky toffee pudding, dr. pepper, and spiced almonds with a velvety, crisp, fruity light-to-medium body and a sleek, interesting, medium-length finish with touches of maple buttercream. A velvety, smooth and decadent Canadian Whisky.
Forty Creek Copper Pot Reserve Canadian Whisky
91 points
$24
Best Buy
Dark amber color. Aromas and flavors of caramel-coconut bar, honey, pineapple upside down cake, and raisins with a round, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, distinctive, medium-long finish with touches of maple-nut cookies and peanut brittle. A round, chewy and complex Canadian Whisky for the enthusiast.
91 points $24 Best Buy
Forty Creek Lot 262 Double Barrel Reserve Small Batch Canadian Whisky
91 points
$54
Copper color. Aromas of fresh french toast with maple syrup, hazelnut creme, spice cookies, and creamy caramel with a round, vibrant, off-dry medium body and an effortless, interesting, medium-long maple creme cookies, toasted nuts, cherry stone, and chocolate-covered caramels finish. A silky smooth Canadian Whiskey with a rounded, maple-centric flavor; decadent.
Pendleton 1910 12 Year Old Canadian Rye Whisky
89 points
$40
Golden amber color. Aromas and flavors of maple syrup, creamy caramels, and cinnamon-spiced nuts with a velvety, soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a polished, medium-length finish conveying suggestions of honey-roasted peanuts. A creamy and mild Canadian whisky that goes down smoothly.
Georgian Bay Small Batch Canadian Whisky
88 points
$28
Pale gold color. Aromas and flavors of hay, candied cashews, maple syrup, and vanilla bean pasty with a lean, soft, fruity light body and a tingling, breezy finish that shows overtones of golden raisins and walnut cake. A light Canadian Whisky that goes down easy.
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
Black Velvet Reserve Canadian Whisky
87 points
$12
Best Buy
Golden amber color. Aromas and flavors of almonds, dried fruits, brown sugar, cultured butter, and mace with a soft, bright, fruity light body and a smooth, relaxed finish evoking elements of sultanas. A mild and creamy Canadian Whisky; great for highballs.
87 points $12 Best Buy
Caribou Crossing Single Barrel Canadian Whisky
87 points
$49
Dark amber color. Aromas and flavors of apple fritters, maple creme, hints of spiced orange tea, and candied cherries with a soft, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light body and a tingling, compelling, medium-length finish with notes of lanolin. A simple and satisfying Canadian Whisky with sweet maple aromas.