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Aww yeah ten and a half months later finally get to my Christmas present from Dan – Twelve Barrels Canadian Whisky.

The story of this bottle is a little amazing. A high school bootlegger making prison wine under his bed in his parent’s home, pitches the story to distilleries all over the world, lands a job in England, and has returned to bottle a three grain blend in the tradition (and with the marketing) of an old Napanee distillery.

Twelve Barrels is a wheat, corn and rye whisky named for a figure skating feat of the original distiller’s son. But there’s a great story here wrapped in alright marketing. I’d watch a TV show based on this guy’s life, but, yeah sure, okay figure skating.

I’m so cynical from all the hype and marketing around any whisky that my pessimist self expected this to be terrible, but I was pleasantly surprised. Here’s what we thought:

nose
Dan – light, slightly floral, ginger
Simon – rye, caramel, hairspray, ginger

neat
Dan – slightly bourbon, spicy, mild caramel
Simon – smooth, toasted rice, pepper

finish
Dan – medium
Simon – burn in the finish, cedar

splash (water)
Dan – soft, woody, caramel, w musty hints
Simon – smooth, almost coppery

splash (maple water)
Dan – way sweeter – all spice gone
Simon – slimeyness of maple water overpowers

overall
Dan – 8.5/10 like a ryed bourbon
Simon – 7.2/10

Twelve Barrels Canadian Whisky – 40% 750ml – $34.80 – Ontario

Try it? Yes. Buy it? Yes.

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