Canadian Club, one of the most widely consumed Canadian whiskies, is often maligned with a bad reputation. After ending near the top in a recent blind tasting amongst friends, however, we decided it is time to take a closer look at Canadian Club. As a whisky which, in my experience, most often ends up mixed with coke, it’s about time people recognize Canadian Club for what it is — a balanced yet flavorful Canadian whisky. If the standard offering of Canadian Club — matured for 6 years — is balanced, then the 100 proof teeters slightly off the scale. Essentially the same whisky, but bottled at 50% ABV instead of 40%, the 100 proof is intended to be slightly richer and more flavorful. The official schtick is that the 100 proof is “zesty and clean, with the aroma of fresh apples and a hint of oak”, the body is “light and zesty” and the taste and finish are “fresh oak, toasted grain, and spice; clean and lingering with dry oak.”
In our glasses CC 100 Proof had a slightly different feel. On the nose, grapes and cinnamon unite with vanilla and butterscotch to create a rich, creamy nose. On the palate, sweet almond joins the chorus to create a sweet sensation tempered by an increased alcohol bite. The finish, as the official line suggests, lingers with hints of oak. Overall a satisfying whisky, and for around $20, it is a great value. Consider it as Don Draper’s drink, but 25% stronger; you can’t go wrong.