Whiskey and Whisky

“When it rains, it pours” is a very common slogan heard in Michigan, as it was an advertising slogan for a salt company in Detroit.  Under the city and beyond its border is a huge underground salt mine, that in the old days, they even gave tours down there; definitely not as eerie as the catacombs of Paris.  The meaning of the slogan, is that years ago, when it rained, the salt crystals use to attract each other from the moisture in the air, and they would clump up enough to keep from going through the holes in a salt shaker and they found a way to correct that situation.  Today, the slogan has morphed into, when something happens, even more occurs and that is what happened. 

I periodically talk about the family down in Kentucky, well, it turns out that a winery in Malibu, California also has a bonded distillery in Kentucky for Bourbon.  I have a bottle of Whatever Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Bottled in Bond.  While I usually talk about wines, a little trivia for everyone is that the Commonwealth of Kentucky is in the top ten percent for states making wine in America, and they produce ninety-five percent of all Bourbon in the country as well.  This is a Bourbon made of seventy-eight percent corn, thirteen percent rye and nine percent barley and was issued at 100 Proof.  Made and aged in the Green River Distilling Brickhouses since 2016 and bottled in partnership with Silent Brigade Distillery.  To be labeled as bottled-in bond, Bourbon has to be the product of one distillation season, by one distiller at one distillery. It must have been aged in a Federally bonded warehouse under U.S. government supervision for at least four years and bottled at 100 Proof (50% alcohol by volume).  Straight Bourbon whiskey is a “term-of-art” description that it has been sored at least for two years in new charred oak barrels.  This was a true “sippin’ Bourbon” with a lot heft, behind the punch.  A nice caramel color with notes of dried fruits and brownies.  On the palate a full-bodied torrent of baked fruit and spices with a very long finish.  I went with the first glass neat, but the next glass will get one ice cube in a snifter.

I also got a four-pack of Crown Royal Canadian Whisky of the Crown Royal Distillery Company of Toronto, Ontario though I was disappointed that the distinctive purple bags were not included.  My Bride was going over to Ontario with her sister for a weekend, and I asked her to get a bottle, you know for medicinal purposes and she came back with a four-pack special and all I can say is “Saints Preserved.”  Now, before we go any farther, Whiskey is the American spelling of Whisky, which I have never quite understood, because supposedly Noah Webster attempted to simplify the spelling of words e.g., parlor for parlour.  Crown Royal was created by Seagram in 1939 to mark the visit of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth’s Royal Tour of North America; a major event in Canada, and originally it was only available until 1964.  That has now changed as it is the top-selling Canadian whisky in the United States and the world.  They now have a dedicated distillery in Gimli on the shores of Lake Winnipeg of forty-six warehouses holding two-million-barrels of Crown Royal spread over five acres of land (the air must smell remarkable there). The distillery in Ontario was closed in 1992.  Blended whisky is a blend of one or more whiskies, which may be made from any combination of malted and un-malted grains, and one of the true benefits is that a “house style” can be consistent year after year.  Seagram’s was broken up in 2000 and Crown Royal is run by the multinational Diageo drinks group.  This caramel-colored beverage comes in at 80 Proof, and has been made year after year by the nose of the blenders.  It offers notes of fruits, florals and vanilla.  On the palate a smooth blend of butterscotch, pepper and vanilla and a nice finish.  And medicinally, it is the perfect whisky for my hot toddies when the bug seems to get to me.    

About thewineraconteur

A non-technical wine writer, who enjoys the moment with the wine, as much as the wine. Twitter.com/WineRaconteur Instagram/thewineraconteur Facebook/ The Wine Raconteur
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