Nose: Very expressive right from the start. Dark, sour German rye bread, with dusty grain, caraway seed, wood, and bitter dark molasses. Dark fruits and hot pepper with swimming pool smells. Hints of perfume and fruity esters. Complex and highly integrated, though the rye bread aromas dominate. Sharp and sweet citric notes predict fruit on the palate.
Palate: A really flavourful whisky that starts and stays on rye bread. Yes, theres a fruitiness: dark fruits, and theres lots of hot pepper too. The mouthfeel is rich and syrupy, yet quite astringent, woody, and oaky. What begins as an undefined fruitiness soon takes on notes of fresh navel oranges and sweet Grand Marnier. It has lots of peppery heat but its all contained by the rye. The dry dustiness of rye quickly emerges, as do floral notes and an earthiness. This whisky evokes those ever-so Canadian summer smells: fresh water plants and swimming in the Rideau River. What starts out as a seemingly simple, almost one-dimensional whisky, becomes a complex ensemble as it develops in the glass and in your mouth. The classic rye bitterness underscores it all like a pedal bass.
Finish: Long, and the rye bread lingers the whole time. A pleasing peppery glow with a hint of vanilla sweetness and a clean zestiness. Even after a few minutes there are still lots of rye bread notes and dry dusty grain.