Review: Wiser's Reserve Canadian Whisky / by Jason Hambrey

Distiller Hiram Walker (Windsor, Ontario)

This whisky was the precursor to Wiser's Small Batch, with which it was replaced in 2008.

Review (2017)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: LH274BY1049

  • Bottling Date: ~2006

This reminds me quite a bit of Wiser’s Small Batch. Spicy, with green wood and bean sprout notes similar to wiser’s with some nice pine, almonds, sweet corn, maple, and coconut. A good dose of those dry, woody, spicy notes. Lots of cinnamon and clove. Oh, and our familiar dusty rye which has seemed to get lost and less emphasized in recent years. Caramel on the palate, with the spices, green wood, and dry rye continuing. This style is less talked about in recent years, but has represented much of the typical Canadian style over the years – and I do enjoy the subtlety. Cedar finds its way in, and the finish is ever so lightly bitter and full of spice. Not hot spice, as so many talk about in whisky these days – but actual spice flavor – cinnamon, clove, and flashes of nutmeg.

Too bad that I don’t have a wiser’s small batch to compare to. From my memory, a touch different – a bit bigger and maybe sweeter -  but still very good and similar in profile from my memory of small batch– worthwhile, once again.

Recommended (81% of whiskies I’ve reviewed to date get this recommendation or higher).

Value: N/A. This one is long gone….