Moonshine

Review: Park Distillery Glacier Rye by Jason Hambrey

Park Unaged Rye 1.jpg
ABV
40%
Aging
None
Recipe
100% Alberta Rye
Distiller Park Distillery (Banff, Alberta)

Park Distillery is located in the beautiful town of Banff, alongside a restaurant. They are relatively new, so the whisky isn’t of age yet - but we get a preview in this unaged grain spirit.


Review (2019)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: N/A

  • Bottling Date: ~2019

The nose has toffee, pine, rich spices, and an oily richness. There is a really nice grassiness and a bit of banana candy and vanilla. It’s a new make and is thus a bit rough, but not as rough as some. I think the underlying grassiness, woodiness, and spices might play out well as it sits in the barrel. The palate is sweet, with some dried floral notes and an oily grain character. The finish is a touch sour, with more pine notes, toffee, and hibiscus.

Interesting, with a nice complex base – but it’s not one I enjoy as is. But, I’m interested to see what some time in the barrel will do.


Review: Sivo Rebel Le Moonshine Du Rye by Jason Hambrey

Sivo+Rebel+Moonshine.jpg
ABV
42%
Aging
None
Recipe
2/3 Quebec Rye, 1/3 Malted Barley
Distiller Maison Sivo (Montérégie, Quebec)

Janos Sivo, the founder of Maison Sivo comes originally from Hungary where Palinka - clear white brandy - rules as the national drink. He told me that he has been incredibly impressed with rye as he has worked with it, even right off the still before it enters into a barrel. As a result, he releases his unaged rye spirit - a mixture of rye and single malt new make - to show off the spirit. It is available at the SAQ in Quebec.


Review (2019)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: N/A

  • Bottling Date: ~2018

The nose is grainy, spicy, and sweet. It’s very fruity, with touches of floral notes too. Lots of berries! The complexity of rye is on full display. The palate is light, quite herbal, and spicy. The sweet grain character of the spirit rises towards a lightly hot finish with a light roughness and dryness.

Very characteristic of Sivo. Fairly clean overall. It’s not one I’d reach for to sip, but I find new makes so interesting in understanding what maturation does to a whisky. If you are curious to try new make whisky spirit, and haven’t, this one is decently priced at $25/500 ml.

With ice, it has a soft grainy front and is fairly sweet.


Review: Darker Side of the Moonshine (Last Straw Distillery) by Jason Hambrey

Image copyright by Last Straw Distillery Corp. Used with Permission.

Image copyright by Last Straw Distillery Corp. Used with Permission.

ABV
46%
Aging
4 months; Virgin Charred Oak
Recipe
100% Corn
Distiller Last Straw (Vaughan, Ontario)

This spirit is to be released this Saturday, December 3. It is a different spirit than previously - their first batch of Dark Side of the Moonshine was distilled only once - but this, though also 100% Corn, was distilled twice for a more polished flavour, and, rather than put into a Tennessee whisky barrel, it was dumped into a new oak barrel. The result, just 4 months in, is astounding: rich woody flavors coming into a clean, light spirit. Go visit the folks at Last Straw and give this one a try, while supplies last.


Review (2016)

  • Batch: Cask 1
  • Bottling Code: N/A
  • Bottling Date: 2016

I really enjoy drinking this. This reviewed sample is only three months into the aging - though the released product will have another month of wood in it.

Rich toffee and oak, with walnut, roasted hazelnut, icing sugar, buttercream, nutmeg, and clove, with the confectionary quality on the nose growing even bigger with time. On the palate, quite confectionary yet with some good spice backing. Easy to drink and oaky with light smoke, rich toffee, caramel, banana, and some lighter apple notes. The finish is full of caramel, oak, toffee, and dried corn.

It doesn’t taste immature, even though it is so young – in part because the distillate is quite clean and combined with bracing oak influence. This has come along in just a few months...I think this is a bit too smooth to be called moonshine!

$50 at Last Straw Distillery, 40 Pippin Rd #9, Vaughan, Ontario

Score: 4/5


Review: Dark Side of the Moonshine (Last Straw Distillery) by Jason Hambrey

Image copyright by Last Straw Distillery Corp. Used with Permission.

Image copyright by Last Straw Distillery Corp. Used with Permission.

ABV
46%
Aging
1 year; Tennesse Whiskey Barrel
Recipe
100% corn
Distiller Last Straw (Vaughan, Ontario)

This is not whisky, and so begins one of many non-whisky spirit reviews to come. Last Straw Distillery in Vaughan, Ontario, started selling their spirits this year and this week I will review a number in anticipation of their launch part for the "Darker Side of the Moonshine" on Friday, December 2.

Last Straw Distillery produce a number of products, and, while focused on the eventual prospect of their whisky, have released a number of other products in the meantime. One of these, Dark Side of the Moonshine, is based on a recipe of 100% corn, aged for 1 year in a Tennessee whiskey barrel. As a micro-distiller, however, focus is on innovation and experimentation, consequently, as this product continues it may come in many different forms.


Review (2016)

  • Batch: First
  • Bottling Code: N/A
  • Bottling Date: 2016

This smells like a dripping wet bourbon barrel. Plentiful spices, barrel char, walnut, pepper, toffee, and corn husks develop nicely before the nose opens up to reveal more brilliant nutty oils. The palate is clean, big, bold, and creamy, again driven by the bourbon cask but with some light pepper, dried corn husk, sunflower seeds, drying reeds, and mixed roasted nuts - it works a trick! Banana bread, toffee, and roasted hazelnut also find their place on a nice finish. Dried corn jumps from the empty glass.

$45 dollars at Last Straw Distillery, 40 Pippin Rd #9, Vaughan, Ontario

Score: 2/5