Pendleton 1910

For years, Pendleton 1910 was a bottle often seen but never purchased. After tasting a generous sample, I enjoyed it enough to acquire a bottle for myself. $40 for a 12-year Canadian rye whisky … not bad. Sure, it’s only 80 proof, but ABV alone hardly defines quality.


Pour: Pendleton 1910 Canadian Rye Whisky
Proof: 80
Age: 12 years
Color: rich amber
Nose: woody honey, Necco wafers, cream soda
Taste: vanilla syrup, gentle oak, mild baking spice
Finish: moderately short – maraschino cherry, brown sugar, rye bread


Overall: Quite satisfying. In many ways, a darker, woodier, creamier Crown Royal Reserve. I wouldn’t call 1910 Rye a bourbon substitute, but the sweet oak character is certainly relative. If WhistlePig’s rye isn’t your jam, Pendleton is a worthy alternative.

Rating: Alryet.

Crown Royal Reserve

Yesterday, I shared my thoughts on the widely popular Crown Royal Deluxe. Today, I’m tasting the similarly specced, yet doubly priced Crown Royal Reserve. The Reserve expression touts itself as a “hand-picked” blend of the producer’s “best barrels.” *The* best? We shall see.


Pour: Crown Royal Reserve Blended Canadian Whisky
Proof: 80
Age: not stated
Color: honey
Nose: vanilla syrup, apple peel, salted caramel
Taste: toffee drizzle, toasted oak, light baking spice
Finish: moderate length – singed marshmallow, creme brûlée, nutmeg


Overall: If these truly are the best barrels Crown Royal has available, I’m unimpressed. Blown smoke aside, Crown Royal Reserve is a decent blended whisky. Definitely more complex and interesting than the Deluxe expression, though I’d appreciate more for $50.

Rating: Lady B.

Crown Royal Deluxe

I have no data to back this up, but based on my regular visits to local liquor stores, Crown Royal Deluxe must be the best-selling whisky in America. And I get it. It’s available, relatively inexpensive, eye-catching, and frequently referenced in pop culture. But is there more?


Pour: Crown Royal Deluxe Blended Canadian Whisky
Proof: 80
Age: not stated
Color: honey
Nose: light vanilla, graham cracker, confectioners sugar
Taste: sweet pear, Ladyfingers, muted floral spice
Finish: moderately short – Necco wafer, mild oak, white pepper


Overall: It’s got inoffensive down, I’ll give it that. In fact, Crown Royal Deluxe may be the most inoffensive whisky around. Outside of that, there’s not much left to say. Virtually no complexity or character – an ideal whisky for an ice-cold glass of Coke.

Rating: Lady C.

J. P. Wiser’s Rye

I spotted a J. P. Wiser’s Blended Canadian Rye 50ml mini bottle at my local bottle shop the other day and thought, why not? I’ve been continually impressed with Dr. Don, and Lot 40 Cask Strength is amazing. J. P. Wiser’s Rye should at least be solid, right? We shall see.


Pour: J. P. Wiser’s Blended Canadian Rye Whisky
Proof: 80
Age: not stated
Color: straw
Nose: dried apricot, pear, honeydew melon
Taste: lemon icing, cake batter, freshly cut pine
Finish: moderately short – fruit rollup, bitter-sour “zing,” astringent oak


Overall: Not exactly what I was expecting. Manageable, yet not very pleasant all the same. I’m no Canadian whisky expert, but I’m assuming J. P. Wiser’s Rye is an everyday mixing whisky. Even if, with that finish you might want to venture out a bit.

Rating: Seek wiser options.