Every so often, I'll be in a liquor store and I'll feel the need to buy something...else. I'm buying bourbon and maybe beer. But then something will catch my eye that I just have to have. One time it was a miniature bottle of Phillips Gin-Ka, a gin-vodka blend that I have no intention of drinking, but whose packaging was too hilariously cute to pass up. Once it was brandy in a bag that was on clearance because...brandy in a bag. (Come to think of it, those might have been the same time...). Hell, one time it was even be a bottle of "individually barreled" bourbon (see the previous post).
But occasionally when this happens, it is something perfectly normal that catches my eye. Something so normal and so ubiquitous that I just never bothered to try it before. Something like Crown Royal Black. I saw this sitting in a bucket near the register at a local liquor store and bought it on a whim. It's been sitting on the shelf for a couple months now, as I keep turning to other products that are new and exciting. But since I finally noticed it on the shelf, let's get down to it.
Crown Royal Black is available almost everywhere. And although I've had some very good products with the Crown Royal name on them, I've also had some real snoozers. The Black version is their run at bourbon drinkers. On their website, they claim it has deeper oak notes on the nose and bourbon notes on the finish. It is bottled at a higher proof then the original release.
Crown Royal Black
Purchase Info: I really have no idea what store it was at, but it was probably a buck or two for each 50 mL bottle.
Details: Canadian Whiskey, 45% ABV
Nose: Brown sugar, cedar, baking spices.
Mouth: Peppery without being too hot. Black pepper, dried fruit, brown sugar, baking spices and oak.
Finish: Medium length. Cinnamon spice candy which transitions into mint.
Thoughts: If anything can be said to "taste Canadian" it would be this. But unlike your stereotypical Canadian whiskey, this has enough spice to keep you interested and enough sweetness to make you want another sip. And it's fine. Nothing special, but I like it. If your choices are between this and the regular Crown, this is an upgrade. Other than that though, this would probably almost never be my first choice of pour. I mean, don't get me wrong, if someone was nice enough to pour me a glass, I'd be happy enough to drink it. I just doubt that I'll be picking up a full bottle anytime soon.
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