Jesse and Chuck invited us back to the Toronto Distillery Co. before they shut down January 31st to try their recent Hickory cask release at bottled and cask strength. Only a few of us from TWS were able to make it, but it was a fantastic afternoon. The Hickory Cask release is 100% toasted soft winter wheat grain, aged in a hickory wood cask (with 1 oak stave, the darker stave on the side view you can see in the pics) for 3 years. The cask is 77L capacity and looks like a torpedo rather than a typical oak cask. The whisky was casked at 62.5% and lost only a few % points as it was 60.9% coming out of the cask. There was a lot of evaporation though, and they only got 54 bottles out of it after 3 years.
Toronto Distillery Co. Hickory Cask Straight Canadian Whisky – 50%
- Appearance: just crazy dark. Ridiculous virgin wood influence.
- Nose: Spicy, sugary, tons of wood spices
- Palate: Really soft mouthfeel, soft sweet fruit, tons of wood, smoky BBQ, very spicy, toasty. Just tons of wood.
- Finish: short finish because of the wheat, woody
- Score: 86
Bonus points for the uniqueness because I love innovation. It’s a bit over-woody and i think it’ll be better on second fill. But really nice, many dimensions to it.
next we tried it at cask strength. Most of my notes are in comparison to the bottled version.
Toronto Distillery Co. Hickory Cask Straight Canadian Whisky Cask Strength – 60.9%
- Appearance: very similar colour. Slightly more red.
- Nose: Similar nose, sugary, spicy, woody
- Palate: Similar again, with more sugar than the bottled version . Less BBQ, more sweet, still very woody, ethanol dominates more
- Finish: Longer finish than 50% . Sweet still
- Score: 83
Better finish, but not as complex palate. Surprising that non cs is better. Generally I enjoy higher ABV more, but this was quite nice at 100 proof.
big thanks to Jesse for letting us taste this at both proofs. look forward to hopefully tasting a second batch out of that cask!