Crown Royal Tasting at 301

Dear world,

Last week I was invited to taste through Crown Royal Whiskey’s lineup of fabuolousness! Here are my tasting notes and a few interesting stories about Crown Royal as presented to us by Haley Wirt, representative from Southern-Odom, and West Coast Master of Whiskey, Breck Taylor.

Breck Taylor, West Coast Master of Whiskey

Crown Royal DeluxePurple bag, 80 Proof. Created in 1939 to celebrate a visit to Canada by the King of England.

Winnie’s notes – Crown Royal Deluxe’s flavor profile is dominated by caramel and vanilla from the American oak. A very smooth sipper with a toasty vanilla finish.

Breck’s notes – Canadian Whiskey is typically light and gentle in style. Crown Royal Deluxe goes great with Coke if you using a mixer. Over the years Crown Royal became popularized in the United States by Canadian oil rig workers who relocated to Texas.

Crown Royal Black –  Black bag, 90 Proof. Former American Bourbon casks are “recharged” (re-toasted) for Crown Royal Black which makes it a darker and more intensely flavored whiskey.

Winnie’s notes – Crown Royal Black smells like black cherries and is really toasty. Caramel dominates with a black cherry and vanilla finish.

Breck’s notes – Crown Royal Black is designed to appeal to a higher-end whiskey drinker. Also mixes well with Ginger Ale.

Crown Royal ReserveGold bag, 80 proof. Master Whisky Blender, Andrew MacKay, selects the top 1% of barrels he thinks are exceptional and uses some of those barrels for Crown Royal Reserve. The Master Whiskey Blender also decides when it gets bottled.

Winnie’s notes – Tons of cinnamon in the aroma. This definitely lives up to calling itself “Reserve” smooth and lingering in the mouth.

Breck’s notes – Crown Royal Reserve is NOT a mixer! Crown Royal Reserve has great body and is creamier than Crown Royal Deluxe and Black.

Crown Royal Cask 16Black velvety bag, 80 proof. It sounded so perfect on their website that I just had to paste it: “A blend of fifty whiskies finished in rare cognac casks made out of oak from the Limousin forest in France, and marked “16” to represent their place of origin.” 16 is the postal code in the region of Cognac, France.

Winnie’s notes – I get a lot more spice notes in the Cask 16 with a Maple Syrup finish. The French use French oak (duh) for their Cognac – which imparts a totally different flavor profile than American oak.

Breck’s notes – Crown Royal Cask 16 has great drinkability.

Crown Royal XRRed bag, 80 proof. Anyone looking for something spectacular, rare and fabulous should be drinking Crown Royal XR!

Winnie’s notes – Definitely obvious in the flavors that this is from older barrels of Crown Royal. So much depth and maturity.

Breck’s notes – Crown Royal XR is from the original Crown Royal distillery in Waterloo which burned down in the 1990’s. They were able to salvage some of the barrels which makes up the XR blend. It is all bottled and they predict it will all be sold by the end of 2011. I know what I want for Christmas!

Crown Royal Lineup!

The group had a chance to discuss the whiskeys and ask Breck and Haley some questions…

Haley and Breck

What is Bourbon?

Haley said Bourbon (by law) has to be:

  • at least 51% corn
  • no added color
  • made in new American oak
  • made in the USA

Bourbon (corn) whiskeys are sweeter while rye whiskeys are dryer.

Breck also noted that we should drink Crown Royal (e.g. neat) at room temperature; drinking it colder masks the elegance of the whiskey and emphasizes the oakier flavors.

Crown Royal has a great website that showcases the diverse Crown Royal line-up and gives some great ideas for drink recipes.

What’s your favorite Crown Royal recipe?




~ by winnieswineworld on June 22, 2011.

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