Canadian Whisky - Blended
Forty Creek Confederation Oak Reserve Canadian Whisky
This is a Tier 1 score in the Whiskey category. It means the spirit has won the highest recommendation at least once and probably many times.
Forty Creek Confederation Oak Reserve is a blend of the individually aged corn, rye, and barley spirits that are "married" together for an additional aging. The "confederation oak" is in reference to the aging completed in barrels from a nearby Canadian grove... that is, this whisky is aged not in American ex-bourbon barrels (as is typical) but Canadian oak.
A positive review from the 2012 Beverage Testing Institute said it had "excellent smoothness and elegance with an intriguing anejo rum like quality." They followed it up in 2013 calling it "hedonistic."
Kittling Ridge is in Ontario, Canada near the Niagara Escarpment and takes its name from the ridge that separates the "growing conditions" for the winery. The winery was purchased in 1992 by John Hall, who also owns Forty Creek Whisky. His background is in wine and has led to a distinctive and unique approach to distilling spirits. In her (excellent!) book 99 Drams of Whiskey self-proclaimed "accidental hedonist" Kate Hopkins interviewed John Hall and quoted him saying, "I respect the traditions surrounding whiskey but coming from a winemakers' background, I am not tied to them." In March, 2014, Forty Creek Distillery was acquired by Italian-based Gruppo Campari for a reported $180 million.