Featured at World Whisky Day 2017: The original Lot No. 40 was released by Corby Distributors in the late 90s under the Canada Whisky Guild series but discontinued it a few years after the turn of the century. Because of the small window of release and amount produced, bottles of it became rare and highly sought after. The brand was reintroduced in 2012 as a premium rye and has continued ever since to great acclaim. Unlike some Canadian whiskies called ryes, Lot 40 is made of 90% rye and 10% malted rye. Nothing that isn’t rye, in other words! Lot No. 40 supposedly refers to a plot of land in Ontario that was the home of Joshua Booth, a Canadian pioneer and politician, and an ancestor of one of Hiram Walker’s distillers. Recently, Hiram Walker has released a cask strength Lot No. 40, which quickly sold out its initial first run.
Distillery: Hiram Walker
Location: Windsor, Ontario
Nose: Orange zest, rye, brown sugar
Palate: Cream, cinnamon, sassafras, clove
Finish: Earth, oak, rye, cinnamon
Comments: The cocktail possibilities this offers intrigue us, much like the Alberta Dark Batch. Nose this one with your mouth open.
Adam – This might be my favorite discovery from World Whisky Day this year. I’ve never been a huge rye aficionado, though I haven’t gone out of my way to try a whole lot. As a fan of Islay scotches, perhaps I cozened up to this gent because of the big, bold, unapologetic flavor that dances across your tongue at every sip. It is a wholly unique whisky, unlike any rye I’ve yet had, though that particular list is not a long one. It is flavorful and engaging, and totally unapologetic about what it is. It’s also cheap enough to keep in regular stock in your home bar. Amaze your friends!
Jenny – Root beer and vanilla ice cream, like a boozy root beer float.
Meghan – There is a syrupy, sticky smell to it. Not as robust as molasses but about as thick smelling, kind of like orange marmalade. There is a spice of rye on the nose that follows on the palate. Hints of cinnamon, sassafras, and clove line the palate. However, there is an interesting lightness to it that contradicts the heavy syrup of the nose. I don’t want to call it watery as that conveys a lack of flavor. But there is a crisp, fresh wetness to it, like a cold cucumber, that fills the mouth without overpowering. Despite the sweet and spicy flavors of the palate, it is a fresh tasting whisky. There isn’t a deep or lasting finish to this one but what there is provides a nice balance. I get a hint of earth or soil in the palate, like the kind of rich earth you want in your garden. It doesn’t have the funky earth taste of peat or the more umami flavor of mushroom but just a clean, damp nature taste to the finish. The whisky is like drinking the smell of the garden just as the heavy summer dew is drying off.
Michael – On the nose, Doctor Pepper and Orange. Very soda-like quality. When I take a sip of it, it reminds me of a Crown and Coke. This is totally different from what I imagined.
Mary-Fred – Cooked orange or candied orange. Not a fresh citrus but a marmalade in the nose. Quite sweet. Rich, in the way that marmalade is. There’s depth to the sweetness. It’s really lovely. Very warm, very expansive and creamy at the end. Less of the sweet on the tongue but lovely, lovely depth. And the cream.
Peter – Like you’re in this silo with all sorts of grain. Very mellow and sweet. It’s complex and just keeps going.
Ben – There’s a little bit of spice and heat, but a good kind. It’s warm, like a fire when you want to warm up to it, not like when you burn your hand.