Yeah, you read that right. It’s time for me to review Crown Royal Deluxe Canadian whisky.
And why am I reviewing it? Because it’s on multiple lists. It’s all over the place. They keep bringing it out and out and new versions and the damn bag is ubiquitous in Canada and it screams Canadian.
Hell, it’s even in the 101 Whiskies to try before you die book, and that’s a pretty good book. So of course I have to review it.
Because I’m a fucking putz, that’s why.
Crown Royal Deluxe was originally made for King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in 1939, during the first grand tour of the country. It is a blend, put together from 50 different whiskies. Or at least, it was when the royalty first showed up.
Who knows what’s changed since then, but it’s still around. It’s currently made from milled corn, rye, and malted barley, though the exact mashbill isn’t that well known. Also it’s aged in both seasoned and new white oak barrels. Again, I’m assuming they were ex-bourbon, but that’s up for debate.
It’s also aged for a certain amount of years. How many? At least 3, that’s all we know.
So, this is the entry level whisky from Crown Royal. Yes, it’s called “Deluxe”, but that’s not to mean it’s the upper end or anything.
Let’s see how the “leading premium Canadian whisky” tastes then, shall we?
Price: $28.95 (CAD) at the LCBO
Colour: Light yellow
Nose: Maple, cayenne spice, alcohol, lemon, a little wood
Yup, it’s that initial blast of maple that really screams Canadian. Or Maine. I can never figure out which.
It has a simple nose to it. There’s some spice, some lemon, some maple, and some alcohol. Maybe some wood to it, but that’s not too present to go on about.
Taste: Peanut, herbal, lemon, butter
Smooth flavour, changes it up a little. For all my mocking tones and derision that is born from being a snob (such a snob), it’s smooth. And while not overtly complex, it did have more than 3 flavours, so that’s something.
Granted it’s also watery, so any bonus point (that’s not plural on purpose).
Finish: Sour, macadamia nuts, sugar syrup, corn
It’s overtly sweet corn and nuts. And tastes as good as that statement sounds.
Honestly the finish is only good because it’s short and it means it’s over.
Conclusion: Really Deluxe alright.
Alright, enough sarcasm, it’s the fine poop time: This isn’t that tasty. It is smooth, the flavour is barely there when it is good, and the finish is pain. The nose is barely there. I’ve had this over and over and it’s not getting better.
Look, let’s talk about this word “Premium”. This is labeled as a “Premium”. I can only assume that’s because it’s pricey. For a dollar more, you can buy Alberta Premium Dark Horse. Or a ton of Alberta Springs 10 year Rye. And they taste better.
If you want a premium Canadian, avoid this stuff. It’s over marketed, the bag is useful (and giving it bonus points), and it’s fairly basic. There’s better Canadian whisky out there, even from Crown Royal.
World Whisky review #67, Canadian #30, Whisky Network review #333
101 Whiskies to try before you die review #44