Drink Magazine

Royal Canadian Small Batch Review

By Josh Peters @TheWhiskeyJug

Royal Canadain Small Batch Review

Royal Canadian Small Batch whisky is imported by the Sazerac company (owners of Buffalo Trace) and comes in, what appears to be, the same bottle as Eagle Rare and the BTAC releases. This small batch release is supposed to be a bit older than the regular Royal Canadian whisky and amongst Canadian Whisky fans this is a label that’s been picking up steam in the US. You’ve already seen the image at this point so you can already tell that I’m not amongst those fans.

There’s not a whole lot about exactly what’s happening with this particular whisky online (blend ratios, ages, etc.) so I’ll leave you with this little snippet from Sazerac before jumping in to the review itself. Though one quick note before I do. Their master blender is Drew Mayville who worked for Seagram’s for 23 years and was their Master Blender when the company was sold. So at the very least this is a whisky with some serious clout behind it.

“Royal Canadian Small Batch is a smooth, rich, complex Canadian whisky made in very small batches by our expert whisky making team under the watchful eye of our Master Blender. Each batch of Royal Canadian Small Batch is comprised of the best barrels from among our finest aged whiskies, which in turn are hand bottled to allow for the highest quality control possible.”

Royal Canadian Small Batch Info

Region: Canada

Distiller: Sazerac (owner)
Age: NAS
ABV: 40%

Price: $13

Royal Canadian Small Batch Review

EYE
Caramel syrup

NOSE
Dark sweets and alcohol. Notes of caramel, toffee, maple, butterscotch and grain alcohol. Light notes of spice, rye, honey, fruit and a creamy custardy sweetness that reminds me of flan.

PALATE
Sweet and grainy. A big dollop of caramel, maple, toffee and raw grains with lighter notes of dill, cinnamon, dark fruit and some metallic back notes that turns to vodka at the end.

FINISH
Short and alcohol heavy with some hints of caramel, rye, grain and maple.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
The grain alcohol and sweet notes seem to be overcorrecting each other, knocking it off balance. Thin body with a watery texture and more burn than expected at 40%.

OVERALL
The Royal Canadian Small Batch is not the worst Canadian whisky I’ve ever had and a far cry from the best, but at least it looks good on the shelf. About the only thing it’s good for is making cocktails and when it comes to that route it’s more than adequate. I made a Sidecar with it (yes I know Sidecars are traditionally made with cognac) and it worked pretty well with the triple sec and lemon juice covering up most of the harsher grain notes, letting the sweeter notes shine in the drink. So if you’re looking for a cheap Canadian mixer that looks good hanging out in your bar this would be your bottle.

SCORE: 78/100

Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review
Royal Canadian Small Batch Review

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