Made with 100% Canadian prairie rye and Rocky Mountain water, Alberta Premium is highly underrated in the Canadian whisky category. Unlike Lot 40 and even AP’s sister brand, Canadian Club, this Calgary-based whisky producer has been pretty low-key over the past decade. For those of you who are not too familiar with the brand, you’ll often associate the Alberta Premium name with cheap whisky. I know I personally have had my share of AP in my sorority days!
However, Alberta Premium is actually sold to many bourbon distilleries (including a Vermont-based distillery I personally like a lot!) where it is aged and bottled at a higher price point. It is also one of the only distilleries left that produces 100% rye whisky. This really supports the theory that all good things start in Calgary (including yours truly) 😉
About Alberta Premium Cask Strength | 65.1% ABV $64.95 MSRP
Aged in charred oak casks and completely undiluted, Alberta Premium’s approach to its Cask Strength expression is highlighted in its exceptionally smooth taste. Uncut and drawn straight from the barrel, Alberta Premium’s first Cask Strength marque features notes, of caramel, vanilla and a hint of chocolate, balanced with black current and spice.
Grayce’s Thoughts: A lot more complex than I was expecting! I heard somewhere that this was only 5 years old though it is released without an age statement. Because of this, I was also expecting it to be a little spirity which was the case in many younger Canadian whiskies I’ve tried so far. It is actually quite fruity and tasted a little like raisins. Out of the two, I definitely like this one the most.
About Alberta Premium 20 Years Old | 42% ABV $89.95 MSPR
Ultra-smooth with a lingering finish, Alberta Premium’s first 20 Years Old is elegance in a bottle. Exuding notes of caramel and toffee, this remarkable rye whisky is blended and aged to perfection.
Grayce’s Thoughts: Upon being told this was 100% rye, I was expecting a spicy spicy lady. This is a spice bomb, however, she was actually also very caramelly and sweet as well. Personally, I like the combination of baking spice and caramel sweetness. It reminds me of the Christmas holidays and gingerbread cookies. I haven’t tried the Alberta Premium 25 Year Old or Alberta Premium 30 Year Old but I’ve heard amazing things about both.
Overall, I would say this release has definitely changed my expectations on releases coming out of Alberta Premium and I would definitely pay $90 for this 20 Year Old whisky.
Looking for more Alberta Premium Cask Strength or Alberta Premium 20 Years reviews?
Check out my friend Mark’s review over on Whisky Buzz!