Showing posts with label Crown Royal Black. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Crown Royal Black. Show all posts

Crown Royal Black Review

Country: Canada
Brand: Crown Royal Black
Type: Blended Whisky
Age: NAS
ABV: 45%

Colour: Very Dark Reddish Amber. I suspect that a generous hand of Caramel was added. This is the darkest dram I've reviewed so far.

Nose: In a blind tasting session, nine out of ten people (including me) would probably identify this as an American Bourbon or Rye Whiskey. The first impressions are Sweet Corn, Rye, Charred Oak, Pepper,Vanilla (Custard), Maple Syrup, Cherry Cough Syrup and Alcohol. After a while I find some Orange Peel, Mint and Cinnamon. Nice effort!

Taste: Bitter Caramel (Too much E 150?), Brown Sugar, Rye, Pepper, Licorice, Orange Peel, Alcohol (Ethanol), Nuts and Cherries. The Crown Royal character pops up a bit now. Taste Wise this is not a Bourbon anymore. It's more Crown Royal Fine De Luxe goes Bourbon style!  I'm not too impressed. I get visions of cheap Rum and Coca Cola!

Finish: Rye, White Pepper, Orange Peel, Alcohol (Ethanol) and Bitter Grapefruit Juice.

I added a few drops of Water but won't do that again despite the 45% ABV. The bitterness on the Palate is becoming unpleasant. Better sip this neat or with Coca Cola.

Rating: 78.5 

Nose: 21 - Taste: 19 - Finish: 19 - Overall: 19.5

General Remarks: This new 45% ABV expression of the well-known Crown Royal Blend was launched by the Diageo Group in April 2010 with a massive propaganda campaign. It is distilled at the Gimli Distillery in Manitoba, Canada and matures in Charred Oak Barrels. Crown Royal Black contains Corn, Rye and Grain Whiskies and was elaborated by Master Blender Andrew MacKay. It is imported and bottled in the USA by the Crown Royal Company, Norwalk (CT).

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay

Conclusion: Crown Royal definitively looked for ways to attract the US Bourbon market when launching the Black. First they put in lots of Caramel to make it look like Bourbon. Then they in fact managed to blend a Nose together that is quite similar to American Bourbon and Rye Whisky. Good work from Andy MacKay in this respect. But on the Palate the Caramel and Ethanol are too dominant and don't give the other flavours a real chance. Americans may be tricked in trying out the Black once but at an average price of around US$ 35 there are too many good Bourbon and Rye Whiskey alternatives available that simply outclass this Canadian brother!

Jan van den Ende                                                              November 2, 2012