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Older, Wiser Richler

France’s premier whisky distributor, La Maison du Whisky, is releasing a J.P. Wiser’s– sourced whisky named The Apprenticeship.

The exclusive 40-year-old whisky is only the second Canadian whisky offer of their 66-year history. It’s also the second of their spiffy Ex Libris whisky series to be named in honour of one of my father Mordecai’s novels. The first, Smaller Hero, won several awards (Canadian Whisky Profile’s Award of Excellence, among others) and sold well. But not here, as the €239 blend of J.P. Wiser’s–sourced pot-distilled rye and 18-year-old corn whisky was earmarked strictly for the European and Asian markets. The Apprenticeship won’t be sold here either, but it will be available stateside. As it had yet to be bottled at press time, I have still to taste it. But according to tasting notes from La Maison du Whisky, this is something to look forward to. The nose is said to be rich and heady, with notes of grain and candied citrus and — as you would expect at its age — vanilla and noble wood. The palate is described as lively and dynamic, ranging from hot honey to agave, while the finish is long and smooth, with notes of aromatic plants and orchard fruits. On the wallet, however, The Apprenticeship delivers only pain (the 700 ml bottle goes for €480 in Europe and you should expect something similar, stateside, when it lands at La Maison & Velier). And only 480 bottles are to be produced, so you can’t afford to wait either.