Tag Archives: Rye


How interesting that  the week after I get back from my first visit to Tennessee – the moonshine mecca of the world – I find a distillery open in my home town!  [maybe I’ll let you be the judge of how interesting that is – read on]

The people at Dixon’s Distillery have been building and distilling for over a year and just opened up their doors to help with public consumption this August. I didn’t even know Guelph needed a craft distillery until we got one. Thanks to mayor Cam Guthrie for ending prohibition so early in his term.

As one who dabbles in his own dark magic – converting cheap American vodka into premium gin – I am always keen to chat it up with fellow elixir makers and sample their potions – so i had a great time with co-owner Vicky Dixon, chatting up the finer points of distilling. Finer points like how to put some of that into my glass so that i can taste it.

White lightning, vodka, and gin is what they make from locally sourced grains and water.  Finally a healthy use for water.  They even age some of the moonshine with an oak spiral in the bottle to give it a bourbon character.

I have the unaged moonshine in my freezer right now because I like drinking it cold.  I really like that i can taste the grains through the alcohol – more so than any spirit I’ve had before. Straight up it makes a fine martini.

You can pick up a bottle of your own for under $40 at the distillery. It’s worth a visit and a much shorter drive than to Tennessee.

The Signs Are Everywhere

Do you ever wonder if you have good taste in alcoholic beverages?  It can be intimidating to purchase wine, beer, or liquor if you know that you are going to be sharing it with others. Sherlock Holmes often noted that we “see but do not observe”.  Well I tell you the signs are out there – you can easily tell if you have discerning tastes. Look at these three photos taken this week at the wine store near me. One of these things is not like the other.




I think that nobody looks to the under 25 generation for alcoholic beverage advice except other under 25 year olds – and they ain’t buying Veuve.

So if you find yourself looking at a bottle of Jägermeister, a 6-pack of Miller Light, and a 1.5 litre bottle of cheap Rye you might want to reconsider your buying habits and have your ID ready.

Coolest Bottle Ever – PROOF

I didn’t know I liked Rye.  The only time I’ve ever seen it was as Crown Royal served with Coke and I’ve never really been interested in that.

PROOF is a Rye whisky marketed in the coolest drug store style 500 ml bottle on the shelves. I admit that the cool bottle is what caught my attention but it was a recommendation by Billy Munnelly that closed the deal.  I trust Billy with everything from beer to espresso  so I gave it a go. I drank it at room temperature neat – really good.  I drank it “on the rock” (1 ice-cube) – fantastic. The bottle makes me feel like I am doing a little Chemistry at home.  Hey, I think I just found a way to keep Chemistry relevant again (read Champagne Science).

Rye is Canada’s spirit. It isn’t complex like Scotch whisky and it doesn’t have the deep smokey character of Bourbon but it is a spirit with expression. It reminds me that I am Canadian without the embarrassment of Crown Royal products hanging around my house.

LCBO 173351 | 500 mL bottle Price: $ 19.95
42.0% Alcohol/Vol.

Tasting Note (from the LCBO)
clear amber colour; orange marmalade, spice aromas; smooth orange, caramel and spice flavours with a touch of smoke, medium finish

Tasting Note (from PROOF brands)
The blend of Canadian prairie rye and wheat is distilled with pristine spring water from the Canadian Rockies. It is then aged to perfection in charred oak barrels, to create its sophisticated sweet and smoky flavours.

PROOF brands of Toronto also makes vodka and rum in these very cool bottles