Lot 40 was first introduced by Hiram Walker as part of new line of premium whiskies in the late 90s. It was a bold move to capitalize on the growing demand worldwide for premium whiskies. Three new styles of Canadian whisky were introduced under the banner of The Canadian Whisky Guild. Sadly, despite being excellent whiskies, the demand did not meet expectations and the brands were discontinued.
However, the demand for premium rye whiskies grew in the early 2000s. Recognizing that the timing was perhaps better, it was decided that one of the discontinued whiskies would be reintroduced. So, in 2012, Lot 40, was reintroduced and met with immediate success. It is an award winning whisky, Best Canadian Blended Whisky (no age statement) in 2013 and 2014. And Best Canadian Rye Whisky in 2016. Canadian Whisky authority Davin de Kergommeaux went so far as to say that Lot 40 has “become the Holy Grail of Canadian whisky, the quintessential Canadian rye.”
Lot No. 40 is an all rye whisky is distilled from a mash of 90% rye grain and 10% malted rye in small batches in a single copper pot still. Though it carries no age statement, Lot 40 matures in new oak casks for seven to eight years.
Lot 40 Canadian Rye Whisky
Producer: Hiram Walker Distillery
Origin: Ontario, Canada
Price Range: $$
Awards: San Francisco 2013, 14, 15, 16; Beverage Testing Institute 2013 (90) 2015 993) 2016 (93); Wine Enthusiast 2015 (97)
Tasting Notes —
Nose: cloves, flints, hints of menthol, buttered popcorn, cinnamon.
Palate: slightly woody / tannic, with lots of spices and herbs. Ginger, clove, cinnamon. Something of rye bread and sour dough too. Again a slight vanilla/ popcorn layer in the background
Finish: not too long, with sourness, pepper and a slightly strange metallic edge in the very end
$$$$$ = Greater than $100
$$$$ = $80 – 100
$$$ = $50 – 80
$$ = $30 – 50
$ = Less than $30
Further Ratings & Reviews
There are many websites and blogs that do an excellent job of reviewing and rating whiskies. As mentioned above The Whiskybits Composite Score is based on an average of at least three reviews conducted by industry leaders. The reviews sites normally referenced include The LA Whisk(e)y Society, The Whisky Reviewer, Proof 66, The Whisky Advocate and The Whisky Jug.