A night with Forty Creek Whisky and John H. Hall and iYellow Wine Club
When iYellow Wine Club announced their next event would be a whisky sampling at Toronto’s Spoke Club, I had to attend. On the corner of King and Portland Street and just a short elevator ride up to the fourth floor opens into a modern yet cozy venue. Tonight John K. Hall shares with us a small glimpse into the world of Canadian whisky, and how he shook up the Canadian distilling industry. Hall started out as a wine maker and decided to make his whisky following the same premise. Instead of mixing the grains together he starts by making his whiskeys as single grains, bringing out the best in each. As part of our evening we were able to taste each in its purity.
100% rye whisky is always best on the second sip. Cinnamon, vanilla, and spice with aromas of toffee and caramel; aged 7 years in a lightly-charred barrel. 100% barley whisky reminds me of the soft, butter nose of a highland Scotch whisky with a short finish; barrel aged for 6 years in a medium charred barrel. 100% corn whisky is slightly sweet with notes of oaky butterscotch and vanilla; barrel aged for 8 years in a heavy charred barrel.
To accompany the fabulous spirits the kitchen has created each h’ordeuvre to incorporate and complement Hall’s richly flavoured whiskys. Buttery tender braised veal cheeks sit lightly on potato caraway scones. Forty Creek flamed wild mushrooms are a delight and finished with Benedictine blue cheese on toasted walnut rye. Five year old mini smoked cheddar cheese sandwiches are rich and it the spot with a sip of Forty Creek Barrel Select.
I can’t forget to mention the gorgeous cheese plate and salty cured meat platter.
Once again I leave satiated. Hall is charming and a delight in conversation. If you love Canadian whisky you will fall in love with Forty Creek.