If It's Broken, Don't Fix It.Broken Top Bourbon Whiskey

Cascade Street Distillery

Tasting notes

Colour:  Deep gold.

Nose:  Caramel, hay/grass, cloves, nutmeg, ginger snaps, crème brûlée.

Taste:  Cloves, nutmeg and pepperiness followed by the sweetness of the caramel.

Finish:  Medium.

A few distilled words

There’s something calming as well as reassuring with constants in life such as:

  • the speed of light in a vacuum (299,792 kilometres per second)
  • no matter how hard you try, you’ll never win an argument against gravity
  • bourbon burn
  • you’ll never find that misplaced item until you go out and buy a new one.

(Press “play” then continue reading.)

Not so fast.

There’s a disruption in the space/time continuum, thanks to Cascade Street Distillery’s Broken Top Bourbon.  This is another selection from Whisky Quarterly Ontario’s e-shelves.  Granted, perhaps the universal constant of the bourbon burn may be a bit of a hyperbole, nonetheless, Broken Top Bourbon does make this theory falsifiable.  (If only the rest of physics was this tasty, I would have paid more attention in class.)

Right off the hop, sweet caramel notes politely introduce themselves.  Right behind are scents that say: “Hay – we’re here.”  In the mix are notes of cloves, ginger and nutmeg.  The neat thing here is they aren’

t dominant.  They aren’t brash or bold.  There’s no yelling going on here.  The spices aren’t overtaking the sweetness of Broken Top.  Imagine all these notes perfectly perched and balanced on a teeter-totter.

Of course, more experimentation is needed.  Tasting Broken Top reveals the spices and sweetness, again, not wanting to shout over one another.  It’s all even-Steven (or Stephen if you prefer) with the delivery with

a soft, thick coating on the tongue.  But I’m waiting… waiting… waiting… and I can’t find the bourbon burn.    To be sure, there’s a tingle at the back of the throat; however, it’s not that expected bourbon burn.  It’s more like a bourbon simmer. And, as the flavours reach a quick boil going down down the back of the throat, the finish gets put on the back burner and set to low.

Here’s the thing:  this is not a tepid bourbon.  It’s just reserved, that’s all.  If you want to introduce a friend to the world of bourbon, this is a delicious way to bring them in on the ground floor before bringing them to the Burn Penthouse.  At 43 percent abv, it offers a little more kick for the flavours to show up, nicely balanced and with no one speaking out of turn.

Broken Top is nothing if approachable and easy going.  You wouldn’t like it too much if your friend got into your grill to make a point.  Broken Top doesn’t get in your whiskey grill either.

So, follow the science and conduct your own Broken Top whiskyological experiments, neat or in a cocktail.  Just a note, like I did, you may need to do a couple to prove your theory.  Cheers.


WQO Score: 80

Other WQO selections you may like:

Probably Shouldn't Whiskey American Whiskey
California Cowboy Whiskey Bourbon
Devine Distillery, Alt Whisky Ancient Grains
Ironclad Distillery Southern Honey Bourbon