Renowned whisky writer Jim Murray has announced Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye as the 2016 World Whisky of the Year, marking the first time a Canadian Whisky has received the honour. The recognition comes at a time when both the Canadian and Rye whisky categories continue to gain popularity amongst whisky aficionados and consumers alike.
"Crown Royal Northern Harvest pops up out of nowhere and changes the game," said Murray of the whisky, which he awarded a record-tying 97.5 out of 100 points. "It certainly puts the rye into Canadian Rye. To say this is a masterpiece is barely doing it justice."
Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye was first released in the U.S. in early 2015. The variant showcases the distinctly Canadian rye whiskey featured in the traditional Crown Royal Deluxe Blend. The latest variant to be introduced by Crown Royal, Northern Harvest Rye (90 proof, 45% ABV) is the brand's first ever blended, 90% rye whisky and embodies a "smooth and spicy flavour profile that can be mixed into traditional rye cocktails or enjoyed neat or on the rocks".
"Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye showcases the rye whisky that has been such an integral component of the Crown Royal Deluxe blend since 1939. This is a testament to the unbelievable blending and distilling that's been taking place in Gimli for over 75 years," said Yvonne Briese, Vice President of Crown Royal. "We are thrilled that Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye has been named World Whisky of the Year!"
In addition to being named 2016 World Whisky of the Year, Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye received a double gold medal at this year's San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye is part of Crown Royal's vast portfolio of variants, including Crown Royal Regal Apple and Crown Royal Hand Selected Barrel, a double gold recipient and winner of "Best Canadian Whisky" in the 2015 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.