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Tales from the Creek

Wine Maker turned Whisky Maker

I am a winemaker by trade, however, in 1992, I decided to start my own distillery in Grimsby, Ontario, Canada and turn my attention to whisky. Having been a winemaker for over 20 years, I decided I needed another canvas on which to paint
to satisfy my creative thirst. Also, I have always enjoyed the taste of a fine whisky. Scotch whisky makers were promoting their single malt whiskies and Bourbon whisky makers were beginning to develop & promote small batch bourbons, but no one in Canada was enhancing the heritage of Canadian Whisky. Over the years the craftsmanship of our Canadian spirit was being lost amongst distillery closings and consolidations. In the mid 1800’s there were over 200 whisky makers.

Single Grain Whiskies

Intuitively, the mash bill concept doesn’t make sense to a winemaker. Wines are vinted by individual varietal to bring out the best taste characteristics from each grape type. Corn doesn’t taste like barley, and rye doesn’t taste like corn, so why mix them altogether at the beginning of the process?

Copper Pot Distilled

It wasn’t like that in the 1800’s when whisky makers used copper pot stills. Conversion to column stills came about when whisky taxes were imposed. Distillers chose the column still because it was very cost effective. Flavor loss was compensated for by lower prices. But, there is a reason why cognac and small scotch whiskies are made in copper pot stills. Pot stills capture not just the alcohol but also the flavor.

Great Barrels

The quality and toasting of the barrels can really change the spirit and no two barrels are alike. Light, medium or heavy char will greatly influence the flavor and aging of the whisky.

The Result is in the Bottle

I believe I have created a whisky that is smooth and mellow but also intense and complex with a character of its’ own.

Tasting Notes of a Whisky Maker

Forty Creek Barrel Select Whisky displays aromas of honey, vanilla and apricot, which fuse with toasty oak, black walnut and spice. The flavor is rich and bold with a smooth, long finish. As you let the whisky breathe in your glass many other flavors begin to evolve such as pecan, chocolate, orange and spice

Thank you for your interest in my whisky.

My Very Best Regards,


John K. Hall, Whisky Maker

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