A new limited-edition Canadian whisky series pays homage to some of the NHL’s most celebrated players. J.P. Wiser’s has teamed up with the NHL Alumni Association (NHLAA) to produce regional-based whiskies inspired by the playing styles of Wendel Clark, Lanny McDonald, and Guy Lafleur.
“We wanted to pay tribute to our incredible country by marrying two major pieces of its history – hockey and whisky,” said Derek Wagner, Assistant Brand Manager, Canadian Whisky, at Corby Spirit and Wine Limited. “Thanks to our great partners at the NHLAA and our fantastic Canadian whisky team, what resulted was the Alumni Whisky Series, a unique way to collect and own a piece of history,”
Several NHLAA members visited J.P. Wiser’s Hiram Walker & Sons Limited Distillery in Windsor, Ontario, to witness the process cultivated by master Canadian whisky blender Dr. Don Livermore. The liquor manufacturer was named Distillery of the Year by the Canadian Whisky Awards 2018.
The Wendel Clark selection, available only in Ontario, is described as “bold and tenacious,” just like the former Toronto Maple Leafs star. The 100 percent rye whisky is aged in bourbon barrels for 11 years and boasts hints of orange honeysuckle and dried fruits.
The Lanny McDonald selection, available only in Alberta, is characterized as “well-rounded and wheat-forward.” The nine-year-old whisky, aged in Canadian and virgin oak barrels, features notes of apricots and fresh honey in honour of the Maple Leafs and Calgary Flames star.
The Guy Lafleur selection, only available in Quebec, is smooth with “a memorable finish.” The 100 percent corn whisky has been aged for 10 years in Speyside, bourbon and rum barrels, resulting in hints of honeycomb, toffee, caramel and vanilla—all inspired by the former Montreal Canadiens and Quebec Nordiques star.
A percentage of the proceeds from the Alumni Whisky Series will be given to NHLAA for philanthropic purposes, according to Corby Spirit and Wine Communications.
“This partnership will help the NHLAA’s mandate to support retired hockey players adjust to life after their professional careers end, while also impacting our local hockey communities,” said Glenn Healy, former professional league champion and Executive Director of the NHLAA.
The Alumni Whisky Series is first come, first serve. Once it runs out, it’s gone forever. Another group of players will be honoured in a new series set for release in spring 2019.