Booze Review

Whisky Review – Crown Royal XO

Crown Royal XO

We’ve already reviewed the Crown Royal XR and Crown Royal Maple. Now it’s time to review their newest whisky, Crown Royal XO. Here’s what Crown Royal has to say about their latest expression:

This is no ordinary reserve quality whisky.

Crafted by the Crown Royal Master Blender, XO furthers the Crown Royal® signature blend from 50 of our finest whiskies, and then finishes them in cognac casks. Resulting in both an extraordinary complex and smooth expression, Crown Royal® XO is an elegant whisky that is deliciously balanced with hints of vanilla, spice and rich dry fruit.

This extraordinary blend is best enjoyed neat or on the rocks.

In case you couldn’t tell, I’m not in a back story kind of mood, so let’s just get on with our tasting notes…

Talk about a very generous sample! Loved the flask like shape of the bottle.

Talk about a very generous sample! Loved the flask like shape of the bottle.

  • Appearance: Pale copper color.
  • ABV: 40%
  • Aroma
    • Limpd: A little astringent then a good bit of citrus (orange bitters). Once I work past that, there’s a good bit of sweetness, i.e. candies sugar orange slices followed immediately by the expected maple syrup notes. Also getting a bit of caramel.
    • G-LO: This smells like what I imagine a barrel aged whisky cocktail would smell like. Getting lots of candied orange peel, bitters, and botanicals, along with some maple sugar (it is Canadian Whisky after all!), and a hint of peppermint.
  • Taste
    • Limpd: Very light mouthfeel with a definite Manhattan Cocktail quality. It’s almost as if I can taste the Vermouth, bitters, and Rye whiskey when I drink this.
    • G-LO: It even tastes like what I imagine a barrel aged cocktail would taste like. It’s reminds me of drinking a very dry Rye Manhattan. Everything in the nose carries through to the palate with some candied orange peel, maple, mint, and rye spice.

The Verdict

The Crown Royal XO was definitely a unique and unusual drinking experience. We’re both curious to try this chilled alongside a Rye Manhattan to see if our impressions were accurate. While we both enjoyed it, I doubt that we’d buy a full bottle, especially given it’s $50 suggested retail price. Definitey worth a try, just not sure if it’s worth the asking price.


Many thanks to Taylor Strategy for providing us with this very generous sample!

4 replies »

  1. DUDE,what did you taste;a cocktail or Crown Royal XO?I’m very surprised at your review…Maybe a Shirley Temple for you next time or Bubblegum Vodka…


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