Innis & Gunn Canadian Cask - Scottish Oak Aged Beer
Innis & Gunn

Innis & Gunn Canadian Cask - Scottish Oak Aged BeerInnis & Gunn Canadian Cask - Scottish Oak Aged Beer
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English Strong Ale
3.7 | pDev: 12.97%
Innis & Gunn
Scotland, United Kingdom
Retired (no longer brewed)
Innis & Gunn Canadian Cask - Scottish Oak Aged BeerInnis & Gunn Canadian Cask - Scottish Oak Aged Beer
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Reviews: 49 | Ratings: 71
Photo of HappyGuy12345
4.26/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Orange/light-amber with moderate-large amount of frothy head
Smell: Fresh vanilla is quite evident along with oak aroma
Taste: Extremely smooth. I thought I was drinking a lager for a second, but a moment later the vanilla and oak is noticeable, along with the carbonation. Very easy going down.
Mouthfeel: The carbonation and smoothness is unmistakable
Overall: Amazing beer that I look forward to trying again.

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Photo of Vylo
4.65/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is much like their rum aged beer, but with a taste of scotch instead, obviously.

Appearance is a bit lighter, but otherwise smell, taste and mouthfeel is comparable to the rum aged.

Delightful beer if you enjoy scotch (on the rocks it is awesome). If you are more of a rum person, check out their rum aged. Both of them impress.

Note: clear bottles enrage me. Order online or take them from a box, etc. to avoid light struck.

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Photo of liamt07
3.18/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle shared with Steve, 2010 edition. Into a tulip.

Pours mahogany with some ruby highlights, foamy eggshell head. Light lacing. Nose has some light rum, molasses and mild butterscotch; in the same vein as most other Innis and Gunn offerings I've had. Taste has some light butter, rum, some toffee and a bit of light alcohol. Body is thin and almost watery, and has a light spicy and buttery finish. Drinkability is fairly low, certainly not a set of flavours I find too appealing. General indifference to this offering, and not something I'd likely revisit.

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Photo of dgilks
4.05/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Great red-orange colour with a thick off-white head. Decent head retention with the foam dissipating to a thin film.

Smooth, caramel malts on the nose with a spicy, noticeable wood note. Almost get a hint of maple. Slightly fruity.

Rich and rounded malt with lots of little spice and fruit notes playing all around. The oak comes through nicely and in balance.

Medium body with moderate carbonation is quite suitable.

A lovely little beer with lots of malty, oaky goodness.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dirty, murky red with off-white lace head, just a thinnish film after a while. Slight cloud. Not sure about the colour, but looks nice.

Smells whiskeyesque, with lots of sweet boozey notes. Plenty of vanilla with a very intense peppery oak, quite cedary maybe, and mild medicinal hop notes at the back. Interesting, and really quite nice.

Taste is very malty, with lots of other, lighter sweet notes. Brown sugar and vanilla with cedar notes and peppery spice. Some cumin notes on the back and a whiskey booze note. Yeah, I've only had Canadian whiskey once but it has that slight spiced sweetness I remember. Not a huge amount to the beer itself, but it provides a good base for the whiskey notes to launch from, and the balance is nicely struck.

Fairly slick body, but a harsh spicy texture on the mid makes it quite dry on the back. Not bad.

Yeah, decent. Better than straight Canadian whiskey and a nice sweet spice blend overall.

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Photo of beertunes
3.63/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to OKcomputer for this gift. Poured into 10oz glass. Poured a very pretty light mahogany with just under a half-inch of tan head that had low retention and decent lacing.

The aroma was mostly malt with some nice oak flavors and a trace of hops on the finish. The taste was very similar, just more focused and clear. The grainy malt was dominant and the oak added a nice aspect.

The body was nice, but a bit thinner than I would have liked. Drinkability was very good, I could easily have several of theses babies.

Overall, a nice brew, worth seeking out.

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Photo of marty21
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep red/copper colour with a small white head. Settles to a thick ring and leaves thick lacing.

S: Smells of malty caramel and some vanilla. Also a bit of a whiskey smell to it.

T: Up front it's a vanilla and oak with Canadian whiskey. But as it progresses I get a caramel, toffee malt taste.

M: It's medium bodied with light to medium carbonation.

D: This is my favorite offering from Innis & Gunn. I love the transition of flavors in this one compared to say their original. This one is very drinkable you just have to be careful of the 7.1 Abv because you don't really detect any alcohol in this one.

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Photo of Zimbo
3.45/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Hmmm, Scottish (not English)ale and Canadian cask.
To start a slight whisky element on the nose this made a very light fluffy head. Amber brown in colour. A rather unusual morish flavour at first with very forward wood and a lingering almost malty smokey butteriness which lingers. Not unpleasant but certainly unique. Slightly on the fat side and that whisky element is always in the background creating some acidity. Its potency does come through in time as does its heaviness though it does improve in the glass as it is drunk. Interesting but if it wasn't for my curiosity I may have found this hard to finish.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.38/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very clear, but very deep amber hue. Rather heavy in the glass, with an initially full, but ultimately filmy head of bright white bubbling. Lacing is as good and thick as you expect from the British Isles, even from a reasonably filmy head. Looks like a very decent ale.

Nose is a little diminished for an oak aged beer. Slight weak almost small-beeresque malty grain character, followed by a moderate sting of organic hops, giving a slight aroma of lemon myrtle. Little else, and while it's pleasant enough, it's extremely light.

Taste is similar, although there's a faint woody oak character flittering around the back. Starts with a light organic grain note mixed with a touch of phenolic heat, before the wood comes through with a touch of blackberry-tart hops to finish. Feel is smooth and a little hot, but doesn't have much breadth on the palate.

It's a respectable beer, but one that doesn't really plumb the depths of the great beer ocean. For an oak-aged beer, it's quite disappointing. For an English Ale, it's acceptable.

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Photo of Reinheitsgebot71
3/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Special edition for Canada day this year.

The beer pours a crystal clear cherry mahogany colour with a off white very active head that, sadly, quickly dissipates to near nothing.

The dominant smell are the usual Innis & Gunn suspects: strong Diacetyl butterscotch and hints of vanilla. Backing this a slightly more robust toffee/brown sugar malt notes the usual as well as some roasted character. Mild alcohol whiffs permeate the finish.

A malt assault on the tongue through and through is what's presented here. Roasted notes but mostly sweetness which, sadly becomes cloying as the drinking goes on. Hints of mild whiskey and cocoa end in a overly sweet boozy finish.
The body is of a slightly oily nature with low carbonation.

I'll never understand why this breweries beers have become so popular. They lack in the complexity they tout, being; for the most part, vanilla and butterscotch, smelling sugar bombs.

very malty light roastiness lingering sweetness slightly oily body alcohol vanilla very sweet finish mild whiskey hint of cocoa nonexistant hops light butty notes

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.36/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber with a large head.
Nose shows sweet bready malt, rum and raisin ice-cream, woody oak and cream. Very different, quite sweet.
Flavours focus more on the sweet malt and oak, although there's still some rum and raisin. Again, different but nice. Next to no bitterness.
Carbonation should be higher and the body should be thicker.

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Photo of bylerteck
4.27/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Half finger head with popping bubbles on a ruby body with medium carbonation. Head was bigger but seems to be hanging out with a half finger for the duration.

S - Sorta musty. Cigars and oak. Some dark fruit and vanilla is there too. Nice and complex.

T - I get the vanilla again, tobacco. Some dark fruits but the vanilla is less pronounced. Some oakiness is there but again less pronounced. Some caramel is there too. Nice stuff.

M - So smooth. Velvety almost. Mild carbonation is nice.

D - Alcohol seems like it doesn't exist. This is nice and drinkable.

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Photo of decimator
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured into a mug.

A - Poured a clear amber-copper colour with a 1cm light tan head. head receded to a thin cap.

S - Toast, dried fruit, caramel, vanilla, cedar and a hint of whiskey.

T - Caramel, toffee, some citrus, oak and vanilla.

M - Smooth, creamy and a dry finish.

D - The ABV is well hidden. Easy to drink and quite flavourful.

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Photo of StephenRich
4.7/5  rDev +27%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Why am I writing about last year's Canadian Cask? Well, I was able to get a bottle of the 2010 ahead of time, and just couldn't wait the 6 weeks to enjoy it. So I've already talked about the 2010 version. Besides, it was availbale at the LCBO 3 or 4 weeks ago anyways - so we've had had the chance. Plus, I specifically held on to one bottle of the 2009 last year so that I could embrace Canada Day with two version of its own beer and reflect on the year past, and dream for the year to come!

2009 was the very first year for Innis & Gunn's Special Edition Canadian Cask. It came in a 300ml bottle housed in a red box bearing Canada Day 2009 on the front. Only 150 barrels of this beer were produced, and they were of course only sent to Canada. Innis & Gunn brewed the beer with rye grains, and aged it in Canadian Whiskey Barrels, then matured it for a total of 71 days; brining it to 7.1% abv. What was produced was music to my palate then, but is now a magical symphony.

I opened the Canadian Flag Red box and gently slid the once dormant Canadian Cask out of its resting place. I poured it into a stemmed Innis & Gunn glass at a cool 8C (45F). The pour was smooth but rumbled with excitement as a darker than normal, creamy tan-brown head build almost immediately. Sowing the pour produced a ruby red crystal clear beer with rich golden browns, copper oranges and beaming rays and sunny yellows. A soft and airy, but dense 1 and a bit inch head was created - ummm.. Yes, I was very, very excited.

Leaning in for a nose brought classic Innis & Gunn flavors of toffee and caramel. But most evident on the nose was the unmistakable scent of whiskey soaked oak, and a tumbler of Crown Royal. Could this be? Really, I was amazing at the potency and also accuracy of the nose here. It didn't smell kind of like rye, it smelled like a creamy, soft and warm glass of rye. Honestly. Soft vanillas balanced with toffee, and beat away any brief scent of hops that may have existed. The nose was now a game of oak, char, whiskey, and rye grains.

The year has treated the Canadian cask apprizingly, and appetizingly well! The first thing that I noticed in the flavor perfectly mimicked the nose; a much richer and more prominent whiskey and oak character. Before, the oak was apparent, but was hiding behind the rye malt sweetness that I felt strongest in the beer. Now though, right away I am hit with the familiar sensations of aged rye whiskey. Now that I think hard about it... and go in for another sip... This 1 year old Innis & Gunn Canadian Cask could possibly display the leanest and most accurate rye whiskey flavors I have ever tasted in a beer!

A big imperial stout aged in rye is one thing - that can just be menacing and overpowering. But this '09 Canadian is shinning deep with smooth and mellow sweet flavors of charred oak, gentle sweet rye, and that honey and grain sweet rye whisky flavor that I love in Crown Royal and Wiser's Very Old.

The whole character of this beer now is improved well beyond its age. I am so, so happily surprised - party because of how magnificent this beer is now, but mainly because I have had a bad experience with a 1 year old Innis & Gunn. I aged the first batch of Rum Casks for 1 year and it came out of my cellar sour and just totally ruined. This though, this beautiful glowing amber gold beer has warmed my soul and lifted my spirits. I have many 2010′s, and I will be putting more than half my stash in the cellar after this genuinely astonishing experience.

Thank you Innis & Gunn. I hope you have the chance to experience what I just felt. Happy Canada Day!

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Photo of MMansfield
3.23/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep red colour with an off white head, frothy & settles to a ring.

Aroma: Vanilla, dark red fruit, heavy on butterscotch.

Taste: Hint of oak, lots of ripened fruit, quite a bit of sweetness, slighty toasty.

Mouthfeel: Lightly carbonated, high drinkability for 7%, but quite dry in finish.

Final Statement: Not as bad as I thought it would as I'm not an Innnis & Gunn fan. Wouldn't try again.

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Photo of uno99
3.69/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle from the LCBO, poured into a Chimay goblet. It bears noting that I have just finished a large curry (although a fairly bollock-less one). Nevertheless it's probably effect my senses a bit.

A: A very dark mahogany liquid rests underneath a modest head whist lacking in any serious lacing. Looks appetizing enough. (3.0)

S: apple, raisin, oak, ceder, slight lemon zest, corriander. That last one might be lingering from my curry however. Actually very understated on the nose, but complex if you take the time to discover. (4.0)

T: More raisins, sugar, maple, oak, surprisingly not much whiskey, although its definitly there on the finish. (4.0)

M: carbonation is a little harsh and artificial feeling. Calms down a bit ones its been in the glass for 5 minutes or so. A little sticky, especially on the lips. (3.5)

D: A nice one for a special occasion. My occasion on this Sunday evening is shutting the door of my den and hiding from visiting inlaws... I suppose for that purpose, sipping on this for the next 25 minutes or so seems about right. (3.0)

Conclusion: I'd like to compare the two side by side, but I'm fairly sure I prefer the rich vanilla notes and better drinkability from the standard version of this well made beer.

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Photo of Seanstoppable
4.02/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cracked one of these open for Canada Day.

Pours a dark reddish brown color with a finger of creamy white head. Head quickly dissolves to a crown, but leaves a decent amount of lacing.

Hints of oak, vanilla, brown sugar, caramel.

Lots of different little flavors blending together. The oak, vanilla, caramel all blend together. Along with those is a bit of smoky character, and hints of darker fruits like raisins. Some mild bitterness in the end. Well rounded and smooth.

Very interesting beverage. However, the scarcity and price ($6 CDN) drives it above the casual drinking line.

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Photo of PEIBeerGuy
3.45/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had one of the 2010 editions yesterday (as it WAS Canada Day). I didn't take any specific notes when I drank it (I was at a friend's place), but I can say this much:

I love Innis & Gunn's main beer, and I like what they do in general. So, my hopes were high for this. I liked the smell... I picked more raisin / date than orange out of it. The head was decent, and didn't stay high for very long. It was not as smooth as other I & G's. Had I paid more attention and taken more time (I didn't chug it by any means), maybe I would have liked it more... but, I just didn't. It was OK, but just. I liked parts of it, and others I didn't. If they made it again next year, I'd maybe get one... but if other new beers were there vying for my attention / dollars, I might skip it.

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Photo of Morrish
3.45/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

enjoying this one on my country's birthday. here goes,

Appearance - Pours a dark amber colour. About half an inch of white head which dissapears quickly leaving no trace.

Smell - Not getting alot smell wise. You can definately pick out the rye characteristics though. a little smoke, caramel

Taste - Similar to the smell. a little smoke, Oak, caramel, and hunny.

Mouthfeel - Mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium, soft carbonation. long and wet finish.

Drinkability - If your a Rye/Whiskey/Scotch/Bourbon fan it might be worth giving it a shot. I'm likely to reach for a proper Whiskey than another on of these though.

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Photo of DoctorStrangiato
4.25/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 330-ml bottle into a long tulip glass. This is the 2009 Limited Edition.

Appearance - Dark copper with a 1/2-inch sustaining off-white head. Highly carbonated.

Smell - light oak aromas with some subtle caramel. Reduced malt scent and just a slight detection of cider.

Taste - lightly smoky, and with a woody flavour like the original Innis & Gunn ale. A little more malt flavour coming through and the aftertaste is short and reverts to the original oak flavourings.

Mouthfeel - very balanced, superbly even throughout. Active carbonation but only makes an impact at the beginning.

Drinkability - obviously this is a special occasion beer and a treat for the right time. I saved it for the next year and that appears to have been the right decision.

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Photo of eat
3.2/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter, this stuff is transparent dark-copper with an island of cream-white bubbles and ring around the glass. Bits of lace. Not too bad.

Smells of dark malt, rye whiskey (obviously), brown sugar, apples and subtle earthy hops. I've got it in a snifter here, there should be a decent nose but it's a little weak.

Good rye whiskey character in the flavour but the malt backing is not full enough to act as a good base. Lightly hopped, it's mostly watery malt with some rye. Some alcohol present, seeming to come from the whiskey. Can't say I'm into it; nothing is really off, there's just not really anything going for it.

Medium-thin body with a little too much carbonation for its style. Not too bad though.

I found this stuff to be boring and watery. At this price, I wouldn't recommend this stuff to anyone. You can find much better beer for half the price.

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Photo of Derek
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


A: Deep amber-copper with a light than head, ring of retention, light lace.

S: Mango, vanilla, oak, red berries, caramel, butterscotch.

T: Wood, whiskey with plenty of corn, caramel, nut, bread, nice fruitiness, light sweetness (modest bitterness).

M: Well-attenuated, moderate body... not at all dried out our acidic like some barrel-aged brews.

D: A decent drinker.

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Photo of Mamerong
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: poured a clear darkish red brown with a 2 finger off white head that didn't last to long with minimal lacing.

S: strong caramel notes, malts are there too with a very slight oaky/whiskey sent that is just hardly there at the end

T: starts strong caramel and malt then finishes sweet fruity with very little hopps. it leaves a very nice bitter dry taste like the original from the oak. but has a difference with a slight tingle in the back of the throat

M: medium bodied

D: it started out a little harsh but as it warmed it smoothed out and became very nice and easy to drink. not a session beer but very good none the less.

this was a very good beer i would recomend it to anyone who can get it. not 100% sure if i like it more or about the same as original.

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Photo of elricorico
3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Deep red body that is quite clear. Thick finger of beige head that slowly settles to a thin cap and leaves a sheet of lacing.

Vanilla-like oak aroma, and a hearty dose of whiskey smell. I'd like to think there is a malt aroma in there, but it is hard to be sure over the more potent oak and liquor smell.

Oak is the strongest part of the flavour, but the malty strong ale underneath manages to peak through. Finish is not nearly as boozy as one might expect, in fact a faint citrus hop plays a part. Probably the best taste from I&G I've had.

There is a little bit of thickness to the body, but carbonation is a little too light. Comes across a bit like a flat soda.

This isn't bad, the booze isn't overbearing and the cask flavours don't bury the beer flavours. Still not going to be one of my favourites but I'd have it again if offered.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Rich copper with a thin, light cream head. Malts, whisky traces and traces of hops.

Scent is similar to the original, except for the different profile from the Canadian whisky. Mellow, whisky taste with a somewhat higher hop presence than the original. Good, malty, peaty taste.

Nice sipper, a good after dinner beer.

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Innis & Gunn Canadian Cask - Scottish Oak Aged Beer from Innis & Gunn
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 71 ratings