Glutton for punishment that I am, I continued down the unforgiving road of blended Canadian whisky with another product aimed at the apparently whisky-starved rodeo market. “8 Seconds” (although the bottle label had me trying to pronounce “Sec8nds” for longer than I’m comfortable admitting) is the younger sibling of the 8 year-old “8 Seconds Black”. Like Pendleton, the website is rife with scenes from cowboy bars, rodeo imagery, and cowboy hats. The whisky? Apparently it’s aged in oak barrels, blended in “small batches” and has developed “elegant nuances”, of what, they don’t specify. But never mind that, we have pictures of hot girls on mechanical bulls!
Also, the bottle is very pretty.
Nose: Sweet. Soft, melty, buttery caramel. And… yeah that’s it.
Palate: Soft texture. Thankfully not ultra-sweet, although the overall impression is of cake-y baked goods. German chocolate cake frosting?
Finish: Short. Brown sugar melting away to reveal a core of pretty young, grassy grain whisky. Ends with straight vodka notes.
With Water: Dampens the aroma. No effect on the palate, maybe turns up the vegetal notes on the finish.
Overall: This is the first “blended Canadian whisky” that I’ve had (ever) that doesn’t make me want to wash my mouth out. That said, it desperately calls for ice and a bitter or acidic ingredient to balance the inherent sweetness. I would wager that if you wanted to make a cocktail that called for Crown Royal, you’d be slightly better off using this. I wouldn’t bother to drink it straight, though, especially with that vodka finish. Even so, it’s better than direct competitor Pendleton, in my book. I’m now curious about the “Black” label from 8 Seconds.