Tag Archives: Blended Scotch

WWII-era 1930s/1940s Johnnie Walker Red Label

Tasting: WWII-era 1930s/1940s Johnnie Walker Red Label

WWII-era 1930s/1940s Johnnie Walker Red LabelDram data:
Distillery: blend
Bottler: –
Distilled: –
Bottled: 1930s/1940s
Age: –
Limitation: –
Casks: –
Alcohol: 40?%

There are two reasons to visit the Limburg Whisky fair – the first one is the people you meet, the second one is the whisky that’s available there. This Johnnie Walker Red label, bottled in the 30’s or 40’s (let me know if you can narrow it down further), is an example for the latter. Never having tried an old version of this extremely well-known blend I thought it would be a good investment of 10€ for a 2cl sample… let’s give it a try, shall we?

Tasting notes:
Colour:
 light amber
The nose reminds me of an old mechanic’s workshop. A concrete floor soiled with several decades worth of oil and grease and freshly spilt cherry syrup mixed with extra dry vermouth. Lots of vermouth, actually. Perhaps the tiniest hint of smoke? Alcohol is noticeable on the nose, albeit only slightly. This has absolutely nothing in common with the modern variant, except for being on the “light and easy” side of things but let’s keep in mind that this has been sitting around for decades in unknown conditions and I’m lacking comparison.  Let’s move on to the palate! 

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Chivas Regal 18 yo blend

Tasting: Chivas Regal 18 yo blend

Chivas Regal 18 yo blendDram data:
Distillery: – (Blend)
Bottler: Chivas Brothers Ltd.
Distilled: –
Bottled: 2015
Age: 18
Limitation: –
Casks: –
Alcohol: 40%
chillfiltered and coloured
Whiskybase link

The bog standard Chivas Regal 12 yo blended Scotch is being quaffed in unbelievably huge quantities all around the world, but then there’s also the older, and more expensive, yet still affordable sipling (about 50€ at the time of writing), the 18 yo. I’ve never tried it – about time I did so, I guess…

Tasting notes:
Colour: E150a-caused dark red-orange hue
The nose starts off light enough with an unexpected dominance of light alcoholic notes, but there’s more lurking in the background. Lots more, a very dense, interwoven nasal experience and malt-dominated, as is to be expected from a blended whisky in that price range. Honey, vanilla, sweet fruits (mango, apricots, peaches, sweet grapes, honey melon, lychees and many more) paired with palm honey, old spicy grain whisky, a light grassy note and a pinch of mulled wine spices. Background notes are provided by a layer of fragrant, but not overwhelming oak. Very well put together, complex yet light enough to be mass-compatible. Nonetheless, it’s able to speak for itself, not just a base for a mixer! On to the palate now! Continue reading

Johnnie Walker Double Black

Blind tasting: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Johnnie Walker Double BlackDram data:
Distillery: – (Blend)
Bottler: Original Bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: ca. 2015
Age: NAS
Limitation: –
Casks: –
Alcohol: 40%
chill filtered; coloured
Whiskybase link

Tasting notes:
Colour:
fake-looking orang-ey dark gold.
Ah yes, another blind tasting – haven’t done one of these in a while. The only hint I have is that it’s a travel retail 1l-sized bottling. Let’s get going then, shall we?
The nose starts off pretty light and muted at first contact, no way this is bottled at more than 40% ABV. A nose not to offend anyone: A profound generic / honey sweetness paired with vanilla, toffee, orange rind, slight spices (allspice, cinnamon) and perhaps a hint of peat smoke in the background or is the cask fooling my senses here? Continue reading