I used to get invited to scotch tastings by Johnnie Walker. I am not a fan of their product but the tastings were great. All the free scotch you could drink! The Master Blender would come over from Scotland to host the tastings.
One thing that I learned that just fascinates me is the way scotch is blended. Blended scotch's are of course a blend of different single malts. The master blender explained that if you drink a Johnnie Walker scotch today that it will taste the same as if he opens a bottle from 200 years ago. Scotch is blended not by taste but by smell. A single malts taste may vary from year to year due to weather conditions and other variables. Since that will alter the taste of a blend a new recipe has to be created every year. The way he keeps the taste the same from year to year is by smelling samples of all the single malts and then combining some of them in varying amounts. it is fascinating to me that he can keep the taste that consistent.
I also think that having that keen of a since of smell must be awful when just walking through different parts of a town or going over to peoples houses.
yeah, I was just making reference to gescom's comment that basically for a cheap "house bottle" (like under $20), a blend like Dewars may be a better buy. No matter what, blends--even the low-end ones can be smoother than like-priced single malts. But Dewars is almost TOO smooth. DANGEROUSLY smooth..... I know. No blends allowed. Got it. So I guess I can't pimp my Suntory Hibiki then.
Not to run afoul of the Macallan crew, but while the flavor is nice I've always considered it too hot on the finish. For me anyway. Even the 18. Got a bottle as a gift and was surprised that it wasn't more smooth at that price.
Last edited by OTTo VoN BLoTTo; June 21st, 2007 at 09:34 PM.
For relaxing times make it Suntory time
On a side note, I am a big Johnny Walker fan (Blue). On a trip home off a British business trip I stopped in the duty free and had the opportunity to get a good deal on a smaller then a fifth (1/2 liter??) of Blue label. The beauty was the lady gave me some tastes of various JW products. Blue, Green, Gold. The fourth was a unique bottle that I am still kicking myself for not getting. It was a single malt that they only offer in Great Britain. Not a bad start to the day. Fourth quality scotch shots by 9:30 am and then onto a business class flight home. Yes, that was a good day.
Haven't cracked that JW Blue label yet either. Has to have aged five more years. Might be time for a couple of fingers ...
Note: Whiskey is not bottle aged. It is aged in wooden casks and then bottled. It will taste the same today as it will in 5 years. So drink up and enjoy.
Last edited by UnderTheGUN; June 21st, 2007 at 09:29 PM.
I don't drink enough to need a beater bottle so I buy at the minimum 15yr and up for single malts.
JW Blue is my regular blend.
Last edited by Fisch; June 21st, 2007 at 11:17 PM.
Yes, that is one of the things I learned from the JW tastings. Single malts are meant to have just a tiny bit of water added to the glass. This will release the flavor and open it up. They should also be served neat. But I like one cube of ice with mine.