Johnnie Walker 18 Year

Peated Blend — Scotland

3.5 out of 5 stars
Bottled 2019 Diageo is genius. For those hardcore whisky fans point to Diageo’s alliance with HBO and Game of Thrones as a pact for profit only: just shut up. Diageo is dumping its developmentally challenged crap whisky into collectible bottles to distract the tourists, collectors, and flippers; in order to protect people like me, and hopefully you. There are now three different Game of Throne Johnnie Walkers; all fucking garbage fires. Meanwhile, the Black 12 year old, the Green 15 year old, and the now colorless 18 year old (the spiritual descendant of Platinum), have all seen a bump in their quality. Diageo has found a way to make money from their garbage, and increase the quality of their products for those actually looking for good whisky. This blend is just so clean and pleasant. I think I like it better than the last bottle of regular Blue Label that I had. I do not care that this is artificially colored, chill-filtered, or served at 40%. I hate this new trend among whisky reviewers of “checking boxes,” judging a whisky before it even interacts with your senses. It’s wine snobbery madness! I love that this whisky is 40% because it is delicious and I can have 3-4 ounces easily before I have an important decision to make about how the rest of the night is going to go. This is a complex whisky. It has every flavor on the wheel. The nose is enormously fruit forward with apple cider and ripe red fruits like raspberries. Deeper notes of malt and honey are present. The palate is where the mass market appeal becomes obvious. There is a confusion of flavors, designed to cancel out any distinctive notes, so you are left with this nicely balance, but nondescript, velvety liquid. The finish is smokier than I remember the old JW Gold to be. I have never tried JW Platinum. The grain influence and the peat influence are the highlights of the palate and finish for me, because they are subtle and superbly integrated. At 18+ years, the grain alcohol starts to give something positive that pure malts just don’t have, in the form of coconuts. I had this side-by-side with Chivas Regal 18, and JW clearly is the winner, and the brand that respects its customers as connoisseurs. Score: * (Unforgettably good) How much does a bottle cost: $70-100 How much do I think a bottle is worth: $100
70.0 USD per Bottle
  • Benji-Robert

    the note about it being a touch smokier than old "gold 18y" have me very interested in trying this one out... I have one lonely bottle of old gold 18y unopened I'm gonna sip on one prime day in my twilight.

  • SpartaTodd

    I felt this way about Jameson Black Barrel. A very satisfying dram at a reasonable cost. JW Green is sublime.

  • AntonioSchmid

    Couldn’t agree more. “I hate this new trend among whisky reviewers of “checking boxes,” judging a whisky before it even interacts with your senses. It’s wine snobbery madness!” Perfect!

  • Ctrexman

    Excellent review

  • ScotchingHard

    @PBMichiganWolverine I got it 2017 I think. After trying a dram for my birthday. I’m still planning to try the whole series.

  • PBMichiganWolverine

    @ScotchingHard the Ghost & Rare Brora? It’s still available? Most places are sold out

  • ScotchingHard

    @PBMichiganWolverine yes! I liked it so much that I bought a bottle.

  • PBMichiganWolverine

    Have you tried their Ghost & Rare Brora ? I found a whole new respect for JW in that one...pricey, but damn good