Heck, walk through any duty free store and chances are there will be a huge display dedicated to JW Blue. You can thank the marketing power of Diageo for that one.
As a gift, you can’t go wrong. Your recipient will know what they’re getting and they’ll be very thankful.
But is it worth it to buy for yourself at home?
Ehhh… that’s a tough one.
Johnnie Walker Blue is just so expensive. Around here, it clocks in around $180 plus tax for a 750ml bottle.
My Personal Take
The price kills it for me. $180 for 750mls puts this into strict indulgence territory. The Macallan 18 is around $170 for 750ml, also an indulgence, but is a single malt that claims an age – eighteen years.
Dollar of dollar, I think I’d rather have three bottles of something in the $50 range than one bottle in the $150 area.
Funny story, I was on the Most Precious Tour at Macallan and we sampled a Macallan 25 (I think, the list price was £321). It was delicious. It was smooth. It was also three times the price of a Macallan 18.
So I asked the tour guide what he thought and he gave me this argument – would I prefer one bottle of 25 or THREE bottles of 18? The answer is clear.
I feel the same way about JW Blue. It’s nice, for sure, but it’s not so much better that you’re getting good value per dollar out of the deal.
Scores & Accollades
For how much it costs, the scores and awards aren’t really all that impressive.
I pulled these scores from the BevMo! website, a popular West Coast retailer:
- Wilfred Wong Rating: 94 (he’s the BevMo cellar master, a veteran wine competition judge and writer)
- Wine Enthusiast Rating: 89 (Wine Enthusiast website has it at 95)
- Beverage Tasting Institute Rating: 93 (Tastings.com doesn’t have Blue listed on their site, so I can’t confirm this number… it does list Double Black, which gets a 93 though)
Whisky Advocate doesn’t score Johnnie Walker Blue (it does score the Anniversary at 95, but that’s a $3500 bottle!), so we’re at a loss in terms of scores. For what it’s worth, Double Black scored a 90.
Say what you will about scores but it seems like there just isn’t much coverage on Johnnie Walker Blue. Does that mean it’s bad? Not necessarily but it was a little surprising after I did some digging.
Let’s look at awards then. At the 2013 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, Johnnie Walker Blue scored “only” a Gold Medal. A Gold Medal is second only to a Double Gold, of which 45 were awarded in 2013.
There was a Johnnie Walker that won Double Gold? Double Black, which will run you around $35 a bottle. They are two totally different spirits in terms of design and intent. That said, Double Black gets some great scores and it’s much much cheaper.
What do you think about Johnnie Walker Blue? Is it worth the price tag?
I personally agree with your logic. I am a self-proclaimed single-malt bigot. I don’t do blended or vatted whisky; at least not very often. I do confess that I have tried as many of the JW’s as I can afford. And I confess I have a bottle of JW Blue in my bar. But, when anyone I’m talking scotch with asks the JW Blue question my personal opinion is, the best JW on the street is JW Swing; and most people have never heard of it; never seen it and would swear when they do see it that its not a JW since its not in the distinctive rectangular bottle. It will run between $55 and $65 a bottle where you can find it and it is every bit as good as JW Gold, JW Platinum, and JW Blue.
I do very little blended or vatted myself (though I have a bottle of Monkey Shoulder I have yet to enjoy) but it sounds like you have a little more experience. I’ve heard of JW Swing before but never had it, I might have to give it a try given such a ringing endorsement.
I had the opportunity to go to a scotch dinner where they used different Balvenie scotch both in the preparation of the different courses and of course, you were served a ‘dram’ of that whisky with that course of the meal. The distributor for Balvenie introduced the Monkey Shoulder that evening. Honestly, not a fan but…I broke the cardinal rule of comparing the Balvenie Single Malts that I’ve tasted to the Monkey Shoulder and it was not a fair comparison. That was back when you could only get Monkey Shoulder in Texas and Illinois (June 2013). I now have a bottle in my bar and, it is a good comparison scotch for when I do tastings for friends. If I am going to drink a blended whisky it is normally JW Double Black or Swing (I just replaced my Swing yesterday $63). Love to hear your thoughts when you taste the Monkey Shoulder.
i tried this bottle about 20 years ago.
and trust me it’s between a red label and black label.
infact at the time i just mixed it with coke.
nothing worth a mention.
Hmm… No offense, but you seem to be missing the point of this blend.. How do I put this..? You don’t make what is essentially a $200.00 “jack n’ coke” with JW Blue Label… its just blasphemous and an utter waste of money.
That’s like saying you didn’t enjoy smoking a Montecristo No. 2 because it made you sick after you smoked the entire thing in 20 minutes and inhaled after every puff, getting it WAYY too hot and complaining that the flavor sucked. You wouldn’t pour a full dinner wine glass of a 2001 Chateau d’Yquiem Sauternes and complain that it was “too sweet” because you WAY over-poured and/or drank the entire aperitif while eating the main course.
I urge you to reconsider my comments and try it again; I think you would have given it it’s well-deserved praise if you had enjoyed it the way it’s intended to. Unfortunately the sad truth is that with a lot of high-end spirits people assume because it costs so much more it MUST make damn 7 n’ 7 or whisky sour taste THAT much better.. It’s those people who drive whisky lovers crazy (myself included). I’m not saying you are one of those people, but you’d be surprised how many people do this and taint reviews by being all too subjective due to the ignorance of the taster, not the spirit itself.
He said he did that with the JW Swing not the Blue.
Sauternes is a digestif, NOT an aperitif.
Actually you do whatever floats your boat. The pretentiousness that accompanies the – no coke, no ice brigade disappoints me. If you want blue or King George with ice and coke, so be it. It’s true you won’t savour the nuances of the whisky, but you might enjoy it and be pleased that you are drinking an expensive blended whisky, albeit loaded with Talisker and Royal . Personally I now prefer a single barrel malt for that money, but hey as I said whatever…
I agree. At a blind tasting last year, I tasted and rated several whiskier in the range from € 50 to € 200 (65 to 250 US dollar). Afterwards I found out that the shiskies from the 65 – 80 dollar range got better marks from me than the expensive ones. It’s all in the taste and the moment of the day. So yes, give me 3 bottles of 50 dollar instead of one 150 dollar one.
Blind tasting is really the only objective way to know… what’s interesting is that the 65-80s did so much better. I wonder if it’s because there’s no mystique around that price point.
I think the pricing puts Blue about a mile past the point of diminishing returns. I won’t say it’s not good, but I will say it’s not THAT good.
My Scotch palate isn’t developed sufficiently to appreciate whatever nuances any $180 bottle of whisky brings to the table. I’m with you- I’d rather have 3 bottles of really good drink.
The palate sophistication is part of it too, maybe there is something magical about it that I’m just missing. 🙂 I suspect not though…
my father introduced me to single malt whisky at the tender age of 16. at the time it was given to me as a cure for a bad cold.
i sipped it and knocked it back. a glenfiddich 18yr
ever since malt is my weakness . ive also been through the johnnie walker range, on the back of their reputation. i would say the green label 15 yr is the best value for money and as good as any in the range. gold label is the best in my opinion. and blue overrated. in my humble opinion as i’m no expert with any qualification’s other than i’ve drunk a lot of variants of good whisky. and i know what i like. in my opinion glenfiddich 18yr
is the best money you will ever spend penny for penny.
and if you can afford it stick with McCallan 12 yr or any age over
the 50 year old is the best iv’e ever drank…
I’m not sure scotch at 16 is a great idea but it sounds like you turned out ok! 🙂
My first scotch was at 9. I hated it then,never touched it again till i turned 18. Now all i have is a single malt.
When I decided it was high time for me to learn something about scotch, I started with Johnnie Walker Black. It was a Christmas gift, and I was in my glories. It did not take long to learn about Mr. BLUE. I have yet to try it, and certainly I would if given a reasonable opportunity, but I could never justify buying a bottle for myself. I would demand that the Blue was 5 times better tasting than the Black, and we all know that THAT is simply SILLY. Blue is a bragging rights dram. If you are into that, then have at it. I will continue my learning journey on finding that special underrated dram at a reasonable price that makes me grin from ear to ear with delight. ~ Bob/Madison, Ohio
That’s a good way to put it… bragging rights dram.
I had the pleasure of trying the Blue a couple months ago, even got to bring home the bottle with a few ounces left. I had several tasting alone, one finger at a pour, but still cannot justify the $250 price tag. I would three bottles of Dalmore 12 or Oban before I drop $250 for JW Blue.
I confess that I’ve never tasted the Blue, preferring not to spend so much on a blend. But I do love the Green which sadly has been phased out by Diageo, so I do recommend to grab those where you can especially at the reduced prices I see for it at various liquor stores here in south Florida. The Green is a wonderful blended malt, i.e., no grain in it, and at 43% is more potent than most of the blended whiskies in the JW fold. I strongly suspect that the Blue is a show horse, so to speak, Johnnie Walker being the most recognized name in Scotch, and what you’re really buying is a marketing package rather than a quality whisky. Ask yourself whether you would rather spend upwards of $200 on a hyped blended Scotch or for the same total amount of money (roughly), you can purchase the following single malts: Balvenie Double Wood, Highland Park 12, Bunnahabhain 12 and a Laphroaig Quarter Cask. A no brainer decision if ever there was one.
i agree if money is an object.
but if not try the whisky exchange for rare bottlings
and special glenfiddichs and mccallans
I think JW Blue is the “gift” whisky. It is a way for someone who is not necessarily “deeply” into scotch to give a gift that they know the person on the other end will recognize, recognize the cost, and appreciate. For this, and all the advertising behind it, they get to charge a premium. As long as it’s a good product, I think there is nothing wrong with that. Now, if someone would just be nice enough to gift me one, already, I could report back on my thoughts on it. 🙂
Yes yes, it very much is a gift whisky.
I’ve tasted the Blue and I agree – it wasn’t worth the premium. In fact, I liked the Gold better for a lot less, … but then I tend to breat that rule with Balvenie also – I like the 15 better than the 21. I regarded JW as the best blended scotch until recently when I found Mokey Shoulder, but it’s still a good scotch, if for nothing else, it’s remarkably consistent.
Technically Monkey Shoulder is vatted, so it’s all single malts… whereas JW isn’t. I never realized that until recently.
JW Gold is my favourite blended scotch
, … sorry, that’s “Monkey Shoulder”, …
Wayne, Monkey Shoulder is a non-age statement blended malt Scotch Whisky from William Grant & Co. It’s a blended malt consisting of Glenfiddich, Balvenie, & Kinninvie single malts at 43% & at $30, all good attributes.
Ralfy on YouTube in his video Whisky Review 47 said that it was a recommended blended malt. In his review 75, he said MS was a budget & quality recommendation. (Check out Ralfy. In his 500 plus vids, he’s most knowledge, informative & entertaining. His grades run from 80 through about 92-ish. If his grade is from 85-86 and approaching 90, those whiskys are well worth buying. He doesn’t review anything below 80.)
Serge at Whisky Fun gave MS a 3 star/80 points on 4/13/11 & a 2.5 star/79 on 10/3/06. For Serge, these grades are quite drinkable ratings. Serge is drinkable to really drinkable from 2.5*/75 to 3.5*/85. If he gives a 3.5/86 into the 90s, those spirits are heavenly and a must buy, if, of course, you can afford them. He rates a whole lot of old to quite old (15 yr, 20 yr, and above) spirits which normal people will never taste, because one can’t afford them.
I like MS, it’s a good buy, and I will buy it again. Out of 10, I give MS a 8.0/10 for quality, and in the days of runaway prices of distilled spirits & especially of quality Scotch, I give it a solid 8.5/10 for value. Ain’t nothing wrong with that. From New Orleans, Slainte.
Forgot: MS is a non-smoky & quite accessible blended malt. Good stuff. Slainte.
What I learned from this post is that I am picking up a bottle if Double Black tonight. Thanks for the informative post Jim!
Ha, good takeaway! I first saw it in duty free, my dad bought a few bottles on the way out to give to relatives as gifts (funny thing about gifts… buy something too nice and they’ll never drink it, buy something nice but approachable and you know they will). We had some, liked it, and he bought more on the way back.
I’ll gladly take 3 bottles of something in the $50 range over a bottle of JW blue. Personally, I like Black and Double black over blue. It’s been already said, but the Blue label is put on some sort of pedestal by consumers that are not into drinking whisky. However, these consumers can’t be faulted since they don’t know better and JW is somewhat of a household name through all of the marketing when it comes to buying a “good” bottle of whisky. Let’s face it, if a person who doesn’t know anything about scotch and needs to buy a scotch drinker a gift, the first bottle they will grab for is something they can read and pronounce and that’s JW.
JW blue is good, very good, but I’d rather have TWO (let alon three) bottles os JW Gold
Fully agree. JW Blue is a great gift to give / get, but to drink, for $180, you could get 4 bottles of Highland park 12 or Laphroaig 10 or 2 bottles of Glenlivet 18 or 8 bottles of Monkey shoulder.
As for ratings, JW Blue is rated 95 by WE, but so is Chivas 18, and is $60 a bottle.
If you look at the bigger picture, JW Blue & King George are Diageo’s top shelf answer to Pernod/Grant/Edrington’s $200+ Malts, Diageo’s marketing keeps it there.
So yes, very hard to top a JW Blue as a gift, but the daily drinker could do lots better with $180.
JW is now creating a Vatted Malt called Odessey at $900 a bottle. Can’t wait to rationalize that one next 🙂
I totally agree with your post. I have had JW Blue and can think of at leat 3 or 4 bottles I have that are better and cheaper. I am not a single malt bigot but do like to sample different varieties.
I have tried JW Swing and can tesity that it is a very good bottle. Highly recommend you add one to your bar. When I feel like I want to have a good JW and don’t mid spending the extra cash(>$60-$70) I love to have have JW Gold. Solid bottle. Love the toffee and vanilla. For a special treat I keep it in my freezer for over 24 hrs and have it neat when I feel like having a good moment. The shame is that they stopped making and selling JW Gold.
Now I have an unopened bottle and do not want to waste it too fast. Will save it for a special occasion.
Have a good day gentlemen
I think that JW Blue, like any highly marketed scotch is going to have to live up to its billing to some extent, but the reality is that in the blended Scotch market, and the realm of reasonability, price for many people is going to be a prohibiting factor. I have never had JW Blue, but two friends with discerning tastes have and neither of those gentlemen would give it their stamp of approval. Taste and price are going to make the decision for all whisky drinkers it is just that taste for some may never exceed what is perceived to be lower cost or lower end distillations. My personal favorite SM scotch is Glengarioch 12 year Old. It is affordable for me and to tell you the truth I like it better than some older whisky I have tasted. Alas JW Blue, if I would not be offered a dram or a bottle then I would be unlikely to buy it.
Having purchased a select limited edition bottle of 50 Yr Glenfiddich for $27,000 I must address the discussion between cost and taste. I often get asked if the taste is “that much better?” Well Jim Murray’s scoring was a 97! Now the question is how much more are you willing to pay , if money is not a concern, for a 97 over a whisky rated at 94? Both would be great whiskies. The plain fact is that one can purchase an excellent whisky for $100. Sure there is a certain prestige of drinking a more expensive whisky and yes it is a fun experience, but he fact is the Ardbeg Corryvreckan that I purchased last week ($92) is rated by Murray as a 96.5 as is a whole lot cheaper than the Johnnie Walker Blue which is rated at an 88. Taste is only one element of price. Perhaps, I should say purchase the whisky that matches your own tastes and wallet.
Have not tried the Blue, do have a bottle of platinum and spice road at the house right now. I would have to say Blue is not worth the money unless you just want to have it to “show off”. I would much prefer to have several Balvenie Double wood, Glenlivet etc. Or even Monkey Shoulder which is a nice easy drinking scotch. Could get 6 of those for one Blue.
I absolutely love the Glenkinchie scotch. I presume you have tasted it, but are you just as fond of it as me?
Also I was in New York recently, where I had a whisky called Bullet Rhye. Does that mean anything to you? Brilliant whisky!
We had a bottle of Blue given to us for a wedding reception (having a slightly larcenous bartender in the family is not at all a bad thing.) What a disappointment. Not a bad bottle by any means, but not remotely worth the price. I can name half a dozen $50-60ish single malts that are vastly superior. I can’t even fathom paying that kind of price for a blend. Maybe I’m just a rube, but so be it. I expected choirs of angels with the first sip of such an exalted elixir; instead it was a muted hum. I suppose I lack the subtlety to appreciate the fine gradations of this supreme product, but to me it was boring, lackluster, humdrum, mundane — calibrated to offend no one, and as a consequence capable of exciting no one.
I won’t be purchasing any, not even to impress my rustic friends. I just don’t see the value in a $200+ dull, boring blended whisky.
I’m not a whiskey drinker so I bought a gift box with 4 small bottles. Johnny walker blue, platinum, gold and black. Blue was definately the smoothest. Don’t care much for any of them but blue is the easiest to drink. I tried them all on the rocks. The blue is almost gone. Too expensive to mix but I drank plenty black with coke in Thailand because it was better than makong. I prefer rum. Sorry.
I should also mention I had a bottle of swing a few years ago. Didn’t like that either but the bottle was cool. Gave it away to a whiskey drinker who loved it.
I am more of a wine drinker than whisky drinker. With that said, I think I enjoy a good whisky as much as the next person. My approach to tasting and rating whiskies is similar to my approach of tasting and rating wines which means to taste similar drinks together side by side. I attended a scotch tasting of single malt whiskies a while ago. It was hosted by a recognized scotch expert/educator and, needless to say, it was quite an educational experience. I recently organized a similar event with a few friends for the blended whiskies. The contestants were a JW Blue, Platinum, and Gold, plus an 18-yr-old Chivas Regal. Then we added a bottle of 18-yr-old Glenlivet just for fun. And what a fun tasting it was. Anyway, back to the topic of whether or not the Blue is worth $180. The consensus was a resounding No, although I found that the Blue was the smoothest of all the bottles tasted, probably due to the older age. Some of us thought that it was actually never a bad idea to have a bottle of JW Blue in our liquor cabinet just for those days when you are in the mood for something different, especially if money is not a major concern. Speaking of that, I am going to pour myself a glass now and probably will enjoy it much more for what it is instead of having to worry about rating or explaining why I like it.
Not a value but still a very good and drinkable blend. I have blind tastings quite often during get togethers. It is the true test. JW Blue has never finished worse then 2nd out of 6. Are there better deals out there? Quite a few. Is it worth $180 bottle? It all depends. If that price point is a lot for you skip it. If you don’t consider that expensive you can’t go wrong.
eric h says blue finished 2nd out of 6. what finished first ? Also, ask Max which scotch came in first place ? great reading and thanks to all the comments. no blue for me until someone is gracious enough to either gift it or let me try.
I just received my first JW Blue today. Don’t know when I’ll try it. I like Dalmore 12. I once bought the 21 year version (about three times the price, if I remember correctly) and honestly could not tell the difference. I had one taste of Blue when we were in South Africa years ago. I don’t remember how it tasted so I thought I would get a bottle of my own and do some comparisons at home. I think now I’ll do it tomorrow night. (I remember in college, we thought Chevis was to die for.) College kids are so cute.
Frank, —  “””Don’t know when I’ll try it.””” Try it as soon as reasonable, but only in the correct circumstances.
—  What are the correct circumstances? Surroundings should be unhurried; quiet; without disturbances; very comfortable; with no extraneous odors; with moderate lighting; with proper & sufficient neutral food & water to clear one’s palate & prevent impairment; & with a very few friends who can truly appreciate such a fine distilled spirit. One should taste slowly, carefully, & with full attention.
—  For experiencing the spirit(s), one might:
—– [a] carefully nose & then sip very small amounts to cover one’s tongue; —– [b] further follow &/or grade the spirit(s) via Jim Murray’s, of the Whisky Bible fame, method of perceiving & grading the spirit(s): nose, taste, finish, balance, & total grade;
—– [c] compare a number of somewhat similar distilled spirits in the same tasting;
—– [d] One should serve [i] quite small drams, 1/2 to 3/4 ounces (distilled spirits are a dangerous drug, if abused 🙂 ), [ii] into Glencairn style or small copita style glasses. [iii] Cover the glasses with cards or appropriate covers. I use cut-out, former small yogurt container bottoms, well washed. I pour the multiple drams a couple of hours ahead of time, well covered, & arranged in rows of the same drams (if one wants a blind tasting, as I love to do.).
—– [e] On YouTube, look up Ralfy Reviews on tastings.
Is it really better to let these tastings sit for hours? Is is totally necessary? What could be the least amt. of time, for the best results? Also, in your opinion- JW Double black or Glenlivet 12 yr. ??
—  “””Is it really better to let these tastings sit for hours?””” Pouring the drams with covers two or three hours before a tasting is not a matter of better or worse. It is a matter of convenience. One doesn’t want to be pouring drams while the guests arrive. One wants to visit with the guests & enjoy their company, & not be tied down with the work of carefully pouring drams with covers.
—  “””What could be the least amt. of time, for the best results?””” I have found no problem with finishing the pouring of the drams an hour or two before the guests arrive. Remember, the drams need covers. Indeed, I would not finish the pouring of the covered drams too much before 2 or 3 hours before the festivities begin.
—  “””Also, in your opinion- JW Double black or Glenlivet 12 yr. ??””” I am not a big peat-person. However, for a peated/smokey whisky, I find JW DB to be quite accessible, pleasant, & to my toleration for peat/smoke. Understanding that peated/smokey whiskys have an ability to cover-up & mask minor flaws & lesser lacks of quality, I generally find JW DB to be of better quality than the perfectly fine & enjoyable GL 12. I put GL 12, Glenfiddich 12, JW Black 12 in the class of low-cost call brand Scotch Whiskys. JW DB seems to be about a half-step above low-cost call brand Scotch Whiskys. Slainte, Richard 🙂
It depends ona few things. 1 are you on a budget? And 2 do you pair your scotch with cigars?
For me, the answer is I budget for what I want. I alternate between mc and jw. Total wine has jw blue for $140 for a 750ml which i think is very reasonable. I pair it with a rocky patel cigar and call it a night. One bottle will last me about 4-6 nights of enjoyment depending if I am enjoying solitude or company. Would I pay $200 for a bottle? Hell no. But $140 hell yes.
I see it at Total Wine for $209. http://www.totalwine.com/spirits/scotch/blended-scotch/johnnie-walker-blue/p/4372750
Do you have the link for $140?
The link i clicked on there took me to 154.99. Every now and then they have sales going on spirits. I wait for the sales and pick it up then. It might not be 140 exactly but its like 140 range.
There’s a really nice economical way to have Blue if you like it, but don’t think it’s worth its price, or if you’ve never tried it, but want to without sinking $140-$180 into it:
Costco has a 4-bottle “sampler” of JWs different lines, each 200ml, so a total of 800ml, for $60. It contains, Black, Good Reserve, Platinum, and Blue.
I did a blind taste of the four, was able to identify all 4 blindly (the Black and Blue are obvious, but it was my.first time drinking any JWs). I was most impressed by the black, most disappointed by the blue (I talking expectation+price for the taste, not the just on the taste alone).
I still found blue to be great, but also discovered Black and will likely be on rotation. Platinum is good as well, and Gold Reserve was a lil forgettable.
But for $60, you get 200ml of Blue, 200ml of Platinum, 200ml of Gold Reserve, and 200ml of Black, so if you like 3 outta the 4, your ahead in value.
JW Blue is staggeringly mediocre. It’s a $150+ NAS blend. The actual contents are nothing special. The best things you can say about it is that it’s “smooth,” which is the most over-used and meaningless descriptor in spirits, since it’s what you say when you can’t come up with an actual compliment (like a note of the flavor or aroma). It’s the sort of thing you buy when you want to impress people who pay attention to brand names and price tags. When someone says they like JW Blue, I know they are very concerned about their image, and they aren’t interested in trying new things. There are a million and one whiskies for a fraction of the price that blow Blue label out of the water in terms of flavor. If you like it, great, because that’s fewer people who compete with me for the good whisky.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion… no matter how wrong it is. I hear complaining from you about the price tag but no recommendation as to what you would recommend in its place. I did not say it was the best ever, but I do love how it pairs with my cigars. Not to mention the “smooth” feeling you sourly complemented it. So, lets hear one of these million+1 others for me to try. And please, regardless of how much you like it, dont say dewars.
The funny thing here is that Blue is entirely designed for marketing, not taste. It’s huge in the Asian markets where it is a status symbol rather than an enjoyable dram.
That’s not to say it’s not an enjoyable dram, but living in Asia, I’ve seen so many Chinese businessmen buy it because it’s the answer to the question: “what’s the most expensive scotch?”
Sick to Islay malts for the best value
lame, expect about the personal account of the blogger regarding the product quality, its effects, etc he merely discusses and relies on ratings and price
Retirement is my Occassion to try Mr. Blue. I have never tasted a smoother Scotch like this one, in all my entire Scotch drinking experience years. My taste buds went into shock . It was beyond a shadow of a doubt the best tasting Scotch ever. I say this honestly, I am not in the employ of the Johnny Walker business howeverI will remain a fan of this fine spirits. Thank you Gentleman for the experience. Now here is my dilema Retirement puts me in the watching my spending mode however this experience was gift from valued friends. I will have to save money for one of these at a rare Occassion. My long winded way of saying it does not fit into my budget. Something like this is a rare treat indeed .
Blue is great, but it reminds me of an American bourbon called Pappy VanWinkle. Not in flavor but in delivery compared to hype. Papi is the Blue of the bourbon world in terms of prestige, and while absolutely a great spirit and experience, you find yourself questioning the whole thing when the bill arrives. For my money, James Buchanan’s Special Reserve 18 is the way to go for an affordable yet amazing blended. Where as Blue is $240 a bottle where I live, Buchanan 18 is a cool $85. As blended scotches go, you can do little better. Cheers.
JW Blue is a first drink type of Scotch on nice or occasions for me – The price is high for sure and there are many wonderful choices in the market – What I really appreciate is the ultra smooth quality
Comparing to single malts or other blends is immaterial to me as I am the one drinking it and enjoying every sip
It is interesting reading, all the comments vertically alligned from 2011-2018.
I opened this thread as it was returned by a Google search for a review of Macallan Edition No. 2. While no review of the 2nd was included, the voyeuristic experience of so many palates’ descriptives was an appreciable time capsule, drawing me through my many memorable and infamous encounters with aquae vitae.
Simply put, some distant friend is offering me his No. 2 and requested that I “make an offer”. While I don’t want to be insulting, this is an opportunity to acquire something of a superlative quality at an improbable price.
However, as is displayed through these years of reviews of so many malted and nearly disparate distillates, appreciation and palatable are entirely subjective.
For instance, just last week a friend (obviously a good one) offered me a few drams of the Blue. He watched and waited for my reaction. I am truly grateful we concurred. While hurting a person’s feelings and ego is contrary to gratifying, lying is contrary to my character. So when I blurted out, “Not what I’d hoped.”, he sighed in relief and we proceeded to dissect it. The biggest affront to my palate was the unmistakable sensation of agave. Yes, we both agreed it was quite smooth. But to my cerebral cortex, I experienced tequila, and not a very good one at that. So we laughed it off and cleaned our palates with his go-to, a Lochnager 12.
To wax on, in reading these comments, I was struck by the resolute commitment to particular brands.
I have sampled hundreds (not a million and 1) of single malts and blends in my travels.
I have even planned and presented a Chocolate and Balvenie pairing at an upscale establishment in Takoma Park MD. And yes Santa Claus, Chocolate and Scotch does work together. It just takes a creative mind to find the appropriate flavors and tactile experiences to compete with and complement the powerful characteristics of Balvenie’s Single Malts.
So in closing, appreciation for Scotch is as subjective as is the appreciation of colors, spices, tobacco or women (or whatever gender/species to which one is attracted).
And in my critical opinion JW Blew did precisely that. My sense is it would ruin a coke and ice.
And after all of this, I still have not settled an a number to offer my friend for the Macallan Edition No. 2.
Oh, and from what tasting notes I have read, there’s probably a Chocolate Truffle I could create that would produce a phenomenal duet between the two.
No, no, no. I’ve tasted almost all types of whiskey, but JW Blue is by far the best, smoothest, finest whiskey to drink straight up! And I usually drink Blue with my friends, and we’re all feeling slightly in heaven after each shot. When I went blue, I could no longer handle go back to less expensive whiskey.