Thursday, December 18, 2008

Malt Mission 2008 #323

Johnnie Walker Gold Scotch Whisky
Johnnie Walker Gold 18yo
Blended Scotch Whisky
40% abv

$75 (USD)

The last of the Johnnie Walker colour hierarchy for me to taste formally on the mission. I promise the delay was not intentional as I had plenty of opportunities to drink the stuff (and man, did I), but not until very recently did I have the chance to taste it in the controlled environment of Dr. Whisky's lab in the controlled method of the Malt Mission.

I do find it hilarious to see new (and old, for that matter) whisky websites tasting and rating whiskies they tried at a distillery, or outside at Feis Isle, after 3 glasses of wine at their uncle's place for dinner, or after 15 other malts at DrunkFEST Chicago, or... Not exactly fair, nor representative of the true flavours of the whisky. Sure, no matter how or when you drink the stuff your impressions will be wholly subjective and by no means absolute (hate to disappoint some of you aspiring MJs and misguided JMs), but at least attempt to have some semblance of control otherwise your authority is nullified immediately and your notes are of no use to anyone but yourself. Maltsterbating, I suppose. By this I mean that WHEN and IN WHAT TYPE OF GLASS are probably the only elements of tasting, of being impressed upon by a malt whisky, that you can control. Without some consistency in the tasting ritual, ESPECIALLY if you are going to have the arrogance to criticise and rate and give scores, you are doing nothing more than jerking off into the toilet. Useless.

Some surfing alerted me to the presence of much misinformation about Johnnie Walker Gold so let me verify that this is a BLENDED whisky: it is made up of 15 or more single malt whiskies mixed with grain whiskies. This does not make it "better" or "worse", it is just different than a single malt or a blended malt whisky. Although the Walker's were grocers in Kilmarnock from 1820, it was in the 1850s that they became whisky blenders and today the name Johnny Walker is synonomous with quality blended Scotch whisky.

For more info and for all Johnnie Walker's had on the mission, click HERE.


Spicy, sweet, winey, and smoky. Red grapes and orange oil, honey and malt, some licorice and stewed cloves. Lots going on in a really co-dependent style.

Soft but full flavours flow across the tongue with sweet smokiness, honey, and some mango and papaya. Gentle but immensely rich.


Talisker elements of smoke, salt and pepper, creamy and honeyed elements of Clynelish, with plenty of speyside fruitiness like Linkwood and/or Glen Elgin. Really delicious, harmonious, and classy blending.

Malt Mission #321
Malt Mission #322

Malt Mission #324
Malt Mission #325

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