Single malt whisky - tasting notes

30 Sep 2013

Johnnie Walker Double Black

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in * Blends

Johnnie Walker Double Black is supposed to be a more extreme version of Johnnie Walker Black Label which I reviewed before. Some of the spirit used was matured in deeply charred casks, and the proportion of peaty Islay malt should be higher.

It’s a fairly recent addition to the Johnnie Walker range. It used to be a Duty Free exclusive but it’s now widely available.

 

 

Johnnie Walker Double BlackJohnnie Walker Double Black
(40%, OB +/- 2013)

Nose: indeed this is clearly Islay influenced. Smoke and ashed, even a slightly medicinal touch. Mineral notes too. Toasted almonds. The citrus and malt of the regular Johnnie Walkers are still there, as is a hint of vanilla and something of a pine wood air freshener. Mouth: oily, lots of Caol Ila character here and hardly noticeable grains. Plain peat. Some salty butter, surprisingly briney actually. A vague sweetness. Mint. Finish: long, fades on salty liquorice and malt. Some cold ashes as well.

I don’t think this is Johnnie Walker Black Label in an amplified version. It’s a style on its own. I think Black Label is too smooth and sweet to be called a smoky blend, but Double Black really is smoky. It’s much closer to single malt Islay whisky than I expected. A blend that’s really well put together – too bad this isn’t at 43%. Around € 35 in my local supermarket – sometimes under € 30 if you look out. Good value for money.

Score: 83/100

Johnnie Walker Double Black 3 Ruben Luyten 2013-09-30
  • http://www.whiskyisrael.co.il Gal(WhiskyIsrael)

    Exactly. I did like this one very much. really surprised. It’s much better than JW black, and really it’s not “amplified” black as you say. Good stuff for a good price.

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  • Tony: Yes, lower! It is almost unheard of for a more recent and older aged bottling to be 30% cheaper than the previously released one. Maybe that also help
  • Tony: True - I had it in my basket in one web shop as soon as it was announced, but it disappeared before I could check out! Luckily I have some of the prev
  • WhiskyNotes: I don't know, Gal. This kind of bottle is either sold out through pre-orders, or in a webshop five minutes after it appears online.

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  • Irish Single Malt 16yo 1999 (The Nectar of the Daily Drams)
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  • Woodford Reserve Master's Collection
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1863 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.