In the upper regions of the Johnnie Walker range, this Platinum Label is the only one to have an age statement: all of its components are 18 years old. Apart from the Johnnie Walker Green Label 15yo but that one has been phased out.
It sits just under the most expensive Johnnie Walker Blue Label and above the Gold Label Reserve, which has now lost its previous 18yo statement and seems to be discontinued altogether in some countries. Not sure how the marketing guys explain all this shifting around, to me it just seems confusing…
Johnnie Walker 18 yo Platinum Label
(40%, OB 2013)
Nose: subtle, as you would expect from 40%, but quite nice. Fruity core: apricots, pears, a hint of pineapple, golden raisins. Also a citrusy note. Soft leathery notes that hint towards older Speyside whiskies, and a very subtle touch of wood smoke in the background. Quite rich for a blend – the biggest compliment is probably that it noses like a (light) single malt.
Mouth: smooth, although disappointingly smooth now. Sugary and watery – no recognizable fruits. Evolves towards herbal notes and bittersweet caramel towards the end. More typical blend notes (grains) now, and still a hint of smoke. Not bad, but less convincing than the nose.
Finish: medium long, sweet, malty and peppery.
A sweet and spicy Johnnie Walker. Platinum Label has a really nice nose, sure it’s soft, but it’s hardly recognizable as a blend. The palate is too bland and caramelly to convince me and certainly less complex than a single malt of the same price. Around € 60 but price differences between shops tend to be high.