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Johnnie Walker Double Black

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Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby Novice Scotch Fan » Sun Apr 29, 2012 3:43 am

What do you think of it?

Here's what I think:

- overpriced;

- balanced Islay emphasized blend;

Pleasant enough, but I think this is not much better or different than Black Bottle.

C'mon, weigh in on this.
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby SheltieBoy » Tue May 01, 2012 8:25 pm

I just purchased a bottle but have not opened it yet.

But I must say, aren't ALL bottles of liquor "overpriced?"
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby Novice Scotch Fan » Tue May 01, 2012 9:39 pm

Here in Canada it is $69 a bottle. That's a lot for a no-age-statement blended scotch.

No, I would not agree that all scotch is over priced. Consider the following:

Teacher's
Black Bottle
Te Bheagh
GlenDronach 12
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby SheltieBoy » Tue May 01, 2012 9:45 pm

I paid $39 US. And truly, I was being a bit sweeping in my statement, there are quite a few bottles that are reasonable. I think Walker products are all a bit over-priced. The Gold is a good example. I think it is delightful but wish it was about $10 less.

I still have not tried the Black Bottle. I must!
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby Ganga » Wed May 02, 2012 4:20 am

I've never been a Walker fan. Some of the older bottlings (think 80s and earlier) can range from very nice to boarding on exceptional (JW Black bottled in the late 60s). Somehow I think much of what I don't like in today's JW offerings is related to the high grain percentage or the the very high cost for what you get (think Blue).
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby SheltieBoy » Wed May 02, 2012 5:03 pm

Excellent observations, Ganga. Clearly, "Blue" is the pinnacle of over-priced blends. There is a large percentage of people that equate high cost with quality (or they simply want to impress their friends with their ability to afford "the best.")

As a relative beginner (who has concentrated on Single Malts) I am simply trying the very popular blends in order to educate my palate. Anything is worth trying once. So, I am currently working through the Walker line.
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby Ganga » Wed May 02, 2012 7:17 pm

SheltieBoy wrote:As a relative beginner (who has concentrated on Single Malts) I am simply trying the very popular blends in order to educate my palate. Anything is worth trying once. So, I am currently working through the Walker line.

Absolutely. You also might find that returning to the blends after several years working with malts might give you a different insight into the blend. Enjoy your journey. :thumbsup:
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby SheltieBoy » Wed May 02, 2012 7:33 pm

Actually, your point is excellent and cannot be overemphasized. I think many of us fail to realize how dynamic and changeable our tastes are, how much our palate develops, and how very small influences make huge impacts on our opinions.

In the last 6 years I have been astounded how my whisky taste has changed and how sensitive I am to so many relatively minor elements of the tasting process. In my opinion, we often under value the influence of the following: the glass we use, the condition of the whisky, the mood we are in, what we have consumed before the tasting, what time of day, who we are with, where we are, the temperature of the product, etc. And especially, each dram we experience changes our tastes/opinions in some way.

Haven't we all felt confounded at times when tasting? Sometimes an old fav seems...flat. Sometimes something we think we wouldn't like leaps out at us and tastes wonderful. I think the best thing to do is to keep in mind all of these subtle yet important influences and most of all, remember that we are all quite fickle and changeable.

I recommend going back and forth between old favs and new samples, between blends and SMs, between Scotch and other whisk(e)y products. Life is too short to let your brain rule your mouth. Life is too short to leave something untasted. And if you haven't done (or tasted) something in the last two weeks, effectively, you have never done/tasted it.

In essence, keep an open mind (and an open mouth)!
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby Lawrence » Thu May 03, 2012 4:46 pm

I bought a bottle and since I like JWB I was curious about the DB, my conclusion was that the 12yo presents as a blend and a very good one at that. The Double Black is kissing cousins nearer to a malt however the peat smoke is not significantly bigger but it all melds together nicely. Still the Double Black is a very good dram but the 12yo has the slight edge with the vibrancy. For those that want a blend the 12yo and for those that lean towards malt then the Double Black.
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby SheltieBoy » Thu May 03, 2012 5:18 pm

Fascinating comparison! You have me quite intrigued and so I will pop open the Double soon!
Thanks!
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby whiskgeek » Fri May 04, 2012 6:22 am

I think it's overpriced. I don't remember what I paid for it, but it might have been $39. My opinion is that it's a $29 bottle, but I was fine with paying an extra ten for the novelty. I won't be buying it again, though.

It has the usual Johnnie Walker complexity, but I can't say I like all the different things I detect, or how it mixes. I got a strong a strong sweetness at the back of my upper teeth. There was a good smokiness that emerged shortly into it. The peat is medicinal and menthol, but not strong. I got the impression of blueberry after the finish had gone.
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Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black

Postby Novice Scotch Fan » Fri May 04, 2012 8:58 pm

Lawrence wrote:I bought a bottle and since I like JWB I was curious about the DB, my conclusion was that the 12yo presents as a blend and a very good one at that. The Double Black is kissing cousins nearer to a malt however the peat smoke is not significantly bigger but it all melds together nicely. Still the Double Black is a very good dram but the 12yo has the slight edge with the vibrancy. For those that want a blend the 12yo and for those that lean towards malt then the Double Black.


I find the Double Black and the standard Black Label not to be very similar.

Black Label is cinammon, caramel, burnt toast and of course nice smoke. Double Black is lacks the cinammon and caramel flavors and instead is mostly smoke and peat. Very different to my untrained palate.
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