Re: Johnnie Walker Double Black
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)!