Whisky Magazine Issue 128
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The Johnnie Walker show marches on
As one of Asia's hottest markets for single malt whiskies Taiwan's main international gateway Taoyuan airport has traditionally been seen as a top regional location for the launch of travel retail exclusive single malt whiskies. Just last year the airport made headlines by playing host to the world exclusive launch of Kinivie 17 Years Old, but in April this year Taoyuan bucked this long-standing trend, seeing the official opening of a new permanent store dedicated to the biggest blend of them all – Johnnie Walker.
The Johnnie Walker House concept, which already has branches in mainland China, South Korea and at Mumbai airport, is described somewhat loftily as a ‘multi-sensory embassy' for luxury blended Scotch whiskies designed to ‘educate and inspire' travellers. In practice that means a tasting bar staffed by brand ambassadors; a blending zone where travellers use touch screens to learn more about the main flavours and aromas in the Johnnie Walker blend, and a heritage wall exploring the brand's long history.
With its leather chairs, oak floors and display cabinets, the Johnnie Walker House store is clearly a great place for whisky lovers to relax and while away a few minutes from the hubbub of the departures terminal, but what of the whiskies stocked there? I am pleased to say as long as your pockets are deep, the assortment runs beyond the usual suspects. Among the rarities showcased are whiskies from the John Walker & Sons Master Blenders Collection such as t...