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Tasting Johnnie Walker Double Black (finally…)

6 April 2011 13,496 views Written by: Gal Granov

johnny-walker

My first JW tasting notes on the blog. I was really looking for this one, not because i am a JW man, or that this one got amazing reviews. Nope. The reason for that is that JW double black was, and is the most searched term on the blog, and my previous post about its introduction into the market is the most viewed post EVER on Whisky Israel. Surprising? Not really. Diageo have a very good marketing department, and the JW brand is well known. Every new product will cause a stir in the Google pond.

We hear you at WI, and since you were looking for notes and review on this one, Its with pleasure that i post my ‘official’ notes here.

Johnnie Walker Double black , 40% ABV , Duty Free only

johnnie-walker-double-black-gear-patrolNose: Brine,pepper,barbecue smoke ,sherry. i was expecting a more Smoky, and peaty experience, from the “double” black, but the nose is extremely enjoyable with the BBQ notes, brine and the sweeter bits.

Palate: The grain notes stand out at the front, then comes the sweet, sugary stuff, and only later enters the smoke, and BBQed meat. Again, not as smoky as i had expected, but nicely balanced, well combined.

Finish : Sweet, smoky. ending on BBQ again.

Bottom line:

This NAS expression is nicer than the ‘plain’ old Black. It’s wee more smoky,though not peaty, and the extra BBQ notes are quite enjoyable. A solid blended whisky, which does not lack complexity, but is also very drinkable. Too bad it’s currently only available at Travel Retail shops.  I can’t belive i am writing this, but  – Well done, Diageo.

Score: 85/100

Slainte!

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  • Paul M.

    I’ve been looking for the Double Black in the larger cities for some time now, but just this evening finally found a bottle in a package store in a town in south Texas. This tends to confirm my suspicion that it’s often worthwhile to see what the smaller, independent retailers have in stock.

    Anyway, I’m in agreement with your impressions for the most part. Standard JW Black is a bit bland for my tastes, but the Double Black has a little more personality: a richer nose, and a bit more smoke and oak overall. Nicely done indeed.

    • http://www.whiskyisrael.co.il Gal(WhiskyIsrael)

      Thank you!

  • Jason Debly

    Recently distribution has been expanded beyond travel retail.  Specifically, in Canada and the USA it is widely available.

    When I drink Double Black, I note how similar it is to Black Bottle which is about 1/3 of the cost.  Double Black is only slightly better.  Not really worth the price.  As you observed, balanced and solid, but not going to win awards.

    However, I still like the standard Black Label better.

    Cheers!

  • http://twitter.com/JayDieNL JayDieNL

    Gal: there’s a typo: it should be Johnnie instead of Jhonnie (label / tag / term)