Originally Posted by Horace
Speaking of Johnnie Walker --
I think there is a noticeably difference in taste between the red and black labels. You get used to the black stuff and the red pales in comparison.
But I've always felt that the other two or three (blue and what? gold?) priced above the black label weren't worth the money.
Your observation about Black v. Red is spot on. Lagavulin is the base for Black; Cardhu for Red, so the flavor profiles are totally different, even setting age aside. I really enjoy Gold--it's almost creamy--but I'm not sure it's 66-75% better than Black, as the price would seem to indicate.
As for Green and Blue, save your money. To my palate, they both taste weak and lack complexity, though Blue is very smooth. I'll grant that I'm an Islay drinker who generally likes a lot of smoke and Iodine, but compare Blue even to, say, MacAllan 18 or Balvenie 21, both of which are less expensive, and it fares poorly.
I've tried swing, and found it to be very much like Red. Not bad for the price.