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Johnnie Walker Blue Label King George V Edition

rebel222

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I had a friend of mine give me a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue Label King George V Edition. Long story short. I installed car stereos during 5-6 years in high school and undergrad, and I did some work for him.

I have never been a scotch guy. I know this stuff is expensive, so I want to fully enjoy it. I am currently saving it for when I graduate law school or pass the bar, which about 1.5 yrs away.

I want to be able to appreciate this bottle of scotch. What do I need to do in the next year and a half to "understand" this scotch. I know I need to start drinking scotch, but what brands? What's the best way to drink it? Etc?

Thanks for the help.
 

Manton

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I would not think about it too much.

It's a nice blended scotch of whiskies that are all very old (I think the minimum is 25 years, and the oldest are 60 or so). The downside of a blend like this is that very old whiskies have unique characteristics that get lost in the blend. The upside is that blending allows the makers to smooth and mellow and round out the flavor of the final blend.

It's nice stuff. Drink it in a snifter, with a drop of water or maybe one small ice cube.

It would be hard to learn too much about it in any case because, unless I am mistaken, JW does not disclose the blend, and in fact they have to change it all the time based on the availabilities of various single malts at any give time. So there is no set formula that you could learn, or individual whiskies that you could study knowing that they are guaranteed to be part of a blend in your bottle.

If you really want to go crazy, you could try to learn something about the unique characteristics of the various malts (Speyside, Islay, etc.) and then as you drink the Blue, see if you can pick up hints of each.
 

BostonRussell

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As it's a blend, just drink some of everything. Rather than targeting a single category of Scotch to "learn" for the JW, just get a basic knowledge of everything. Drink Scotch regularly and buy a new bottle every time you finish one. Make it your nightcap.

When you do crack the bottle you will love it. However the REAL reward of a year and a half of learning to appreciate Scotch is you might find a bottle you like better
 

Listi

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Isn't scotch learning something that can't be rushed? Why not just take your time with it, save it for special occasions?
 

rebel222

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Originally Posted by Listi
Isn't scotch learning something that can't be rushed? Why not just take your time with it, save it for special occasions?

That's exactly what I am planning on doing. I can't learn about scotch in 1.5 yrs? I hope passing the bar/graduating law school is sufficient for a special occasion. I just would like to start learning now, so I have a greater appreciation once the time comes.

If I drank it right now, I couldn't tell the difference between it and some crappy store brand.
 

Manton

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One thing you can do is try the other JW blends. Start with Red, the cheapest. Move on to Black, which is much better. Then Gold, then Green. Frankly, I think the added value of these is not so great, but anyway, try them.

Blue is top of the line. It is like XO cognac, for a special occasion, to be enjoyed neat, and slowly.
 

Mauby

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To my tastebuds, JW Blue & JW Black taste about the same. I couldn't justify spending the extra for it. Glad yours was given to you. JW Gold is my favorite of the family. JW Green has a very distinct flavor. I also suggest trying them all.
 

BostonRussell

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I've only had two glass of blue label, and it wasn't the King George blend. Stuff was heavenly.

I'd say you're only rushing it if you start targeting regions like a madman trying to internalize tasting notes. Just drink lots of Scotch and let it work its' magic. I don't think you'll be any kind of conniseur in 1.5 years but you'll sure be able to tell the difference between Walker Blue and Black.
 

grimslade

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Originally Posted by Manton
Blue is top of the line. It is like XO cognac, for a special occasion, to be enjoyed neat, and slowly.

Bah. This is myth. A block of ice will open it up and you'll probably enjoy it more. You'll also drink it more slowly. Don't listen to those that insist you drink whisky neat. The likeliest result will be to turn you off whisky.
 

Manton

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Originally Posted by grimslade
Bah. This is myth. A block of ice will open it up and you'll probably enjoy it more. You'll also drink it more slowly. Don't listen to those that insist you drink whisky neat. The likeliest result will be to turn you off whisky.

Well, I said above that a little water or a small ice cube are ideal, so I should have been more precise the second time.

What I meant was, on the rocks or blended in a mixed drink, never.
 

grimslade

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Originally Posted by Manton
Well, I said above that a little water or a small ice cube are ideal, so I should have been more precise the second time.

What I meant was, on the rocks or blended in a mixed drink, never.


My wife put Oban into a hot tottie the other night. I was displeased.
 

EL72

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The King George V Edition is out of this world! I just tasted it once and
Even smoother than the regular Blue Label - if that's possible. I think it sells for $400 a bottle. Nice gift you've received.
 

Huntsman

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Yes, nice gift! Truly. Yes, smoother than that is possible!

Regardless, Manton's advice is good. Have some JW Black. Drink that for a good six months. The try any malts you see in your local. Keep doing that. If you find you love scotch, you will seek out all the info you need.

Blue, in any incarnation, is good whisky, though a little muted, a little muddled, by blending. It can be appreciated, but don't expect to be blown away completely.

~ H
 

Connemara

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Single malts reign supreme.
 

grimslade

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Originally Posted by Connemara
Irish whiskeys reign supreme.

FTFY.
 

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