An Evening with Johnnie Walker is an opportunity for scotch-lovers or scotch-newbies to host a private, in-home, scotch tasting for up to 15 guests. Your friends can deepen their knowledge of Johnnie Walker, through an in-depth immersion into scotch and its history. Currently, the tastings are only available in Calgary, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.
Once a date and time are confirmed by their concierge, ambassadors arrive at your home or office with all the tools necessary to execute a tasting and they guide you through an experience with scotch.
Tastings are completely free, but hosts are asked to provide adequate table space for each guest to stand or sit in front of, such as a dining room table or coffee table. Dee of Gastrofork was kind enough to host a bunch of us at her place.
The ambassador spends the first part of the evening talking about the history of Johnnie Walker and then we dive into the tasting of their:
- Red Label
- Black Label
- Blue Label
All three of the whiskies were linked up and ready for you when you begin the tasting.
A sampling of berries and chocolate are paired with the whiskies, however, hosts are asked to provide food to balance alcohol consumption in the evening. Dee got us some Church’s Chicken, Sushi, and a few other snacks to make sure we don’t get too drunk.
Johnnie Walker Red Label is their Pioneer Blend, the one that has introduced their brand of whisky to the world.
Highly versatile and with universal appeal, it has a bold, characterful flavour that shines through even when mixed. Johnnie Walker Red Label is now the best-selling Scotch Whisky around the globe.
It retails for about $40 at local BC liquor stores.
It has a bright brass colour, light smoke, wood and vanilla toffee and spicy flavours. We most dominant flavour when we smelled it was caramel. Its a light style of scotch, so most people end up using the Red Label for mixing drinks rather than sipping on it all night long.
They paired the Red Label with Strawberries dipped in pepper to really help enhance the flavour. Surprisingly, it was a good combination.
Johnnie Walker Black Label was next and it acts as the benchmark for all other deluxe blends. It is created using only whiskies aged for a minimum of 12 years from the four corners of Scotland, Johnnie Walker Black Label has a smooth, deep, complex character. Definitely more popular than the Red, but of course a tad more expensive at around $50 a bottle at the local liquor store.
It was paired with dark chocolate to bring balance out the flavours.
In the Black Label, there are notes of wood smoke and dry spice, hints of barley and cereal with creamy toffee and a distinct herbal note. The finish is quite fruity and long with a note of sultanas and mixed peels.
Johnnie Walker Blue Label is a blend made from some of Scotland’s rarest and most exceptional whiskies. Only one in every ten thousand casks has the elusive quality, character and flavour to deliver the’ remarkable signature taste of Johnnie Walker Blue Label. People tend to crack this open for big occasions or celebrations.
Each bottle retails for around $280 locally.
To really enjoy the best from the Blue Label, they suggest it should be served neat, or with a dash of water to open up the flavours a bit more. It tastes like toffee with hints of very wistful smoke.
It was good to try Johnnie Walker’s Whiskies side by side and I discovered that Whisky isn’t my drink of choice. I still prefer wine or beer.
Thats basically what the tasting experience is like, if you want to host your own with your friends, definitely contact their concierge to set one up.