Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

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climber2020
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Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by climber2020 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:49 am

Hi everyone,

I'm looking for a nice bottle of whisky as part of a groomsmen gift and am wondering if Johnnie Walker Blue was worth the high price tag. I've read some very contrasting reviews online. Only one of the 4 guys is someone I would consider a Scotch connoisseur, so an oddball single malt is probably not the best choice for this crowd. Any thoughts or recommendations?

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by MPAndy222 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:23 am

I personally think Glenfiddich 15 is the best tasting scotch for the money. If your friend's aren't connoisseur's then you may want to just stick with Black, Green, or Gold label and get something else in addition to the scotch. Blue is definitely smoother but not worth the extra $150, IMO

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bottlecap
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by bottlecap » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:25 am

I personally don't think so, but the real question is whether your groomsmen will like it.

If only one of them will appreciate it, then you're "wasting" a lot of money on all but one groomsmen - and that presumes he loves JWB.

JT

Jack FFR1846
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:30 am

Would the groomsmen appreciate it? If I were given this as a gift, I would dump the contents and put the bottle into the glass recycling bin. Nobody in my house drinks alcohol and we certainly don't need it around with a teenager in the house.
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by NightFall » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:30 am

It's not one someone might think of but Wild Turkey 101 is a good price for a decent bourbon.

http://scotchnoob.com/2011/04/21/wild-t ... 1-bourbon/

Jim Beam Black is smooth as well. These are all bourbons... perhaps my preference is showing through. Glenfiddich is a good scotch for the money if you don't go too high end.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by katzmandu » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:33 am

Its only worth it for the price if you and your friends will enjoy it that much. Objectively, its 150-200 for a blend that I find to be at best, 'pretty good' but Ive tasted better and more complex single malt scotches for 1/2 the price or less. I always enjoy if someone is pouring, but I find the cost to be excessive and would never pick one up for myself. If I was going to throw down that much for myself I'd be thinking Highland Park 18 or Glenlivet 21 Archive.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by awval999 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:43 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:Would the groomsmen appreciate it? If I were given this as a gift, I would dump the contents and put the bottle into the glass recycling bin. Nobody in my house drinks alcohol and we certainly don't need it around with a teenager in the house.
You probably could give it away you know.

It costs like $200/bottle.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by gator15 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:50 am

I'm a fan of Johnnie Walker Blue, but as others have stated it is a bit overpriced. I bought a bottle a couple of years ago and enjoyed it. It's very smooth. I just didn't think it was worth $200. These days I drink the Black. It's $150 cheaper and also pretty good.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by staybalanced » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:51 am

Someone recently gifted my dad a bottle of blue, him, my brother and I opened it up on a recent beach trip, we were all a little disappointed. It is very good, but we kind of laughed as none of us would ever pay that much for it. Black label is fine to me, the big difference is the blue is so smooth you almost don't know you're drinking scotch imo. I personally favor bourbon so may not be the best to speak on this.

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climber2020
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by climber2020 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:00 am

Thanks for all the advice so far. I'm not dead set on scotch for this gift; a nice bottle of bourbon would also be a consideration, so any recommendations there would be appreciated as well.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by tludwig23 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:15 am

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by nikfleisch » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:19 am

climber2020 wrote:Hi everyone,

I'm looking for a nice bottle of whisky as part of a groomsmen gift and am wondering if Johnnie Walker Blue was worth the high price tag. I've read some very contrasting reviews online. Only one of the 4 guys is someone I would consider a Scotch connoisseur, so an oddball single malt is probably not the best choice for this crowd. Any thoughts or recommendations?
This is my favorite for a nice celebratory drink that doesn't break the bank. Can be found for less than $30.
https://www.monkeyshoulder.com/

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by topper1296 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:22 am

I took a bourbon tasting class a couple years ago and the one take away I remember is this. The instructor said she could justify spending up to ~$50 for a bottle in the name of taste and quality. Anything above that is just paying for a name. Of course there are exceptions, but this was a good rule of thumb.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by katzmandu » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:26 am

climber2020 wrote:Thanks for all the advice so far. I'm not dead set on scotch for this gift; a nice bottle of bourbon would also be a consideration, so any recommendations there would be appreciated as well.
EH Taylor
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High West is pretty darn good too.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by surveyor » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:30 am

climber2020 wrote:Thanks for all the advice so far. I'm not dead set on scotch for this gift; a nice bottle of bourbon would also be a consideration, so any recommendations there would be appreciated as well.
Blantons and be done with it

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by tludwig23 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:39 am

climber2020 wrote: Pappy Van Winkle 20 year (if you can get your hands on it)
And have $900/bottle to spend. :beer
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by alpenglow » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:41 am

To answer your question, no. JW Blue is all about marketing and is highly overpriced IMHO. Since you aren't serious scotch drinkers, I won't suggest any single malts. Save some money and get the JW Green. Much more character at a much lower price! :beer Slainte!

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Inverted Pyramid » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:45 am

I'm gonna go another direction from everyone here. For $200 is their a better Scotch absolutely, I could name a few dozen, but will they be a Scotch your groomsmen have heard of very doubtful. Is Starbucks the best coffee, no but it's the symbol that matters. I'd go with a well known "sexy" brand for a groomsmen gift because all they will notice is how smooth it is, your groomsmen aren't gonna apprentice a Lagavulin Distillers Edition, But they will enjoy displaying a shiny bottle of Johnnie walker blue. With all that said I'd still skip the blue, but go to your local liquor stores and look for a cool looking limited edition bottle of a very well known brand think Crown Royal, Jack Daniels, Etc.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by njboater74 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:59 am

Nobody ever lost a friend over Macallan 18
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by alpenglow » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:01 am

surveyor wrote:
climber2020 wrote:Thanks for all the advice so far. I'm not dead set on scotch for this gift; a nice bottle of bourbon would also be a consideration, so any recommendations there would be appreciated as well.
Blantons and be done with it
+1 Good stuff if you want to go the bourbon route.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Loik098 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:26 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:Would the groomsmen appreciate it? If I were given this as a gift, I would dump the contents and put the bottle into the glass recycling bin. Nobody in my house drinks alcohol and we certainly don't need it around with a teenager in the house.
Well this certainly ranks up there with "most helpful posts".

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by DoTheMath » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:52 am

climber2020 wrote:Hi everyone,

I'm looking for a nice bottle of whisky as part of a groomsmen gift and am wondering if Johnnie Walker Blue was worth the high price tag. I've read some very contrasting reviews online. Only one of the 4 guys is someone I would consider a Scotch connoisseur, so an oddball single malt is probably not the best choice for this crowd. Any thoughts or recommendations?

When giving whisky as a gift I've often gone with an Irish whisky. They aren't as bold as Scotches and appeal to a wide range of tastes. My personal favorite in this category is the Redbreast 12 year old.
“I am losing precious days. I am degenerating into a machine for making money. I am learning nothing in this trivial world of men. I must break away and get out into the mountains...” -- John Muir

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Atilla » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:58 am

Glenlivet Nadurra is my recommendation. Runs about $80 bucks a bottle. :beer
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by bottlecap » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:03 am

Loik098 wrote:
Jack FFR1846 wrote:Would the groomsmen appreciate it? If I were given this as a gift, I would dump the contents and put the bottle into the glass recycling bin. Nobody in my house drinks alcohol and we certainly don't need it around with a teenager in the house.
Well this certainly ranks up there with "most helpful posts".
LOL. That's why Jack FFR1846 isn't the OP's groomsman. One would hope he knows his groomsmen well enough to know if they partake or not!

As far as Bourbons go, lots of choices.

Blanton's is good and $50 or so.
Four Roses Single Barrel is what I'm drinking of late - $34.
Four Roses Single Barrel Cask Strength is good and a little pricier -$54
Rowan's Creek ($35) and Noah's Mill ($46) are good.
Jefferson's is good, too. Can't recall the pricing.
Knob Creek has a Reserve that I like, runs about $45.

If you wanted you could get them a decent set of glasses to go with it.

Good luck,

JT

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by El Greco » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:11 am

+1 on the Knob Creek Reserve. If you're into bourbon.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by oldcomputerguy » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:15 am

For much less you could give him a bottle of 21-year-old Appleton Rum. Given the two alternatives, the Appleton would be my personal favorite (not a fan of Scotch whiskey, but I have been known to sample Appleton rum from time to time).
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by tim1999 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:18 am

I would not buy it unless I knew for sure that he has had it before and it is one of his favorites. I am an occasional scotch drinker and don't like Blue any more than Dewars.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by MI_bogle » Thu Oct 06, 2016 10:14 am

JW Blue is overpriced and novelty IMO

lots of great bourbons and scotches that can be had for 1/3rd the price that are just as good or not better. Depends on personal taste though.

Do you know the whiskey tastes of each groomsmen? If so, consider getting a different bottle for each one. If not, I would play it safe and go with a nice bourbon - less risk of offending the senses if one doesn't like peat

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by alfaspider » Thu Oct 06, 2016 10:28 am

Single malt or GTFO. Walker is not bad per-se, but a lot of the cost is just the ad budget.

I'm a fan of Talisker. 18yr Tallsker is half the price of Walker Blue and better IMO.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by goodlifer » Thu Oct 06, 2016 11:34 am

My personal favorite is Auchentoshan 12 year. It would be a great starter Scotch. That and a nice, maybe personalized glass would be a nice gift. Maybe even a good cigar. I gave bottles of Dom Perignon as our gifts. You could argue that D.P. is overpriced for what it is too, but we drank one of the bottles we were giving and it was the best bubbly we ever had. Then we bought another bottle a few years later and it was much less than stellar. So there you go.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by alpenglow » Thu Oct 06, 2016 11:44 am

I see people are throwing in single malt recs. Unless you know the specific tastes of your groomsmen, I really wouldn't go there. I have 10 diverse single malts open in my house right now and I have strong opinions about each of them. For example, peat is very polarizing (like in Talisker). Some like a strong sherry cask finished/matured flavor (like in Macallan) and others don't. To play it safe, I would stick with bourbon or a blended scotch.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by LouieLouie2 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 12:13 pm

As most have posted, good bottles of scotch can be had for between $50-$80/bottle. For variety and drinking pleasure I like to buy the three different Glenmorangie scotches (regular, Lasanta & Ruban). These are I beleive 12 year old and run about 48-55$/bottle. Very good in that the regular is more peatty and the least sweet when it finishes on your palate after taking a sip. Lasanta is aged in sherry casks and is a little more sweet finish. The Ruban is even sweeter finish and aged in Port casks.
I'm also a a fan of Cardhu, Oban and scotches from the Speyside region (Cardhu and Belvenie are a few). Scotches get their reputations from the area of Scotland in which they are created usually. Unless you are buying non-Scottish scotch which is sacreligious! Usually, the higher the age the more the money, and as most have stated, expensive is not always better. I've never tried Blue Label but have had my share of Red and Black, they sufice nicely. Not long ago i was in my nieces wedding and all the groomsmen, myself & her brother were all given Irish whiskey which could only be purchased in Ireland. It was Bushmills special type of Irish whiskey. I thought it a nice gift. Her husband bought a case on business and brought back with him.
I hope this helps, Good luck with whatever you select. :beer :sharebeer :sharebeer :sharebeer
Louis

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by alfaspider » Thu Oct 06, 2016 12:16 pm

alpenglow wrote:I see people are throwing in single malt recs. Unless you know the specific tastes of your groomsmen, I really wouldn't go there. I have 10 diverse single malts open in my house right now and I have strong opinions about each of them. For example, peat is very polarizing (like in Talisker). Some like a strong sherry cask finished/matured flavor (like in Macallan) and others don't. To play it safe, I would stick with bourbon or a blended scotch.
Everything can be polarizing. Personally, I don't like bourbon at all.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by alpenglow » Thu Oct 06, 2016 12:19 pm

alfaspider wrote:
alpenglow wrote:I see people are throwing in single malt recs. Unless you know the specific tastes of your groomsmen, I really wouldn't go there. I have 10 diverse single malts open in my house right now and I have strong opinions about each of them. For example, peat is very polarizing (like in Talisker). Some like a strong sherry cask finished/matured flavor (like in Macallan) and others don't. To play it safe, I would stick with bourbon or a blended scotch.
Everything can be polarizing. Personally, I don't like bourbon at all.
True. I'll take scotch over bourbon any day.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by barnaclebob » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:20 pm

Atilla wrote:Glenlivet Nadurra is my recommendation. Runs about $80 bucks a bottle. :beer
I'll second. Nice and bright, not too harsh.

I'd for sure appreciate a bottle of Johnny walker blue as a gift even if it were just for the novelty. Everyone wants to at least try it or have a bottle on their shelf because it has recognition as "the good stuff". Your groomsmen will be able let that gift keep giving by offering it to guests if they don't drink it themselves.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Bungo » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:26 pm

njboater74 wrote:Nobody ever lost a friend over Macallan 18
That's what occurred to me when I read the title "Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?" Answer: no it's not, in a world where you can get a bottle of Macallan 18 for roughly the same price.

(Although in my opinion, Macallan 12 is 99% as good for about 20-25% of the price.)

I actually received a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue as a gift a few years ago, and while I appreciated the gesture, I didn't actually enjoy it very much. I'm not a fan of blended scotch in general. On the other hand, I've never met anyone who liked scotch but didn't enjoy Macallan.
Last edited by Bungo on Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:36 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by ilostmywallet » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:26 pm

Jack FFR1846 wrote:Would the groomsmen appreciate it? If I were given this as a gift, I would dump the contents and put the bottle into the glass recycling bin. Nobody in my house drinks alcohol and we certainly don't need it around with a teenager in the house.
sounds like you've got some bad history

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by katzmandu » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:30 pm

LouieLouie2 wrote:As most have posted, good bottles of scotch can be had for between $50-$80/bottle. For variety and drinking pleasure I like to buy the three different Glenmorangie scotches (regular, Lasanta & Ruban). These are I beleive 12 year old and run about 48-55$/bottle. Very good in that the regular is more peatty and the least sweet when it finishes on your palate after taking a sip. Lasanta is aged in sherry casks and is a little more sweet finish. The Ruban is even sweeter finish and aged in Port casks.
I'm also a a fan of Cardhu, Oban and scotches from the Speyside region (Cardhu and Belvenie are a few). Scotches get their reputations from the area of Scotland in which they are created usually. Unless you are buying non-Scottish scotch which is sacreligious! Usually, the higher the age the more the money, and as most have stated, expensive is not always better. I've never tried Blue Label but have had my share of Red and Black, they sufice nicely. Not long ago i was in my nieces wedding and all the groomsmen, myself & her brother were all given Irish whiskey which could only be purchased in Ireland. It was Bushmills special type of Irish whiskey. I thought it a nice gift. Her husband bought a case on business and brought back with him.
I hope this helps, Good luck with whatever you select. :beer :sharebeer :sharebeer :sharebeer
Louis
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by panhead » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:46 pm

Bungo wrote:
njboater74 wrote:Nobody ever lost a friend over Macallan 18
That's what occurred to me when I read the title "Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?" Answer: no it's not, in a world where you can get a bottle of Macallan 18 for roughly the same price.

(Although in my opinion, Macallan 12 is 99% as good for about 20-25% of the price.)

I actually received a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue as a gift a few years ago, and while I appreciated the gesture, I didn't actually enjoy it very much. I'm not a fan of blended scotch in general. On the other hand, I've never met anyone who liked scotch but didn't enjoy Macallan.

I do like Scotch and the above advice is exactly what I would have recommended. Macallen 12 is excellent and is my normal "go to". I've had Macallan 18 and honestly don't think its worth the extra cost over the 12. I've had a bottle of JW Blue as well, and IMHO, either Macallen is significantly better tasting and a much better value.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by corwin » Thu Oct 06, 2016 2:00 pm

+1 on Oban. I first tried it at the distillery 20 years ago. About $80, it's what I have when I want to splurge. Smooth finish doesn't scare off occasional scotch drinkers.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by tomd37 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 2:22 pm

Johnnie Walker scotches are a blend of scotches.
Tom D.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by adamthesmythe » Thu Oct 06, 2016 2:48 pm

The title asks whether Blue is worth the cost and the text asks whether Blue is an appropriate gift.

These are two different questions. I haven't tasted Blue because I wouldn't spend $150 for a bottle of bourbon. I would be very happy with the taste of $50 bourbon however.

For a gift, you want something that (1) has the right perceived value and (2) appropriately reflects on the discernment and status of the giver and receiver. Details of the color, nose, taste and finish are irrelevant.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Nicolas » Thu Oct 06, 2016 3:54 pm

I'm surprised no-one's mentioned Laphroaig, one of my favorites. It's usually $50 for 750 mL but my Costco sells it for $39. However it's very peaty so probably only an acquired taste for most, though I warmed up to it immediately.

Plus along with every bottle comes a code you can use to claim deed to a square foot of their land in Scotland! Actually I think it's just a lease that reverts back after 100 years. If you buy enough bottles you can acquire enough property to set up a lawn chair on. :beer

dbr
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by dbr » Thu Oct 06, 2016 4:46 pm

climber2020 wrote:Hi everyone,

I'm looking for a nice bottle of whisky as part of a groomsmen gift and am wondering if Johnnie Walker Blue was worth the high price tag. I've read some very contrasting reviews online. Only one of the 4 guys is someone I would consider a Scotch connoisseur, so an oddball single malt is probably not the best choice for this crowd. Any thoughts or recommendations?
It's worth it because it shows nothing is too expensive for the occasion and no one would dare suggest they don't like it, or at least what people like isn't really relevant.

Otherwise there is no choice that appeals to everyone at any price. See if any four of the posters on this thread could agree on any one choice. A different way look at it is that if this is not a group with a common taste in whisky, then whisky might better be avoided in favor of something else.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by bigred77 » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:38 pm

Bungo wrote:
njboater74 wrote:Nobody ever lost a friend over Macallan 18
That's what occurred to me when I read the title "Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?" Answer: no it's not, in a world where you can get a bottle of Macallan 18 for roughly the same price.

(Although in my opinion, Macallan 12 is 99% as good for about 20-25% of the price.)

I actually received a bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue as a gift a few years ago, and while I appreciated the gesture, I didn't actually enjoy it very much. I'm not a fan of blended scotch in general. On the other hand, I've never met anyone who liked scotch but didn't enjoy Macallan.
Ha!! I'm a big scotch drinker and I don't enjoy Macallan!! :mrgreen:

For some reason I just don't enjoy it and I've tried both the 12 and 18 year old vintages. I will typically drink JW black on the rocks since it's relatively inexpensive and my extended family's drink of choice when they come over. For single malts (always neat) I really like any of the Glenfiddich and Glenlivet options. Laphroaig is not bad. My absolute favorite though is Lagavulin 16 but it's at least $90 bucks a bottle where I live and I can't afford to drink that as much I would like too.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by SpringMan » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:41 pm

Scotch tastes like lighter fluid to me so I would say no.
Best Wishes, SpringMan

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by RyeWhiskey » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:46 pm

Johnnie Walker Blue? No thanks. That gift says 'status' more than 'delicious.' Go to your local liquor store and talk to the folks there. Explain your situation, go for something less than $100, preferably local as it will have a better story; on this note, any smaller distilleries in your area? If so, go in there and taste and ask. :beer

Also, don't count out Irish whiskies. Green Spot and Yellow Spot are phenomenal. Red Breast is easy to find and has different 'grades.'
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Compound
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Compound » Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:46 pm

alpenglow wrote:To answer your question, no. JW Blue is all about marketing and is highly overpriced IMHO. Since you aren't serious scotch drinkers, I won't suggest any single malts. Save some money and get the JW Green. Much more character at a much lower price! :beer Slainte!
My first taste of JW Green was at my own wedding, supplied by the wedding party. Quite a nice taste and much more reasonably priced than JW Blue. That said, Blue is quite yummy.

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Ged
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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by Ged » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:01 pm

I would say it's not worth the price. There are many fine choices for $100 available.

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Re: Johnnie Walker Blue worth the cost?

Post by jasper » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:46 pm

Just for a different perspective. If they like whiskey, but not necessarily scotch, I second Irish whiskey

Nobody yet mentioned Midletons. In the same price range. Delicious. Thank me later. Plus it is something different they likely haven't tried yet

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