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mrt
11-05-2006, 01:25
If you have ever tried, what's your opinion about Johnnie Walker Black Label?

I've bought a bottle yesterday and tried for the first time. It's far more better than the standard blends I had tried before-icluding JW Red, J&B Rare, etc., in compliance with the "deluxe" claim on the bottle and the maturation period of 12 years. However, bourbon continues to be my choice. What do you think?

PS: BTW, I posted a poll about JW Black Label on the Whiskey Magazine forum-you know there are mostly Scotch fans there. I'll compare the opinions of the two sides of Atlantic.

DrinkyBanjo
11-05-2006, 04:59
It's good stuff, not great. I'd use it as a really good mixer.

Nebraska
11-05-2006, 07:05
Last year I purchased a gift sampler for sampling by my poker group. It contained JW red, black, gold and blue.

The Blue was the clear winner, very very good stuff.

The Gold over all would have been everybody's pick when considering taste, price, etc.

The Black was ok, but no where near the Gold or Blue in terms of taste.

The red is the red.

I'm not really a blended scotch whiskey drinker, but the gold would be my choice out of those four.

bluesbassdad
11-05-2006, 12:48
There must be a more enjoyable blended scotch than JW Black Label, but I haven't had the opportunity to taste it yet. Because of the high prices for scotch as compared to bourbon, I probably never will.

I have a small bottle of the Gold Label open; I like the Black Label better. The Gold is delicate by comparison, not a quality likely to endear it to me.

Here are some comments from long ago.

One (http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1116&highlight=black)
Two (http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?p=61283&highlight=black#post61283)
Three (http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?p=13479&highlight=black#post13479)

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

CrispyCritter
11-05-2006, 19:02
I'd consider JWB to be a good, solid Scotch blend - but for about the same price I could get Compass Box Asyla, which wins hands-down for me.

I haven't tried the Red, Gold, or Blue versions.

The best blend I've had was Campbeltown Loch 25yo, sadly now extinct. I have one last bottle in my bunker, and I greatly regret not buying more when I had the opportunity. You snooze, you lose...

TimmyBoston
11-05-2006, 22:57
Don't care for the red or the black at all, but the Gold is very good. The Blue is tasty, but nowhere near worth the price.

smokinjoe
11-06-2006, 07:33
I find the JW Black to be very enjoyable on the what has become few times I opt for scotch. A few years back I was invited to a tasting that JW Black hosted at a trendy spot in Atlanta. Started off with some single's Oban, Talisker, Lagavulin, and one other I can't remember. Then a tasting of the Black. Received a 350 bottle and some other stuff too. It was very well done, and enforced my admiration for the brand. But, I just don't drink much scotch these days for some reason...;)
JOE

DrinkyBanjo
11-06-2006, 08:15
The thing I like about JW Black is that you can get it almost anywhere. I had it a couple of weeks ago at my sisters wedding and it wasn't bad at all. It has strong Islay flavors without being to 'extreme' as you might get from the Single Malts of the region.

I however, like the extreme singles from Islay so I would rather drink them when available.

cowdery
11-06-2006, 11:18
I don't drink much scotch, but I like JW black.

TNbourbon
11-06-2006, 13:38
JW Black is the one of the Johnnie Walkers I'd buy most often if I bought blended Scotch often. It's easily better than the red, and much cheaper than either the gold (very good) and blue (over-rated, I think, and thus overpriced).

ratcheer
11-06-2006, 14:36
I also don't drink much scotch and I also really like JW Black. It is not the best scotch I ever tasted, but it is very good.

Tim

robbyvirus
11-07-2006, 00:09
I also don't drink much scotch and I also really like JW Black. It is not the best scotch I ever tasted, but it is very good.

Tim

Same here. I rarely drink scotch, but I've always thought JW black was pretty good. But then again, it ain't bourbon!

Bamber
11-07-2006, 10:40
I've had the blue, gold, black, green (ok it is pure malt) and red.

Apart from the red, which is pretty average, they're all about the same for me. I'm not a big fan of blends, but I will drink JWB on occasion.

I've actually got friends and family to taste the JW whiskies blind and generally the order is:

Gold
Black
=Blue, Green

OscarV
11-24-2006, 16:23
I for one would never refuse a Johnnie Walker Black.
JWB was the first whisky that I liked.
Before JWB, there was Seagrams Canadian, I could drink it with 7-Up but soda-pop gets old fast.
I think the scotch ads in Playboy magazine influenced me when I was young, they always showed it on the rocks, and it looked so good.
I don't remember any bourbon ads, but they always had those classic Jack Daniels ads. Those ads were better than the product.

Dramiel McHinson
11-24-2006, 16:25
JW! I must admit I'm a little conflicted when it comes to blended scotch. JW black is a good choice for taste if you like a little smooth smokey-peatey in your daily dram. I don't think its up to the price unless you get it at discount. My preference would be to go with an Islay single malt. An Islay single malt in the same price range as JW Black would be an unfair comparison with the single malt winning hands down for me. Still, JW Black has its place on the shelf and if you really like it and you think the price fair then by all means enjoy it.

AVB
11-24-2006, 18:17
JW Black is claimed to be largest selling "premium" blend in the world. It does hold it's own against most but if you really want something superior at close to the same price, go and find some BlacK Bottle 10. (if you like Islay whisky that is)

emr454
12-29-2006, 10:58
I can say that the 200mL bottle of JW Black was probably the worst $10 I've ever spent. The nose is very medicinal, for lack of a better word. Mixed with ice and water, it doesnt taste too bad, as long as you dont swallow it. The finish is way too reminiscent of Chloraseptic sore throat spray. I tried to get myself to enjoy it but I've given up now. I will probably never buy any Johnnie Walker products again, or any more blended scotch for that matter.

Now single-malts, on the other had arent bad, although The Glenlivet 12 is the only SMS I've ever had, but it was head and shoulders above JWB.

Different strokes for different folks I guess, but it just aint my thing.

Eric

CrispyCritter
12-29-2006, 20:35
Now single-malts, on the other had arent bad, although The Glenlivet 12 is the only SMS I've ever had, but it was head and shoulders above JWB.

My guess, then, is that you wouldn't like peated single malts like Talisker (from Skye), Laphroaig, Ardbeg, or Lagavulin (from Islay), or Highland Park (from Orkney). JWB allegedly contains some Talisker in the blend, for instance, and I've certainly noted a bit of peat when I've tasted it.

When the malt is dried over burning peat, the smoke finds its way into the finished whisky - and this often gives it a bit of a medicinal character.

(FYI, I love both peated and unpeated single malts!)

Glenlivet is a classic Speyside single malt - little or no peat, and at least some of it is aged in sherry casks. Others in that vein would include Aberlour, Glenrothes, and Macallan; note that Macallan "Fine Oak" is aged only in bourbon barrels.

As for blended Scotches, a favorite of mine is Compass Box Asyla. It is definitely not JWB!

emr454
12-30-2006, 07:37
So the medicinal taste in JWB is also referred to as peat? I guess if I want to try any more blends, or SMS for that matter, I'll look for one without a strong peat presence.

Not trying to hijack this thread, but I was told by the liquor store clerk that McClellands Highland single malt was a good beginner scotch. Locally its only about $18 for a 750mL bottle. Any thoughts or comments on this one?

Eric

ratcheer
12-30-2006, 09:34
It is my recollection that the predominant flavoring whisky in JWB is Cardhu. I also seem to recall that the SMS purists decry the fact that JW uses up so much of the precious Cardhu for blending stock and releases so little of it as single malt. It is supposed to be a great whisky.

Tim

Frodo
01-01-2007, 05:28
I've tried JW Black and although it's not to my taste, I see why people would like it. Cardhu I've tried and was underwelmed...

cowdery
01-09-2007, 01:57
Back when I was a scotch drinker, in my childhood, it was mostly cheap blends (Usher's, Passport, Scoresby), so when I had me some JW Black, I realized that blended scotch could be so much more. I still prefer it to all of the other majors.

I think it's ridiculous, as some people do, to compare single malts and blends, and declare singles superior. They're simply two different kinds of whiskey and should be judged on their own terms.

When you think about it, the U.S. has blends, but not any really top shelf ones, and the Canadians don't make any "straights." The Scots, Irish and Japanese make both fine blends and fine singles. Good for them.

If you must compare single malts to blends, compare a cheap single malt to a first rate blend and see if you still think singles are inherently superior.

Edward_call_me_Ed
01-18-2007, 06:30
I can't vote. It has been an awfully long time since I had the JWB. I remember liking it, but not liking its price point. It is cheaper now, I think. Every time I see it on the shelf, frequently that is, I think about buying it. So far I haven't but I think I should get a bottle. Probably next time I see it...

Ed

Gillman
01-18-2007, 07:07
I haven't had it in a long time either, so I won't comment on that expression. Recently I did have some Red label, it was a Christmas gift since normally I would buy other things (not necessarily more expensive, just different, e.g., I bought a reputed blend called Gordon Highlanders I am very pleased with).

I found the Red Label very good, it had a good round taste and the malts, while certainly not well-aged (I'd guess most were 8-10 years old) were balanced, fruity, lightly smoky.

Gary

cowdery
01-18-2007, 10:03
Funny, but I've never bought a bottle of JWB, yet I always seem to have one around. I've received it as a gift and have rescued bottles from non-drinking friends, who themselves received it as a gift, which is how I obtained the bottle in my possession now.

Edward_call_me_Ed
01-18-2007, 22:30
A friend of a friend bunkered a lot of JWB here in Japan back in the 70s and 80s during what is called the Bubble Economy. At that time is was viewed as a super premium brand and was very expensive. Now it is fairly inexpensive, maybe a little more than $20 US.

Ed

OscarV
01-19-2007, 11:12
A Persian friend of mine said in the Middle East you have to be careful when buying JWB over there because there are a lot of fakes.
The last one I had was about 8 years ago a friend gave it to me for Christmas.

Edward_call_me_Ed
01-23-2007, 14:08
I picked up a bottle the other day after reading this thread.

Nice smoke, not enough of it IMHO. Nothing wrong with the stuff really, but I was underwelmed.

Ed

RoyalWater
02-07-2007, 20:58
I can't quite decide whether I like Walker Black or Cutty Sark better. I buy Cutty though because it's under $20 but Walker Black is over $30. I like J&B best with soda but it doesn't hold up to Cutty or Walker straight. Maybe my taste is strange because most folks I know won't drink Cutty Sark straight.

AVB
02-08-2007, 05:00
Cutty is presumed to have the lowest percentage of scotch in it. I've heard as low as 15% so the blender must be hitting your flavor profile pretty well.

Frodo
02-17-2007, 14:26
Maybe my taste is strange because most folks I know won't drink Cutty Sark straight.

Cutty Sark is one of the few value blends that I actually have a good memory of drinking. Nothing too complex, but I did remember liking it...

craigthom
02-18-2007, 10:59
According to Michael Jackson Talisker is responsible for that sharp peaty note in JWB, and I'll take his word for it.

I've toured the Talisker distillery and was told that something like 80% of their output is put into blends. I think that's true for most distilleries. The trendy single malt market is relatively young and it still makes up a small percentage of what people buy.

Every blended Scotch, no matter how cheap, has single malts in it, and companies like Johnnie Walker aren't distilleries; they are blenders and bottlers.

Joeluka
02-18-2007, 11:46
companies like Johnnie Walker aren't distilleries; they are blenders and bottlers.

That's not really true. Diageo blends and bottle's JW. They also bottle these blends, Bells, Buchanan's, Black & White, Haig, Dimple(Pinch), J&B, Old Parr, White Horse, and several lesser know brands. Now all these blends are blended using Single Malts from Distilleries that Diageo owns and operates. They are Cardhu, Caol Ila, Talisker, Cylnelish, Cragganmore, Dalwhinnie, Glen Elgin, Glen Ord, Glenkinchie, Knockando, Lagavulin, Oban, Royal Lochnager, plus several closed distilleries.

Diageo can then in turn use all the different single malts they make to achieve all the blends flavor profiles. Most blends are owned by giant coporation's that also own distilleries too. IMHO I tend to consider these blends distilled and bottled by their companies. Diageo owns them all so it's all their Scotch.

mier
08-18-2007, 02:13
I prefer the green label,far better.
Eric.

aarkwilde
08-18-2007, 18:57
When I was a young teen I had a friend who's parents didn't drink at all. But they kept a few bottles in the house for company, and one was JWB. I used to sneak capfuls whenever it occured to me.

It's good stuff.

jcusey
08-19-2007, 10:23
Glenlivet is a classic Speyside single malt - little or no peat, and at least some of it is aged in sherry casks. Others in that vein would include Aberlour, Glenrothes, and Macallan; note that Macallan "Fine Oak" is aged only in bourbon barrels.


I realize that this is an old post, and I'm really not trying to be pedantic. However, one of The Glenlivet's claims to fame is that it is one of the few Scotches that is aged in 100% ex-bourbon barrels (at least the 12 year old version is; other versions may spend time in French oak casks or other types of barrels). Macallan's Fine Oak range is not aged exclusively in ex-bourbon barrels but rather a combination of ex-bourbon barrels, Spanish oak (Quercus robur) casks seasoned with sherry, and American oak (Quercus alba) casks seasoned with sherry. Mainline Macallan is aged exclusively in Spanish oak casks seasoned with sherry.


It is my recollection that the predominant flavoring whisky in JWB is Cardhu. I also seem to recall that the SMS purists decry the fact that JW uses up so much of the precious Cardhu for blending stock and releases so little of it as single malt. It is supposed to be a great whisky.


Cardhu is indeed one of the principal flavoring malts that Diageo uses for Johnnie Walker whiskies, although I'm not certain of how much it influences the Black Label. (Diageo is trying for different flavor profiles out of the Red, Black, Green, Gold, and Blue -- it's not the case that Black is Red with more aging and so on; the actual blend will be very different for all of the various expressions). What happened is that Cardhu for some reason exploded in popularity in Spain a few years ago -- apparently, Cardhu and Coke was the drink to have there. Diageo couldn't keep up with the demand in the Spanish market for Cardhu single malt and still have sufficient stocks for blending, so they created something new: Cardhu Pure Malt, which was a vatting of a number of single malts, packaged and labeled in a manner very similar to the Cardhu single malt. This caused something of a scandal because of the inherent deceptiveness of the marketing, and the result was that Diageo had to pull the Pure Malt version of Cardhu and that the British government promulgated new regulations to prevent something similar from happening again. I have never had Cardhu; but from what I have read, it's a good whisky but probably not one of the universally-acknowledged classics of the genre.

As for JW Black, it is what it is: a very good, ubiquitous, utterly reliable blend. I wouldn't turn down a bottle of it, and I would happily order it in a bar if I felt like a Scotch and the bar's selection was dodgy.

ACDetroit
08-19-2007, 19:54
As a member of the walking man society I’ve been invited to a couple JW tastings in the Detroit area. The first was a walk with Black. Picture walking into a banquet hall (room) at a Ritz Carlton with tables and chairs set up for a couple hundred people. In front of each chair was a place mat with 5 shot glasses of Scotch, the 2 on the right and left were single malts with Black in the middle. It was very educational with a host narrated video and explanation of how these 4 singles was blended to make Black. I really found an appreciation for Black that night.

Second event was a tour of JW in Detroit and we tasted all the flavors if I remember correctly:
JWR (mixer) great with Ginger Ale, Soda etc

JWB (Neat, Rocks or Mixer)

JWG was in the freezer and served cold (just pure heaven in a glass). You could taste the honey comb in this scotch.

JWG comes from a rainy region and you can taste it in this bottle, I really enjoy the green and keep it at home.

JWB Tops them all IMO it's in the mid 2 hundreds in my area so I don't keep it but if you get the opportunity when out I would highly recommend it after dinner.

Sorry for the ramble as I'm not a scotch guy but Johnnie Walker has a great line up in many price ranges. Enjoy

Cheers!!

bluesbassdad
08-19-2007, 21:09
T.C.,

Do I understand correctly?

JW Black is a blend of only four malts (plus what else?).
Company reps divulged the proportions to all in attendance.
You found chilling improves the flavor of JW green label.I seldom drink whisk(e)y these days, but there was a time when I regarded JW black label, which I always have on hand, as the scotch equivalent to Wild Turkey 101. By that I mean good-to-best value for my money and a good representative of the type.

However, JWB would never become a staple for me when I can get 1.75 L. of WT 101 for about the same price or a 750 of Wild Turkey Rare Breed for a few dollars more.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

AVB
08-20-2007, 04:47
JW Black is far more then 4 malts and grain but obviously I don't know what they all are. I've regularly heard it is up to 40 different whiskies.

For some reason JW Gold is suggested to be served ice cold, I have no idea why as it does nothing for me when it is cold like that.

ILLfarmboy
08-20-2007, 05:44
I prefer in descending order JW Gold, JW Green and then JW Black. I will say sometimes Green strikes me as better than Gold. Both are very good!

I can't see why anyone would want to drink them ice cold. But then again I'm not an "on the rocks" drinker. I think the cold temps blunt the flavor too much, especially with higher proofs. However, I do on occasion drink the cheaper (less pot still character) Irish whiskeys like standard Jamesons with plenty of ice. I let the ice melt quite a bit so it's sort of a whiskey and water with very little water.

ACDetroit
08-22-2007, 05:02
At the tasting held by JW they served the gold chilled and that was the first time I had had it. I found it very good. It frosted the glass as they served it.

The Black was made up of several blended whisky’s and 4 single malt scotches. We were able to try the singles first and then chalenged to find those flavores in the last glass which was JWB. If I can remember there was one that was quite fruity one was grainy, one char or smokey, I can not remember the fourth but the experience they walked you through was very cool. Each of these was served neat and you had a glass of water and a straw. The guide had everyone try each neat and then with a half straw of the water. It was very educational to see how a little bit of water can really open up the flavors that can be hidden by the proof or alcohol burn.

Sorry for the vagueness it was about 5 years ago and many new bottles have passed since.

AVB good to see you here as well!!

jwrussell
08-22-2007, 10:36
Can't answer the poll because I haven't had any blends better than JW Black, but I haven't been trying any either. I like JW Black. If I want something different, I'm trying a Single, not a Blend.

CrispyCritter
08-22-2007, 22:19
JW Black, to me, is a solid, consistent blend - and it's available just about everywhere. I have certainly had better blends (such as Compass Box Asyla, or especially Campbeltown Loch 25yo), but those suffer from limited availability for the Compass Box, to utter non-availability for the CL25.

I have one last bottle of CL25, and it's not getting opened until I finish my also-irreplaceable Ardbeg 1977 - and that's very much a special-occasion pour! I could kick myself for not snapping up as many CL25 bottles as I could get when it was on the store shelves.

whiskeyhatch
08-22-2007, 23:26
I'd be interested to see what the folks across the pond say about this stuff. I don't have a lot of experience with blends. I drink single malts (particularly from the Islays). But I have had JWB and I like it a lot. I won't turn my nose up to a whisk(e)y just because it's a scotch, and I won't turn my nose up to a scotch just because it's a blend. JWB is good stuff. Maybe some day I'll be able to compare it to the Blue, Green and Gold.

Vange
08-23-2007, 12:11
For me, JW Black is good on the rocks. A bit tougher to take neat. JW Gold is I think the best of the JW products. JW Blue is very good, but VERY VERY smoky tasting and probably not for everyone. JW Green I had once and remember being unimpressed for a vatted malt.

sku
08-24-2007, 11:12
I think JWBlack is a pretty reliable blend to get at a bar or party where there is not anything more interesting being offered. I prefer it to Dewars, Cutty Sark and other comparable blends that are often offered side by side.

I don't care for JW Red, and I haven't had any of their other colors, though I might pick up a bottle of gold after reading Jim Murray's raves about it in his most recent Whisky Bible.

bongoman
12-11-2007, 02:44
"Each day I have some 6,000 whiskies to choose from for a social dram if I want one. And at least once a week I will sample a Black Label. While the single malt revolution continues unabated, it is a shame that whisky lovers do not use this as a yardstick. They will find that very few malts can match this for complexity. This is the Savoy, the Everest of Deluxe Whiskies: there is not a blender who would not give their right arm - or even their left one - for the recipe of this supreme whisky. The trouble is, even if they had it, they would then struggle to find the stock. It represents probably the best value for money of any whisky in the world.-- Jim Murray


That's some serious praise.

Sijan
12-25-2007, 21:30
I like JWB quite a bit. Talisker is definitely a strong influence in it; as a Talisker fan, I enjoy that smoke & spice element.

JW Gold is also very nice. And I also keep mine in the freezer. It was designed as a dessert/celebration whisky and the folks at JW even recommend serving it ice cold, then holding it on your tongue and letting it warm and release the flavors. I was very skeptical at first, but I have to say it is very enjoyable when served this way.

JW Blue is good too, but overrated and not worth the price.

Gillman
12-26-2007, 00:05
A business contact gifts me Johnnie Walker Red each year. I still have most of last year's and did a side-by-side with this year's. While recognisably the same brand, this year's was in my opinon much better, being softer and with less apparent grain whisky bite. Also, the current one had more depth and taste I thought, seemingly more of a Speyside note. As someone who admires good blending skills, the current bottling is a textbook example. Black label is good but I find it has a marked effect of its grain whiskies, and as was mentioned, needs ice to soften its edges. Gold is usually very good. Blue too but is in a different style and not as good as value.

I have always wanted to try Vat 69 which was the first vatted malt ever made. It is not available in Canada but I see it in the cerveserias in Spain where I am sojourning, so probably it will be essayed soon next to a cana (small draft beer).

I found the store which offers a broad range of spirits (the one I mentioned earlier on the board) but it has been closed due to the hloidays. I'll report more anon. I passed its barred windows and was wowed by a veritable wall of absinthes but of bourbon there was only "Marshall's" apparent. However I am sure other brands are within its precincts. We will see soon.

Gary

Megawatt
12-28-2007, 11:29
Just tried my first glass of Black Label last night. Now that I'm more accustomed to the smokiness, I found it to be quite pleasant, definitely nicer than I recall the red to be. I might buy a bottle while it's on sale, in fact...

PAspirit1
01-22-2008, 16:47
I answered excellent deluxe blend because I like this whiskey quite a bit. I didn't like scotch untill I tried this. I bought a handfull of scotch minis, blends and single malts, and JWB is the one that impressed my newbie palate. Along with the light sweet background I get a spice, then I guess a peat note and then It trails away nicely. I'm a fan of this one right now.

Megawatt
01-23-2008, 04:46
I answered excellent deluxe blend because I like this whiskey quite a bit. I didn't like scotch untill I tried this. I bought a handfull of scotch minis, blends and single malts, and JWB is the one that impressed my newbie palate. Along with the light sweet background I get a spice, then I guess a peat note and then It trails away nicely. I'm a fan of this one right now.

Agreed. It has a wonderfully balanced flavour.

Megawatt
01-30-2008, 17:46
Having my first glass of Dewar's Special Reserve 12 right now, and I might even like it better. More sweet malt and less smoke, but still a wonderful balance.

Gov
03-06-2008, 12:04
Having my first glass of Dewar's Special Reserve 12 right now, and I might even like it better. More sweet malt and less smoke, but still a wonderful balance.

So what is the verdict? JWB or Dewars 12? I have not yet had Dewars 12. I really like JWB though, an excellent blend

Megawatt
03-06-2008, 12:17
So what is the verdict? JWB or Dewars 12? I have not yet had Dewars 12. I really like JWB though, an excellent blend

Johnnie Black, in my opinion. Smoother and more pleasant, but also more balanced. Greater finesse.

LeoDLion
04-15-2008, 13:04
There was a time when we drink a lot of blended scotch- maybe because we never heard of single malt or SMS is quite expensive for us back then. Our choices of blended scotches were:

Cutty Sark
JB
Chivas Regal

with Chivas Regal reserved for special occasions.

I started sampling the JW later. My staple is JWR only because I can afford it. On special occasion its JWB and once or twice we open a bottle of the Blue. I was not impressed with the Blue at all and its overprice. Our house remodelling contractor gave me the Gold and I suspected right away that I paid him more than I should. Gold was better than the Blue and cheaper I think.

AVB
04-15-2008, 14:08
Yes, Gold is less expensive then the Blue. Not many people will open a +$150 bottle a second time if they didn't like it the first go round so at least it shows you were trying. I like the Blue very much, far more then the Gold. Red I've managed to avoid for almost 30 years but I doubt it has gotten better in that time.

Gov
04-15-2008, 14:47
I have tried all of them, and GREEN is the best in my opinon

Dranac Lihp
05-15-2008, 21:54
JW Black is about the most I would spend on a blend, as for little more money you are getting into some good single malts. I really like JW Black and place it above its similarly priced competotors, but for $14 I can get McIvor blended scotch that I prefer over JW Red for drinking straight. There is always White Horse and Teacher's as well, which are far better buys than JW Black for everyday drinking, unless....you are wealthy. JW Black is worth every penny if you can scrape up the pennies. My bottle lasted maybe 4 days as I couldn't stay out of it.