We are absolutely thrilled to be inviting members back to the store, to take part in Drop-In Drams once again. This is how our club started – and is in my mind the most important part of The Dram Association. We invite all members, whatever whisky background and experience they may have, to come and try some wonderful drams with us in the store. Any time before 7 pm, any day but Wednesday. It’s designed to be approachable and easy to take part in, no matter your schedule.
When you come in to try the dram, you’ll be given two cards – one with the details of what you’re trying (now including a QR code that links to this site with more information and the “Unbottling” video), and a second card that allows your voice to be heard by leaving a review for the dram. After the dram is retired (all drams are available for four weeks), we tally up the average score and this page is updated and joins the Dram Associations bank of reviews.
Why This Bottle?
Well, ain’t that a dram good question!? Johnny Walker is a stalwart of the Scotch whisky scene and in many ways is responsible for the popularity of blended Scotch around the world. After all, they sell around 250 million bottles a year. Not bad for a company that started off as a small-town grocery store in 1820. And if it weren’t for the success of blended Scotch, we wouldn’t have the incredible selection of single malts available to us today either.
So, in honour of their importance to the industry as a whole, I’m proud to present this special edition 21-year-old Scotch. Award-winning master blender Jim Beverage created this recipe from handwritten notes by John Walker’s son Alexander Walker. It starts off with paying special attention to the grain component – often considered as filler to a blend, but certainly not in this case. It actually showcases single grain from Port Dundas – an excellent, but now sadly closed distillery. The malt is fronted by the one-two Speyside punch of Mortlach and Cardhu and features a mix of bourbon and sherry cask matured malts – and even a bit of peat.
The truly amazing thing about this whisky though is the price. For some reason, it’s about $50 less in BC than it was in other provinces – and of course, the discount only helps that further! We stocked up well, knowing that this was bound to be a popular choice for gift-givers. Why not nip down to the store and give this one a sample? Who knows – maybe you deserve a gift yourself!
Adam’s Tasting Notes
In my initial exploration, it was very toffee heavy on the nose. Hints of Banana and custard then gave way to a rich oat crumble breakfast cereal with cinnamon, lemongrass and Greek yogurt. The palate was full and indulgent, more than one might expect at 40% abv. Apricot kernels, amaretto and Cadbury’s fudge fingers joined the dance on the palate.
On a later revisit, I found more tropical notes. Mango and pineapple specifically. They came on a bed of lightly smoked granola complete with pecans and brown sugar. A delightfully delicate yet full-flavoured blend whose complexity, balance, and maturity can’t really be beaten at this price point. But that’s just my opinion – come down to the store and find out yours!