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Inasmuch as it's popular in many online whisky groups to regard blends as "inferior" (especially mass market blends such as JW), my fellow Connosr members tend to be a bit more open minded. After all, good whisky is good whisky. While it may not be a favourite among "insiders", Johnnie Walker Black tends to be my choice for a "can't miss" scotch whisky that pleases just about anyone, especially those new to smokier offerings. The Sherry Cask edition of JW Black caught my eye when I saw it a few months ago and much like Bilbo Baggins, I thought to myself "Why not? Why shouldn't I keep it?".
- Nose (undiluted): very fruity with raisins, dates, some red berries, followed by a touch of smoke, fresh tobacco, and something slightly nutty
- Palate: easy arrival, light-ish body, sweetness, red fruit, oranges, more nuttiness (pecans? hazelnuts? I can't be sure), with a bit of smoke.
- Finish: medium length, with some toffee, raisins, and smoke lingering.
- Thoughts: This is no smoke monster. The fruitiness is definitely the star of this show but it's quite a pleasant dram. There are no off notes and the grain whisky is aged enought that there's no unpleasant acetone aroma, nor is there any bitterness on the finish. Will it become my favourite blended whisky ever? I doubt it, but it's one I won't turn down either. I'd like a bit more smoke, but I knew going in that "Sherry Finish" would lean more towards the fruit than the peat.