Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Review: Dewar’s 12 years old “Special Reserve” Blended Scotch Whisky
Lately, all I seem to purchase are single malt scotch whiskies. What about a good blended scotch whisky? I like Johnnie Walker Black Label. Green Label is very good. Chivas Regal 12 years works too. What about Dewar's 12 years? Me thinks I need to try it. So, a bottle was procured from my local liquor store by yours truly, and so here we are.
Muted dandelions and malt notes. No strong aromas here. Very gentle scents.
Very sweet entry onto the palate followed by some feeble attempt to dry or evaporate, but this is mostly a failed attempt. Instead of drying there is a warm graininess. As for flavors, you will be greeted by sugary, cloyingly so, honey, followed by some malty notes and dark chocolate. There is a slight barnyard funkiness, something spoiled going on here. Not easy to put my finger on it. Think of the taste of rinds of tangerines left in the fruit bowl too long by the kitchen window, as the sun beams down day after day.
Artificially sweetened cereal. Think Captain Crunch and Lucky Charms in a bowl of chocolate milk with saccharine liberally sprinkled on top. That’s the very brief lingering taste. The saccharine really is a distinct and unfortunate (like a car accident) flavor on the finish. Yuck!
Add a teaspoon of water and the pleasing undiluted nose disappears. In its place is the scent of damp leaves.
The disappointment continues. The addition of water just punches up the NutraSweet levels to near diabetic coma conditions. Flavors? I dunno. I guess you could call it honey, Dollar Store honey, way past expiry date that was safe for human consumption.
Graphite, cheap and short like Madonna's mini skirts from early '80's music videos. This is junk scotch.
Please avoid at all costs. Drinking Dewar’s 12 years evokes childhood memories of bouts of car sickness on the long drive to Grandma’s house.
If I were to sum it up in a few words, I would say: grainy sweet with some malt notes on the finish. The taste is cheap. Reminds me of something rummies would drink. I am surprised it is a 12 year old blend. Also reminds me of J&B, which is not a good thing. I am still emotionally scarred from the last J&B tasting. Both are ridiculously sweet with simple, unadulterated flavors of artificial sweetener, honey and some malty cereal. Probably the best feature of this blended scotch whisky was the undiluted nose. It was subtle and pleasing and consequently provided no warning of the huge pedestrian crosswalk disappointment that awaits the unsuspecting and trusting fool.
Value for Money?
Me thinks not. The price is within $1 of Johnnie Walker Black Label, another 12 yr old blended scotch, and it is the same price as Chivas Regal 12 years. Dewar's tastes more like an economy blended scotch and they (ie. Johnnie Walker Red Label, Ballantines) are better. Dewar's 12 years old is too expensive for what you get. It is similar to J & B Rare, another terribly sweet blended scotch that is better consumed as part of a mixed drink. Dewar's may work as mix, but the trouble is one should not have to spend that much for mix!
I still have about half a bottle. I am not going to finish it. I will give it to someone, but the questions is: Who do I dislike that much?
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