Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Update: Johnnie Walker Green Label

I received this email today from Diageo:

Dear Mr. Jason Debly,

Thank you for taking time to contact Johnnie Walker. Your feedback is important to us.

We value loyal consumers such as yourself and we appreciate your enthusiasm. In response to your inquiry, the  Johnnie Walker Green Limited Edition still has the same core single malts of Cragganmore, Linkwood, Talisker and Caol Ila. The product was released to help celebrate the 10th anniversary and is coming back as a Limited Time Offer in 2015 only.

If there is anything else I could help you with now or in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Once again, thank you for contacting Johnnie Walker.

Sincerely,

Betty
Johnnie Walker Consumer Care Representative

To join a group of individuals who share an appreciation for Johnnie Walker and to enjoy access to unique offers and opportunities, go online and join the House of Walker at https://www.johnniewalker.com/en-us/scotch-whisky-blends/secure/registration.aspx

Keep walking at www.johnniewalker.com please Drink Responsibly.

. . .

Thanks to all of you readers, I have also learned that this release has retained the 15 year age statement.  The only difference between this edition and previous is the use of a twist off cap and a jigger device in the neck.  That's ok so long as the whisky is fine, and it sounds like they are continuing to use the same core single malts.

Readers, if you try this latest release, do let the rest of us know how it stacks up with the Green Label of a few years ago.

I am pretty psyched.  Just need to procure a bottle now.

Cheers!



Jason Debly

62 comments:

  1. The new bottle is also taller and heavier. I do miss the squeak upon removing the cork stopper in the original version but I would have to say the juice is the same. Still a great buy.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for letting us all know.

      I suspect the bottles being used now are probably excess that Diageo had for Blue Label or Gold Label and have been re-purposed for this release. If the whisky is great, I can live with out the cork. Obviously the use of cork adds a cost too. Cork stoppers are not as easy to source as twist off caps, and the decision may have been made quickly to do this launch, however temporary it may be.

      I am also happy to see that the price is not higher than it had been previously.

      Delete
  2. I live near New London, Connecticut have been able to find this Green Label blend at only one retailer so far, and they're charging a bloody premium for it: $65.00 for a 750ml bottle, which I think is rather steep considering the alternatives at that price point. I've never had Green Label as it was discontinued well before I became a regular scotch drinker, so I'm rather reluctant to spend that much money for something I've never sampled before....though I do like Black Label well enough. Are there any online sources for purchasing Green Label as a discounted price here in the States?

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    Replies
    1. There are a number of online retailers carrying it for around $50 I think. Check out the previous post regarding this pure malt, and you will find one of the readers left a comment about where it can be found online.

      One reader said it is now being carried by Costco again for $50 on sale.

      Frankly, I think it is worth $65. Really do. Grab it and see what all the buzz is!

      Delete
    2. See Michael's comment with all the retail info you need.

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    3. KLS, If you don't mind driving up to Manchester, Total Wine has Green Label for $45.

      Delete
  3. Amity Wine & Spirits Co. CT: New Haven. $47.99

    Allendale Wine Shoppe NJ: Allendale. $49.00

    Stirling Fine Wines NJ: Stirling. $49.00

    Mission Liquor & Wines CA: Los Angeles. $49.95

    Winesanywhere NJ: Brick. $49.99

    Buy-Rite Jersey City NJ: Jersey City. $49.99

    http://www.winechateau.com/sku1651888_JOHNNIE-WALKER-SCOTCH-GREEN-LABEL-750ML
    $50 Free Shipping or Store Pickup in NJ

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Michael for the info!

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    2. Thank you for the info, Michael! Very helpful! :-)

      Delete
  4. Ok, this will be a long post lol.... I have a good source who told me that the re-release of Johnnie Walker green label was originally intended for the Asian markets. the stopper was to prevent counterfeiting in other countries. there is a slight difference in the new release versus the old to my palate. occasionally you can find the green label still in a box as I just picked up two today at $60 a piece. I'm sure it helps that I live in Chicago because I can hit smaller liquor stores do not realize what they have. because I knew they were discontinuing it because I attend a lot of tastings and Johnnie Walker gold and green are my preferred drink. at least I was able to stock up and I have enough of each to last me the next 5 years!if you're not aware of it, because of the complaints from the North America consumers they extended it for an additional year in 2014.in the long run I think they are playing a marketing game, but I will continue to stock up just in case.

    Cheers!

    Jason

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    Replies
    1. The thought has crossed my mind too that this may be an elaborate marketing ruse, but hard to say as it is "temporary." If they bring it back permanently, i would hardly complain.

      A friend of mine picked me up a bottle in Florida and will have it shortly. I intend to taste carefully in hopes it is good as it was when being discontinued.

      Delete
  5. Hi. I like your latest blog post. I’m a big fan of whiskey in general. So much so we’ve started sourcing and aging coffee beans in whiskey barrels. Any chance you would be up for reviewing our coffee for your blog readers? I can send out some free samples to you. Awesome site by the way.

    Let me know. Thanks.
    John

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi John,

      I am not drinking coffee anymore as I have to keep the ol' acid reflux under control. Coffee irritates it. So, no review possible.

      Good luck with your venture!

      Delete
  6. My birthday today & Lovely wifey gave me some $$ and said "put that towards your next purchase." Better get stuck into Dan Murphys down here !!

    AL

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  7. Bought a bottle yesterday ($64 US), and it is worth every penny! Sampled it right after dinner and quickly, but it was very good and reminds me of Highland Park 15. When did they discontinue it previously?

    Bob K

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mid-December 2011 was the time when Diageo announced that production would stop. After that there was some in the supply chain in the US and Canada for a while.

      At some point Diageo started making it again as it first appeared again in Hong Kong, Japan and that area.

      Now, we here it is back "temporarily." As of today's date, Diageo have not made a formal announcement about it. Not sure what they have planned.

      I suspect that they may have had an oversupply of the key ingredient malts and so thought to get rid of it in the form of Green Label.

      Hopefully sales might encourage Diageo to take another long look at this great offering in the Johnnie Walker product line.

      My good friend is picking me up a bottle in Florida for me so I will be able to report on what it is tasting like shortly. Your report and others have been very encouraging. One thing I gotta say for Diageo brands of whisky, quality assurance is A1, so I suspect the Green Label you are enjoying now is the same as the past.

      Thanks for commenting! I and the readers appreciate it.

      Delete
  8. Hi Jason
    Thank you for your time on reviews
    Is there any impact of Currency ,Euro is almost close to dollar ,we hope that Scotch price will be reduced
    Thanks

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    Replies
    1. Recent foreign exchange rates for the British pound do not appear to have translated into a reduced price for consumers in the US, but the good news is that the price has not noticeably gone up. I think the price is fair.

      Delete
  9. Found it for $60 here in Tennessee. Now I can get to opening that old bottle i had stashed away!

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    Replies
    1. Please consider doing a tasting side by side to see if there is a difference and report back here. I and the readers would like to know your impressions.

      Thanks for commenting!

      Delete
  10. Not a bad idea. Having some friends and family over next weekend may be a good time for a Green Label tasting. Hoping its identical to the older bottling. For $60 its at a great price point. Most entry level single malts (Balvenie 12,Macallan 12, etc) are the same price here. Actually ive seen macallan 12 for $70....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are correct in observing most entry level single malts are at the same price point, but Green Label is superior to them. More complexity!

      Delete
  11. In the past couple of weeks, I have done three side-by-side comparisons of JWG15 old versus new, with many side-by-side nosings & tastings in each comparison. Despite much recent past effort and much future effort to come (because of my sense of duty, of course :) ), I cannot perceive any significant difference between the two. I'll do additional tasting in the hope of confirming what I have set forth. Slainte, Richard

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Ray, I have heard the same from a friend. This is great news. A good product that remains unchanged and back on shelves, at least for a while.

      Thanks for chiming in!

      Delete
    2. I agree with Ray, I have tasted the old (from my precious stockpile) and the new that I received last week and cannot taste any difference. I am so glad that they re-released it and I was able to add a couple more bottles.

      Delete
    3. Many thanks to Ray R. and Jason W. for doing side-by-side tastings and reporting their results.

      I recently received a few bottles from an online vendor. But I haven't tried one yet because I have been under the weather.

      I'm very happy to hear the reports that there doesn't seem to be any noticeable difference between the old and new JWG15.

      And very excited to open a bottle and taste for myself!

      - Josh

      Delete
  12. In order to uphold my honor and duty to Scotch Whisky-dom, whisky-dom, and distilled spirits-dom in general, I'll be forced to perform a number more comparisons of new versus old JEG15. I'll timely report on the results. It's a tough job, but somebody's gotta do it.

    In semi-seriousness, taking nothing away from fine single malt Scotches of 12 to 15 years and from Johnnie Walker Black 12yr, JWG15 is just such a fine whisky. I do love it. I'm going to stock up before it goes away forever from the Western World. Slainte, Richard ("Ray" is simply an email pseudonym.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Richard, you understand where I am coming from with respect to Johnnie Walker Green. Magical stuff! Other readers are now convinced I am totally off my rocker and wait for me to move on to another topic.

      Can't wait for your comparisons!

      Delete
    2. Jason, I certainly understand your JWG15 view. JWG15 is a superior dram for the $50 to $60 price range. JWG15 is certainly well above the common call brand Scotch single malts (SMs) in the $35-40 range: Glenlivet12, Glenfiddich12, JW Black 12 (which is my restaurant neat dram), & most of the other 12 year Scotch single malts.

      Also, in the $50-60 range, a quite strong case can easily be made (& I make that case) that JWG15 is quite on par with Scotch SMs in that $50-60 range. Further, heresy of heresy to many, I suggest that JWG15 is probably better than many of the Scotch SMs in the $50-60 range.

      Straight out, JWG15 is great stuff.

      Last week, in addition to the 3 or so similar tasting comparisons that I had performed earlier, I compared the new JWG15 to the old JWG15. Over the course of the tasting/comparison, I could not find any difference.

      However, in the name of science, of whisky awaredness, and of the requirement of duty, I will perform another few of these tasting/comparisons of JWG15 new & old. I'll report appropriately. :)

      Slainte, Richard

      Delete
    3. Thanks for your comments.

      JWG15 in the past has always been a better Scotch whisky than many single malts in its price range. I think some consumers think that because it is not a "single malt" but rather a "pure malt" or "blended malt" that it is automatically inferior. This view point is a mistake.

      Cheers!

      Delete
  13. For anyone in Virginia, received the following from VA ABC:

    On Fri, Mar 20, 2015 at 10:31 AM, McDonough, Heather (ABC) wrote:
    Kevin,
    We have a shipment of Johnnie Walker Green Label coming in to the warehouse on March 24. I would recommend reaching out to your local Virginia ABC store to let them know you’d like a bottle as soon as possible. If you can let me know which store is your local store, I can see if I can make sure we get a bottle out to that store.

    Thanks,

    Heather McDonough| Marketing & Merchandising Analyst| Virginia ABC | 2901 Hermitage Road, Richmond, VA 23220

    Needless to say, I'll be heading down to my local store very soon!

    ~KB

    ReplyDelete
  14. Still yet to see it down here in my neck of the woods...

    AL (from OZ)

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    Replies
    1. I have a bottle and will post a review in the next couple of days.

      Delete
  15. I just picked up two bottles at Costco for 45 each. (Los angeles, ca)

    before it was discontinued, green was my go to. For the price/quality and ease of sippability. It was on the lighter side, not too heavy, well balanced. I've always thought of it as a nice crisp scotch. For lack of better terms, a good daily drinker.

    Ive tried the new release. First off, it was way darker in the bottle than it used to be. Tasting it, it also feels heavier, with more barrel and spice than the older ones.

    Still glad I picked up two, so I could stash one for later. But I was really hoping it would have a more similar crisp character to the green I liked so much.

    Thanks for sharing JW's response

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hector & Jason,

      Two days ago, I purchased 4 bottles of JWG15 from Costco New Orleans for $44 + $4 tax, equals $48 net to me. Great price for a great whisky.

      After the purchase, in proper quiet, calm, & laid-back tasting conditions, I performed a comparative tasting of Glenlivet 15, 40%; Glenfiddich Solera 15, 40%; JWG15 new, 43%; & JWG15 old, 43%. My opinion, all of these Scotch Whiskys are most excellent. I love them all. All being in the $50 price area, they are at what I consider the high end of moderately priced.

      I will be forced to perform more tastings in order to confirm my results. You must understand that I have just got to get this right. :)

      Among these four excellent Scotch Whiskys, my results are:

      #4 GL15 - A fair bit lighter & thinner in aroma & taste compared to the other three. It is a 9 of 10.

      The remaining three are effectively tied, within a gnat's hair of each other, at 10 of 10. All are thick, heavy, & rich in aroma & flavor. If I had to rank them because of the threat of bodily harm, #3 is JWG15 old, #2 is JWG15 new, & #1 is GF15 Solera.

      Remember, I must perform additional comparative tastings to confirm.

      Slainte, Richard

      Delete
  16. How would you compare JW Green to Readbreast 12 for $50?

    Available in Hoboken, NJ at Sparrow Wine:

    http://shop.sparrowwine.com/productDisplay.cfm?id=423944&cid=872

    http://shop.sparrowwine.com/productDisplay.cfm?id=423472&cid=872

    JW Platinum available for $75, worth the premium?

    http://shop.sparrowwine.com/productDisplay.cfm?id=450138&cid=872

    Just started getting into Whisky, one of my favorites is Jameson Gold Reserve (which was originally made for Asian Markets, which it seems the Green Label is going as well).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Comparing Green Label to Redbreast 12 is like comparing a Mercedes S class to a 7 series BMW. They are both great. If I had to choose, I think Green Label edges out the Redbreast just like i think the S class is better than the 7 series.

      Platinum Label for $75 is not worth the money. At that price point there are far better single malts that deliver more complexity. I would pass on the Platinum.

      Thanks for commenting!

      Delete
    2. Anonymous,

      In my informed opinion from having carefully tasted both on a good number of occasions (yes, life is tough, but someone has to do it :) ), Redbreast 12 is a most excellent whiskey and Irish Whiskey. Also, it is quite accessible to those who are not neat whiskey tasters. I love RB12 for an Irish whiskey. Fairly priced at $50, it is on the price edge of what I'm willing to afford.

      In contrast, JWG15 is even more excellent than the most excellent RB12 and is a better buy at $50. I love it even more than the RB12. The JWG15 has a deeper, richer, and more complex aroma & flavor than the RB12. If you can, buy both and compare side by side. You will probably come to a similar conclusion.

      RB12 & JWG15 - both are most excellent, with JWG15 being better. Slainte,

      Delete
  17. Looks like I'm the poor cousin down here in Aus. Local supplier didn't even know about it and have no intention of getting any.... Bugger !! Aaah well...

    AL (from OZ)

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    Replies
    1. Who knows maybe it will turn up at some point.

      Delete
    2. Just got 4 bottles (non jitter) in Wellington. NZ. $90NZD each, lovely jubbly!

      Delete
    3. Anon, You will enjoy your JWG15 in the land of the wingless Kiwis. They are quite cute looking. Also, I hope that $90NZD is somewhere near $50USD. Slainte, Richard (Ray Raymond is an internet nom de plume)

      Delete
  18. Sorry Oz Whisky fans, word from Diageo Australia is that JW Green Label WILL NOT be returning to Oz.
    They finally replied to my email late last week. Boooo!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Templar, For JWG15, you might try Wine-Searcher: http://www.wine-searcher.com/find/johnnie+walker+green/1/usa . Maybe some of these vendors ship to Oz. Also, if you know someone in the US with a Costco card, he could purchase JWG15 for you & ship to you. Good luck. Slainte, Richard

      Delete
  19. Only got 1 here in saigon.. Old stuff... Are these available in duty free shops?

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hi all,
    Its available in Australia via Costco Australia ... Aud$70.00

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AuD$70 equals about how much in US$? Slainte, Richard

      Delete
    2. Thanks Anon!
      Obviously Diageo Aust. don't know what they're doing.
      Cheers
      MD

      Delete
    3. I bought two of these at my local vintage cellars in Sydney last Wednesday.

      They were $65 per bottle. Dan Murphys have them listed as coming soon with a price of $79.99

      The two I got at vintage cellars are in the new heavier style new bottle, but they are not a twist top. Both bottles also came in a box have a cork.

      Delete
  21. Anon, For spirits prices, including JWG15, try Wine-Searcher: http://www.wine-searcher.com/find/johnnie+walker+green . Slainte, Richard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ray,
      I do not understand the purpose of your response? Why would I need prices? I clearly already knew the prices for JW Green as I listed them in my reply....

      Delete
    2. My post was to inform others in Australia that is is available for around the 70 dollar AUD (54 USD) mark. And that it comes in a box and is corked. Not boxless and screwtop as others in northern hemisphere have found.

      Delete
    3. Cool. No problem at all. I was simply providing Wine-Searcher as a website that might provide useful spirits price information to readers no matter in which country they may be located. Slainte, Richard

      Delete
  22. Hello, was wondering if someone could please help me, my husband has a whiskey colleciton, and is wanting to have them valued. He is specificially wondering about a Johnnie Walker Green label, where the man is walking the opposite was, he thinks it was one of the last bottles to be made? I have pictures aswell if anyone would need.Thanks so much. Regards Tarryn

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think Johnnie Walker Green has much value as a collectible bottle. There are a couple of reasons. Widely available, distribution has started again (not sure for how long) and it is not a single malt. Single Malts are more coveted by collectors.

      A mislabeled bottle of Green may have some novelty value but not much.

      Delete
  23. Jack - Knoxville, TNJuly 10, 2015 at 10:26 AM

    I just wanted to drop you a note and let you know how much I enjoy your reviews. I have learned a lot about Scotch. I am a bourbon/rye drinker but have come to enjoy a few Scotches. I, like you, think the Johnnie Walker Green Label is a world class whisky. Thanks.

    Jack

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  24. Thanks for the info guys.

    As a younger collector of JW (24 years old) I have never really tried the original stuff though I was lucky enough to find 2 bottles of the recently released stuff just sitting there looking at me when I walked into the BWS in Bright Victoria whilst on a snow trip to Mt Hotham.

    I grabbed them both without hesitation and happily paid the $75 a bottle. I asked the guy how they had these and he explained how they were released for the anniversary and there were only a few that came in. I was just lucky enough to grab the last 2 bottles.

    I spoke to a local Dan Murphys rep and he stated they received 156 bottles in and within a few hours they were all gone. The demand must be ridiculously high.

    I hope it lives up to my expectations. I have a bottle of all the ones available only on cruise ships (Explorers Club bottles: Royal route, Spicy Road, Gold Route), Blue Label etc. so these Greens will go great in my collection.

    I must say I was like a kid in a candy store when I saw them.

    Happy Hunting guys

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  25. "I hope it lives up to my expectations." With JWG15, you will definitely not be disappointed. It will meet your expectations, despite paying a bit of a high price at $75 each. For spirit prices try Wine-Searcher: http://www.wine-searcher.com/find/johnnie+walker+green/1/usa .

    Slainte, Richard (Ray Raymond is an email name)

    ReplyDelete
  26. Anyone wanting the new johnnie walker green label 10 years I have some available shoot me an email on elite_i.t@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  27. Just picked up a bottle of Green Label, I thought (rightly or wrongly) that it wasn't available anymore, so when I saw it in the store I grabbed a bottle. I tried it years ago when it first came out and the price was more affordable, and always enjoyed it. I thought though (rightly or wrongly) it used to be a malt of all Islay.
    Anyway this new version is quite nice, as soon as I tasted it - I was thinking this isn't an all Islay malt, but I like it and it reminds me of Craggenmore (I wonder why - lol)
    So I'm a fan. I got it for $60, which I guess is not a bad price for a 15 year old. Remember this is not a blend, its a "malted" scotch.

    ReplyDelete