John Walker & Sons Private Collection 2017 Edition by Master Blender Jim Beveridge has been released. This limited release of 5,588 individually numbered decanters is the fourth in a series that showcases the craft of the blenders behind John Walker & Sons Blended Scotch Whiskies.

The 2017 Edition, Mastery of Oak, is the first bottle in the series to celebrate the full richness that cask character can bring to Blended Scotch Whiskies.

Master Blender Jim Beveridge handpicked a number of malt and grain whiskies from American oak casks, refill casks and experimental casks to construct the final blend.

“This year’s edition of the John Walker & Sons Private Collection is another excellent example of Jim Beveridge’s outstanding artistry and passion for whisky. The 2017 Edition is best served neat or with a few drops of water to really accentuate the vibrant fruit notes,” said Diageo Whisky Ambassador, Simon McGoram.

Jim Beveridge, Master Blender, commented: “Every whisky starts out full of the promise of its distillery character. Oak casks offer us an astonishing number of ways to differentiate these styles further as they mature, broadening our palette of flavours for blending.

“For Mastery of Oak, we assembled some of our finest casks into three main styles of oak effects. Each vatting, brimming with complexity, was re-casked into blending puncheons for the flavours to combine. We’re delighted to have been able to bring them together to such great effect in the 2017 Edition, a sumptuous blend of oak-rich fruit notes.”

The John Walker & Sons Private Collection 2017 Edition (46.8 percent ABV) is a limited release of only 5,588 individually numbered decanters worldwide. The 2017 Edition is now available at selected liquor stores for a recommended retail price of $995.

Tasting notes

Colour: Golden.

Nose: Toffee and vanilla notes hint at the wonderfully complex sweetness from the variety of American oak casks, and mingle with aromas of ripe orchard fruits.

Palate: American oak toffee and vanilla notes and ripe orchard fruits on the nose, and toffee on the palate too with creamy, spice notes. Mature Highland and Speyside fruit character emerges as blackcurrants and berries, soft peach skin and stewed apples, all mellowed by the oak. A trace of crisp, green apples, a memory of the young distillery character preserved through refill casks, lifts the blend, and the

European oak cask effect appears as a touch of leather. Deep, rich vanilla sweetness from the experimental American oak casks on the finish.

Serve: Neat, or with a few drops of ice cold water to reveal the subtleties of layer upon layer of flavour.

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