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Many whisky blenders make the mistake of thinking that to produce a brand of Scotch Whisky that will be popular internationally, they need to create a blend with not much flavour. Nothing could be further from the truth as Johnnie Walker Red Label has proved. It is the world's most popular whisky, yet it has a distinctive strength of character and a fullness of flavour that sets it apart from other brands.
When Johnnie Walker began in business in 1820, he developed an immense respect for malt whiskies with real flavour. In particular, he favoured robust Islay and Island malt whiskies, because they added depth and vigour to his blends. His grandson, Alexander Walker, inherited all his grandfather's blending skills and his taste preferences. When he developed the Johnnie Walker Red Label blend, he made sure that, although it was much smoother and somewhat lighter than many of its contemporaries, it retained the authentic flavour of traditional Scotch Whisky.
That was at the turn of the century. Within twenty years Red Label had become the first truly global brand, sold in over 120 countries around the world. It also gained a devoted following at home in Britain. King George V liked Johnnie Walker whisky so much that he granted a Royal Warrant to the company in 1933, and Johnnie Walker has remained an official purveyor of whisky to the Royal Household to the present day.
Red Label whiskies have consistently won awards in competitions; recently Red Label won Gold and Grand Gold Medals at the Monde Selection Awards, one of the drinks industry's most respected international events. And in 1996 it won a Gold Medal in the International Wine and Spirit Competition in the blended Scotch Whisky category.
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