Scotch - Blended

Johnnie Walker Red Label Blended Scotch Whisky

From: Scotland Liquor Review Category: Blended Scotch

Bottle/Rating Data

Rating Description

Tier 2
This is a Tier 2 score in the Whiskey category. It means critics have highly recommended the spirit as a benchmark in the category.
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Awards

San Francisco World Spirits Competition

  • 2005
  • 2006
  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016

Beverage Testing Institute

  • 2008
  • 2010
  • 2014

Wine Enthusiast

  • 2004
  • 2011
  • 2014

Proof66 Notes

Today, Johnnie Walker offers several different "labels" of scotch whisky, designated by color. Johnnie Walker Red Label is the flagship blend from the world-famous label and they regard it as their best scotch for mixing due to its "vibrant character." It is the biggest selling scotch in the world.

The 2011 Wine Enthusiast review suggested serving the Red Label "tall" in ginger ale and ice.

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Rabble Reviews

This bottle has 33 ratings and 33 reviews.
SirDeath SirDeath (32)
Rating: 2.5 (2016-10-30)
Ok but way overpriced. I'd say it's generally overpriced by about 1/3rd. You're paying a lot for the name. It's a little bitter but has a slight hint of peat. Finish is quick and almost medicinal with an uncomfortable amount of heat. I think it's better on a cold day as the taste goes up into your nose quite a bit. I'd say a better mixer but I really don't like my scotch mixed except in a Rob Roy. Johnnie Red does make a decent Rob Roy, but you can do a good bit better for less.
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Cranecreek Cranecreek (164)
Rating: 2.5 (2016-10-16)
Just getting back into trying some new scotches and even though I had this quite a long time ago I am sure it's the same now. Floral sweetness with a grainy alcohol taste. For a low proof it is rather raw. But somehow maintains a bland quality. This is when I drank it neat.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2016-10-17.

  • - KaiserSoze up voted your review on 2016-10-16.

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KaiserSoze KaiserSoze (234)
Rating: 3.9 (2016-10-12)
I think too many folks expect Johnnie Walker Black when drinking Red Label….is this something I buy to sip neat in a glencarin??? NO! But I really enjoy it on the rocks and it makes a fantastic Rob Roy! Yes, it’s a little rough around the edges, but that’s what I enjoy, especially when making a cocktail. It’s $1 more than Dewars White in my area and I’ll pick this every time!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2016-10-17.

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Shmotch Shmotch (68)
Rating: 3.0 (2016-10-09)
Winston Churchill's favorite back in the day, nowadays red label is strictly a mixing scotch, comprised of mostly grain whisky ...overall not very smooth, a whispered hint of peat is present, for straight sipping go to the black label
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ducktapeguy8 ducktapeguy8 (10)
Rating: 2.0 (2016-02-08)
Mehhhhhhhhh
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US Spirit US Spirit (74)
Rating: 2.0 (2015-12-09)
This was the very first scotch I ever tried, all the way back when I first turned 21, not surprising a I guess since this is the most popular scotch in the world. How this can possibly be more popular than the Black Label for $5 more is beyond me. Its not undrinkable, and its readily identifiable as scotch whisky but its not good either. Thin, light, a little bit of burn, a little peat, a tiny bit of malt sweetness, and a lot of neutral grain spirits (though the those aren't terrible, kind of like its cut with Smirnoff instead of Wolfshmidt's) pretty much sum up Johnny Red. What do you do with this? I don't know, I almost never order Johnny Red. You can sip it neat, but I'd enjoy almost anything from North America more (even Crown Royal or Jim Beam, though Jim would burn a lot more), on ice you're just reminded that this is thin, a little peaty, not gross, but not really interesting or pleasant either. One day maybe I'll try it over ice with ginger ale like proof66 quotes wine enthusiast as recommending. But till then, there are just so, many things I'd rather drink than this. Its not a terrible starting point, it didn't specifically put me off scotch, so anyone else who's curious its not the worst thing ever. Definitely a better starting point than Dewar's White Label (which is disgusting), and possibly a better first scotch than Chivas (which is more interesting but has a surprising amount of burn), But $25 could buy me literally half a dozen different bottles I'd actually enjoy drinking. Ok, I'm not a scotch lover but I'm not a scotch hater either. My advice is start with Johnny Black instead if you can possibly afford it. 2 stars.
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jeanphilt jeanphilt (30)
Rating: 4.0 (2015-08-03)
It's the top-selling Scotch for 2 reasons : it's not expansive and it does the job in a cocktail. Personally, I enjoy drinking it neat too. It's quite similar to the Grant's Family Reserve.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • - Thrain II down voted your review on 2016-07-19.

  • - KaiserSoze up voted your review on 2016-03-21.

  • - Muncher up voted your review on 2015-08-03.

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jaketaz jaketaz (211)
Rating: 1.0 (2015-06-30)
JW has this thing where in every level of their pricing, there are way better options for the price. The Grouses, Monarch, Chivas, Dewars AND Buchanans all slay JW with ease. You can do even better with a few cheapo single malts, and if you're talking American whiskey in this price range then just fugeddaboutit. I usually add a star for value, so here I'm subtracting one for lack of value. JW has enough money, spread your wealth to someone that makes something better.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2016-02-27.

  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-07-29.

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bigstang bigstang (4)
Rating: 3.0 (2015-06-04)
Standard, a little harsh but alright.
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hoorayforpeepee hoorayforpeepee (14)
Rating: 2.0 (2015-03-27)
You can order this at the bar in nightclub and polish a bottle with your friends, but honestly, there is no place for this whisky at home's cabinet.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-04-08.

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nashdaq nashdaq (24)
Rating: 2.0 (2015-02-16)
For me this is the worst scotch ever, to rough in the edges, not pleasurable enough after taste, strong first taste, and harsh body, but is a cheap whiskey so what you expect?
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-06-30.

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Filthee Filthee (62)
Rating: 1.0 (2015-01-30)
Very harsh, unbalanced flavor profile to me (too much peat for the rest of the flavors to compete), has a burning edge of too young whisky. For the same price you can get Dewar's White label which I feel is a better balanced and smoother blend or the far superior Famous Grouse
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Funkenstein Funkenstein (39)
Rating: 3.0 (2014-08-24)
Way too much smoke for me. I prefer JW Black.
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BDanner BDanner (274)
Rating: 2.0 (2014-08-08)
My first foray into scotch was almost my last. Very harsh. I got two overpowering flavors from this: Smoke and Cough Syrup. On the rocks helps even it out some, and gets it 2 stars instead of 1. Even at this price I do not recommend. I would take the Dewar's White Label (which I quite enjoy) over this every time.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • - KaiserSoze up voted your review on 2016-10-16.

  • - jaketaz up voted your review on 2015-06-30.

  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-06-30.

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DakotaGuy DakotaGuy (73)
Rating: 3.0 (2014-06-14)
'Salright, but throw out a few more bones and get the black label instead.
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Muncher Muncher (587)
Rating: 3.0 (2014-04-26)
Really not as bad as some of the previous reviews would lead you to believe. Definitely more quality per dollar than with the Blue and Gold labels. Not as good as the Black though, even with the prices factored in.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • - KaiserSoze up voted your review on 2016-03-21.

  • - Filthee down voted your review on 2015-06-30.

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Hotspur17 Hotspur17 (33)
Rating: 1.0 (2014-04-23)
This stuff is better used to start your bonfire. So harsh it is hard for any flavor to come through.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-06-30.

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Hottgunn Hottgunn (12)
Rating: 4.0 (2014-01-31)
I have drank this scotch occasionally for several years. My first impression was of a strong iodine taste, medicinal alcohol taste bordering on pure ethanol. However, I now add about a half a capful of soda to a double shot and find it quite enjoyable. Full, rich carmel like flavor - not at all harsh. In spite of what the "wannabe" comic writers reviewing Scotch Whiskey say, I continue to try other scotches both single and blended and I enjoy them all in their own right. I like this scotch and will continue to enjoy it. Not all like this blend, but that's OK.
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Ackman Ackman (99)
Rating: 2.0 (2013-09-30)
I really tried. We had a regular that would sing the praises of JW Red, hell even Thorogood gave a shout out to it along with JW Black. I just could not like it. The peat while an integral part of scotch, was just too much form e to handle.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-06-30.

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Dakota Dakota (132)
Rating: 3.0 (2013-07-08)
Very harsh very overpowering
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Kenneth Kenneth (26)
Rating: 2.0 (2013-05-26)
This stuff is simply undeniably foul. Gave it two stars as it may be acceptable as a mixer for someone on a budget.
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Thor_Foote Thor_Foote (15)
Rating: 3.0 (2013-05-21)
3.5 of 5 stars. The Honda Accord of whiskys -- a step above the crowd in both quality and price, but definitely middle-of-the-road, non-intense, nonthreatening. JW Red is the best-selling Scotch in the world for a reason, but the JW Black is noticeably better quality (and higher price). Black Bottle may be a better value if you like peat. (And if you don't like peat, why are you wasting money on Scotch? Try Buffalo Trace bourbon.)
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joelbarrett joelbarrett (56)
Rating: 3.0 (2013-03-22)
Not a bad blend. JWBlack is better.
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StevenSauce StevenSauce (69)
Rating: 2.0 (2013-02-06)
2.3 stars not thaaat horrible flavorwise but very harsh, its pretty cheap but even at that price level not recommendable.
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tequilaguy tequilaguy (23)
Rating: 3.0 (2012-11-16)
Drinkable... Not a Scotch snob, but it was enjoyable but def. an mixer...drinking straight is not that pleasant and even though there is buttery smooth flavor...it isnt what id expect... smoked peat was there..but not something id buy again...maybe black or green label if you dont mind mixed scotch..
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cmtonkinson cmtonkinson (7)
Rating: 3.0 (2012-01-29)
My first scotch, so I dont have much experience. That said, I appreciated the maltiness, the smoke was a bit overdone. Otherwise, I was neither repulsed nor wowed.
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dmiller19713 dmiller19713 (1)
Rating: 4.0 (2011-06-25)
A good starter scotch drink on rocks cuts it a bit as ice melts good for everyday cocktail hour
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TheSippingLife TheSippingLife (135)
Rating: 2.0 (2011-04-24)
JWR is just harsh, period. Unquestionably their least refined, and least desirable. This is their mixer, and its marketed that way, because this would hardly cut the mustard against nearly anything else. This is the kind of stuff that would fuel a drinking contest.
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mvg1 mvg1 (32)
Rating: 1.0 (2011-03-03)
Wow this stuff is bad bad bad .....! I could not get that nasty taste out of my mouth for three days, its like you just escaped a inferno, to much smoke gross..! One *
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superman superman (44)
Rating: 4.0 (2009-12-03)
tough to go wrong
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TheLibrarian TheLibrarian (61)
Rating: 3.0 (2009-07-19)
Meh... JW Red is everywhere, so its hard not to come across it at some point in time. Personally this scotch has an overly smokey and overly complex taste. Works good if you are making a scotch cocktail like a Rusty Nail or a Godfather, mainly because the other alcohols dilute the flavor of the scotch.
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Phizbin Phizbin (362)
Rating: 2.0 (2009-06-30)
Introductory scotches shouldn't be this harsh. Don't let the somewhat foul taste of this thing dissuade you from trying scotches in general. Go try that Black Label... that's an excellent scotch for a reasonable price.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - peathead up voted your review on 2016-10-17.

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TWoman TWoman (45)
Rating: 2.0 (2009-06-30)
Ehh, so-so. Didn't do anything for me and didn't make me want to rush out to buy another bottle.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - mvg1 up voted your review on 2013-01-14.

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Here are the barcodes we have collected from various sizes of this bottle. If you have additional barcodes please submit them to us!
  • 088076163164
  • 088110021306
  • 088110021191
  • 088110021405
  • 088110021009
  • 622153631049
  • 622153631063
  • 5000267014005
  • 5000267013602
  • 5000267013404
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