is sometimes like a big circle. There’s no real beginning, middle, or end; it
is just continuous. Today I’m going way, way back in time.
whisky journey began as a random choice of spirits. I wasn’t a drinker of
alcoholic spirits. My wife suggested that I find something – anything – that I
could sip on just to be social. There were two things I knew I didn’t care
for: tequila and gin. I was not too fond
of the smell of either, let alone the taste.
a desire to appear sophisticated, I
opted for Scotch. While I wanted to appear as such, my wallet had different
ideas. As a friend described things, you have
champagne tastes on a beer budget. I don’t quite remember how the actual
selection happened, but I think it was Mrs. Whiskeyfellow who handed me a 200ml
bottle of Dewar’s White Label (since publishing this, Mrs. Whiskeyfellow says it was not her that got me to try Dewar's).
cycled between Dewar’s and Chivas Regal for about a year before I opted
to delve deeper, and once I did that, I never tried Dewar’s White Label again;
began in 1846 when John Dewar and his two sons, who were wine merchants,
purchased whiskies and blended them for their store brand. In 1896, the Aberfeldy
Distillery was built so the Dewars could make their own whisky. Dewar’s has
changed hands a few times and is currently owned by Bacardi.
White Label is still a blended Scotch, but it blends differently from most
brands. Instead of blending grains and malts and then aging the blended whisky,
Dewar’s selects over 40 different mature single malts from around Scotland
(with a large portion from Aberfeldy) and marries them to form its concoction.
Label carries no age statement; it is chill-filtered and offers no mention of
e150a coloring. You can find this pretty much everywhere from the corner
convenience to a full-blown liquor store and should expect to pay about $24.99
for a 750ml package.
will be an exciting review because I honestly can’t remember how it tasted. I’ll
#DrinkCurious and find out what made me stick with it for such a long
Appearance: In my
Glencairn glass, Dewar’s White Label presented as the color of straw. It formed
a thicker rim and watery legs that raced down the wall of the glass.
fruits such as peach, apple, and citrus greeted my nostrils. Beneath those were
honey, vanilla, and a hint of ethanol. When I pulled the air into my mouth,
there was a blast of tangerine.
Palate: This Scotch had a watery mouthfeel. Vanilla
and honey were on the front, caramel was on the middle (although challenging to
find), and the back had flavors of lemon curd combined with char.
Finish: The lemon and char remained through the
finish and included vanilla, black pepper, and slightly bitter quality. It was
medium in length.
Bottle, Bar, or Bust: I have to be honest. I was a bit concerned I
would hate this. Dewar’s White Label isn’t the best whisky, it won’t blow your
doors off, but it isn’t unpleasant. It is basic and unassuming. It
was probably a good idea to use this as my toe-dip into Scotch all those years
ago because there is enough to make things interesting without some of the overpowering
qualities that can turn off novices. It could almost be mistaken for a
lower-end Irish whiskey on a different day, which is likely why I initially found
this appealing. The price is undoubtedly easy. For those curious about Scotch,
this will be a Bottle, and for the more
experienced whisky drinker, a Bar. Cheers!
My Simple, Easy to
Understand Rating System
- Bottle = Buy It
- Bar = Try It
- Bust = Leave It
you to enjoy your whiskey as you see fit but begs you do so responsibly.