SHARE THE JOY THIS HOLIDAY

Ev­ery whisky has a tale to tell, but few are as sto­ried as the le­gacy of John­nie Walker. Why has it be­come the world’s most pop­u­lar whisky? As the holiday sea­son be­gins, share it around and the an­swer will be ob­vi­ous.

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It was in the back of John Walker’s mod­est gro­cery store, in western Scot­land, where the founder of the world’s most fa­mous whisky first dab­bled in the art of blend­ing in the 1820s. He shared this pas­sion with his son Alexan­der, whose global am­bi­tions took the fam­ily’s whiskies to the far reaches of the world. Alexan­der would coax mer­chant cap­tains into sell­ing ship­ments wher­ever their trade routes led, and in time a fol­low­ing emerged, de­mand grew and the leg­end took root.

The Walk­ers were business savvy and rec­og­nized op­por­tu­ni­ties to set their whisky apart. By us­ing a di­ag­o­nal la­bel, they in­stantly cre­ated a dis­tinc­tion on the shelf. The iconic square bot­tle was not just for looks; it also safe­guarded against break­age dur­ing voy­ages to new mar­kets. By 1920, John­nie Walker would be avail­able in 120 coun­tries, and that global rep­u­ta­tion has only flour­ished since then.

So how does a blend man­age to re­main rel­e­vant when sin­gle malt culture seems so dom­i­nant? John­nie Walker has the dis­tinct ad­van­tage of be­ing made with some of the best sin­gle malts in the world — whiskies from all over Scot­land, in­clud­ing Cardhu, Caol Ila, Blair Athol and Cameron­bridge — care­fully blended to en­sure con­sis­tent qual­ity and taste in ev­ery drop.

Jim Bev­eridge is one of only six mas­ter blenders in John­nie Walker’s 200-year his­tory. As the cus­to­dian of an un­ri­valled re­serve con­tain­ing more than eight mil­lion casks of Scotch whisky, drawn from more than 30 dis­til­leries across Scot­land, he leads a team of 12 men and women who are com­mit­ted to the pur­suit of blend­ing ex­cel­lence.

Dif­fer­en­ti­ated by la­bel colour, each John­nie Walker blend is unique in its own right, show­cas­ing the dis­tinc­tive flavours, aro­mas and tex­tures that con­trib­ute to that un­mis­tak­ably smooth, gen­tly smoky John­nie Walker per­son­al­ity. Taken neat, with a drop of wa­ter, a splash of mix, or in cock­tails both un­der­stated and ex­trav­a­gant, this is a whisky that makes a state­ment.

Dis­cover it for your­self this holiday sea­son. Whether you’re en­ter­tain­ing or look­ing for the per­fect gift, John­nie Walker of­fers end­less in­spi­ra­tion. For more in­for­ma­tion, visit lcbo.com/john­niewalker

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