Just about the top of the line of the Dewar’s blended whisky stable, the brand new Dewar’s 18 Years Old Founders Reserve is a blend of some refinement.
Gentle and easygoing, this medium gold blend offers enticing honey and caramel entry points, with a mild, nutty body. The finish is surprisingly long, with a modicum of heat and a pleasant sweetness. It’s surprisingly simple, but well balanced. Though frankly, I’d recommend the Dewar’s 12 Year Special Reserve (at about a third of the price) for everyday drinking.
B+ / $75 / dewars.com
Also new from Dewar’s is the Dewar’s Discovery Gift Set ($100; photo above), which includes three 200ml bottles of Dewar’s Scotches in a leather case, suitable for keeping on your (or your dad’s) desk at the office. Included are pint-sized bottles of Dewar’s 12 Year, Dewar’s 18 Year, and Dewar’s Signature, the company’s highest-end blend, designed as a competitor for Johnnie Walker Blue Label and reportedly built around Aberfeldy 27 Year Old single malt. Signature (also 80 proof) is quite a different whisky, richer in body and more complicated, with malty grain notes, raisins, tea, and a sherry finish. $175 or more per bottle on its own, you can get it on the cheap along with two other solid whiskys in this handy, gift-worthy set. Rating for Signature: A-