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Dewar’s 18 vs Johnnie Walker 18: Head to Head!

Discover the differences between Dewar’s 18 vs Johnnie Walker 18 in this in-depth comparison and decide which Whisky is better for You!

Dewar’s 18

  • Nose: Fresh bread, cherries, orange, baking spice
  • Palate: Oak, sour apples, ripe fruit, peat
  • Finish: Short, smoke, oak spice
  • Alcohol content: 80 proof (40% ABV)
  • How to drink: Add water
  • Similar to: Dewar’s 15


The nose is amazing as it hits with a Christmas Cake scent that brings hints of fresh bread, cherries, orange and a drizzle of baking spice.

On the palate, the Dewar’s 18 provides a somewhat thin body. First sip fails to deliver the Christmas Cake of the nose as it provides a musty oak taste and sour apples up-front with a little of ripe fruit coming behind.

There is a faint touch of peat present in the taste; very subtle, though.

The finish is short-lived, with a tiny whiff of smoke to it and and oak spice bitterness.

Is it good?

Not terrible but NOT something I would recommend buying.

It kicks-off with a nice Christmas Cake scent that doesn’t follow through on the taste where you mostly get musty oak and sour apples.

The finish is quite short, with very little warmth, though, but completely unremarkable.

Looks affordable at first glance but you can definitely get much better Scotch whiskies for less than $50 in the United States such as the Laphroaig 10 or the Glenfiddich 14 Bourbon Barrel if you are not fond of smoke.

In Britain you can get incredible whiskies under £50 so I definitely pass on this one.

Dewar’s 18 facts:

  • This is a blend of single malt and grain whiskies coming from 5 different distilleries owned by Dewar’s.
  • Aged in American oak before being blended and refilled into an oak vat.
  • Dewar’s is owned by Bermuda-based Bacardi.

Johnnie Walker 18 Year Platinum

  • Nose: Vanilla, citrus, ethanol
  • Palate: Vanilla, almond, caramel, smoke
  • Finish: Medium, caramel, smoke
  • Alcohol content: 80 proof (40% ABV)
  • How to drink: Add water
  • Similar to: Green Label, Gold Label


The nose is soft, with shallow hints of vanilla and citrus coming at first, followed by a whiff of ethanol that fades away as you let it breathe.

On the palate, the Johnnie Walker 18 displays a full body providing a solid mouthfeel. Flavor hits with vanilla and caramel, giving way to almond and a subtle touch of smoke.

The finish lacks a bit in length, with very little warmth to it, with more caramel and a light touch of smoke.

Adding a dash of water releases caramel and oak which is surprisingly absent despite the long 18 year aging.

Is it good?

Johnnie Walker Platinum Label is smooth from nose to finish, perhaps too smooth as it lacks in character.

Not bad by any means, is just that it’s way too smooth and I like my drams to hit harder with more flavorful notes.

But if you are looking for an overly smooth and easy drinker you are going to love it.

Yet I still prefer the Johnnie Walker Green Label which makes the best Johnnie Walker for the money as it feels more complex and tasty and yet smooth providing a solid experience.

Johnnie Walker Platinum Label facts

  • Johnnie Platinum is a blend of whiskies crafted at 20 different distilleries across Scotland. The whiskies in the blend are aged for at least 18 years.
  • Assembled from 20-25 different distilleries owned by Diageo.

What to the Dewar’s 18 and the JW 18 have in common?

These whiskies are blends of grain and malt whiskies crafted at diverse distilleries across Scotland.

A Single Malt is not necessarily better than a blend, though.

Dewar’s 18 vs Johnnie Walker 18: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

Dewar’s 18$49
Johnnie Walker 18 Platinum$96

Dewar’s 18 vs Johnnie Walker 18: Which is better?

Johnnie Platinum tastes better

WhiskeyDewar’s 18Johnnie 18
  • The Johnnie Walker 18 is super smooth and has better tasting notes than the Dewar’s making the better of the two by a fair margin.
  • Do I recommend buying it? No, as it sits at a price range in which there are several available options more appealing.
  • For less than $100 you can find top Single Malts such as the Lagavulin 16 which is supremely good, the Aberlour A’bunadh which is free of smoke or the Kilkerran 12 which is subtle on the smoke and perhaps the best 12 year Single Malt in the market.

I love the diversity that Scotch Whisky has to offer as there is an unlimited supply of alternatives which provides me of a living!