Drink News


Johnnie Walker has revealed the Blenders’ Batch series, an experimental collection of whiskies created to celebrate the craftsmanship and skill of world class scotch blending.

World-renowned for pushing the boundaries and formulating exceptional blends, such as Johnnie Walker Black Label, which was created over a century ago and has since become a global Scotch icon, the launch of two new expressions, Blenders’ Batch Espresso Roast and Rum Cask Finish will be available in the UK on and off-trade from October.

Blending from the back bar in its truest form, the blends have been developed and refined over the last ten years in collaboration between Johnnie Walker Master Blender, Jim Beveridge and his expert team of blenders, alongside global bartenders and whisky influencers.

Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Espresso Roast is an intense whisky with notes of rich coffee and dark chocolate. Fashioned using heavily roasted barley, the blend is infused with roasted malt and spicy wood hints. Headed up by Aimée Gibson, one of the new generation of Johnnie Walker Blenders, Espresso Roast was inspired by her mission to make scotch the spirit of choice amongst more consumers. The blend is steered by leading flavour and coffee expert, James Hoffman, supported by industry figures including Ali Reynolds, and backed with practiced guidance from Ryan Chetiyawardana.

Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Rum Cask Finish signifies ten years of experiments carefully conditioning scotch in casks that previously held rum. Inspired by whiskies originating from distilleries in Speyside and the Lowlands of Scotland, the astutely crafted scotch hints at the flavour of Caribbean rum, with a distinctly smooth texture. Chris Clark, Johnnie Walker Expert Blender, was responsible for rum quality at Diageo for 16 years and contributed his

30 OCTOBER 2017


Stonegate Pub Company have completed a £325,000 investment at the Regent in Walton-on- Thames,

seven months after they bought

the pub from JD Wetherspoon in February 2017.

Locals generated a 498-signature petition against the pub’s closure when it pub was put on the market for sale in May 2016. Stonegate stepped in and have now transformed the pub into Walton’s first big High Street sports viewing amenity, modernising its look, and introducing music, whilst protecting its real ale reputation having been entered in in the CAMRA Good Beer guide for four consecutive years.

extensive knowledge and curiosity for merging rum and scotch to developing Rum Cask Finish.

Ali Reynolds, Johnnie Walker Brand Ambassador at Diageo Reserve commented: “Blenders’ Batch paves the way for crafting truly exceptional cocktails and unlocks a wealth of opportunity for both the bartender and consumers. Blenders’ Batch is all about perfecting flavours by getting the balance right. Both new variants have been crafted by leading taste influencers who’ve shared years of expertise to now offer discerning whisky drinkers and those new to the spirit the chance to discover and explore whisky at its best.”

Available throughout the UK on-trade and specialist retail from October 2017

Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Rum Cask Finish is 40.8% ABV – RRSP: £30 50cl

Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Espresso Roast is 43.2% ABV – RRSP: £30 50cl(

The opening on Friday 22nd September saw the Mayor of Elmbridge officially open the pub with brewers from Hogsback Brewery, Windsor and Eaton Brewery, Twickenham fine ales, and Surrey Hills Brewery emphasising the continued focus on real ales.

Manager of four years, retained along with other staff from the acquisition, Matt Lettington said: “I love this pub and I love Walton so when Stonegate walked in and said they were prepared to invest such a huge sum of money, completely transforming the look of the pub, I couldn’t believe our luck.

“We’re proud of our beer reputation, that won’t change. But by adding such a modern sports offer, it makes us the best pub on the High street.”

The investment has created seven new roles.

Opening hours: Monday-Thursday 8am – midnight; Friday & Saturday 8am-1am; Sunday 8am-midnight. Food served 8am- 10pm every day

19 Church St, Walton-on-Thames KT12 2QP

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