Chivas Regal 18 blended Scotch Whisky is not what you would ever call cheap, it will set you back between $55 to $90, though it is far less expensive than comparable Johnny Walker Scotch blends. This blend was created in 1997 and is composed of over 20, at least 18 year old single malts. Blended Scotch whisky has a base of grain alcohol and then the single malt whiskies are added to fill out the flavor spectrum. The original Chivas Regal 12 year old blend was a favorite of Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack. The Chivas Regal 18 is produced at the Strathisla Distillery in Speyside, Moray, Scotland, the oldest Highland Distillery (1786). The alcohol content is 40% or 80 proof.
The color is amber with golden highlights. The first thing I notice about the nose is that is does not have that strong blast of alcohol, instead the nose is sweet and inviting. There is butterscotch, honey, vanilla, orange peel, smoke off the grill, a little lumber yard, cooking fudge, cinnamon spice, stick your nose in the glass and get another scent, this Scotch blend has huge depth on the nose. It has a nice thick, voluptuous mouthfeel and again the alcohol is muted on the palate. This Scotch has a great deal of length, the flavors take their time developing (Chivas Regal claims there are 85 separate tasting notes in each sip). The flavors remind me of a bakery, with honey, orange zest, molasses, tobacco, vanilla, oak spice, smoke, some char from the barrel and dried fruit. There is a fine balance to the flavors. The finish is subdued, but never really goes away.
The Chivas Regal 18 is a fine bottle of Whisky. There is a smoothness and a depth of flavor that allows the Chivas Regal 18 to standout from the crowd. If you are going to have only one bottle of Scotch in your house, the Chivas Regal 18 just might be the most logical choice. It is a very satisfying dram, that is accessible to new Scotch Whisky drinkers and highly enjoyable to Whisky affectionados. All and all, a very adult, dignified drink of Scotch.