Diageo’s Whisky Masters engaging in a discussion while they collaborate to craft whisky.

Blogs & Inspiration

Experimenting With Flavour

Diageo’s team of 12 Whisky Masters work tirelessly to experiment with new blends, collaborating with world-renowned bartenders to craft a delicious spirit fit for all the latest cocktail trends.

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

Mixing, matching, and experimenting are the tasks of an alchemist – and both bartenders and blenders have this passion for exploring new combinations and trying new tastes. It’s a journey to create something unique and delicious.

Our 12 Whisky Masters are always experimenting, resulting in flavours like our limited edition whiskies – Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Wine Cask Blend, Rum Cask Finish and Espresso Roast.

In the same way that bartenders put their own twist on classic cocktails, our experts are always looking for new combinations to try, hoping they’ll end up in the newest cocktail trend.


Our team of experts have welcomed leading bartenders and taste pioneers from all over the world including Ryan Chetiyawardana (owner of Dandelyan, number two on the 2017 list of the World’s 50 Best Bars) and Andrew Ferreira (World Class Bartender of the Year 2017 Ireland), where they were invited to experiment with new whiskies.

Aimée Gibson, a whisky master who led the latest creations of Jonnie Walker Blender’s Batch whiskies, saw this as an exciting opportunity for new ideas. “As blenders we collaborate a great deal and love the chance to work with bartenders. It gives us a well-rounded understanding of the possibilities in flavour.”

“It was fascinating to see Ryan craft The Fertado using cardamom and raspberries - it’s a remarkable combination for the Espresso Roast.”


Created from ideas surrounding flavour, Aimée shares, “Wine Cask Blend is the result of an experiment in maturation of whisky in former wine casks. Some of these whiskies were blended with others to create a Scotch with fragrant aromas that we want bartenders to have fun with.”

World Class Bartender of the Year Mexico 2016, Mica Rousseau, was also in attendance and thoroughly enjoyed talking about different taste profiles with our Whisky Masters, adding “From the very first sip of Wine Cask Blend you get a real surprise. It’s a unique, sweet and charming liquid but the DNA of Johnnie Walker is still there. I loved talking about different tastes with the blenders and coming up with new serves.”

As the result of a series of whisky experiments, Jonnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Espresso Roast is distilled using barley roasted more heavily than ever. Stemming from this, Aimée created a Scotch that’s rich and smooth with notes of coffee and dark chocolate.

Our Rum Cask Finish was created by Aimée’s colleague, Chris Clark.

Chris wanted to highlight the fruity flavours found in Scotch Whisky, so he finished the whisky in former rum casks. This resulted in a sweet blended Scotch that’s smooth yet spicey, drawing on whiskies from handpicked distilleries in Speyside and the Lowlands of Scotland.


These flavour experiments feature over 30 Malt and Grain Whiskies which resulted in Jonnie Walker Black Label over a century ago. Blender’s Batch whiskies offer opportunities to explore and experiment, continuing the heritage of flavour experimentation.

Ready to begin your journey of flavour experimentation? Check out these great serves below!

Key Takeaways

  • Diageo's 12 Whisky Masters are a global team of experts from around the world.
  • Much like a bartender experiments with cocktail flavours, Diageo's 12 Whisky Masters are constantly experimenting to blend whisky flavours for new limited edition whiskies.
  • As the result of these series of whisky experiments, Johnnie Walker blends are constantly finessed.
  • Whiskies have unique flavour profiles while can be leveraged to make great tasting cocktails that appeal to different customers preferences.

For more recipes and tips and tricks from world-renowned bartenders, sign up for Diageo Bar Academy today!