Johnnie Walker and Sons has been making whiskey since 1820. The company developed a variety of colored labels in 1906 to establish their age. The original colors were red, white and black, although white was removed in the early 1900s. Since then, gold, green and blue labels have been added to the mix, each with its own style and history. The easiest way to determine the whiskey’s age is by the color of the label. However, extremely old bottles can be determined by the absence of certain logos or slogans.
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Examine the color of the label.
Red infers an age of less than 10 years.
Black implies at least 12 years of age.
Green or Gold means the whiskey has been aged 15 to 18 years.
Blue label is the oldest, aged at least 20 years and without limit.
The ‘striding man’ logo and slogan “Born 1820 – Still going strong” were trademarked in 1910. Extremely old bottles of red and black Johnnie Walker Whiskey will not have them. Also, any bottle with a white label predates World War I, ironically making the rarest Johnnie Walker Whiskey the one that was made most cheaply.