To know where you are going, you need to understand your past. Discover the Johnnie Walker story.
The story of Johnnie Walker and our history begins with John Walker, the man who gave our whisky his name. In 1820, the young farmer’s son started his own grocer’s shop in the thriving town of Kilmarnock. It was a tough start in life, but there was always something special about John. A glint in his eye. A fire in his belly. John had a natural gift for business. He also had a genius for whisky.
In those days, most grocers stocked a line of single malts, but they were never consistent. This wasn’t good enough for John. So he started blending them together to create a whisky that tasted just as good every time. It proved an extremely popular addition to the inventory.
When John passed away in 1857, he left his son, Alexander, with a very healthy business. These were fast-moving times. The Industrial Revolution was set to change everything. In Kilmarnock, the railway had arrived, carrying goods to ships travelling all over the world. Like his father, Alexander knew a good opportunity when he saw one.
Alexander introduced the iconic slanted label and square bottle. A leading illustrator, Tom Browne, sketched the striding man. By 1920, Johnnie Walker whisky was available in 120 countries and had become a part of global culture.
The rest, as they say, is history.