Chivas 18 Year is the next rung up the ladder from their Extra expression, positioned to compete with the likes of Johnnie Walker Gold. It is claimed that the core component of the blend, much like the 12 Year, is Strathisla, there's really no way to know exactly what is going into it beyond the age.
This whisky was bottled at 40% with coloring and chill filtration.
Chivas Regal 18 Year
Nose: malt/grain, floral, gentle peat smoke and oak, light sherry influence with savory notes and wood spices. After adding a few drops of water it becomes flatter, with less peat smoke.
Taste: a little flat - grain/malt, gentle oak, light sherry, vanilla, citrus/berry overtones, and a touch of peat with oak tannins at the back. After dilution it becomes even flatter - mostly grain with a little vanilla and a touch of sherry at the back.
Finish: oak tannins, a touch of sherry
While a perfectly competent blend, there is little here that makes me want more. The touch of peat sets it above the 12 Year, but the lack of complexity in the flavors keeps it from being a good value. For something with similar structure but more robust flavors, Johnnie Walker Green Label is probably the better choice. With that said, I think this comes close to Johnnie Walker Blue Label at a fraction of the price, though the latter is more flavorful.