December 29, 2005

And You Wonder Why The Scotch Costs $200?

Johnnie Walker BlueSometimes a story comes along that sort of makes things click into place. Kevin over at The Scotch Blog just got his hands on a copy of the "The Blue Label Book," a large and expensive treatise from Diageo, the folks who own Johnnie Walker Blue. It's big. It's blue. It's expensive-looking. It's supposed to make rich people want to buy an expensive Scotch. But here's the doesn't actually say anything about Scotch.

It is a beautiful piece of work with a tri-fold blue linen cover and gold-edged pages. It has one of those built-in ribbon bookmarks generally reserved for bibles and great master-works. Yet, it is singularly uninteresting - whether to a Scotch aficionado like myself, or to a busy CIO of a Fortune 50 company, like the original recipient.

Let me quote from the Introduction:

"You are holding something rare. It's called the Blue Label Book and it's brought to you (personally) by the ultimate luxury Scotch, Johnnie Walker Blue Label. Rare because, like the whisky itself, we feel only a select group of individuals worldwide are capable of appreciating what the pages of this strictly limited-edition Blue Label Book have to offer.

The book goes on to show the "best seat in the house" for a number of worldwide venues - various theaters, opera houses, restaurants and the like, interspersed with paintings of well-dressed, beautiful people enjoying (presumably) Johnnie Walker Blue.

There are only four paragraphs on a single page that refer to Scotch in the entire book.

Well to be honest, I may well be wrong about that as I quickly became bored with the book and put it aside. The high-powered exec that this book was originally meant for (presumably to mesmerize him into buying a $200+ bottle of Blue) didn't even give it a second glance.

Why would Diageo spend so much money to put out a book about Scotch that's not about Scotch? We're guessing it's so they can justify the price tag. "We have to charge $200 for it...did you see our marketing budget!?"

If you need us, we'll be drinking our White Horse, getting ready for New Year's. You can read the rest of the story at The Scotch Blog.

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Posted by Jake Jamieson at December 29, 2005 11:52 AM
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