This New Year, the team behind Johnnie Walker, a brand of Norwalk, Conn.-based Diageo North America Inc., released a special-edition whisky exclusive to travelers: Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Sherry Cask Finish, which now is available in duty-free stores worldwide.

The Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch portfolio is a series of whiskies crafted with the freedom to create blends that challenge whisky making traditions, the company says. The result is a unique series of experimental whiskies that deliver distinctive flavors and serves, it says.

The experiment behind this latest release took inspiration from the iconic Johnnie Walker Black Label, which has been crafted with an element of sherry cask maturation for more than 100 years. Inspired by this process, the whisky makers at Johnnie Walker wanted to delve deeper and explore the fruity notes that sherry cask maturation brings to the taste — creating the deliciously rich and sweet Johnnie Walker Blenders Batch Sherry Cask Finish, which is aged for 12 years, the company says.

Made with whiskies from distilleries such as Blair Athol, Cardhu and Strathmill, Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Sherry Cask Finish is a smooth-sipping dark Scotch with notes of sweet vanilla, smoke, raisins and a warming finish of dark chocolate, it adds.

In a statement, Aimée Gibson, Johnnie Walker expert whisky maker said: "Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch whiskies are the result of bold experiments that push the boundaries in flavor. Taking inspiration from the element of sherry cask maturation in Johnnie Walker Black Label, I was intrigued by the rich and fruity taste it added to the blend. It inspired me to experiment with the sherry cask finish to awaken more of these fruity notes and to add a unique flavor dynamic.

"The outcome has been extraordinary; Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Sherry Cask Finish is a fantastically sweet and rich whisky,” she continued. “It's the perfect introduction for those who are new to Scotch Whisky, but will also excite seasoned whisky lovers."

Commenting on the travel retail exclusivity, Dayalan Nayager, Managing Director of Diageo Global Travel said: "This is a special launch for Diageo Global Travel because it's exclusive to our shoppers. It is the first travel retail exclusive from the Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch series and will make the perfect purchase for travelers who want to gift something truly special in the New Year.

"Travelers are looking for brands that have discovery, authenticity, craftsmanship and real human stories behind them, and there is none better than Johnnie Walker,” Nayager continued. “We are thrilled to offer shoppers a glimpse into the world of flavor exploration from the world's biggest Scotch Whisky brand and add another innovation to our range."

Travelers can pick up a bottle of Johnnie Walker Sherry Cask Finish in selected duty-free stores worldwide with a suggested retail price of £26.50 / $44 RRSP for a 1-liter bottle.