Cardhu 14 Year Diageo 2021 Special Release

Scotch Whisky Review #356: Cardhu 14 Year Diageo 2021 Special Release

Distillery: Cardhu.

Region: Speyside.

Age: 14 Year.

ABV: 55.5%. Cask Strength.

Cask Type: Refill American oak casks, finished in red wine casks.

Cost: Sample courtesy of /u/I_SAID_NO_GOLDFISH.

Color: 0.2, Pale Straw.

This is the 21st installment of this years’ Christmas Countdown. You can see the 2020 edition here and 2019 edition here.


Nose: There’s is a lot of citrus from the start. Lemon and yuzu are big notes here. Honeycomb and beeswax follow giving this a slightly sweet and waxy tone. Orange blossoms wrap things up in a floral way.

Palate: Follows right along with the nose. It’s lightly floral with some orange blossoms. Lots of citrus comes through with pomelo, grapefruits, and yuzu. A bit of honeycomb appears as well. Adding water doesn’t seem to do anything to this whisky.

Finish: Fairly long. Citrus rind is a major note, particularly the bitter oils that you can get out of it by squeezing one.


Conclusion: While I’ve tried many of Speyside’s distilleries, Cardhu is one I’ve not had any experience with before this dram. I didn’t know what to expect but I’m quite pleasantly surprised. There’s tons of cotrus from start to finish in many forms from orange blossoms to the fruits themselves to a bit of rind and oil. The honeycomb and beeswax notes that come with those citrus ones add a lovely secondary element to what might otherwise be a one dimensional dram. Although I get absolutely nothing of the red wine casks, the whole package is fairly tasty. Not bad Cardhu, not bad.

Final Score: 82.


Scotch Whisky Review #356, Speyside Review #129, Whisky Network Review #506


Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky.
  • 85-89: Amazing, will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection (if feasible).
  • 80-84: Very Good, maybe only one minor nitpick about the whisky keeping it here.
  • 75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink.
  • 70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
  • Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.

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