Cardhu 14 Year Old (Special Release)

Another bottling from the Special Releases 2019. The reason this Cardhu 14 Years caught my attention is because it is finished in Amontillado seasoned casks for the last two years.

Amontillado is a mature style of sherry, a mix of both biological ageing (under a layer of flor yeast) and oxidative ageing (in contact with air). Often there’s a hint of nuts, caramel, wood and vanilla, so it can be a slightly whisky-like style. That’s probably also why it isn’t used more for whisky maturation – it brings less new aromas to the table than Oloroso for instance. It’s also more expensive as you’ll need at least 5 years to create this wine.



Cardhu 14 Year Old - Special ReleasesCardhu 14 yo 2004
(55%, OB 2019, 4860 btl.)

Nose: sweet and rather creamy, with a hint of red apple, orange candy and white grape juice. Bananas. Honey and caramelized hazelnuts. Intensifies over time, with some oak spice and waxy oak. Water adds a nice brightness.

Mouth: powerful, with big peppery notes and a little ginger. Pears and peaches on a second level, as well as creamy toffee. Nutty notes again, a little milk chocolate. A hint of grassy, green oak and mint. Again more rounded with a little water, which is recommended here.

Finish: medium, with a similar combination of oak and chocolate. Cinnamon and citrus.

One of the better Cardhu releases I’ve had: rich and creamy, reasonably complex, even better with a little water. Available from TWE for instance, or check your local retailer.

Score: 86/100