Review No.143. Cardhu 12 Year Old

Cardhu is another distillery under the ownership of Diageo.  Malts from this distillery are used in the Johnnie Walker range but they also have their own core range consisting of the Reserve, 12 year old, 15 year old and 18 year old.  You can find the non age statement and the 12 year old stocked in some UK supermarkets however the brand has a bigger presence in France and Spain where this sells well.  Cardhu is not a malt that has ever stood out to me, maybe that’s something to do with the bottle design and partly due to it being another Speysider of which were are a lot.  Although you should never assume they all taste alike.


Whisky: Cardhu 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky, 40%

Nose: Floral, fragrant primrose, lavendar, honey, brown sugar

Taste: Spiced honey, malt, freshly baked bread, toast, tea, chilli, butterscotch

Finish: Burnt toast and tea

Score: 2.75

Summary: This is very pleasant on the nose with an array of floral notes which I could smell all day long.  Onto the palate some of that floral-ness is replaced with a bit of spice, honey and baked bread and then towards the end it finishes with some bitterness.  This isn’t complex and I would have preferred more of the nose on the palate but this does exhibit those classic flavours you find in many Highland and Speyside single malts.  It’s a malt that I would happily drink at a bar but it shows nothing to entice me into the rest of the range.



Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,

1 – not to my preference

2 – tastes fine but does not excite me

3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally

4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf

5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf


Image source: