One of the main reasons I enjoy this beautiful whisky is because I have an inherent sweet tooth and this single malt is without a doubt on the sweeter side. The distillery was started by whisky smuggler John Cumming in the 1820’s. Initially known as Cardow until it’s name was changed to its current form in the 1870’s by Elizabeth Cumming, Cardhu is located on the north eastern region of Scotland known as Speyside. It was in great demand in those days by Johnnie Walker and Sons who used the spirit in their blends. Later Elizabeth Cumming sold the distillery to them under the conditions that the Cumming family would continue to run the distillery on a day to day basis. This arrangement continued until the Second World War broke out when wartime restrictions made it difficult to source barley. Cardhu, now owned by Diageo, began distillation again in 2006.
Speyside whiskies normally tend to be either on the grassy-floral-dry side or the sweet-fruity side and as mentioned before Cardhu falls into the latter category. Cardhu is very popular for its well balanced smooth silkiness. Moreover, it comes in a beautiful decanter like bottle. Here is my take on it.
Colour: Beautiful golden-amber hue.
Body: On giving it a swirl the whisky appears to have a medium body that clings to the glass.
Nose: Aromas of apples and pears are very prominent once the whisky begins to settle down.
Palate: Sweet pears, honey and just the bit of smoke. It truly is a well balanced whisky and goes down smoothly.
Finish: The sweetness lingers on the palate but makes way for the hint of smoke. Very enjoyable.
Due to its balance I felt the whisky could be as perfect as an aperitif as a digestif. If I had it as an aperitif I would add just the bit of water to make the whisky a bit more delicate and rounded whereas as a digestif I enjoyed it neats. But as we all know there is no tried and tested formula for drinking whisky so you may even try it in a quality cocktail. Slainte!