Laphroaig Cairdeas 2022 Warehouse 1
Peated Single Malt — Islay, Scotland
Reviewed October 16, 2022
I almost didn't buy this. Although admittedly, my first chance to buy this was during my shore vacation and it was $116 dollars, and I know that at home, when this comes in stock it's $99. Only it wasn't in stock at home yet, and I wasn't sure it would be, so I was tempted, but I laid off because of the early reviews I'd read on this site. You see, I loved the 2021 Cairdeas Pedro Ximenez. It was, in fact, one of my favorite whiskies I've ever had. And the initial reviews I saw on this site for Warehouse 1 were lukewarm. I get that, and I don't get it. The reason I get that is, this isn't as good as the 2021. The reason I don't get it is, this is a very Laphroaig Laphroaig. I am, to an extent, echoing what others have said, but I think this needs to be reiterated. Bottled at 104 proof, it's not quite as high strength as the 10 Year Cask Strength, yet it's a higher proof than the regular 10 year, and even though this doesn't have an age statement, it drinks like a higher proof version of the 10. Now I've never landed a bottle of the 10 Cask Strength yet, so I can't compare to that. But this has everything the 10 has in terms of nose and flavor. Iodine, Peat, Rubber, Tar, so if you like that, it baffles me why you wouldn't like this because here it's more intense and richer. The palate is similar providing a slight edge of vanilla honey coated sweetness on the back end with a long briny finish. I can't imagine you're drinking this if you don't like peated scotch. I can't imagine you're drinking this if this is your first Laphroaig. So again, I'm not sure where the low scores are coming from. I opened this last week in a tasting during a football game where my brother-in-law and dad were over my place. The tasting started with this, followed up with the Talikser Distillers Edition, followed that with Ardbeg Wee Beastie, and followed that with the Nikka from the Barrel. And you know what? All of them were amazing. But this was definitely the best of the lot, and that's a tall order with the Talisker Distiller's Edition in the mix. The DE was the 2021 Talisker, and that's an amazing dram, but this Cairdeas was fuller and richer. Didn't have the same sweetness, but made up for it with the intensity. As a side note, this was matured in Maker's Mark barrels, and I'm thinking that this is sort of like the Maker's 101 of the Laphroaig lineup. Not quite the Cask Strength, but adding a little umph to the standard bottling this likely falls in the middle. Naturally, until I have the Cask Strength, this is just conjecture. But my final verdict is: don't sleep on this. The lower scores than last year's make sense but only because last year's was phenomenal. If you like Islay, if you like peat, if you like Laphroaig, this dram's for you.
99.99 USD per Bottle