Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Review

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Review

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask is the latest in the Cairdeas releases which are typically tasty whiskies. Each release has a new theme and is often centered around a specific kind of cask finish. The Laphroaig Cairdeas 2013 Port Wood is among my all-time favorite whiskies and I have to say… this 2016 Cairdeas is gaining ground on it.

To make the Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask the folks at Laphroaig took some fully matured Laphroaig (~8-10 years old) and dumped it into some madeira casks for some additional aging. This extra aging in the Madeira lends the smoky giant a bit of sweetness which ill chat more about below in the Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Review.

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Info

Region: Islay, Scotland

Distiller: Laphroaig
Mashbill: 100% malted barley
Cask: ex-Bourbon and ex-Madeira
Age: NAS
ABV: 51.6%

Cask Strength | Non-Chill Filtered | Natural Color

Batch: 2016

Price: $85*

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Review

Pink butterscotch

Smoke, bacon, pepper, red grapes, saline, crisp rosé-like wine notes, ash, orange zest, spice and a some malty sweetness. Complex and dynamic, it’s a wonderful new take on Laphroaig.

Peat, cocoa, smoked paprika, more of those crisp rosé-like wine notes, ash, spice, oak, citrus peels and a light bit of waxy licorice before it dovetails into the finish. Alluring, crisp and sweet and smoky… yum.

Smoke, rosé, cocoa, malty sweetness, dried fruit and nuts.

Pristine balance, round full body and a heavy oily feel.

I loved the 2015 Cairdeas (I bought 3 bottles of it), but the Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask is a small step above it thanks to the wonderful delicate pairing of the madeira sweetness to the burly smoke-beast that is the core Laphroaig. I’ve compared Laphroaig to a smoked fruit cake before and this carries that same essence, but it’s toasted and has a layer of perfectly sweetened jam over the top.

The Laphroaig Caideas 2016 Madeira Cask runs closer to my favorite Cairdeas release, the alluring Cairdeas 2013, than it does last year’s and I’m finding that for the most part I enjoy wine sweetened (cask finished / aged) Laphroaig more and more, it’s the reason the Lore is so damn good.

To sum it up, if you get the chance to flood your palate with the Laphroaig Caideas 2016 Madeira Cask do it. It’s a smoky giant soaked in sweet wine notes and it’s delicious.

SCORE: 93/100 (A)

*Disclosure: This Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask was graciously sent to me by the company for the purposes of this review. The views, opinions, and tasting notes are 100% my own.
Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Review - Score Breakdown
  • Nose - 94
  • Palate - 94
  • Finish - 93
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 93


Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask is awesome. I love it.

Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Label

Josh Peters

Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters

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12 Responses to Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 Madeira Cask Review

  1. Just placed my order for 2 bottles. Looking forward to a wee sip of this highly rated dram. Enjoyed the 2014 as well as the 2015. Here in Canada the bottle sells for $ 100.00/bottle (about $ 75.00 us)

  2. Inspired by your review, I just got my bottle. Only managed to get the one (85 gbp). This is the first bottle of Laphroaig that I have purchased. (I’ve tasted many but never bought one.) Looking forward to a quiet moment in which to savor it.

  3. Josh, I’ve recently started following your blog and your reviews are spot on. You’re now my go to source for finding new and unique bourbon and scotch. Just ordered a bottle of the Cairdeas 2016 and cannot wait to try it!

  4. Just picked up two bottles can’t wait to enjoy a dram. A great bartender at WSKY Lounge in OKC took me on a tasty trip into single malts for the first time a year or so back and the 2013 Cairdeas was the last stop. It ruined me, had the literal “where has this been all my life moment”. Hopefully these bottles will deliver that same type of experience. Great stuff sir, you got yourself a new subscriber.

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