Cadenhead's is an independent bottler that have a few bottle shops across Scotland, one of which is located down the lower end of the Royal Mile before you get to the Scottish Parliament and Holyrood Palace and a whisky lovers dream. (172 Canongate Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH8 8BN)
I first came across their store on a particularly rotten day, the jobcentre had sent me on a two hour trip from home to Leith for a job interview that it turned out I wasn't even eligible for! I decided to try and make something of the day so. I went to the cinema (nothing on), went to Princes St gardens (too dreich) and finally wound up wandering down the Royal Mile with the intention of going to the Parliament to see a whisky exhibition.
Luckily I popped into Cadenheads's on the way down!
|Cluttered can be good. (Erin Jane)|
Alongside a wide range of standard and single cask 70cl bottlings (an idea of their selection is at the end of this post) they have a great variety of 20cl bottles. Being rather skint this was fabulous as you can buy something unique for a fraction of the price of a full bottle.
I was honest and told the staff that I didn;t had enough money for a full bottle, but they were still very generous and happily allowed me to try a fair few of their expressions.
In the end I went for a fabulous 12 year old cask strength Springbank that had some delicious walnut notes at a wallop-in-the-face 55% strength.
Like other independent bottlers they rarely have some whisky (Lagavulin, Ardbeg etc) but that's the nature of the whisky business these days. Record high demand coupled with distilleries increasingly releasing their own single cask or special editions doesn't leave much for the independents.
|Edinburgh set-up (Erin Jane)|
Cadenhead's generally have five on their own blended malts on the go at once, broadly aligned with the Scottish whisky regions.
I was impressed by the honesty of the staff who gave a fairly objective opinion of the current tastiness of each batch.
Cadenhead's is a curious whisky lovers dream. If you're in Edinburgh make sure you head down to the less well travelled end of the Royal Mile to pay them a visit. Friendly, quiet with a wide range of accessibly priced bottles that you won't find anywhere else. It's a real shame they don't have a better online presence or store, I think they'd do pretty well if they had one.
Last, but not least.. a snapshot of their whisky board!
|Thanks to Bananeman|