Tasmanian Whisky

Tasmanian whisky has become synonymous with good quality and innovation in the global whisky scene. That only happened after Tasmanian whiskies and distillers started earning international awards across the board, showcasing the ideal climate, locally sourced ingredients, and a fast-growing handcrafted whisky scene, establishing the island as a powerhouse comparable to Scotch regions like Speyside and Islay.  

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Tasmanian Whisky History:

Home to some of the world’s best and award-winning single malt whiskies, Tasmania is renowned for quality, locally produced and sourced ingredients, and an almost perfect climate for whisky maturation.

But to get there, things went backwards first. In 1838, Tasmania had at least 16 legal distilleries and many illegal ones, with a growing population and high demand for spirits at the time. That was until Lady Jane Franklin, the wife of Tasmanian Governor John Franklin, resolved to intervene in the industry by introducing laws to make it illegal the distilling of spirits in the state. In her words: “I would prefer barley be fed to pigs, than it be used to turn men into swine”.

The rebirth of Tasmanian whisky wouldn’t happen till 1992 when Bill and Lyn Lark secured the first legal whisky license in the state to form Lark Distillery. With its abundance in crystal-clear water, perfect climate, locally grow barley and peat bogs, Bill had realised his home island would be the perfect place for making whisky and couldn’t understand why no one in Tassie was making whisky. Soon enough, he would learn about Lady Jane’s law. Bill contacted a local MP to change the outdated law, and the rest, as they say, is history. Paving the way for not just his own distillery but the entire modern Australian whisky industry, Bill is now hailed as the Godfather of Australian Whisky.

Another Tasmanian whisky milestone happened in 2014 when then Sullivans Cove Marketing Manager and soon-to-be The Whisky Club co-founder, Bertie Cason, selected French Oak Cask HH0525 to be entered in the World Whiskies Awards. This superb but humble drop was crowned ‘World’s Best Single Malt Whisky', the first non-Scottish or Japanese single malt to win the category – and the first from the southern hemisphere. This event not only launched Sullivans Cove to the world stage but also brought the whole Tasmanian whisky scene with it.

With so many achievements in such a short period of time, Tasmania has become the proud Whisky Capital of Australia.


Best Tasmanian whiskies released by The Whisky Club


Hellyers Road Vintage Triple Cask

Hellyers Road Vintage Triple Cask, created exclusively for The Whisky Club, is a vatting of two parcels of casks laid down in 2014 (Sherry and Port) and 2016 (American oak and Port), bottled in 2024 at 48.2% ABV with non-chill filtration and natural copper colour. There’s complexity to this whisky that belies age statements and transcends whisky specs – and we wouldn't expect anything less from the Tasmanian distillery that dominated the 2024 World Whisky Awards, taking home a slew of golds and becoming Australia's most awarded distillery.

NOSE: Marmalade, orange blossom and beeswax, with round notes of plump sultana and nutty nougat.

PALATE: Beautifully balanced, palate-coating flavours of toffee, gingerbread, stewed stone fruits and fresh berries.

FINISH: Rich, fruit-driven roundness with a touch of umami leads to an elegant, building white fudge finish.


Lark The Rising Tide

The Rising Tide by Lark Distillery was created in celebration of 30 years since the rebirth of not just Tasmanian whisky but the entire Australian whisky industry. Coming from distilleries all around the island state, this blended whisky is a marriage of single malts from distilleries close to Bill Lark’s heart and showcasing what put the heart-shaped island on the global map as Australia’s Whisky Capital. Coming in at 51.4% ABV, it’s a decadent malt masterpiece of stewed apple pie and sticky toffee on the nose, citrus, chewy caramel and buttery honey on the palate, and a long, continuous finish with thick maple syrup, fruit mince pie and dark chocolate.

NOSE: Floral orange and toffee, stewed apple pie, dusty with a touch of maritime.

PALATE: Wonderful citrus followed by roasted malt, caramel and buttery honey.

FINISH: Big and continuous, maple syrup and coconut with fruit mince pie and dark chocolate.


Overeem Tokay Cask

From one of the founding whisky families of the modern Australian whisky industry, Overeem Tokay Cask is a superb example on why this Tasmanian distillery is on everyone’s lips (and glasses). Matured in Port and Sherry casks before a second maturation in rich South Australian Tokay casks, this single malt is jammed with juicy orange, Jersey caramel and milk chocolate. It’s no wonder this Club-exclusive beauty sold out within 24 hours of its release.

NOSE: Juicy orange and fresh pineapple, treacle intertwined with rich dried fruits and caramelised oak.

PALATE: Baked tropical fruits and Jersey caramel meld with chocolate powder and sweet spices.

FINISH: Long and viscous. Figs and raisins with hazelnuts, chewy fruit cake and milk chocolate.


Hobart Oloroso Sherry Finish

This Hobart Whisky single malt was created exclusively for the Club with a long 12-month finish in Oloroso Sherry cask, the very first time Hobart Whisky released a whisky with these specs. The results were nothing short of delightfully viscous, with its decadent flourish of stewed apples, sticky caramel and dates, and dark chocolate and a rich blackberry finish.

NOSE: Lovely light floral notes, stewed apples and Monte Carlo biscuits, matched with figs and light spice.

PALATE: Zesty orange alongside strawberries and cream, sticky caramel and dates with rye bread.

FINISH: Freshly ground coffee meets dark chocolate with a rich blackberry finish.


Hellyers Road 21 Year Old Single Cask

The oldest Australian single cask at the time of release, this collector’s edition is from one of the most iconic Tassie distilleries. This incredible age statement dram was distilled by one of the distillery’s founders, fully matured in American Oak cask and filled on 6th June 2002. Such a milestone whisky demands an even more iconic case: a hand-crafted Northern Tasmanian timber box made of Huon Pine, Myrtle and Celery Top Pine by Master Woodworker Rob van Tholen. With a secret locking mechanism, it’s the perfect case for a treasured single cask.

NOSE: An abundance of tropical fruit and citrus. Grapefruit and marmalade lean into vanilla custard, light spice and a soft nuttiness.

PALATE: Orange blossom with those delicious tropical fruits again dominating, lychee, pineapple and dragon fruit alongside thick butterscotch and a malt undertone.

FINISH: Showcasing its length of time in cask, this is decadently long and sublime, with ginger snaps, vanilla cream and white chocolate with a balance of aged ripe fruits.


Old Kempton Cask Strength Port Cask

This Christmas exclusive small batch from Old Kempton was created from hand-selected 20 litre Grand Burge Port barrels which, in a first for the distillery, were then vatted and finished in a single South Australian Port Cask. The results? An indulgent festive dram. Presented at cask strength with a strong opening of golden syrup, berries, and fresh Anzac biscuits on the nose, spicy red peppers make way for abundant red fruits, candy and honey on toast.

NOSE: Sweet and thick, toasty, golden syrup drizzled over plums and mixed berries, freshly baked ANZAC biscuits

PALATE: Viscous and oily, it’s intense in the mouth with red pepper spices initially, making way for ripe cherries, apples and cranberries, candy, honey on toast, and distinct cereal notes.

FINISH: Long and strong, leaves your mouth satisfied and coated with a delicious sweet swirl of fruits and syrup before gently fading, signalling time for another sip


Belgrove Pinot Noir Single Cask

This single cask perfection comes from the world’s greenest distillery based in Tassie’s Midlands, run by all-round industry legend, farmer, distiller, inventor and artist Peter Bignell. This exclusive single malt was selected from a single Pinot Not cask and bottle at 50% ABV to deliver a perfect oily rye with apricot jam, bubble gum, nougat, and just a sprinkle of sherbet!

NOSE: Smooth and creamy, it’s delicate on the nose with apricot jam, bubble gum and sprinkle of sherbet.

PALATE: Strong cereal notes, with Rye bread, nuts and grains. Nougat and some pepper mingle with citrus fruits and brown sugar. An excellent mouthfeel and pleasant, oily texture.

FINISH: Long and gentle, the sweetness makes way allowing a persistent rye to gently fade away.


Mackey Release 7 Triple Distilled

This amazing highly-anticipated release was created exclusively for The Whisky Club and hot on the heels of Release 6’s Double Gold at the 2020 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Release 7 is a triple-distilled Tasmanian single malt, matured in 20L French Oak McWilliams ex-Apera casks, and mashed, fermented, matured and bottled on site from pristine Tasmanian highland water and 100% Tasmanian malted barley. The sip meets a thick and luscious mouthful with sweet and spicy tropical fruits, banana custard and poached fig. Finishing long and lingering with sweet sherbet, caramel and white pepper, this is staple Mackey.

NOSE: Lovely floral nose with hints of banana custard, poached figs, chocolate and a little nuttiness

PALATE: Big, luscious mouthfeel, sweet and spicy with delicate and sweet tropical fruit notes transitioning to pantry spices and white pepper

FINISH: Sweet sherbet and white pepper combo, summarised as long lingering and luscious


Launceston Distillery Distiller’s Cut Double Cask

This superb Double Cask Limited Edition from Launceston Distillery was another Club-exclusive and a huge success. Rich, sticky and delicious, this single malt whisky was bottled at 54.9% ABV and brings sticky toffee apple and raspberries on the nose, a luscious palate of chewy toffee, figs and peanut brittle, and a long, velvety finish of candied citrus and toasted oak.

NOSE: Zesty orange and hints of toffee apple. Fresh raspberries, sultanas, walnuts and caramelised pecans settle into light wood shavings.

PALATE: Bright mandarin and peanut butter brittle with oven fresh muffins, chewy toffee and creamy vanilla espresso. Caramelised beef brisket brings a touch of savoury.

FINISH: Long and velvety. Dried fruits alongside candied citrus and toasted oak.


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