Whiskey Business: Top 5 Tasmanian Whiskey Distilleries

Did you know that the first legal distillery in Australia was opened in 1822 in Tasmania? Even though there were prohibitions, Tasmania remained the top whiskey distiller in Australia. It had, and still has, the best liquid sunshine in the country. Nowadays, there are more than 80 distilleries in this region that are competitive but also share strong respect and appreciation for each other. All of them create award-winning whiskeys that the whole world loves. Here are five examples of them.


Source: larkdistillery.com

The Lark Distillery has been in the whiskey business for more than 30 years. It’s one of the most popular brands that’s been nominated and won many awards all over the country and worldwide. It all began in 1989 when the founder Max and his father-in-law were on a fishing trip. The question “I wonder why there isn’t anyone making malt whiskey in Tasmania?” is what started it all.

Max and his wife were curious and found out about the prohibitions. They managed to amend the laws and opened the first Australian distillery after 154 years. Their ideas flourished and they created the luscious Lark single malt whiskey. In 1998, they released it to the public and it became a huge success.

They continue to thrive because of their commitment to making the perfect sip of whiskey. They go above and beyond and mine freshwater sphagnum peat from the Tasmanian Highlands and smoke the barley with it. As a result, they get a rich spirit sparkled with citrus. The Lark distillery has grown and now has the capacity to accommodate a 500l Spirit Still and 1800l Wash Still, both of them running seven days a week.

Their Dark Lark is very alluring. It won the Master Medal at the Global World Whiskey Masters because it’s a true feast for all the senses. It has bright and floral-tasting notes with hints of tropical fruit. It smells bright and fresh with a hint of oak. Your palate will enjoy a deep mocha and caramel flavour which finishes with a clean tropical crescendo.

Their Tasmanian Peated is also an amazing choice. They say it was born from fire and fervour. It ignites the senses with every sip because of the delicately smoky dram. The tasting notes are earthy and floral. You’ll get a whiff of sea spray in the aromas and your palate will enjoy a combination of dark chocolate and oyster shell topped with hints of marmalade and coffee.

Another Lark gem is the Symphony Nº1. It’s their first blended whiskey which won the World Whiskies Awards Best Blended Malt in 2022 and 2023. It’s a blend of American oak bourbon and sherry. This creates a creamy, oily mix of flavours that lingers in your mouth. Their distillers are passionate about their job and like to experiment, which results in memorable, luscious drinks everyone loves.


Source: singlemalt.com.au

The Belgrove distillery is one of the few in the world that does it all on its own. They grow their own grain, ferments, malts, distils and barrel ages. They produce 100% rye whiskey and build their own copper pots from scratch. Next to their farm, there’s a roadhouse where they get the used cooking oil and use it as biofuel.

They also use the biofuel to run their tractors, trucks and forklifts and heat the water. They often reuse yeast, and their cooling water comes from their dam. Overall, Belgrove is a sustainable, small carbon footprint and green distillery with the aim to produce great flavours.

Just like with the Lark single malt, the first thing you notice about their products is their one-of-a-kind packaging. The bottles are thin and tall with simple, yet unique labels. The seal at the lower part of the bottle gives it a nice vintage touch. Their White Rye has a peppery, smoky taste with hints of mango, dried berries and an aftertaste of Molasses.

With only 126 bottles released, their Wholly Shit Liquid Gold Edition whiskey has a divine taste and smell. It gives you a two-tone attack on the palate with the kick of Demerara sugars and the smokiness to round it all up. There’s light spiciness to complement it all. Besides the whiskey, they also made a Black Rye Coffee Liqueur. The base is grappa and white rye topped with chocolate and nutty tones.


Source: thefortdistillery.com

The Heartwood distillery currently holds around 19,000l of whiskey in oak barrels which are made of Hungarian, American and French oak. Besides the single malt, they also produce blended malt whiskey. The wide variety of barrels and whiskey styles gives them endless blending opportunities. They can experiment and bring new flavours to the table.

They have a vast collection of drinks you can choose from. The “A Serious Whiskey” bottles come from a pleated sherry cask type. It has been a game changer in this industry and has become a favourite very fast. The “Wizard’s Sceptre” is another extraordinary drink, this time a vatted version. It slowly builds up the flavours until you can feel it all in stages.

Callington Mill

Source: facebook.com/CallingtonMillDistillery

The owners of the Callington Mill were inspired to take this journey when they visited Scotland and its whiskey distilleries. They came back and founded the distillery of their dreams. Just like the Lark whisky, they make single malts with intense flavours. The Entropy has rich notes of rhubarb, maple syrup and marmalade.

The Emulsion is also known as strawberry gold which is very light and elegant. It has notes of vanilla, pineapple and Turkish delight. But their Dark Secret is one of the most popular sellers. It’s made in collaboration with the urban artist Dscreet and has a very unique bottle. It has creamy butterscotch, dark chocolate and toffee notes with a touch of bitterness at the end. This is an extraordinary drink with very distinctive flavours.

Hellyers Road

Source: discovertasmania.com.au

Hellyers Road was established in 1999 and has developed and improved a lot since. They create their malt and flavourings from scratch. They pay attention to every detail. That’s why their labels are embellished with artwork. They want to emphasise the depth and wilderness of the Tasmanian region.

The Journeyman whiskey is triple distilled and bottled on-site. It’s complex and delicate with notes of marmalade, honeycomb and herbs. It also has hints of orange blossom and green leaf to give it a distinct sweet and floral taste. The Double Cask is rich and full, with vibrant flavours of stewed fruits, raisin toast and candied orange. The final hint of clove will round up this amazing drink and leave you thinking about it for a long time.