Review: Sullivan’s Cove French Oak Cask

Category: Tasmanian single malt whisky

Origin: Tasmania Distillery

Bottling: Official

ABV: 47.5%

Cost: £150

Score: 93/100

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What they say:

Sullivans Cove’s French Oak cask was voted the World’s Best Single Malt Whisky at the 2014 World Whisky Awards – the first time a whisky from somewhere other than Scotland or Japan has been awarded this honour.

This single cask expression varies from 12 to 14 years in age and is a big, fat, chewy whisky full of rich toffee and molasses notes. You could almost be forgiven for mistaking it for Demerara rum on first taste!

TASTING NOTES
NOSE: Full rich dark chocolate with cinnamon, orange peel, hazelnut and licorice mint
PALATE: Rich and sweet front palate with flavours of chocolate, pepper, toffee and fruit cake
FINISH: Long lingering finish of dried dark fruit and dark chocolate

Sullivan'sCoveFrenchOak

What I say:

Purchased awhile before the awards during our Virtual World Tour of Whisky. In order to  equate our experience as much as possible I had selected similar cask types such as this French Oak cask from Sullivan’s Cove in Tasmania and our previously reviewed Kavalan Solist Vinho Barrique ~ 57.7% (King Car Group). It was therefore a lucky accident that we ended up with a sample of the 2014 World’s Best Whisky as awarded by the Whisky Magazine’s World Whiskies Awards.

Colour:

Amber gold (11/20), medium slow tears

Nose:

Sweet, irn bru chews and swizzle stick sweeties, sherbet refresher’s sweeties, woody oak, beeswax, furniture polish, botanical and herbal, juicy fruity berries, redcurrant, dark bramble jam, ‘high’ icing sugar sweetness, some cereal grains and barley

Taste:

Smooth, cereal barley malt, porridge oats, oak wood, beeswax, caramel, candle wax, honeyed fruits, slight spiced paprika and chilli, mouth watering

Finish:

Medium-long, drying and tannic oak wood, some chilli spice then smooth milk chocolate

Overall:

Actually rather delicious! We found this much more deep and fruity/fruitcake mix with the cocoa elements really only shining  through in the finish. The tannins work well with the sweet and fruity flavours to make this really zesty and mouthwatering. A wonderful whisky well deserving of the awards and accolades it has received!