The Whisky Show 2012 in Review

The Whisky Show 2012 was held over two days with more than 1000 whisky fans attending the inaugural event at the Tattersalls Club in Sydney. Over 150 different whiskies were available to taste giving novices and enthusiasts the opportunity to taste a wide range of single malts and premium blends.

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The Whisky Show, Tattersalls Club

The Whisky Show hosted the inaugural Australasian Whisky Awards with 6 independent judges blind-tasting 24 entries from Australia and New Zealand.

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Casey Overeem

Overeem/Old Hobart Distillery won the Gold and Silver medals for their Port and Sherry casks respectively in the Single Malt category. Overeem also and took out the Gold award in the Cask Strength category as well as being pronounced the overall winner.

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Medals and Awards

Old Hobart Distillery is a boutique distillery in southern Tasmania. Although established in 2005, Overeem whiskies have only been on the market since December 2011. Their casks are closely monitored to ensure the whisky is decanted at the optimum level of maturity. They use ex-port, ex-sherry and ex-bourbon French and American Oak barrels where the spirit is matured in 100 litre casks cut down from larger barrels.

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Three Capes

The New Zealand Whisky Company 21 yo came third in the Single Malt category while Lark Distillery LD and Three Capes 10 yo took out second and third place in the Cask Strength category.

The winner of the Glenmorangie Cocktail competition was also announced, with Luke Redington of Eau-de-Vie bar taking out the title (see separate post). His cocktail “Hit and Run” was available to taste at the show.

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Andres Walters behind the bar with “Hit and Run” cocktail

Below are some of the highlights and favourite drams with brief tasting notes taken on the go.

Robert Burns Single Malt – named after the Scottish poet and is officially endorsed by the World Burns Federation. Light and palatable, it makes a good entry point into single malts with vanilla, apples, pears, with a little honey and spice on the finish.

The Arran Port Cask Finish – a single malt aged for 10 years then finished for 1 year in port casks (50% ABV). Fruit and spice with a hint of chocolate with a complex and long finish.

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Dan Woolley (World of Whisky Ambassador) with the Arran Port Cask Finish

Dalmore Cigar Malt Reserve – (44%ABV)aged in ex bourbon casks, 30 year old sherry butts and premier cru Cabernet Sauvignon wine barriques. Great drop to enjoy with or without a cigar.

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L-R: John Gakuru and Ben Marshall (Think Spirits) with Jura and the Dalmore

Ardbeg Uigeadail – matured in ex bourbon and sherry casks Has the fruit and classic Ardbeg peated style. Bears no age statement. Higher ABV (57%). gives it more flavour than the 10yo Ardbeg.

Ardbeg Corryvreckan, a limited release that is similar to the Ardbeg Day release. A little sweeter on the palate, matured in ex bourbon barrels and some French oak barrels 57% ABV.

Tomatin Highland Single Malt – 12yo and 18yo are finished in sherry and yield more flavours than the 15yo (43% ABV) which is finished in American oak. The latter is much paler in colour, light and easy drinking with subtle smoke, vanilla apples and pears. The 18yo (46% ABV) has an oilier mouthfeel than the younger whiskies.

Glenlivet Nadurra – 16 yo non-chill filtered cask strength (53% ABV) aged in American oak. Rich complex, with pineapple notes.

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L-R: Ross Blainey (Pure Beverages) with Tomatin – Laura Hay (Pernod Ricard) with The Glenlivet

Elements of Islay Lp3 58.7% ABV surprisingly with very lightly peated on the nose but strong on the palate. Typical Laphroaig character. Elements of Islay CI1 (62% ABV) and CI2, the latter being sweeter and more floral in character.

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Elements of Islay range – Refer to our indepth article on Elements of Islay Bn2, Br2 and Pe5

Balvenie Double – a boutique distillery producing hand crafted whisky. They grow their own barley, turn out the malt by hand and have their own coopers. Made in a single barrel, it has signature honey flavours. The whisky is aged in American oak and finished in sherry casks.

Glenfiddich Rich Oak – aged for 14 years and sits in between the 12 yo and the Solera. Strong deep vanilla flavours, with fruit and oak. Delicious.

Glenlivet 15 yo – matured in American oak then in French Limousin oak in for 2 years. Rich, syrupy with vanilla notes, very smooth and velvety on the palate.

Glenlivet 18 yo – matured in ex sherry casks, rich and syrupy. Lots of spice, rich, lingering and warming.

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Ben Davidson (Pernod Ricard) with the Glenlivet

Sullivans Cove Port Cask – matured in a single cask (47.5% ABV) with French oak cask maturation. Dark chocolate, fruit cake flavours, warming with a long finish. A luxurious dram to sip by an open fire. Read our interview with Patrick Maguire Master Distiller and Sullivans Cove Distillery Tour.

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Sullivan’s Cove range

Glenglassaugh Revival – from a distillery that has been shut for over 20 years comes this first release. A most unusual non-chill filtered, 4 yo whisky with some mineral characteristics. The nose, mouthfeel and aftertaste all differ. A most unusual whisky worth a taste

Glenglassaugh 26 yo – very smooth with complex flavours that release slowly, building on complexity and character. Long and lingering finish to be savoured.

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L-R: Glenglassaugh  26 yo and Revival

Miltonduff 10 yo – dubbed as the “breakfast whisky” for being light and easy drinking. Good entry point into whisky from this independent bottler.

Glenburgie 10 yo – aged in bourbon with a sherry finish. Sweet flavours and a subtle sherry influence.

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Milton Duff and Glenburgie

Johnnie Walker Platinum – 18 yo, a luxury blend aged with a little smoke on the finish.

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Johnnie Walker range including the Double Black and Blue Label

Many more whisky brands and expressions were on taste, including some of the favourites such as the Chivas range, Lark Distillery, Jack Daniel’s including the new release Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jura, The Macallan, Singleton of Ord, Talisker and Woodford Reserve.

Tickets to the show cost $50 online or $60 at the door and included 10 tastings with a Glencairn Glass to keep. The tasting glass has a unique shape with a wide bowl and tapered mouth specifically designed to enhance the enjoyment of whisky.

The Whisky Show was presented by World of Whisky of Double Bay and was held on Friday 20 July and Saturday 21 July 2012 at the Tattersalls Club in Sydney.

For a photo gallery of the event, visit Gourmantic on Facebook and “Like” the page.

World of Whisky

Gourmantic attended the event as media guests.


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About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is the Founder/Editor of popular online magazine Gourmantic and Cocktails & Bars, a website dedicated to cocktail culture and the discerning drinker. She is named in Australian Bartender Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential List since 2013, is a member of The Academy responsible for judging the World’s 50 Best Bars. She has also judged the inaugural Australasian Whisky Awards and various national cocktail competitions.