Tasmanian independent bottler, Spirit Thief, has launched The Exploration Series, comprising six new whiskies designed to showcase the unique effects of maturing whisky using non-traditional ex-red wine casks.
As an independent bottler Spirit Thief takes spirit from other distilleries and then looks to put its own stamp on it by aging in different barrels. In particular Spirit Thief focuses on ex-red wine casks such as French Oak Tempranillo, Grenache and Bordeaux ex-wine casks.
The six whiskies in this series have been selected by Spirit Thief team for their new unique flavour characteristics and highlight amazing new-make spirit from five different distilleries. Available in the new range are three whiskies from award winning Tasmanian distilleries, Belgrove, Adams and Shene distilleries as well as one whisky from New Zealand and another from Scotland.
Spirit Thief’s Founder and Master Blender, Brett Steel on the release “Spirit Thief began as a passion project that accidentally grew into a business. Back in 2015 we intended to experiment with one cask of French Oak Tempranillo and one cask of American Oak Shiraz to mature Tasmanian new-make spirit from the original Redlands Distillery, Tasmania.
“We wanted to know the difference that would take place between specific grape-varietal wines and oak types in the final whiskies.”
“The results surpassed our expectations, and the demand for more was high, our first bottles selling out fast. We then turned our interests to collaborations with other distilleries in Tasmania, including Shene, Adams and Belgrove Distillery and to sourcing matured casks from overseas in New Zealand and Scotland, building a portfolio of red-wine matured whiskies that would be unique, experimental and very limited.”
The full line-up comprises:
- French Oak Pinot Noir & American Oak Bourbon, New Zealand Whisky Co (48.1% abv)
- French Oak Grenache, Shene Distillery double-distilled (55.4% abv)
- French Oak Mataro, Belgrove Distillery (63.5% abv)
- American Oak Shiraz Heavily Charred, Adams Distillery (63.5% abv)
- Coastal Peated French Oak Cabernet, Belgrove Distillery (48.3% abv)
- Bordeaux Red-Wine, Benrinnes Distillery (55.2% abv)