Lost casks help create Sullivans Cove Anniversary release

An unexpected discovery of four long-lost casks in a Hobart warehouse sires Sullivans Cove's oldest whisky ever produced.

By James Fordham, October 9 2019
Lost casks help create Sullivans Cove Anniversary release

Tasmanian distillery Sullivans Cove is set to release a special 25th Anniversary Whisky, thanks to the discovery of four long lost casks sitting in a Hobart warehouse.

The recipient of multiple best-in-class accolades from the World Whisky Awards, Sullivans Cove is using the lucky find to create the oldest Sullivans Cove whisky ever released, at 21 years of age.

A fortuitous drop

Between 1994 and 1999, the founders of Sullivans Cove produced a total of 162 casks of whisky. All of these casks were thought to have been bottled and sold years ago in one form or another.

Then, a call out of the blue from a warehouse in Hobart revealed that four casks of Sullivans Cove’s earliest single malt had been found. The casks had been sold to private owners in the very early years of the distillery, but now the distiller has bought the casks back.

Patrick Maguire, General Manager for Sullivans Cove, reveals "it was an incredible find, this handful of forgotten barrels of Sullivans Cove's earliest distillations. When I got the call to go and taste these barrels to see what the whisky was like, I couldn’t get there fast enough."

"Years of maturation had done wonders to this spirit. There wasn’t much left in some of them, but marrying them together has produced a beautiful drop of Tasmanian whisky history."

Yielding a total of only around 500 bottles at 49.6% abv, this incredibly rare whisky is presented in a crystal decanter by Glencairn, and the label design reflects the packaging of Sullivans Cove’s first release of Tasmanian single malt from the late 1990s.

Sullivans Cove 25th Anniversary Special Edition will be released later this month, but will only be available for sale to members of the Sullivans Cove mailing list and visitors to the distillery’s Cellar Door in Tasmania.


Name: Sullivans Cove 25th Anniversary Special Edition

Age: 21 years


ABV: 49.6%

Size: 770ml

Bottles: Approx. 500

Price: $1,800


James has been interested in aviation ever since his first flight. When he’s not travelling, he’s still on the road indulging his motoring hobby, or trying a new whisky.

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