By Deborah Jackson, editor National Liquor News

Following a successful first release, Lark Whisky Distillery has once again combined with cider makers Willie Smith’s to create a limited edition barrel aged cider.

The two iconic Tasmanian innovators have combined their talents to produce the unique winter warmer, with just 400 bottles of the 2014 vintage being produced.

Sam Reid, Willie Smith’s co-owner said the 2013 vintage was so well received it was decided to regularly release a vintage.

“The Vintage 2014 Lark Distillery Whisky barrel aged cider comes in at 9.9 per cent which is higher than the first batch, having spent up to 12 months in the barrels, which was longer that the inaugural offering.”

Reid said a decision was made to hold back on its release until autumn 2016, as a perfect way to welcome winter.

“We felt it was a better product to have going into winter to warm the cockles of your heart as the first chills of the season set in,” Reid said.

“It has also allowed the product to continue to soften in bottle in our controlled environment and so it’s perfect for drinking in the next six months.”

Reid said chief cider maker Dr Tim Jones was very strict on quality control this year, resulting in the production of only 400 bottles – making it extremely sought after by cider connoisseurs across the country.

Jones said: “Following maturation times ranging from six to 12 months, individual barrels were selected and blended to achieve a complex, balanced cider that express both soft apple cider characteristics and persistent whisky and oak notes. Soft carbonation and no filtration has resulted in a structured cider with textured mouthfeel and lingering warmth.”

Willie Smith's Whisky Aged Cider, this year features a copper label and can be found at leading independent retailers around Australia from April and retails for $60 per 750ml bottle.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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