Tuesday, 7 January 2014

2013 Trip to Tasmania - Day 1 - Lark Distillery

We left the car in the motel and walked to the city. It was a short stroll which took us from Battery Point to Salamanca, past several noisy pubs occupied by Hobart's finest, along the waterfront and, finally, to The Lark Distillery.

The place looked like a bar - the first thing that caught my attention was a collection of whisky bottles beyond the counter. Possibly there are bars with a richer choice of whisky (they say that in Scotland any bar has 20 sorts of whisky just on tap), but I still have to find one. However, there was no point in going all the way from Sydney to Hobart just to taste Glenfiddich, so I asked for local booze which should have been available for tasting as the joint was called a cellar door. Indeed it was available for a small fee that I found reasonable as some bottles reached the price of Johnny Walker's Blue Label. Where is a tasting there is a talk. The guy who lectured us on the subtleties of Tasmanian whisky was knowledgeable and obviously liked his own produce. When he started the tasting blurb by saying "This is what I call a breakfast whisky," I couldn't help exclaiming "I love Hobart!"

Good thing I wasn't driving - I would hate to spit their whiskies out. All of them were good but the cask-strength whisky (58% ABV) aged in port barrels was hands down outstanding. Before that tasting I knew the difference between old and new casks. Now I know the difference between old wine and old port casks - whisky matured in the latter had a brighter and richer taste. It possessed an almost dessert quality - vanilla flavour was followed by a smooth and sweet taste which would be a good match to some kind of Danish pastry.

I guess the price of that whisky was justified but at that time I was not prepared to invest a small fortune into a half-a-litre bottle so I limited myself to a 100 ml hip flask. Now I have to be on my best behaviour for the rest of the year as my next message starts like this:
Dear Santa,
You know that Lark Distillery in Hobart...