Hobart Whisky Private Casks

When we started in 2014 our focus was on setting up our distillery and our own production. As such we opted not to offer private casks. 

5 years later we still regularly receive emails from customers asking about the availability of private casks. Recently, we’ve had a bit of time to reflect on what it would mean to our loyal customers and us.

We believe that we’re now in the perfect position to offer private casks to our customers.  We have worked to grow our reputation, and we know that we can provide a quality, consistent product.

Introducing Hobart Whisky Private Casks.

We’re giving you the opportunity to own your own 20L Hobart Whisky cask.

This is not a new concept, but I will go over how it will work for you and us in some detail.

You pay upfront for the cask, and 20 litres of our Hobart Whisky single malt spirit. We fill your cask and leave it to mature at our bond store in Hobart for a minimum of two years. The filling abv will be determined once we have the new make spirit and will be between 62% and 64%. All of our new make spirit is made from 100% Tasmanian malted barley and unpeated.

We will be available to provide samples on request so that you can check the progress of your cask, or by appointment you will be able to visit and grab a sample yourself.

While your cask is technically whisky in two years, it’s important to understand that it may take slightly longer. At a guess, we don’t suspect we would be bottling for two and a half years, however each cask is different and they will be assessed cask by cask to ensure quality.

Following maturation your cask will have had some losses (the angel’s share). We anticipate there to be 14-16L at around 60% abv. At this point we will have the conversation about bottling and abv.

If you’re looking to use our Hobart Whisky bottle and label there will be an additional fee of $10 p/bottle. This covers the bottle, label, outer packaging, and labour. We will be able to personalise the message on the whisky details strap for you. 

If we’re bottling for you we will provide you with 5x 10ml samples, from 46% through to natural cask strength, and discuss how you want to proceed. We will provide input on our preferred abv, but ultimately it’s your whisky and if you want your whisky cut to a specific abv, we can do that.

If we are bottling at a lower abv please take note that there may be some additional time for flocking. Flocking is a process where we let your whisky sit in a vessel for up to a couple of months to allow insoluble components to settle. There may also be some slight losses in volume which are separated here.

Whether bottled on site or provided to you in bulk, at this point we will calculate the government excise tax due (estimated to be around $800-$900), which will need to be settled prior to dispatch of the whisky. Bottles can be collected from our distillery or sent with a courier at your expense.

As one of the first Hobart Whisky private cask owners you will be eligible to the following exclusive benefits;

  • Your name will be etched into a plaque and displayed in our private tasting room.
  • A sample of the new make spirit that your cask is filled with.
  • You can organise a time to come and see your cask and pull a sample.
  • You will be invited to an exclusive event at our distillery to be held mid 2021.
  • A 5% discount on all Hobart Whisky purchased through our online store for the life of your cask.

We have three cask options available, all recoopered for us by our friends at Transwood Cooperage and are as follows:

  • 20L Ex-Tennessee Whiskey Cask (Jack Daniels Select).
  • 20L Ruby Port Cask (from North Portugal).
  • 20L Oloroso Sherry Cask (30 years old).

This is new territory for us and to ensure that it does not interfere with our ongoing pursuit to make great whisky we are limiting our private cask sales. This allows us to ensure the highest quality new make spirit, casks and cask filling conditions. 

Cost:

  • $2350 – 20L Ex-Tennessee Whiskey Cask (Jack Daniels Select).
  • $2400 – 20L Ruby Port Cask (from North Portugal).
  • $2450 – 20L Oloroso Sherry Cask (30 years old).
    (All prices include gst.)

Further Expenses (following maturation)

  • Excise (estimated to be $800-$900).
  • (optional) Bottling Fee ($10 p/bottle).
  • (optional) Freight on bottles and/or cask (TBD).

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FAQ.

Why is there a variance in your filling abv?
We base our filling abv decision on the new make spirit and each cask.  While there is minimal difference, our head distiller Ben James wants to ensure the optimum maturation conditions and sometimes this means filling at a slightly lower abv.

Do I have to wait two years?
Yes, your spirit is legally whisky after a minimum of two years. If you wish to bottle at that point you can, however whisky is not always ready at that time and may benefit from a slightly longer maturation.

How many 500ml bottles will I get?
It can vary, however we estimate around 30x 500ml bottles at natural cask strength, or 40x 500ml if we’re to cut to 46% abv.

Are there any additional costs?
Your initial payment covers the cask purchase, single malt spirit and storage at our bond store. This means there are additional costs which include bottling (optional), government excise tax and freight.

What is Excise and why do I need to pay it?
Excise is a commodity-based tax on alcohol that every alcohol manufacturer in Australia has to pay. Excise rates are expressed per litre of alcohol (LAL) for alcoholic beverages. The volume of alcohol subject to excise duty is calculated by multiplying the actual volume of product by its alcoholic strength. It’s current rate is $86.90 p/LAL however may increase by the time your cask has matured.

What happens to the cask after it’s been decanted?
Included in the purchase price is the cask. Once decanted you are welcome to take the cask with you, or we will exchange it for a bottle of our own Hobart Whisky.

Can I refill the cask with more Hobart Whisky single malt spirit?
This is a question that will raise a few different opinions. If you want to go down this route you will need to understand that while there is absolutely nothing wrong with refilling the cask, it’s important to note that the whisky that comes out of it can be different, and may take longer to mature. The way we see it, if you’re investing in whisky and 2+ years of maturation time, put some extra cash into a good cask to mature it in.

What are the risks?
We want to be completely up front and transparent to the risk.

In the very unlikely event that your cask is damaged/leaks, is lost, or has some other catastrophic failure, then we will provide you with mature whisky that you’re happy with from our bond store in exchange 1:1. We don’t see this being a consideration at all but want to provide some confidence in what we’re doing.

The other risk is that you simply do not like your whisky after maturation. We are working with Transwood Cooperage to provide the utmost highest quality casks, paired with our own new make spirit. We believe that this ensures the highest quality whisky following maturation, however this is the risk with owning a private cask. You can be certain though that we will work with you to make sure you’re happy with your whisky.

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Cost:

  • $2350 – 20L Ex-Tennessee Whiskey Cask (Jack Daniels Select).
  • $2400 – 20L Ruby Port Cask (from North Portugal).
  • $2450 – 20L Oloroso Sherry Cask (30 years old).
    (All prices include gst.)

Further Expenses (following maturation)

  • Excise (estimated to be $800-$900).
  • (optional) Bottling Fee ($10 p/bottle).
  • (optional) Freight on bottles and/or cask (TBD).

Please email enquiries to privatecask@hobartwhisky.com.au

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