Australian whisky, despite seeing growing popularity and awards in the larger global market, lacks deep penetration into the all important American drinker segment. Only a couple of brands have seen their way to the shores of the United States to date, but now they are being joined by Morris Australian Single Malt Whisky.
Morris Australian Single Malt Whisky, being imported by Hotaling & Co., is described as “a unique style of whisky that captures the provenance, climate and terroir of Australia.” Led by Head Distiller Darren Peck, Morris produces its whiskies out of Victoria using 100% locally sourced ingredients. It is then finished in fortified wine barrels, being influenced by a Mediterranean style climate that “allows the liquid to mature faster than whiskies aged in cooler climates, allowing for richer and more robust flavors to develop in a shorter time.”
“At Morris,” said Peck in a prepared statement, “we’ve created a unique whisky style that speaks to our home in Rutherglen. Made with Australian barley and pure, filtered water from the Snowy Mountains, Morris Whisky reflects not only the world-class fortified barrels but also its regional Victorian provenance.
“The Rutherglen region has a climate of hot summer days and cool nights, which is ideal conditions not only for producing world-class wines but also barrel ageing exquisite whisky.”
Two offerings from Morris are being imported initially, including:
- A brilliant sipper, the Australian Single Malt Signature Whisky presents a bright topaz hue and reveals aromas of orchard fruit profiles, macerated black cherry and biscuit, with notes of zesty marmalade jam, lingering cocoa and dark berry for a pleasantly well-rounded mouthfeel. Aged for a minimum of three years in ex-wine barrels with an ABV of 44%, the Signature expression delivers a rich finish that lingers on the palate.
- Designed as a whisky best enjoyed neat, the premium Australian Single Malt Muscat Barrel Whisky reveals aromas of dates, figs and dark molasses with a complex mix of dried fig, sweet malt, vanilla and spices on the palate. Also made with Australian malted barley and aged for three years in American and French oak barrels with an ABV of 48%, the Muscat Barrel expression presents a reddish copper hue, ending with a creamy lingering finish.
It is said production of “these two whiskies commenced in 2016 using the original copper pot and column still installed at the Morris winery in 1941, when it was used for producing base spirits for Morris fortified wines. Maturation has taken place on-site in the purpose-built barrel house using ex-wine barrels that have been hand-crafted at Morris’ private cooperage to a specific method.
“The liquid was aged in a combination of American and French oak, ex-Shiraz and Cabernet red wine barrels, that were carefully selected from family-owned wineries in the Barossa and Coonawarra regions.”
Morris Australian Single Malt Whisky is available at select retailers in California, Texas, Illinois, New York, Massachusetts, Georgia, Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Maryland with eventual availability in Arizona, Nevada, and Missouri in the coming months. The Australian Single Malt Signature Whisky has a suggested retail price of $59.99 for a 750 ml and the Australian Single Malt Muscat Barrel Whisky has a suggested retail price of $89.99 for a 750 ml.
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Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and...