When Patrick Maguire, a former pathology lab worker, took the reins of Sullivans Cove in 2003, he had a lot to do. The distillery had experienced a rocky initial period since its founding in Hobart’s old gasworks in 1994. He redesigned the distillery’s branding, updated its production methods and moved the operation to its current home in Cambridge, 15 minutes from central Hobart.

But mainly, he was thinking about long-term aging, small batches and high quality. And it worked. In 2014, Maguire’s years of patience and hard graft were rewarded when Sullivans Cove French Oak (HH0525) was named the world’s best single malt at the World Whiskies Awards. It’s difficult to overstate the impact of that win. It catapulted Sullivans Cove, and Tasmanian whisky generally, onto the world stage.

These days, every bottling of Sullivans Cove whisky (released under the guidance of distillery manager Heather Tillott) is snapped up within minutes. The best place to get better acquainted with the Sullivans Cove story – and maybe even nab a bottle – is at the brand’s Cambridge distillery and rustic cellar door, open seven days a week for tours and tastings.

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Updated: September 15th, 2023

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