Tuesday 3 August 2021

Morris Whisky [Tasted #529]

Morris Whisky entered the Australian Whisky foray last month and although the Morris brand is relatively new in the whisky sphere, the Morris brand itself has been known for over 160 years with its winery business - also known as the Morris of Rutherglen. 

The fortified wine brand was purchased by John Casella and his family in 2016 through which John introduced Morris Whisky, a category that has now breathed new life into the Morris brand. 

The idea of introducing a whisky range culminated from the idea of combining both, whisky distillation as well as in using wine barrels that come from their primary business. Whilst the concept of ageing in wine barrels is not new, the proposition is certainly is for the Morris brand.

John Capella also wanted to bring to market, an Australian whisky range that can be accessed by most Australians. He wanted to make sure that prices remain relatively low and at A$89.99 for its 700ml signature single malt, Morris is out there with more mainstream Scotch whiskies or Starward, a local brand that is often to known to have its pricing lower than their Australian peers. 

Regardless, the pricing point will likely be a win for consumers across Australia and the strategy will no doubt help Morris quickly launch into the mainstream Australian whisky market.

Situated in North East Victoria, in the small town of Rutherglen, Morris of Rutherglen - the actual winery was established in 1859 on a site that is now shared with the new Morris Whisky Distillery. 

Prior to the birth of Morris Whisky, Morris of Rutherglen had been primarily known for their wines and in particular, their fortified wines. In fact, the North-Eastern Victoria region is widely known as the capital of fortified wines. The region's temperate climate provide the perfect condition for ageing wines and now, for whisky distillation and ageing.

At the heart of the distillery are the original 1930s copper pot and column stills. These stills were re-conditioned and are now used to produce Morris whisky.

Morris Whisky is primarily derived from Australian malted barley which is the matured in Barossa and Coonawarra wine barrels which are coopered by the Casella family on-site. The whisky is finished in Morris' fortified wine barrels to give it its unique signature.

Morris Rutherglen Signature Single Malt (40%, Victoria, Australia, A$89.99) 

Nose: light-bodied, caramelised brown sugar, citrus and summer fruits and some fresh apple pie. There is an aroma of grain mixed with peppermint and banana muffin

Palate: Soft, light, easy on the palate. There's fudge with drizzle of honey followed by dry, peppermint and some white pepper

Finish: There's a soft spice with some peppermint that remains but fizzle out over time

Rating: 91/100 (very much an everyday, shareable whisky that can be enjoyed on its own or paired)


Thanks to Liquid Ideas for providing us with a sample bottle.

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