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Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels | Image: Starward Whsiky

Starward’s New Limited Edition Whisky Was Finished in Ex-Lagavulin Peated Barrels


Melbourne’s own Starward was already a distillery after our own hearts, but the team has dialled things up a notch with its latest limited edition release. It goes by the name of Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels and says everything you need to know right there on the label. That is, the distillery took its signature red wine barrel matured whisky and finished it in former Lagavulin casks to create something lightly smoky and boldly unique. Yes, please.

The Starward Whisky team at Lagavulin Distillery in Islay | Image: Starward
The Starward Whisky team at Lagavulin Distillery in Islay | Image: Starward

One of our favourite names in Scotch whisky, Lagavulin hails from the rugged island of Islay. Like more or less every distillery in the region, the label burns local peat moss to dry out the malted barley during production, leading to a smoky spirit with notable accents of sweetness and iodine. Its 16-year-old single malt is the stuff of legend, but there’s really nothing it throws down that adventurous drinkers wouldn’t gladly pick up. And while the taste of a campfire isn’t to everyone’s liking, those who do like it, really like it.

Starward spent years crafting this new release, which celebrates the distinct flavour profiles one can achieve by experimenting with different types of barrel maturation. It was first aged in the signature red wine barrels before spending an additional 18 months in ex-Lagavulin peated Scotch whisky casks. The resulting single malt injects abundant tropical notes with an edge of salty iodine and sweet smoke for a one-of-a-kind tasting experience.

Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels | Image: Starward Whisky
Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels | Image: Starward Whisky

Starward founder David Vitale said of the release, “My earliest inspiration for Starward was to create a deliciously distinctive whisky, and while we certainly hit that brief with our red wine barrel matured whisky, what whisky better epitomises distinctively delicious than Lagavulin? Sourcing these barrels to create this exciting expression gives us a magical moment to celebrate the very best of Australian curiosity and Scottish tradition.”

Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels is a true limited-edition release and an inspired one at that. The distillery is preceding its official launch with a series of exclusive masterclass tasting events throughout Australia, during which you can score a taste. Click here (and scroll to the bottom) to see a list of participating venues and to purchase tickets while they last.

Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels | Image: Starward Whisky
Starward Single Malt Australian Whisky Finished in ex-Lagavulin Barrels | Image: Starward Whisky

As for those of us who want a bottle for ourselves, Starward is offering this unique whisky by way of a ballot system. The ballot is open to Australian residents only and entrants must be at least 18 years of age. Each bottle costs AUD$199 and comes presented in a bespoke gift box because this is nothing if not a special spirit. Now if you don’t mind, we’re off to submit our name for contention. Fingers crossed!

The Starward Whisky team at Lagavulin Distillery in Islay | Image: Starward
The Starward Whisky team at Lagavulin Distillery in Islay | Image: Starward

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