Heartwood is the creation of whisky connoisseur extraordinaire, Tim Duckett. He has been buying barrels of whisky from the various Tasmanian distillers for a considerable number of years and then bottling them, after careful tasting and nosing, to produce some wonderful expressions with highly imaginative names and lovely labels to match.
Duckett is, in effect, the leading independent bottler of Tasmanian whiskies and, as such, deserves a very special place in the Tasmanian whisky story, not least because he has brought to the table an element of excitement and expectation, which might never have existed without him. His knowledge is more than matched by his enthusiasm, which gets wrapped up in a certain poetic flare as in the names of his whiskies and his highly imaginative descriptions of them.
Who else other than Duckett would draw on Jurassic Park to describe his whiskies! Thus, the long necked and long-tailed brontosaurus beautifully depicts a whisky that starts off a bit thin but then quickly broadens out to a thick body and then gradually tails off to a rather long finish.
Tim’s creativity does not end there because he also marries or blends different casks of whisky to produce something that is peculiar to his particular vision of what makes a good drop. There is a tradition of this in Scotland and the result used to be called a “vatted malt” but is now referred to as “blended malt”. Whilst there is always the suspicion that this process might be used to absorb a poor whisky by masking it through blending it with something better, in the Heartwood case the end results speak for themselves.
To give full credit to, and due recognition of Tim Duckett’s efforts, we can do no better than provide here a modest inventory of some past examples of the Heartwood product range, none of which is, as far as we know, available on the open market.