Trapper’s Hut was the first independent bottler of Tasmanian whisky and was the initiative of Ron and Jo Carthew who started the venture in 2008. Initially, it was devoted to bottling single cask Sullivans Cove whisky distilled in 1999-2000 at Tasmania Distillery. The spirit was matured in 200L American Oak Bourbon barrels. Only one barrel is released at a time while the spirit in the remaining barrels continues to mature. The first barrel (HH348) was released in 2008. Barrels HH350, HH349, HH473 and HH067 were subsequently released and soon sold out. Then came Barrel HH070. The spirit in this barrel was distilled in November 1999 and was bottled in December 2013. Being 14 years in cask, it was then the oldest Trapper’s Hut ever released. In total there have been more than twenty Trapper’s Hut releases, with hopefully more to come.
The name Trapper’s Hut comes from the local Tasmanian settlers who would go into the bush and wilderness and live in huts as they foraged. Trapper’s Hut is an actual place on Bruny Island in southeast Tasmania.
Given the limited releases and the modest number of bottles filled from a single cask, this brand is very difficult to find. It was sold in 2014 to Raven Vax of the Bruny Island House of Whisky and they are continuing to release limited single cask expressions, but also working towards a way to continue the brand in the longer term. They had four single cask releases in the twelve-month period from November 2014. HH071 followed HH070 then HH360 and HH507, which is Tasmania’s oldest single cask release at 15 years and 6 months. These were the last known barrels of that age from Sullivans Cove.
Thereafter, Cask LD438 was released in December 2015, yielding only 200 bottles. LD438 was distilled at the Lark distillery, and matured as an 8 year old in an American Oak Cask. Like its predecessors it is now a collector’s item.