Hellyers Road is Australia's largest single malt distillery. Their Original expression comes without an age statement at 46.2% and is made entirely of Tasmanian malt. The wine bottle which contains this whisky comes complete with a screw top, and the back label describes "tenacity and vision," notably lacking any mention of the whisky's character.
Nose: Despite clear indications on the label, grain alcohol features prominently on the nose. Too much oak, grassy, a hint of smoke, something reminiscent of sea salt, a touch of black licorice. The nose is unrefined and lacks any significant depth.
Palate: The plum note and mint undertone is a nice but cheap cocoa packed with heat and uncomfortable spice are sure to trigger an involuntary grimace.
Finish: Dry, really hot, minerals and citrus. The finish doesn't write an invitation to another sip.
Overall: The original $100 price tag is preposterous. The bottle was discounted to $75 and we felt strongly disappointed at this price point. I expect many would be unimpressed at $45. My guess would be this whisky was pulled from the cask several years ahead of its time to generate revenue. There was some disagreement within our tasting panel, ranging from "undrinkable" to simply "overpriced and unremarkable." Yet another dimwitted example of the LCBO's consummate ineptitude - not only at curating its whisky catalogue, but also pricing it. If only I had the tenacity and vision to return the last three ounces to the LCBO for a refund...