Last month master distiller, Mark Littler, attended Europe’s largest whisky event, Whisky Live-Paris which each year welcomes thousands of whisky devotees from across Europe. This was the fourth occasion since 2008 that Hellyers Road has been represented.
Whisky Live – Paris is managed by La Maison du Whisky, Hellyers Road’s distribution agents in Europe where the brand can now be found in over 25 countries. Much of the distillery’s double digit growth in Europe can be attributed to its presence at Whisky Live where the ‘New World’ Whisky Category stimulates a great deal of interest amongst patrons, especially a younger demographic. Joining Mark in Europe again were company chairman, Neville Latimer and fellow board members, Lesley French and Basil Shepherd.
“I get wonderful support from our board members who pay their own way to Europe each year on what they consider to be a ‘working holiday’. We get the chance to talk extensively with patrons during the course of the three day event. As much as the French love our whiskies, they also love the story behind our brand and the fact we come from a small island state in Australia. The event provides a platform to not only showcase our whiskies to thousands of people but to also promote Tasmania, its natural beauty and wonderfully pure environment. French culture is essentially built around a sense of provenance so our story really resonates,” Mark said.
Apart from attending Whisky Live, Mark and his intrepid board members undertook several distillery tours in Scotland before tackling a gruelling cross continent trip to visit distribution agents in Germany, the Czech Republic and Sweden. He also conducted several Whisky Master-Class sessions as well as promoting the HRD brand at Stockholm’s Whisky and Beer Festival.
“It was a very busy three weeks but it is important for Hellyers Road Distillery, and for the Tasmanian Whisky Industry, to continue the expansion of its international footprint, further build brand awareness and capitalise on the significant sales growth we are experiencing globally. It was also a great opportunity to tell people about our beautiful island state,” he concluded.