LARK releases Fresh IPA Cask with Garage Project
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LARK Distilling Co. and Garage Project Brewery joins forces for WORLDS COLLIDE campaign, this summer’s freshest collab.
LARK Distillery has released a new limited-edition single malt whisky in collaboration with cult Wellington-NZ brewers Garage Project. The new release, dubbed ‘Fresh IPA Cask’, paired with a four pack of GP’s Fresh IPA Blend, is a lighter, more tropical whisky matured in a Fresh IPA cask, resulting in a summer flavour bomb perfect for picnics, patios and porches. Award-winning local Tasmanian artist Joel Crosswell was commissioned to create a unique work of art to adorn the labels, resulting in 4 highly collectible bottles.
For the first time in LARK’s 30-year history, they experimented with an IPA finished whisky, something LARK Master Blender Chris Thomson has dreamt of for over a decade. With an archive of Garage Project’s monthly one-off Fresh IPA’s, the LARK blending team tested over 100 different iterations, before landing on the four best brews to season the casks, to create this never to be repeated single malt. Tropical sunshine leaps from the glass, with notes of frangipani, lime ice cream and buttery toast. The elevated 46% ABV is deliciously integrated on the palate, with layers of ginger and citrus rounded out by juicy melon and banana bread.
LARK has been at the forefront of innovation since Bill Lark reinvigorated distilling in Australia in 1992, crafting whiskies for all occasions that challenge stale stereotypes and bring whisky out of the dark ages and into the light. You can’t make whisky without first making a beer, and the two have always been intrinsically connected. LARK have taken things a step further, and the collaboration with Garage Project and Crosswell weaves art, craft and science together like never before.
Only 1200 bottles have been produced, available exclusively online at larkdistillery.com, and at LARK’s Whisky Bar, The Still. Retailing at $270, the Hero Boilermaker pack nets you a bottle of ‘Fresh IPA Cask’ Tasmanian Single Malt and a 4 pack of Garage Project’s Fresh IPA, brewed exclusively for this release. The Collectors Pack retails for $950 and secures you the 4 bottles of ‘Fresh IPA Cask’, a 4 pack of Garage Project’s Fresh IPA, and is the only way to ensure the full set of Crosswell’s label artwork.
For those curious to taste the dram, a limited number of bottles will be poured at LARK’s Hobart venues, The Still, and Pontville Distillery, as well as newly crowned #60 best bar in the world (World’s 50 Best) Caretaker’s Cottage, Melbourne, the exclusive launch venue, for a takeover from Tuesday 28th February to Saturday 4th March
Garage Project are as well-known for the artwork that adorns their cans as much as the award-winning beer inside, and renown Hobart artist Joel Crosswell was tasked with creating the artwork for the Fresh IPA Cask release. Known for his darker work exploring spirituality and the human experience, Crosswell opts for a brighter approach, with Kaleidoscopic artwork throwing pineapples, kiwis and topless beer breaks on the hood of a Camaro, together in a menagerie of cross-continental Antipodean summer. The impressive original Crosswell piece of art was translated from a master collage, into 4 unique collectable labels. The artwork can be viewed at The Still Hobart from February 2023.
Long admirers of each other’s work across the pond, Chris Tomson, Master Blender at LARK and Garage Project founder and head brewer Pete Gillespie came together as much through their mutual respect for product as well as the process.
Says Thomson “I’m a huge fan of Garage Project’s beer and there are a lot of similarities between the two companies. Garage Project’s commitment to sustainability is something we champion here at LARK, and their passion for creativity in all their releases is always pushing the boundaries with the drinker in mind. ‘When World’s Collide’ is a totally unique whisky, best enjoyed at a barbie with friends on a hot summer’s day with a cold Garage Project Fresh IPA.’
Thomson’s thoughts are mirrored by Gillespie. ‘We’ve been aware of LARK for ages, they are such an iconic brand who always seem to be pushing the creative envelope. There is a philosophical alignment between both brands; we’re both merchants in fermented grain at the end of the day, but what we end up with is quite different. There is a lot of collaboration within the brewing industry but not so much outside of it. It’s great to have that fresh energy injected by LARK and that really shines through the whisky that Chris has made.’