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Australian whisky auctions are rapidly gaining popularity among whisky enthusiasts, collectors and investors. These specialist whisky auction houses are a relatively new phenomenon, having emerged in the past decade. They offer a unique opportunity to acquire valuable, hard-to-get bottles of Australian whisky rarely available through traditional retail channels.

With the exponential growth of the Australian whisky industry and increasing interest in these home-grown, high-quality spirits, whisky auctions have become a popular way to acquire rare and sought-after bottles that now tend to be snapped up as soon as they are released.

This comprehensive guide covers all aspects of Australian whisky auctions, including selling whisky privately, the leading Australian distilleries, how whisky auctions work, whisky valuation and investment, and the best whisky brands and distilleries in Australia. The guide also addresses common questions such as how to sell your whisky, how to value your whisky, and whether buying a cask of whisky is a good investment.

Whether you are a collector, investor, or simply an whisky enthusiast, this guide provides an authoritative and professional understanding of Australian whisky auctions and the whisky industry in Australia.

Australian whisky auctions are ideal to find Sullivans Cove and Lark whiskies
Award-Winning and Cult-Level Australian Whisky, a prime choice in our Whisky Auction Australia-wide.

Selling Whisky Privately

Selling your collectible whisky privately can be a great way to get a good price. Here are four tips to help you sell your whisky privately:

  1. Find the right market: Identify your target market and find the right platform to sell your whisky. There are various online platforms like auction websites, specialist whisky sites, and social media groups where you can list your bottles for sale.
  2. Do your research: Before selling your whisky, research the market to determine the current value of your bottles. This will help you set a fair price and attract potential buyers. Wickman’s maintains a comprehensive guide on how to value whisky.
  3. Presentation: Ensure that your bottles are in good condition and well-presented. This means providing accurate and detailed descriptions of the bottle, its contents, age and any defects. If you have the original packaging, be sure to keep it with the bottle — this can make a big difference to a collector.
  4. Be patient: Selling collectible whisky can take time. Wait for the right buyer.

In addition to selling your whisky privately, you can also sell it online through various platforms. Here are three selling tips to help you sell your whisky online:

  1. Choose the right platform: There are various online platforms where you can sell your whisky. These include auction websites, specialist whisky sites and social media groups. Choose the platform best suited to your needs and target market. Wickman's is recognized among the top Whisky Auctions Australia wide, attracting enthusiasts from all corners of the nation.
  2. Provide accurate Information: When listing your bottles for sale, provide accurate and detailed information about the bottle, its contents, age and any defects.
  3. Packaging: Make sure your bottles are well-packaged and protected during shipping. This helps prevent damage during transit and maintains the value of the bottles.

Finally, many people wonder whether they can sell their whisky on Gumtree and eBay. While it is possible to sell whisky on these platforms, it is important to check the rules before listing. For example, eBay has strict rules about the sale of alcohol, so it is important to comply before listing.

To get a valuation of your whisky, fill in our valuation form online

Australian Whisky Distilleries

Australia's whisky industry has grown significantly over the past few decades, with numerous distilleries popping up across the country. Here is an overview of five leading Australian whisky distilleries:

  1. Lark Distillery: Founded in Tasmania in 1992, Lark Distillery is credited with kickstarting the Australian whisky revival.
  2. Sullivans Cove: Located in Hobart, Tasmania, Sullivans Cove gained worldwide recognition in 2014 when its French Oak Cask was named the world's best single malt whisky at the World Whiskies Awards. Learn more about the value of Sullivans Cove whisky at auction.
  3. Starward Distillery: Based in Melbourne, Starward produces award-winning single malt whiskies aged in Australian wine barrels.
  4. Hellyers Road Distillery: Located in Burnie, Tasmania, Hellyers Road is known for producing smooth, easy-to-drink whiskies.
  5. Limeburners Distillery: Based in Albany, Western Australia, Limeburners takes a unique and experimental approach to making whisky.

As of 2023, there are more than 150 whisky distilleries in Australia, with new ones popping up every year. The country's diverse climate and geography provide ideal conditions for producing a range of styles, making Australia a hotspot for whisky enthusiasts and collectors alike.

Specialist Australian Whisky Auctions

Whisky auctions are a great way to buy and sell rare and collectible whiskies. The auctions provide a platform for whisky enthusiasts to find unique and valuable bottles that may not be available in retail stores.

In general, whisky auctions work by sellers consigning their bottles to an auction house, which then offers them to the highest bidder. The auction house charges a commission fee, which can vary, depending on the bottle’s value.

One advantage of online whisky auctions is that they allow buyers and sellers from all over the world to participate, increasing the potential audience and therefore the value of the bottle. Online whisky auctions also tend to have lower commission rates than traditional brick-and-mortar auction houses.

Several Australian whisky auctioneers provide these services, including some located in Adelaide, Sydney and Perth. These auction houses provide a reliable, transparent way to buy and sell rare and valuable whiskies.

When it comes to selling your whisky at auction, choosing the right auctioneer makes all the difference. It is important to do your research and read online reviews from other whisky sellers. Look for an auction house with a track record of success and positive feedback from clients and which is experienced in handling rare and collectible whisky, and has a strong reputation in the industry. Look for an auction house with a good track record of achieving high prices for similar bottles, and which offers a transparent and fair commission structure.

You may also want to consider the house’s online presence and marketing reach, which can greatly affect the exposure your bottles will receive. Do not be afraid to ask for references or to speak to other sellers who have worked with this auctioneer. Ultimately, the right auctioneer can help you get the best possible price for your collection. Get a valuation of your whisky.

Whisky Valuation and Investment

Valuing your whisky can be challenging, but it is crucial to make sure you get a fair selling price. There are various factors to consider when valuing whisky, including age, rarity, and condition. Some leading Australian whiskies worth collecting include Sullivans Cove French Oak, Lark, Limeburners and Starward.

If you are looking to sell your whisky, you may wonder whether it will increase in value over time. While some bottles of whisky do appreciate, it is not a guarantee. The whisky market can be volatile and is subject to supply and demand. But investing in the right bottle can be lucrative.

Selling an expensive bottle of whisky can be intimidating, but there are ways to maximise its value. One option is to sell through a reputable auction house or online auction platform. Another option is to find a private buyer willing to pay a premium price.

In the realm of whisky connoisseurship, the prevailing perspective emphasises the enjoyment and appreciation of this fine spirit as its primary purpose, rather than as an investment. Nevertheless, certain bottles have a propensity for increasing in value. Such bottles include limited editions from reputable distilleries, vintage bottlings, and scarce expressions originating from now-defunct distilleries.

While the prospect of investing in an cask of whisky presents a unique opportunity, it requires a considerable initial investment and an extended period of patience as the whisky matures. It is therefore advisable to approach whisky primarily as a beverage to be savoured, while acknowledging the potential for occasional financial gains.

That being said, the average return on whisky investment varies, depending on several factors, including the age and rarity, the initial purchase price, and the selling price. In general, the longer you hold on to the bottle, the more potential for appreciation.

For those who want to take their whisky investment to the next level, buying a cask can be an attractive option. However, it is important to research first to understand the risks before making a substantial investment. In general, buying a cask can be a good investment if you are willing to hold on to it for a significant time, typically at least 10 years.

Over time, the value can increase significantly, especially if the whisky is from a highly sought-after distillery or has won awards. But there are risks, such as fluctuations in demand or changes in the market. As with any investment, it is important to consider your options carefully and seek professional advice before deciding.

In terms of average return on whisky investment, it is difficult to provide a precise figure, because it can vary greatly depending on several factors such as age, rarity and quality of the whisky, as well as market trends and demand. Some experts suggest that the average annual return on whisky investment can range from 10-20 per cent. That said, it is important to bear in mind that investing in whisky should be seen as a long-term venture, and short-term fluctuations should not deter you from staying in for the long haul.

Notable Australian Whisky Brands and Distilleries

Australia is home to some excellent whisky brands and distilleries that produce high-quality whiskies. Here are some notable brands and distilleries:

  • Australia’s best whisky: This is a matter of personal preference, but many enthusiasts consider Sullivans Cove Whisky to be the best. This Tasmanian distillery has won numerous awards for its single malt whisky.
  • The largest whisky distillery in Australia is the Hellyers Road Distillery in Tasmania, which produces a range of single malts.
  • According to Wikipedia's entry on Australian whisky, the oldest known, legal Australian whisky was produced by Sorell Distillery in Hobart, which opened in 1822. But by 1838 all 15 distilleries in Tasmania had been closed down , and Australia’s whisky production then ceased for well over 100 years. Today, Australia’s oldest active distillery is Lark Distillery, established in Hobart, Tasmania, in 1992.
  • Tasmania is often considered Australia’s whisky capital, with more than 20 distilleries operating on the island.
  • Sullivans Cove French Oak is a highly regarded Tasmanian whisky brand that has won numerous awards These include the World Whiskies Awards "World's Best Single Malt Whisky" in 2014.
  • Lark Symphony Nº1 is another Tasmanian whisky to win several awards, including the World Whiskies Awards "World's Best Other Single Malt" in 2020.
  • Starward Small Batch Whisky is a unique Australian whisky that has gained popularity for its innovative and experimental releases. The Small Batch Experimental Series offers limited edition releases, each showcasing a distinct flavour profile and unique maturation process. These one-off releases are highly sought-after by collectors and whisky enthusiasts.


Australian whisky auctions have gained popularity in recent years, offering a platform for enthusiasts to buy and sell rare and collectible bottles. It is important to know the value of your whisky, and online auctions have made this easier.

Australia's whisky industry has grown significantly in recent years, with several successful distilleries producing exceptional whiskies. Sullivans Cove French Oak, Lark Symphony Nº1, and Starward’s Small Batch Experimental Series are just a few of the many examples of quality Australian products.

Overall, the industry looks to have a promising future. With the continued growth and popularity of whisky auctions, enthusiasts can expect even more exciting developments in the years to come.

Author: Mark Wickman
wineauction@wickman.net.auction@wickman.net.au  Linked-In Profile

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