Australia’s craft distilling industry is growing at a phenomenal rate.
With the resurgence for spirits in full swing, craft distilleries are popping up throughout Sydney. Zoom in on the Inner City and Inner West, and you will find some of the best distilleries in the country.
The experience of a distillery is an immersive blend of all the senses. It is no longer just about the taste, but the ability to meet the makers, understand the philosophy and see the process unfold.
There is much pride that goes into the craft and we are chuffed that many of these award-winning distilleries are popping up in our very own backyard. Enjoy this tour of distilleries dotted right throughout the Inner City and Inner West:
When it comes to award-winning, these guys have nailed it having been twice named the world’s leading gin producer. HQ is in the Yarra Valley however Surry Hills got lucky in 2020 with the opening of the experimental Four Pillars Laboratory. This unique concept comprises a boutique distillery, bar and retail space, all celebrating one thing…Gin! The lab is home to Eileen, a 70-litre copper still producing small batches of gin. Sample the pour at the discretely located Eileen’s Bar (look for the hidden door). If you want to go deeper into the philosophy, try your hand at one of the masterclasses or take home a block of organic gin chocolate. Our personal Four Pillars fave is the Bloody Shiraz Gin with a squeeze of lime and dash of tonic.
410 Crown St, Surry Hills
Archie Rose Distilling Co. was the first independent distillery and bar to open in Sydney since 1853! Producing Gin, Vodka, Rum and White Whiskey, Archie Rose is housed in an impressive space at The Cannery, Rosebery. With the scent of Australian herbs, spices and fruits infusing the air, all the goodness is made right here onsite.
If you are a distiller in the making book a tour or opt for one of the blending classes. Or, if you would rather taste the makers craft, pull up a stool at the industrial copper bar and tuck into a tasting flight. It may have taken 160 years, but Archie Rose is here to stay.
84 Dunning Ave, Rosebery
With a mission to make Rum the hero of all the spirits, Brix Distillery is rewriting history in Sydney. Once used as currency, Rum has had a dark and sordid past. Fast forward to the present and it is now a diverse spirit with a bright future. The modern industrial space located on Bourke Street features a working distillery, shop, bar and barreling room. With a dining menu to match, you can sip on the Brix White, Gold or Spiced rum. If global is your vibe, select from the Rum wall featuring 150 international varieties. The Brix experience is a memorable one, to say the least, book yourself into Rum school or go one step further and buy your own barrel.
Brewing and distilling naturally go hand in hand so, when the team at Young Henry’s had perfected their craft beer, they decided to turn to spirits. With a fast-growing Gin industry in Australia, it was a natural next step to combine core ingredients of Aussie botanicals and hops. Affectionately known as the ‘Brewers Gin’, the award-winning Noble Cut celebrates flavours such as juniper, coriander and tomato bush. It is a true celebration of Australian produce and some very clever minds. You can literally taste the passion in every pour at this buzzing Newtown distillery.
76 Wilford St, Newtown
Roll up the garage door in this quiet street in Marrickville and you will be surprised and delighted to find Poor Toms Gin Hall. This distillery’s name draws on Shakespeare's King Lear however that’s where history comes to a halt as these guys are paving the way for the future. The Gin Hall is open Thursday-Sunday serving up classy seasonal cocktails such as the ‘Gnarly Chaplin’ and ‘Chica Cherry Cola’. Patrons are invited to BYOP (bring your own pooch) to this cool urban warehouse which is reinterpreting tradition and serving up some seriously smooth gin.
6 Chalder Ave, Marrickville
When in your wildest dreams did you ever imagine a gin to be likened to apple pie? Enter small-batch distillery Mobius who are turning the industry on its head. These guys are gurus! The philosophy behind Mobius rests on the morale that “good spirits are made to be shared”. This mission rings true in the aptly named “The Company You Keep” Gin which is designed to be consumed with the ones you love. And so, with warming the cockles of your heart in mind, we circle back to the Apple Pie Liqueur which has notes of flaky pastry, warm granny smith apples and a dash of cinnamon. Now that is love. Located in the craft hub of Marrickville, Mobius is smooth and full of soul. There are hints of a bar opening soon but for now it’s best to check the website for local stockists.
110 Renwick St, Marrickville
Photo credit: Archie Rose