Bespoke gin? Yes, please!
The obvious progression when it comes to alcohol is to go from drinking it to making it. (Featured image: @brisbanedistillery)
Thankfully, there’s a place here in Brisbane where you can do exactly that without needing to fork out for a warehouse and all the special equipment needed to produce quality liquor. At least, that is if gin is what you’re drinking.
At the Brisbane Distillery Company in the West End, class is in session and we are pretty sure that this is one you’re not going to be falling asleep in. If you do, though, you will be going home empty-handed because in this class you take home what you make. It’s like home-ec but with quality ingredients.
Inside the 260sqm grain-to-glass distillery and bar, you will find a dedicated classroom decorated with botanicals and set up with a number of miniature copper stills where you and your buddies will be distilling your own gin. But before you can do that, you’re going to need to sit up and listen first because there is an art to choosing the right botanicals for you and a science to measuring them all out just right.
It helps then that the crew at Brisbane Distillery will guide you through every step in the two-hour session. From eyeing all the botanicals and choosing your favs – depending on the season, you could be pouring over 130-plus varieties — to measuring, balancing, and then distilling your signature creation, a master gin distiller will be by your side. The penultimate step in the process is the taste test. Then when you’re happy with your unique gin, you get to pour yourself a bottle with a personalised label to take home.
Brisbane Distillery Company uses ingredients sourced from Queensland, and the pure-grain spirit you will be using will have been produced in-house over two weeks. They say there are other ways to make this base spirit, notably quicker, but at Brisbane Distillery they say this is the right way. If you’ve ever sat down at their 26-metre long bar — whether to taste test their range or sip on any one of their 40-plus cocktails — you know that you’re not gonna be that smart-arse kid in class that tries to correct the teacher.
Currently, classes are scheduled for Wednesdays and Sundays with two sessions each day. To book in your gin-making sessions, click here.
Brisbane Distillery also produces their own vodka and rhum — French Caribbean style made from sugar-cane juice, not molasses like most rums.
If you have a favourite rare fruit, spice or herb, you’re free to take it along to your session and create a very special flavoured gin.