When That Boutique-y Whisky Company announced they were releasing an Australia Series, we had to get in on the action! Two special, limited edition releases from Down Under!
A duo of small-batch Craft Australian Rums, shining a light on a vibrant Australian craft scene. From highly sought after distilleries, showcasing the character and variety available in this unique spirits category. Sounds pretty good right? Read on to find out more about the dynamic duo.
BLACK GATE DISTILLERY
The first of our two Australian Series releases comes from Black Gate Distillery. Founded by husband and wife team, Brian and Genise Hollingworth, Black Gate Distillery started with whisky, before expanding into rum production. Their Rum output now equates around a thousand litres per annum, a quarter of the distillery’s overall production.
Genise sources molasses from Queensland, and she runs a super long, two week fermentation using a speciality Rum yeast. The distillery uses direct fired pot-stills, which are somewhat rare in the Rum world, but are instrumental in producing Black Gate’s full flavoured rum.
It’s a double distillation, with the feints recycled during the spirit run. After all that love and attention, the Rum is matured in 100 litre Tawny casks, the Australian equivalent of Port Wine. Oh, and the word is that this batch was distilled on Genise and Brian’s 10th Wedding Anniversary, making this release even more of a celebration!
Our Black Gate label captures a beautiful, sunny day at the distillery, complete with Frankie the dachshund, who appears to be herding a group of trespassing Emus (with distillery equipment under their wings) off of the property. Feels like there might be a story to tell there eh?
WHAT BOUTIQUE-Y PETE TASTES;
Nose: Initially heavy notes of oily rubber, and smoke loom large. Leading to a big waft of molasses and sweet licorice. Gentle hints of caramel
Palate: Mouth Filling and warming, a simple delivery of baked oat cakes, a gentle oaky grip.
Finish: Delicate lingering peppery.
Our second Australia Series is for our friends down under, as an Australian Exclusive (oohh ahhh)
This bottling takes us to Riverbourne Distillery, a set up being run by Australia’s oldest distiller Martin Pye. Martin utilizes a wide range of yeast strains, and the fermentation includes the use of dunder - a nod to Jamaican style production which interested Martin. Once distilled, this Rum was matured in carefully managed, re-charred ex-wine casks which really gives the Rum a unique character.
Riverbourne Distillery uses small casks - 25 & 50 litres - opposed to the more commonplace 200 litre - that have previously held Red Wine from the Napa Valley, California. The casks are scraped, re-charred and re-coopered with virgin American oak ends offering a complex space for maturation.
We wonder if the team struggles a bit with the wombats at the distillery, but as our label shows, Martin is ready to play whack-a-mole with the light fingered marsupials.
WHAT BOUTIQUE-Y PETE TASTES;
Nose: A feast of fruits, ripe mango and papaya, vye with dates, and hints of liquorice and cloves. Lots of sweet caramel.
Palate: Sweet and oily over the palate, jammy, developing heavy fusel notes.
Finish: A bite of bitter coffee and a black pepper
Currently exclusive to the Australian market.
FINAL THOUGHTS FROM BOUTIQUE-Y PETE
We’re really happy with our first foray into the Australian Rum scene, and with such an amazing selection of craft distillers, it’s only a matter of time before we return. However, we’ve a mind to keep exploring, and so make sure to keep checking in with us.
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