Become a gin distiller for the day and try your hand at creating your own custom gin. Work with one of our distillers to make a gin of your own creation using your choice of botanicals, including some you can pick from our very own botanical garden!
Workshops are held 11:00AM to 3:00PM by appointment.
- Introduction by expert distiller.
- Guided tour of the distillery.
- Learn about the history of gin, and modern Australian gins.
- Savour and sip the South Coast range from contemporary and navy strength to Illawarra plum and the Oolong infused Old Tom, with expert guidance to identify the key flavourings (botanicals) and your preferences.
- Next we go out into the botanical garden, learning about edible natives and their use in spirits.
- An experienced distiller will discuss your preferred recipe, before you select your choice of botanicals and amounts – picking some from the botanical garden if desired.
- A special lunch follows with delicious local seasonal food that is flavour matched for G+Ts.
- Watch your recipe come to life before your eyes as the botanicals bubble and mix in the glass stills.
- Finally, depart with 500mL of your own distilled gin, labelled with your recipe.
South Coast Distillery was established in 2017 by Luke Harding and Oskar Schwab, but its story really began in 2011. While housemates in Wollongong, Harding and Schwab discovered a mutual appreciation for gin, leading to a tradition of “Martini Thursdays.” Each week, the duo explored all varieties of the spirit, hoping to discover the perfect gin for the ultimate martini. They came close but knew that they could do better. Seeking inspiration, the mates met with distillers far and wide to learn about the craft and focused on perfecting their own recipes. By 2018, they were primed to produce their first commercial release, Sublime Gin. The globally-recognised product was named 2019 Champion Australian Small Batch Spirit at the prestigious Australian Distilled Spirits Awards and received the Silver Medal at the influential San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Recently, the prestigious 2020 Silver Award Contemporary Style Gin at the London World Gin Awards selecting the very best in all internationally recognised styles of gin.
Today, South Coast Distillery’s growing line is available in fine bottle shops and restaurants throughout the Illawarra region. The distillery also opens their cellar door every Friday evening, where guests can sample spirits and preview upcoming releases.
With a focus on responsibility and sustainability, South Coast Distillery supports its local farmers by sourcing ingredients from Illawarra-based producers whenever possible.