It’s always a memorable day when a new craft spirit is released, but when four special releases made from some of the best Australian spirits debut, then its a special day indeed.
Last week I was a special guest of the team of The Aussie Tipple Company at their VIP launch party in Sydney along with the distillers, bar + spirits media and some of Australia’s bar scene who’s who. The launch was more of a party and within no time eclectic strangers were mingling and bonding over great cocktails, along with some very heartfelt words of thanks and acknowledgement for everyone who made the debut possible, how perfect is that?
Staged in the Sydney offices of leading creative agency Bold Inc. Brand Innovation it was a true celebration of the passion, talent and hard work behind the range.
Whilst pre-mixed cocktails are nothing new what is special about this range are its ingredients and care with the recipes and packaging. Coming in handsome and beautifully packaged bottles of 100ml and 1000ml, the range was developed as a result of a crowd funding campaign in the past couple of months that hit its target in what seemed like 5 minutes flat.
My own funding contribution saw my reward of four x 1 litre bottles (one of each) turn up within a day of release, so my guests will be enjoying those in the near future! I feel very happy knowing I’ve a litre of great Martini stashed away for emergencies. 😉
The team would see the opportunity in the market for a range of caterers, bars and home drinkers who want to offer premium cocktails efficiently, consistently and with style. Upmarket restaurants could take advantage of the range to offer their guests a great cocktail without the need for special training or equipment.
As someone suggested to me on the night, a craft beer joint stocking the range could suddenly see girlfriends of beer fans coming along now as they could get a great Espresso Martini.
They even took care of the labelling to ensure it can survive being wet during service without rubbing off and there are detailed descriptions on the ingredients and service instructions, so you can’t go wrong. In addition, each of the labels is over 30% alcohol which means they’ll keep sealed pretty much forever, and 7 days once opened.
The Aussie Tipple Range uses all Australian ingredients and it was great spending time with Genise and Brian Hollingworth from Black Gate Distillery, Ian Glen from Stone Pine Distillery and Peter Bignell from Tasmania, his distillery, Belgrove, is perhaps the most sustainable in the world.
It was fun chatting before and during the event about all things craft spirits, and most importantly seeing them getting the star billing they deserved on the night for their talent, passion and commitment for their craft.
Also involved are leading Australian vermouth makers, Regal Rogue which features in the range.
- The White Rye Espresso Martini
- Based around Belgrove’s White Devil Rye (which comes in at 66.6% ABV for extra oomph) and their Black Rye Coffee Liqueur, this recipe was a real hit on the night offering a complex and richer cocktail than your usual Espresso Martini and none of the sweetness.
- The Negroni
- Using the Stone Pine Gin and Regal Rogue vermouth this is a bright and suitably bitter aperitif that gives the one’s in Rome a run for their money. It was just the ticket on a hot and sultry Sydney night. The Negroni is a great starter with its mix of bitter, sweet and a gin kicker in the middle. It always gets you where you need to go to start out for a great night. I like mine over ice with a slice of orange.
- The Dry Martini
- Naturally I made a beeline for one of these. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Ian and his gin before and really appreciate is use of native botanicals’s like Finger Lime and Native Myrtle, so it doesn’t need a lot of dry vermouth – and the recipe really nails it here. You get a really lovely balanced Dry Martini with the distinctive botanicals coming through. I would think about using a thin lemon twist or fresh thyme as a garnish for this one.
- The Rum Old Fashioned
- The preferred drink of Mad Men’s Don Draper, the Old Fashioned is one of earliest ever cocktails, and usually based on Rye Whisky, along plenty of some bitters over sugar cube crushed, plus and ice and water. Using Black Gate’s Rum (distilled by Denise) is an excellent idea- it was selected to be served at the world renowned NOMA restaurant in Sydney. Its a lighter style of rum using local ingredients, and its bright amber colour and honey / vanilla flavour notes is retained in the cocktail. Perfect for sipping with a good book, a companionable dog, or other good company.
One of my missions for the Martini Whisperer is to both bring Australian craft spirits to a wider audience, but also to show how best they can be enjoyed.
I encounter many people who love the idea of them but are cautious about how to drink them and so hesitate buying them.
This range will go a long way to open up new fans of Australian spirits, after all what’s not to love about just chilling, opening and pouring a great cocktail every time?
The Take Home
I think this idea is going to take off. The recipes are great, the packaging and presentation first class, and the premium positioning of the range does justice to the ingredients and craft inside the bottles. Five stars.
Where to Purchase
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Disclaimer: I was a guest of the Aussie Tipple Company at the launch event, views are my own.