Over the past few years, craft alcohol has taken off in Australia. With every passing week, it seems, there’s a new, locally-made beer or spirit to try. Here are three craft rums to look out for:
1. Dead Man’s Drop from Stone Pine Distillery
This one’s inspired by Australia’s bush ranging days and, specifically, by a bunch of outlaws by the name of the Ribbon Gang. On November 2nd, 1930, the hooligans met their fate in the first public hanging ever to be held in Bathurst. They were put to death for the crimes of bush ranging, murder and stealing horses. Dead Man’s Drop recalls this wild era, with its heady blend of orange peel and vanilla, coupled with Australian native ringwood and cinnamon myrtle and infused in barrel-aged rum. It is made at Stone Pine, a family-run distillery in Bathurst, which is a country town located three hours’ drive west of Sydney. They also have a fine limited edition rum dubbed Founders, which is aged in Serbian oak and bottled at cask strength.
2. Ord River Rum from Hoochery Distillery
Hoochery Distillery, located in Kununurra, is the oldest continuously operating distillery in Australia. It’s also the ONLY place in Western Australia that makes rum. At the moment, there are five types of Ord River Rum available: premium; overproof (56.4%); Spike’s Reserve, which is a smooth dark rum aged for ten years; single barrel; and Kimberley Moon, a premium white. Hoochery Distillery has won two major awards for its rums – Gold Medal and Champion Rum in the 2014 and 2015 Melbourne Fine Food Awards and Australian Distilled Spirit Competition.
3. Iridium Rum from Mt. Uncle Distillery
We’ve covered NSW and WA, so here’s one from QLD. Iridium Rum is made at Mt. Uncle Distillery, which was founded on the Athertown Tablelands in 2001 and is the first and only distillery in Northern Queensland. Instead of being made of molasses, Iridium is created from local cane sugar, before being aged in red-wine casks for four years. Its beautiful golden colour is the result of this ageing process – no additives whatsoever are involved.