Coopers Brewery is investing $50 million into a new world-class visitor centre, microbrewery and whisky distillery at its Regency Park site.
The expansion, designed by Studio Nine Architects and pending council approval, would include a restaurant and bar, tasting room, outdoor plaza dining and underground stillage for whisky maturation, with a view to attracting interstate and international tourists.
The curved design of the new two-storey development, with a sloping amphitheatre, is inspired by the Coopers label roundel. Under the plans, a tree-lined promenade will extend from a new entry at Regency Road to greet visitors to the facility, which will be linked to the existing brewery building with a window-lined bridge featuring an interactive history display.
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A new 3200-litre microbrewery will mean more “craft-style” beers to supplement the current portfolio, while the whisky distillery will comprise a 9600-litre wash still and a 5500-litre spirit still, with the initial objective of producing 200,000 bottles per year. (Though the first release won’t be ready for a few years.)
“We have been thinking about malt whisky for some time as we see it as a natural extension to our on-site maltings and our experience in brewing and fermentation,” Coopers managing director Dr Tim Cooper said in a press release.
“Our goal is to achieve the highest possible level of spirit quality to match our reputation in brewing. Having our own maltings will allow us to tell the whole story from the barley grower to the whisky glass.”
Construction is expected to begin around mid-2022 and due for completion by Christmas 2023.