Kilderkin Distillery blends co-founder Chris Pratt’s Scottish roots with native Australian botanicals to create high-quality gins. In 2017, Kilderkin launched its first spirits – which are named after the barrel used for aging. Today, Pratt and his partner Rebecca Mathews distill and pour their small-batch gins and liqueurs from a light-filled warehouse in Ballarat.

Kilderkin produces its range of gins using the vapour infusion technique. As Pratt explains, there are two main ways of extracting flavours during distillation. Maceration involves steeping botanicals in the pot as you’re distilling them, while vapour infusion uses heat to force the alcohol vapour through the botanicals. Kilderkin follows this technique to create easy-drinking gins with a smooth mouthfeel.

Its flagship Scoundrel gin is a classic London dry with notes of juniper and coriander. The Original Larrikin is an Australian gin infused with native botanicals, including lemon myrtle, cinnamon myrtle, aniseed myrtle, pepperberry leaf, wattleseed, rivermint and lilly pilly berries.

Native botanicals – primarily bush fruits such as Kakadu plum, native blood lime, desert lime, bush tomato, Davidson’s plum and finger lime – also infuse Sunburnt Country but produce a different flavour to the Original Larrikin.

At the Kilderkin cellar door – or distillery door, to be accurate – you can get a taste of its signature and seasonal gins on a tasting flight or with a mixer. If you’re not on the gin train, there’s also cider, soft drinks, and Victorian beers by Cubby Haus, Paper Scissors Rock Brew Co and Bankhouse Brewery. The light food menu includes boards of locally sourced cheeses, chips, smoked nuts and Mount Zero olives. While the primary focus is Kilderkin gin, it’s also a place where you can bring your family in for an afternoon.

The space also features a dedicated area for masterclasses. These two to three-hour experiences cover the distilling process and its history, flavour profiles of different gins and how to make gin cocktails.

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Updated: July 14th, 2023

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