Best Distilleries in Melbourne

Updated 2 weeks ago

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Breweries are everywhere in Melbourne. Distilleries are comparatively rare, but the standard is astonishingly high. Whether you’re seeking gin, whisky or even non-alcoholic distilled spirits, there’s an award-winning distillery making it in Melbourne. The good news? Most of them – with a few notable exceptions, such as Starward, which is currently closed for renovations – are also open to the public for tastings and tours. Here’s where to find them.

  • Most distilleries need plenty of space. Yet this 20-seater, in a 19th-century cottage, squeezes in a lot. Sample Little Lon’s small-batch gins at the bar, before checking out the gin still in one room and fermentation tanks in the other. Try its fun cocktails, take a bottle home or take gin masterclass.

  • This dim, swanky distillery and bar may be in the ’burbs – but it’s on par with those in the city. Try Naught’s award-winning gins in classic cocktails or on tasting flights. A concise snack menu adds top-quality charcuterie and tinned seafood to the equation.

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  • Inside a 19th-century pub, Darling Distillery is the work of three mates who are crafting a small range of high-quality gins. It’s open just once a month – which is your chance to drop in for a free tasting and to pick up a bottle (or get a refill) and chat with the distillers.

  • The father-daughter duo behind Brogan’s Way believe there’s a gin for everyone. Yours may well be the distillery’s Strawberries and Cream gin, served in a Martini or G&T. Watch the distillers in action over plates of crisp, European-style flatbreads and gin-friendly bar snacks.

  • Australia’s first permanent non-alcoholic bar and distillery. It crafts its zero per cent gin, Sapiir, on-site with the same botanical profile as its full-strength spirits, so you won’t get short-changed in the flavour department. Try it in a well-made cocktail, or sample from one of the most impressive ranges of non-alc beer, wine and spirits in the city.

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  • It’s all about gin, whisky, vodka and rum at the buzzy bluestone outpost for the Mildura distillery of the same name. Both the bar and kitchen are making good use of the house-made hooch. Pair your saltbush Margarita with some spicy wings marinated in a signature rum-infused sauce.

  • A gleaming 100-litre still sits at the centre of this red-accented bar and restaurant. It’s where distiller (and chef) Carlo Tran makes the gin you’ll find in your Asian-inspired cocktails – most of which are on tap. Pair them with pan-Asian dishes such as chargrilled prawns, beef rendang, deconstructed bao and karaage chicken.

  • Find out how gin is made in the distillery, then test it out in a classic G&T, Martini or on a tasting flight. If you're feeling more adventurous, go for cocktails that draw on rhubarb, pineapple, pear and cherry. Or learn about the craft in a gin masterclass.

  • Ales and loaded pizzas are the main game at this San Diego-inspired brewery – but they’re not the only draw. This spot also distills whisky, dark rum and botanical gin in limited batches. Try them neat, on ice, with a mixer or in a basic cocktail.

  • This massive all-in-one food park, health-food cafe and distillery packs in a lot. Bee-line to the Saint Felix Distillery for its fruit-based gins, which are made in an 18th-century copper still. A mini cocktail paddle is the best way to sample the standouts.

  • Come to the old Stevedore’s Association building-turned-distillery for gins like the accidentally barrel-aged Mighty Apollo, Negronis infused with smoke, and an assortment of house-made spirits including brandy, whisky and limoncello.

  • Come for oak, mulberry and pomegranate gins distilled in the former warehouse space. Try riffs on classic cocktails, including an updated Southside and a pomegranate and sumac-infused spin on the Cosmopolitan.