Noble Bootlegging - is there such a thing?
On a property just outside of Bendigo, a family are producing some pretty impeccable spirits. They are bootlegging whiskey, gin and a range of aged, small batch cocktails, including a ripping aged Negroni, aged Manhattan, Espresso Martini and an aged Boulevardier, all in 100ml bottles, beautifully and thoughtfully packaged. In fact, there is little about this brand which has not been well thought out.
The Scoffers have known husband and wife team Dan and Kristin Lemura from their years working in the hospitality industry over the past 20 years, while they were at the helm of some of Melbourne's finest establishments. A Bendigo property is a long way from the bustling energy of Smith Street Collingwood, but it has paid off in spades.
There are four gins and each is pretty spectacular. As much as this scribe is not a fan of anything cherry flavoured, the Experimental Cherry Gin Batch 2 comes highly recommended as does the Batch 3. An Australian Contemporary Gin is quintessentially now with angelica root, vanilla, pepper and coriander over background citrus freshness and well placed juniper notes all blending seamlessly together. This is a must have on the bar, as is my new favourite thing in the world, Christmas Gin Batch 3 or Christmas Pudding, winning a silver media at the Australian Distilled Spirits Awards.
Imagine a smooshed quality fruit mince pie with all the buttery pastry and scented boozy fruit, mixed in with brandy and rum notes and then added to a Christmas pudding spice mix. Now that as a gin brings tears of joy from me as I think about the memory journey I am taken on. Rest assured I'll be home for Christmas if there is any of this left on the bar. It needs nothing - no ice, no mixer, just sip away, although if you must, a quality ginger ale is a perfect marriage.
Back when Dan and Kristin owned The Noble Experiment in Melbourne, a 5 litre Tokay seasoned American oak barrel and a smoky Islay whisky were the start of what has been an incredible whiskey journey. Some experimentation followed in in late 2016 - Noble Bootleggers X Starward - Pedro Ximenez finish.
Now Dan is obsessed. The latest batch resulted in just 73 bottles, all of which are sold out. We want to tell you about them so you join the mailing list and be involved for the next round. Trust me, these are some damned fine bottles of Australian Whiskey.
When passion is followed and the heart & soul is put into making something special, then it is always a joy to drink the finished product. Get on to the Noble Bootlegger - a short supply trial run for a handful of big retail outlets in Bendigo could mean there is none left for you and me, and that would be a terrible shame.
Christmas Gin RRP $75 | 40% ABV