The idea of STARWARD was somewhat unconventional. Most distilleries trade on tradition. And while we respect it and understand the value in it – both from crafting a whisky as well as from a branding perspective – we wanted to do things differently.
We were inspired by the Australian wine industry – 30 years ago non-existent on the world stage, and today a credible player offering a fresh take on traditional varieties. Often viewed by traditionalists as too analytical or technical.
Developing a whisky with a blank sheet of paper is both refreshing and daunting. We focused on the elements that we believed would provide provenance and authenticity.
Our team experimented with barley and barrels and adopted, adjusted and re-adjusted brewing, distilling and maturation techniques observing the influence of time, place and the natural elements.
We have adopted an innovative approach to maturing inventory by leveraging Melbourne’s climate (a highly variable temperature range throughout the year) and a “portfolio” approach to barrel inventory (different sizes filled and disgorged) to create depth of flavour without compromising quality or character.
The distillery uses almost exclusively Apera (Australian sherry style) barrels. The average age of wood is in excess of 20 years of age and some barrels are over 55 years of age.
We hand select these barrels that are painstainkingly re-coopered, re-toasted and re-sized for aging our spirit extracting dried fruit, spice and more sweetness.
Our barley is 100% Australian and adds to the provenance of the whisky. We have worked with our maltster and use a bespoke Australian malted barley to suit our requirements ‒ a balanced cereal note providing a full mouthfeel.
The result is STARWARD. It will challenge your perceptions of what whisky can be.