Single Malt Whisky / 700ml / 43%
Our first whisky to shun the humdrum
Gold Medal Winner at World Whiskies Awards 2016, 2017, 2019.
There's a time for tradition. And there's a time to go rogue. Solera was the first whisky where we borrowed from tradition then started asking questions. It left us with a whisky deemed world class not just by us, but award judges too.
Nose / Bright tropical and orchard fruits, caramel and vanilla.
Palate / Toasty caramel and creme brûlée, banana, figs and sweet spice.
Finish / Juicy and full with a lingering dry spice.
Solera is a traditional method the Spanish used to age their Sherry and keep it consistent. A fractional amount of each young cask is blended with more mature spirit. It's the inspiration for making our Solera. And it means there's still a touch of our first ever cask in every bottle made today.
We source every Solera ingredient from just a day's drive away. A quintessential grain like Australian malted barley was a no-brainer to start with. Then, for a bold, craft flavour we ferment our barley with brewers' yeast.
Next, the barrel.
We wanted barrels with one hell of a history. Our Apera barrels, an Aussie fortified wine similar to Sherry, have typically held spirit over decades. That's some seriously flavourful oak.
We didn't stray far to find ones we like. Our Apera casks mostly come from McWilliams Winery, right on the border between Victoria and New South Wales. We often recooper, shave and char our barrels before filling them.
At first, maturation was a bit of trial and error. We were used to Scottish whiskies with age statements over a decade long. But we soon found out that wasn't Melbourne weather's style.
Sure, Aussie winter temperatures aren't far off the short Scottish summer. And they don't say Melbourne has 'four seasons in a day' for nothing. With a southern arctic breeze and northern desert winds, the weather here can be shockingly turbulent. But wildly varied temperature means whisky works harder in the barrel, absorbing flavour from the wood in a much shorter time.
With this elemental maturation, Solera is a neat reflection of Melbourne; wild weather and all.