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South Australia’s largest whisky distillery opens

February 18, 2022

By Ioni Doherty

South Australian Premier Steven Marshall will open Kangaroo Island Spirits’ new cellar door and production facility today after a re-development to the tune of $3.5 million, $500,000 of which was granted by the South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC).

The project includes the installation of a 1,800L steam-driven gin still that will see the Kangaroo Island site producing up to 3,000L of gin a week, as well as a 4,500L whisky still. This will allow 1,200L of the spirit to be produced each week, making Kangaroo Island Spirits the largest whisky distillery in South Australia.

Chief Distiller Charlie Schmidt (pictured right with dog, Tyler) joined the distillery in September 2020. He grew up in Adelaide and his father, Ian, is a distiller with twenty years experience and the owner of the award winning Tin Shed Distilling Co.

Mighty Craft Managing Director Mark Haysman said the new facility and cellar door at Kangaroo Island Spirits heralds a new chapter in the distillery’s 16-year history.

“With the addition of a range of exciting and immersive tasting experiences and a new Spirits Academy on the island, our vision is to attract additional visitors, be involved in a wider a range of events, create new jobs for locals and increase our capacity for innovation and excellence,” he said.

“Thanks to the support of the South Australian Government, Kangaroo Island Distillery is now poised to become one of Australia’s most iconic experiential distilleries, attracting global attention and visitation, and contributing to the broader economy.”

With its sights firmly set on taking Kangaroo Island Spirits’ uniquely Australian, hand-crafted products to the world, the brand and packaging has also been overhauled giving it a new look and feel. 

The new bottles can be found in leading bottles shops, restaurants, and bars, and via Kangaroo Island Spirits’ website from March 2022.

Mighty Craft’s new Spirits Academy at Emu Bay on Kangaroo Island is set to become a centre of learning, innovation, and excellence for Australian distilling talent. Overseen by Mighty Craft’s Group Distiller George Campbell, the Spirits Academy has been designed as an industry-leading resource and will be used to induct new distilling staff and enhance their technical distilling expertise.

Kangaroo Island Spirits’ exciting and immersive tasting experiences kick off on 1 April and include a premium gin tasting flight, a blend-your-own-gin experience led by a member of the Kangaroo Island Spirits team, and a cocktail masterclass where guests will make drinks using Kangaroo Island Spirits’ award-winning gins, vodkas, and liqueurs.

Kangaroo Island Spirits is one of Australia’s most consistently awarded gin brands and receives numerous local, national, and international accolades each year.

Kangaroo Island Spirits, 856 Playford Highway, Cygnet River, Kangaroo Island, South Australia