Western Australian Master Distiller Cameron Syme is headed for the Swan Valley in early June with two of his
biggest spirit brands – Limeburners and Giniversity.
Syme purchased Carilley Estate on Hyem Road, Herne Hill in late December and is now refurbishing the venue, which will meld his array of whiskies and gins.
While the distilling of Limeburners will remain in Albany and Giniversity in Margaret River, it will mark the first whisky on show in the region, joining more than 40 world-class wineries, boutique breweries, cideries and gin distilleries.
Syme said: “I have wanted to share my products in the city for a while now, but we had to find the right space. Carilley Estate had the perfect location and structure to work with. We now have the most beautiful garden setting and an ideal location within the Valley, allowing us to build a quality destination for people to visit and enjoy our internationally recognised spirits and experiences.”
The distiller’s philosophy has always been to champion local products, sourcing as many as possible from Western Australia. In Porongurup he is installing a malt works onsite to process locally grown barley and has planted juniper trees to harvest the berries as the core gin botanical. He also works with First Nations Australians to source and purchase local indigenous botanicals.
“The Swan Valley is a unique food and beverage destination in WA that we’re excited to be adding to,” he said. “With properties now in the Valley, the Great Southern and Margaret River were using some of the best produce in our state to continue making world class gin and whiskies. We’re excited to collaborate with our neighbours to showcase and enhance the region.”
Syme (above) is committed to ensuring he integrates with the Valley and is already working with wine barrels from local producers such as Kosovich Wines, Talijancich Wines and Olive Farm Wines. Cameron has been doing the same thing for years in the Margaret River, Albany and Porongurup regions, working with local producers to create products that champion and highlight the surrounding producers.
“We are looking for barrels which have produced quality wine and what better place to get that than our new neighbours in the Valley,” he said. “We will use the flavours infused in the barrel, such as a delicious Verdelho, and draw them into the whisky or gin, imparting that unique flavour. Long term, we would like to do seasonal releases in line with winery releases. There are so many exciting times to come.”
The new venue will feature a 200-seat venue, including a restaurant, bar, cellar door and function venue. There will be Giniversity and Limeburners blending experiences and the menu, currently being tried and tested, will exclusively feature gluten free options.
The Swan Valley can expect a taste of that class at the beginning of June.