Construction commences on Coopers whisky distillery

Construction of Coopers Brewery’s $50 million new visitor centre, microbrewery and whisky distillery is underway, with ground broken on the site today.

The official sod-turning event marked the start of the construction phase of the expansion of the brewery in Regency Park.

The development is expected to be finished by May 2024, and will enable the 160-year-old family-owned Coopers Brewery to distil its own whisky for the first time.

The Coopers whisky distillery will comprise a 9600L wash still and a 5500L spirit still. ‘Wash’ for the wash still will be supplied by the microbrewery, with the initial objective of producing 200,000 bottles per year. However, consumers will need to wait some years before the first batch of Coopers whisky can be sampled.

“We have been thinking about malt whisky for some time as we see it as a natural extension to our on-site maltings and our experience in brewing and fermentation,” Dr Cooper said.

“Our goal is to achieve the highest possible level of spirit quality to match our reputation in brewing. Having our own maltings will allow us to tell the whole story from the barley grower to the whisky glass.”

Following a competitive tender process, Coopers has appointed Australian construction company Built to deliver the new development.

Coopers Brewery Managing Director Dr Tim Cooper said there had been an overwhelmingly positive public response to the development since plans were announced in April this year.

“This is an exciting expansion for Coopers, and represents a significant investment for the company, with an emphasis on maximising Australian input throughout the process,” Dr Cooper said.

“As a proud Australian company, we hope to create a welcoming experience for local, national and international visitors, while positioning our brewery for the future.

“The feedback we’ve received from Coopers fans near and far is gratifying and their vote of confidence in this major investment is much appreciated.

“Today marks a major milestone and our team is excited to see our vision start to become a reality. We look forward to working with Built and all our project partners to deliver a highly unique and immersive facility.”

Built General Manager, SA, Chris Bate said Built was proud to be the delivery partner for this iconic project in Adelaide for Coopers.

“This project will help bolster job creation providing in excess of 500 onsite local South Australian jobs during the construction phase and many more in the manufacturing of material prior to site delivery,” Mr Bate said.

“Our highly experienced local team are looking forward to delivering a high-quality result that both the Coopers team and the people of South Australia can be proud of for many years to come.”

In addition to the Coopers whisky distillery, the development will include:

  • Restaurant and bar
  • Outdoor plaza dining
  • Dedicated tasting room
  • Interactive history display
  • Microbrewery
  • Underground stillage for whisky maturation

Studio Nine Architects’ unique curved design of the two-storey development has been inspired by the iconic Coopers’ roundel label. The curved structure encompasses a sloping amphitheatre that will showcase the brewery grounds and maltings. Construction is expected to be completed by May 2024.

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