Meet the Maker: Bathurst Grange Distillery

Established in 2014, Bathurst Grange Distillery is a family-owned and operated business located on The Grange heritage estate near Bathurst, NSW. As an award-winning craft distillery and cellar door, they’ve been producing small-batch handmade gin and whisky since 2019. With a “paddock-to-bottle” ethos, they grow many of their ingredients such as barley, junipers, and gin botanicals directly on their farm. Their quality, sustainability, and craftsmanship shine through in every bottle, making Bathurst Grange Distillery a sought-after brand for gin and whisky enthusiasts alike.

How they started their handmade gin and whisky business

Starting the business coincided with a pivotal generational shift on the farm. Alongside his dad Toby, Nick Jones decided the farm that had been in their family since 1972 was too precious to sell. They knew it wasn’t viable as a stand-alone farm, so they shifted their focus to distilling and leveraged their farm to grow some of the ingredients they needed. This approach not only allowed them to create gin and whisky products that were higher quality than imported spirits, but it also helped them champion sustainability throughout the entire production process. As for their name, Bathurst Grange Distillery pays homage to The Grange, which is the 200-year-old heritage-listed farm estate their distillery is located on.

Their handmade gin and whisky range

Bathurst Grange Distillery prides itself on crafting handmade gin and whisky products with locally-sourced ingredients. Their Rose Garden Gin uses rose petals from The Grange, which are then steeped and distilled. These are combined with a classic juniper-flavoured gin base to reveal an elegant and smooth gin with hints of citrus from the juniper and sweet fragrances from the rose petals. Their Bourbon Cask Whisky is distilled with locally-sourced heirloom malt barley and aged in ex-bourbon casks for three years. With every sip, you’ll experience notes of buttery vanilla, sweet raisin, and subtle oak accompanied by an intriguing biscuit undertone and finished with a lingering chocolate conclusion.

Bathurst Grange Distillery  Team photo
Two bottles of alcohol from Bathurst Grange Distilery

What they love about their handmade business

When asked what he loves about being in business, Nick Jones says, “It’s rewarding to see our family legacy develop into a successful business while sharing our love and passion for our beautiful country landscape, farmland, and the handmade techniques we use to make our gin and whisky”. In 2023, Nick and the team at Bathurst Grange Distillery were awarded double gold medals, which is the highest accolade, for both their Rose Garden Gin and Bourbon Cask Whisky at the World Spirits Competition in San Francisco. Nick credits this achievement and their business evolution to “blood, sweat, and tears”. He goes on to say, “Receiving these accolades is an incredible milestone and huge validation, but ultimately we feel this is just the beginning”.

How their handmade business succeeds

Nick believes there are two ingredients for business success – resilience and optimism. They launched their first product in December 2019, which, unbeknown to them, was right before the pandemic. This setback, coupled with significant expenses related to opening their cellar door and experiencing a cost increase of up to 30% on grain and other supplies, challenged them as they started their business. But they’re still standing – and they credit their resilience and optimism to this. Nick says that having a good network of people who will cheer you on and support you is crucial, especially in your first year of business. They’re now lucky to have a solid foundation for their business and a support network of family, friends, and loyal customers who they can lean on during the tough times.

What they love about coming to Handmade Canberra

“It’s the people who make an event special”, says Nick. He loves coming to the Handmade Market because of the people – and they’ve embraced the distillery’s products with open arms (and mouths!). He goes on to say “We love the wide selection of handmade products and the friendly people we meet who are part of this incredible community”.

Nick and the Bathurst Grange Distillery team attended our Winter market in July 2023 where customers were able to taste and buy both award-winning spirits, alongside Bathurst Grange’s core range of best-selling gin and whisky. They also had a special limited-release Sugar and Spice Whisky Liqueur on offer – the perfect winter warmer, but it was only available at markets and their distillery cellar door. You can see their full range of gin and whisky on the Bathurst Grange Distillery website. Don’t forget to follow them on Facebook and Instagram for cocktail recipes and more.