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Four Pillars opens new bar and gin lab

Australian gin brand Four Pillars has opened a new bar, lab and retail space in Surry Hills, Sydney.

The Four Pillars Laboratory in Surry Hills, Sydney

Earlier this month on World Gin Day (13 June), the brand opened its new Four Pillars Laboratory, which houses a gin lab, bar and shop. Four Pillars operates its distillery in Healesville, Victoria.

“When we thought about what we wanted to bring to Sydney, we were determined to take that same passion for making, creativity and experimentation and focus it on the delicious drinks you can make with our gins,” said Four Pillars co-founder Matt Jones.

“And we wanted to serve it all up with our signature love of warm hospitality and beautiful design. The result is the Four Pillars Laboratory in Surry Hills, a delicious playground for Sydney’s gin lovers and a new bucket list destination for gin fanatics around the world.”

Located in a 1930s building on Crown Street in Surry Hills, the Four Pillars Laboratory is described as a gin palace. The site features a cocktail bar, called Eileen’s Bar, and a gin lab with an experimental 70-litre copper still, also named Eileen after Jones’ mother.

Eileen’s Bar features a long concrete bar with 20 stools and has the capacity to hold 60 people. The cocktail list features classic gin cocktails and modern serves made using the Four Pillars range, plus a snack menu.

The Gin Lab features the Eileen still as its centrepiece and offers all-day drinks for walk-in customers. Consumers can also book gin, cocktail or distilling masterclasses at Eileen’s Bar and the Gin Lab.

Current visitor capacities across the site are limited due to government restrictions over the Covid-19 pandemic.

Bloody Shiraz Gin

First released in 2015, Bloody Shiraz Gin is the brand’s second best-selling product after the core Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin. Every year, the brand releases a new vintage of the gin, which is made with Shiraz grapes.

The 2020 Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz Gin will be released in early July, a month later than usual. The brand said it was fortunate that its Shiraz grapes in Yarra Valley were able to survive the Australian wildfires.

Four Pillars distiller Cameron Mackenzie said: “2020 will go down as one of the strangest vintages on record. While half the country was on fire and experienced extreme heat, the Yarra was quite the opposite.

2020 Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz Gin will be released next month

“Overall, we had very mild conditions and high rainfall so the region stayed green for most of summer. Low fruit set and small bunch weights intensified the fruit flavours but the cool conditions (yes, a very cool summer) has allowed great spice, red berry and natural acidity.

“Straight away you get pine forest notes, white pepper and spices. The gin is beautifully balanced with a delicious sweetness and nice tannins to finish.”

More than 100 tonnes of Shiraz grapes were sourced from the vineyards in the Yarra Valley and nearby in the Macedon Ranges and Yea Valley to make the gin.

This year, the Shiraz was also sourced from Punt Road, Boat O’Craigo, Yering Station and Faraday Estate, as well as growers in Yea and Macedon. The harvested grapes are de-stemmed but kept mainly as whole berries and then steeped in Rare Dry Gin in cool tanks that are stirred daily.

After eight weeks the fruit is pressed before being blended with more Rare Dry Gin to reach an ABV of 37.8%.

Bloody Shiraz Gin is available in more than 20 markets across the world.

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