While there were challenges to the complete lack of a handbook to guide us to create a distillery of our size, the upside is that we learned from the ground up the craft of spirit making from people who have done it before us.
They say good things come to those who wait. In our case, the wait for our distilling equipment to be built was exactly 364 days from when we commissioned craftsman Peter Bailly to create it. With the highest purity copper shipped in from Europe then hand-hammered, our three copper pot stills are fabricated to our exact specifications. Lead by Master Distiller Dave Withers, our distilling team produces exceptional gins, vodkas, whiskies and rums leading to our acknowledgement as Australia’s most highly awarded distillery.
Precisely three metres from the distillery and flanked by a wall of ageing whisky casks, the bar showcases the full Archie Rose spirits range, including a number of unreleased products, while also offering an interesting selection of local craft beers, award-winning biodynamic wines and food by local producers. The bar is the perfect place to pull up a stool and settle in.
Here, two spaces – a ground floor area and a mezzanine – use copper, steel, oak and concrete to create a striking space where you can sample, sip and savour the spirits we craft on site.
Archie Rose founder, Will Edwards, always had a passion for spirits, experimenting with homebrew, spirit based infusions and oak maturation whilst reading up on the chemistry and engineering that underpins distillation whilst at Sydney Uni. After an early career in management consulting Will left his corporate job at Deloitte travelling to New York and Tasmania to answer the question that had intrigued him for many years – why weren’t there more distilleries in Australia, specifically in the cities, and could one be established? Fast-forward to March 2015 and Archie Rose Distilling Co. opened its doors in Rosebery, just 5kms from the Sydney CBD and has since become Australia’s most highly awarded distillery, handcrafting whisky, gin, vodka, rum and tailored spirits experiences. Innovative and progressive, Archie Rose also creates an eclectic range of limited editions and special releases, often collaborating with those who share its ethos.
Since launch Archie Rose has received accolades for Best Australian Whisky, World’s Best Gin & Vodka, won a Global Distillery Masters Medal for Customer Experience and Will himself has won Australian Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the Hospitality & Tourism Category in 2018 and been listed in the Forbes 30 under 30 in 2017. When Will’s not knee deep in running Archie Rose, you’ll find him enjoying an Aviation, Manhattan or a Trinidad Sour at the bar with the Archie Rose team, soaking up great design, travelling and quietly tidying the spaces around him - noise cancelling headphones in place.
As a renowned spirits authority, Dave is the leader of the Archie Rose production team and the driving force behind Archie Rose’s spirits vision. Born into a family of wine makers, Dave showed a keen interest in the field of wine production early in life, however quickly managed to impress his friends and disappoint his father by becoming a distiller. Rebellion can be a great motivator after all.
Never content with the status quo, Dave is constantly striving to improve the quality of spirit produced at Archie Rose, delving deep into the science of spirits production, and working alongside our Head Distillers to put theory into practice on the floor. In his spare time Dave can be found sipping on a rare malt or obscure rum while reading 400 page books on water chemistry. He is, in our view, the very best yeast-tickler and grain-fondler in the land.
As head of hospitality for Archie Rose Distilling Co., Harriet Leigh could not be in a more perfect job – spearheading the brand’s experiences and events at its distillery and bar in Sydney’s Rosebery, as well as across the country. She also works closely with the production team to ensure new spirit releases stand up behind the bar and mix well in both classic and contemporary cocktails.
Born and bred in London, it seems the lure of hospitality came early, when at the age of 4, Harriet’s parents would dress her up in little bow ties and flat caps and ‘allow’ her to make gin and tonics for their parties – and she wouldn’t have had it any other way.
After finishing high school in London’s Hammersmith, Harriet started bartending at 18 before moving to Australia in 2000 at the age of 20. She began her Australian hospitality career, bartending at the Hollywood Hotel in Sydney’s Surry Hills before moving to Kings Cross nightclub, Melt.
A stint back in the UK saw Harriet and her brother open Age & Sons, a restaurant and bar in Ramsgate, before Aussie shores beckoned her back, where she whet the palates of Sydneysiders at the Flinders and Hazy Rose and then moving to Sydney’s acclaimed Open Air Cinema as Food & Beverage Manager.
It was at the Open Air Cinema where she was approached by Archie Rose founder, Will Edwards to join the team. For Harriet, it was a no brainer to join the first custom-designed, multi-spirit distillery and bar in Sydney in over 160 years, where she says, “I have the best job in the world. I come in everyday, I run a team of 20, I make booze and I help make gin, which is the best thing I’ve ever done. Who gets paid to do that? I get out of bed looking forward to going to work.”
With 20 years experience in hospitality, Harriet is now recognised as one of the leaders in the industry and a force in promoting and supporting women in hospitality.
She has scooped up awards including Australia’s Top 25 Bartenders, was the only woman to be shortlisted for Australia’s Top Bar Manager and picked up arguably the most prestigious peer awarded honours for women in hospitality. She contributes to industry publications providing comment on trends and issues and has spoken on stage for International Women’s Day as well as Coleman’s Academy, a not for profit focusing on empowering and inspiring women in hospitality.
When she’s not quaffing a G&T, a Southside or a Manhattan, you can find Harriet soaking up culture and the arts – “Spending time alone in the National Gallery and in MONA will be two experiences I’ll never forget.”
Tori joins Archie Rose following decades of marketing experience in Australia and the UK.
Born with a glass in hand as part of a fourth generation wine family she’s launched hundreds of products, events, venues and campaigns for consumer brands around the world. She’s now delighted to be head of marketing for Archie Rose along with founder of her own growth marketing business, Kindred.
Trevor has spent over half of working life successfully building iconic alcohol brands in Australia and globally.
Now, after a successful stint with a global coffee house working with Australia’s finest chefs and highly awarded restaurants, Trevor brings his industry experience and love of spirits to Archie Rose.
Born in the UK and emigrating to Perth as a teenager, Nick caught the hospitality bug back home in 2005. More than 9 years at some of Brighton’s best drinks focused venues followed, along with teaching bartenders on ‘how to not set fire to things’ for renowned Jamaican rum company Wray & Nephew.
Returning to Australia with stints at WA favourites Bar Lafayette, The Dominion League and Lalla Rookh, he joined the opening team at Long Chim (Perth) before setting sail for Melbourne.
With a passion for travel and boilermakers (the drink rather than the occupation), look out for Nick on his adventures throughout VIC, WA, and Tassie as he spreads the Archie Rose story far and wide.
You can talk to Nick here: email@example.com
A highly experienced chap with a CV that runs the full gamut from cafes to pubs, hotels, restaurants and high end cocktail bars including the Bentley Restaurant and Bar, The Roosevelt and Eau de Vie Sydney, awarded the World’s Best New Cocktail Bar in 2010. Phil’s love affair with liquid nitrogen and commercial bacon bourbon abounds, rewarded in cocktail competition wins around the world. His lesser known accolades include horrendous conversational skills, overtly scholastic bar geekery and a capacity to eat large numbers of hamburgers. He now resides in Brisbane with his wife, daughter and cat, charged with navigating the vast expanse of QLD, NT and SA as Archie Rose Ambassador.
For all things Archie in QLD, NT, and SA you can get in touch with Phil here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Helen has more than 15 years experience across sponsorship and fundraising for world-leading cultural organisations both in the UK and Australia, including the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney Festival and Sydney Film Festival.
Never one to draw between the lines, Helen thrives off finding new and innovative ways of doing things with a genuine passion for forging sustainable and meaningful partnerships between business and cultural organisations.
She’s thrilled to now join a like-minded team of innovators at Archie Rose. Between negotiating partnership agreements and networking like a pro, you’ll find her chilling at the distillery with a cocktail discussing her love of travelling the world and her next holiday destination.
Hailing from a family passionate about wine and the arts, Nina spent her youth playing in orchestras, wandering art galleries & rummaging through her family’s cellar, eventually converting her wine obsession into a day job as a wine (and vermouth) maker in Australia and Europe. In recent years she switched her love to hospitality heading up events at some of Sydney’s top venues including Art Gallery of NSW, Hubert and Chin Chin before a happy spirits landing at Archie Rose, ready for global spirits events and experiences domination.
Lewis joins Archie Rose following a year in New York as co-owner, bar manager and operations director for Manhattan restaurant and bar, Gran Tivoli and Peppi’s Cellar, a role he was recruited for based on his global success across the Australia and UK including Big Poppa’s, The Baxter Inn and Grandma’s in Sydney and Home House and Le Monde Hotel in the UK. As owner, general manager and director of Big Poppa’s, Lewis won a slew of awards including Best Restaurant Bar in the Time Out 2017 Awards, the Best Bartenders Bar in the 2017 Bartender Magazine Awards and the People’s Choice in the Concrete Playground 2017 Awards. While he was at the helm at The Baxter Inn, it made the top ten in the World’s Best 50 Bars and highest entry for new bar at number 6 in the world. He’s also won other high profile coveted awards including ALIA Bar Manager of the Year in 2014 and has been consistently named as one of the top 100 most influential bartenders in Australia by Australian Bartender Magazine since 2013.
Venue Manager Jonathan Liu was born into the hospitality industry, he learnt his trade working at his family’s restaurant from a young age, and has since tended bar at several high profile venues including The Star and Grain at the Four Seasons Hotel Sydney. Jonathan is our much respected leader in house
A master of all spirits but a devout whisky fan, if you find yourself at the bar with Jonathan, he will gladly share his passion for whisky and guide you through the extensive, lovingly curated, selection on the backbar. His love of spirits is only beaten by his love for his young family, with baby Evie potentially the next in a long line of hospitality pros.
Rachelle “Rocky” Hair cut her teeth bartending with Swillhouse group in Sydney where she became a staple at The Baxter Inn. Along with breaking down gender divides behind the bar, she was also the first woman to win Time Out’s Hot Talent Award in 2016. She has since spent the last three years living and working in Los Angeles, London and Lebanon and avidly adding to her Whisky collection. With stints at Harvard and Stone, Gwen, Super Lyan and Dandelyan, she approaches all creative drink creation with a no holds barred approach and a keen eye for international trends. She has featured in several forums about drink consultation, sustainability and gender in the hospitality industry. Now freshly back in Sydney she is set to head up the Creative Drinks department at Archie Rose.