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With craft distilling fast becoming a popular trend in Australia, South Australia’s location and access to incredible produce makes it the perfect spot for producers to flourish. There’s no better way to do this than with a distillery dedicated to reflecting the sites and soils of its landscape.

This is exactly what Laura and Brendan Carter are achieving with Applewood Distillery. They are not only passionate about making craft spirits but also about sharing Australia’s unique culture with the world.

Both Laura and Brendan are winemakers by education and trade. They were previously involved with Unico Zelo Winery and NØMAD Perfumery – and their innate creativity led them to an industry that was in desperate need of disruption: craft spirits.

After Applewood’s inception in 2012, it took three years of experimenting to release the first of their spirits. What sets their products apart is the thought and care that goes into each and every bottle. Aside from using a wide range of unique and native ingredients, they also ensure the survival of struggling farmers by purchasing fruit that is often knocked back for traditional pathways and turning them into something special.

Applewood is known for producing a range of spirits including the slightly unusual, Økar – a light aperitivo-type amaro that’s not dissimilar to Aperol. It’s crafted from native Australian botanicals, including riberries, blood limes and saltbush.

A semi-dilapidated building built in the 1920s for the cold storage of apples has slowly been transformed into a destination where they can experiment and create. Visitors are welcome on Thursday, Friday and Saturday by appointment only – because Laura and Brendan will personally be manning the distillery! Or you can enjoy their handiwork at any great independent bottle shop, or creatively-driven bar.


We were lucky enough to chat with Brendan and gain an insight into the world of craft distilling as well as their use of native Australian ingredients.




Words by Antonea Gilopidis

Locate Applewood Distillery

24 Victoria Street, Gumeracha, SA 5233


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