Loch Distillery sounds like it should be in Scotland. It conjures images of a creaky, old, wind-battered, salt-spattered building, dwarfed by an inky black sea, the only sound other than the wind the whine of a corroded old copper still.
It couldn’t be further from the reality. Loch Brewery & Distillery, housed in a beautiful, 100-year-old red brick bank in the sunny South Gippsland town of Loch (just 90 minutes from Melbourne), is run by the very tall and strapping Craig Johnson and his partner Mel Davies. The couple have been brewing a range of spirits and ales here commercially since 2014.
Gin is the main focus, and it’s so good Rene Redzepi put it on the menu at Noma Sydney. Next to the Classic Dry Gin, there’s an Australian gin called The Weaver, distilled with native Australian botanicals like wattle seed and strawberry gum. There’s also one made specially for gin and tonics. Uniquely, Johnson and Davies also distil a range of gin liqueurs, slightly sweeter than regular gin and designed to drink neat.