History tells us that ‘Moonshine’ was rife during the prohibition era in the USA, when corn mash was used to make distilled spirit in secrecy at night.
Today the distillation of alcohol is legal in Australia if one has the appropriate license, and ‘Melbourne Moonshine’ specialises in this popular ‘clear liquor’.
For several years Melbourne Moonshine was hidden down a laneway in the backstreets of South Melbourne; hidden behind barn like doors; malting, distilling, and bottling liquor. Andrew Fitzgerald and Ben Bowles met many moons ago, when both worked in construction. It wasn’t until 3 years ago that they turned their love for moonshine into an above board distillery. The space grew organically, with copper stills sourced from Portugal, and corn from a local farmer. Melbourne Moonshine vows to capture the ‘true spirit’ of the American South; which by the way is where Ben is from.
While I can appreciate the appeal of un-aged whiskey, I won’t profess to know how the distillation process occurs. I do however, admire the pair’s knowledge and craft; and their initiative to launch a coffee bar complimenting the distillery within the open space. Much like their business, the coffee bar grew organically too, made from leftover timber, form ply, and stools obtained from the hotel they would lunch at on Sunday afternoons.
The Campos team came in and setup the custom La Marzocco Linea, which extracts their superior blend 6 days a week, while the boys are out delivering their Sour Mash, Apple Pie, and Sweet Tea Shine; and Single Cask Moonshine from a fully restored historic Bedford Ute.
Kat is the head barista, and she also brews up filter coffee via a Moccamaster, using the Blade Runner blend. This blend of Ethiopian and Kenyan beans is lightly roasted, thus exhibiting the classic Scandinavian style roast profiles. It’s a bright juicy cup, with citrus acidity.
8 George Street