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All Aboard! Sydney Gin Tasting Cruise and the Ladies of Spirit

Celebrating not only Australian craft spirits but some of the amazing women distilling them, Nip of Courage is working in association with the Australian National Maritime Museum to bring a gin experience like no other to life.

L-R: Ally Ayres, Karu - Holly Klintworth, Bass & Flinders - Carla Daunton, Young Henrys - Samantha Stefani, Banks & Solander - and Alarna Doherty, Tara Distillery

Across five Fridays between 17th December 2021 and 4th Feb 2022, you can board the beautiful Edwardian steamboat Ena to taste a range of Aussie gins as well as meet one of five remarkable women who craft the spirits you sip.

Each week one of five different women distillers will share their journey into and around the distilling landscape, how they create their high-quality gins and what it takes to be a woman distiller in a male-dominated industry.

Kathleen Davies, founder-owner of Nip of Courage explains:

“It’s great to see not only a growth in the craft spirits industry in Australia, but also an increase in the number of women in distilling. And this is a fun way to learn more about both.”

The evenings are set to be both an inspiring and delicious with a glass of gin-infused sparkling upon arrival and canapés by Ripples paired with each gin.

Cruises run twice each night - 6pm-7.15pm and again 8pm-9.15pm, and the dates are Dec 17, Jan 14, Jan 21, Jan 28 and Feb 4.

Ladies of Spirit Gin Tasting Event - meet the women behind the stills

These are the five inspiring women distillers who will be aboard the good ship Ena charting a course through the gins at your table.

Ally Ayres – Karu Distillery, Blue Mountains, NSW

Ally is the head distiller and co-owner of Karu Distillery, hidden in the Devils Wilderness on the edge of the Blue Mountains.

Her primary focus has been composing gins using fresh, locally grown and sourced botanicals.

Throughout the years of her self-taught distillation journey she has accumulated over 50 global awards, including IWSC trophy for best contemporary gin in the world 2021.

You can read more about Ally and her husband Nick here.

Holly Klintworth - Bass and Flinders, Mornington Peninsula, VIC

Holly is one of the few second-generation distillers in Australia, having taken over from her father in 2016 to lead her family business as managing director and head distiller.

Bass and Flinders Distillery has been producing artisanal small-batch spirits since 2009 merging traditional Old World techniques with New World flavours.

The distillery source fresh, local ingredients to produce unique, genuine Australian craft spirits, and draws inspiration from their coastal home where the sea meets the wine-growing hinterland.

Carla Daunton – Young Henry’s, Sydney, NSW

Carla started her journey into spirits as a science communicator and teacher before making the change to brewing and distilling.

Her first role in the field was at an ethanol production facility, where she learnt the fine art of plant operation and a solid grounding in high quality neutral spirits production.

Interested in both brewing and distilling, Carla started at Young Henrys as a brewer in 2018 and took over distilling Young Henrys’ Noble Cut a year later.

Sam Stefani - Banks and Solander, Sydney, NSW

Building both her experience and education in distilling from the age of 19 in the States, Sam moved to Sydney in 2016.

Beginning as an assistant distiller and then senior distiller at Archie Rose, and then at Brix Distillery making rum, Sam was both distilleries’ first woman distiller.

Sam joined the team at Banks and Solander Distillery in Botany after the first lockdown of 2020, and continues to work with her passion for distilling rum and gin.

Alarna Doherty - Tara Distillery, Shoalhaven, NSW

Until recently, Alarna lived a successful city life with a career in corporate, but the desire of a life hand-crafting high-quality spirits in the country was too strong to resist.

Together with her husband Ben, Alarna started a small rural distillery in the Shoalhaven on the South Coast of NSW.

They use the traditional one-shot gin method, and are passionate about this true pot-still style of gin making.


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