Prohibition Liquor Co.
We’ve just returned back to Berlin after a gorgeous two and a half weeks in Adelaide, Australia for the doctoral graduation and wedding of my fantastic sister-in-law. On top of crying with happiness at those two events, I was filled with all the emotions because it was my first time ever visiting Australia. First off, wow, the PR for the country is very off in terms of 1) spider proliferation and 2) heat levels. (Not a complaint!) It seems that autumn is the perfect time to visit Adelaide, with crisp air and minimal encounters with giant spiders. Additionally, I got to feed several kangaroos and pet a hilarious koala, so this vacation really hit all the marks for me.
We did manage to sadly bring some grey Berlin weather with us, but the locals said the rain was very welcome. Undaunted, one drizzly afternoon we headed down to Prohibition Liquor Co., which is conveniently located on the southern side of the city center and easily accessible by the FREE TRAM (!!!) (I felt so naughty riding schwarzfahren the whole trip). The entrance to the tasting room is located through a cafe, which was a little confusing but gave an air of Prohibitionesque clandestinity, I suppose. Try saying that three times fast after a couple of gin flights.
Speaking of gin flights, go for those. Prohibition Liquor Co. has a fantastic gin selection behind the bar, as well as an inventive cocktail list. Slightly overwhelmed at the choice, we chose the Prohibition Liquor Co flight ($24) and South Aussie Gins flight ($24) to properly introduce our palates to the area. The flights come with optional garnishes to either add to your drink or help with flavor/scent identification.
The Prohibition Liquor Co. flight included their original gin (42%), Shiraz barrel aged gin (60%), and bathtub cut gin (a whopping 69%). We found the original to be quite tasty both neat and with the Capi tonic water that accompanied the flight. The Shiraz barrel gin was heavy on the warmth, both in a rich clove/cinnamon/vanilla sense but also in an alcohol sense. The bathtub cut was honestly one of the better high-proof gins I’ve tasted; the distillers did a good job of balancing the herbaceous notes against the alcohol burn.
The South Aussie flight should have been composed of the Prohibition Liquor Co. original gin again, with Something Wild Green Ant gin and 78 degree Sunset gin, both from Adelaide Hills Distillery. Sadly, our bartender informed us that their order of Adelaide Hills gins had been delayed that week, so he replaced those two pours with Kangaroo Island Spirits O’gin and Never Never Distilling Co. Southern Strength gin. This worked out well for us, since we had been given a bottle of O’gin as a wedding gift a couple of years before. It was lovely to sample again and relive the memories. Additionally, I had a delicious negroni made with Never Never gin a few days previously, so I was interested to try the gin on its own. I don’t hold much stock in spirit award ceremonies, but Southern Strength won the medal for the World Gin Awards 2019 world’s best classic gin, so I was a little intrigued. It was a lovely balance of juniper and citrus, which is really what I look for in a gin, so I was very pleased (and slightly rosy-cheeked, from the 52% ABV).
Prohibition Liquor Co. also offers a great range of food to accompany their beverages. We opted for the Barossa smoked ham/South Australian cheddar toastie and the roast pumpkin/feta/pesto/garlic butter toastie, but we were soon envious of the neighboring table who ordered the Gourmet Grazer, a whopping spread of beautiful sliced ham, salami, cheeses, olives, and ciabatta. Make sure to check out the distillery’s 900-liter still, Mary, in the back of the space behind the bar area. She’s a real beauty.
Prohibition Liquor Co. started in 2015 as the passion project of Adam Carpenter and Wes Heddles, both from Adelaide. They started in a garage in the inner suburbs of Adelaide, working with Applewood Distillery to design and produce their gins. The tasting room opened in 2018, but the still was not ready for production in its current location until April 2019. They plan to start leading tours and teaching classes about gin, as well. Hopefully soon, we will return to Adelaide and see how the business is booming! If you are planning to travel to Australia, make sure to add Adelaide and the Prohibition Liquor Co. to your destination plans.
Prohibition Liquor Co. // 22 Gilbert St. // Adelaide SA 5000