Melbourne born and bred, Starward founder David Vitale began with a simple vision; to create a distinctly AustralianWhisky to offer the world with pride. In 2007 it all started with curiosity and the impetus to try, trial and taste.
Australia has arguably some of thebest red Wine barrels in the world in their ‘backyard’ and with the quality of ingredients and materials available within a day’s drive from Melbourne, Starward tried something new and never looked back.
They currently have a Wine Cask (crowned Best Craft Distilled Whisky in the world in 2016) and a Solerasingle malt Whisky (solely matured in Australian fortified Wine barrels), barrel-aged (New) Old Fashioned and Red Manhattan cocktails, and a Two-Fold Double Grain Whisky.
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Melbourne’s crazy “four seasons in a day” climate means it takes a fraction of the time it takes to make Whisky in Scottish Isles or Ireland.
The original Starward facility was actually an old flight hangar in Essendon Fields.
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In 2007, Starward Whisky was founded by David Vitale, who branched off to start his own label after kickstarting the Australian single malt movement under the tutelage of Whisky godfather Bill Lark. Vitale, a Melbourne native.
Starward Spirits are distilled in the bedrock of southeastern Australia's wine scene. The unique climate and world-renowned wines of Australia are carved in the DNA of each expression. The dynamic climate accelerates the maturation process in “Melbourne years.” Their Spirits are uniquely Aussie.
The premium Australian Whisky maker was crowned Best Australian Whisky Innovator, their Starward Nova Whisky earning Best Craft Distilled Whisky in the world in 2016.
Their star-studded line-up includes their award-winning Starward Nova Malt Whisky matured in carefully selected ex-shiraz, cabernet sauvignon and pinot barrels, their Solera-aged Whisky matured in 40 to 50 year-old fortified Australian Wine barrels, their barrel-aged (New) Old Fashioned and Red Manhattan cocktails, and a Two-Fold Double Grain Whisky.
Address50 Bertie St, Port Melbourne VIC 3207, Australia
A transcript for non-audio situations
My name is David Vitale, I'm the founder of Starward distillery in Port Melbourne and behind me is my playground.
So the story begins in Tasmania about ten years ago. Walked into a cellar door on the waterfront there the Lark distillery and I was completely captivated by Whisky.
Up until then my background was in sort of a drinking a lot of craft Beer, was really excited by that and I really didn't understand that there was a world of Whisky out there beyond the traditional blends, and just fell in love with this whole idea that this is, there was a craft Beer scene but you could have a craft Whisky scene.
So we were already making like Whisky in Australia, my inspiration really was to think about it as being far more accessible and easier to find and obviously more approachable to drink. The thing that really captivated us was this idea that perhaps we could use the Australian Wine barrels to influence the flavor of the Whisky and therefore having a reason to exist on the back bar.
Everybody loves Australian wine so for us having the ability to source these barrels and get them to the distillery still saturated with Wine in the barrel itself means that we're getting all that flavor into the Whisky and you can see it in the color of the product itself. That's half of the story, the second half is obviously that once we get them here and fill them with that new-made Spirit we've got Melbourne’s four seasons in a day to be able to mature the Whisky in.
Quite often we come to the distillery with a sunny morning. It's hailing in the afternoon and by the evening it's mild again and that change in temperature that happens so frequently means the Whisky is expanding and deflecting out of the oak all the time. So we're getting all that complexity, color and character out of the oak into the Spirit far quicker than we would anywhere else in the world. We wanted to inspire our drinkers and ourselves every day to think about what Whisky can be by reaching towards the stars and that's why we call it Starward.