East Coast Wine Trail

East Coast Wine Trail
East Coast Wine Trail

Friday, 16 April 2021

Turning back time as a new whisky makes its debut

Meet Bad Boy Billy, the first whisky to be made in the Geelong region for four decades that will be released on April 26. 

Billy is the first barrel of single malt whisky from Bellarine Distillery. 

The release maintains the tradition of naming their products after the family’s four-legged friends with the honour of the first barrel goes to Billy the Staffordshire terrier distillery dog.

 Bad Boy Billy will be the first whisky to be made, matured and bottled in the Geelong region since the closure of Corio Distillery in the 1980s.


Bellarine Distillery was established in 2015 by Russell Watson & Lorelle Warren, with the dream of making a single malt whisky.


Commercial production began in 2017, when distillery manager Craig Michael joined the team and in 2019 he and his wife Nicky came on board as business partners.


While Bellarine Distillery’s much anticipated whisky was maturing, the team were working on releasing their award-winning gin range.


Bellarine Distillery’s cellar door, The Whiskery, opened in 2018 and has proved immensely popular in showcasing the gin range, including the popular Teddy & The Fox. 

“Since opening early 2018, the cellar door has proven to be a popular venue for visitors both local and far and wide, with our gin products now being sent all over Australia,” says Russell Watson. 


“From the beginning, however, the dream was to produce our own single malt whisky, made, matured and bottled on the Bellarine.” 


Bad Boy Billy - a single-cask release - will produce a very limited number of bottles but the team has been constantly laying down barrels to secure greater volume releases in the future.


See www.bellarinedistillery.com.au 

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