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Monday 6 December 2021

Doctor duo distils a liquid idea

A visit to the doctors sounds a whole lot more appealing when the doctors in question have a whisky bar. 

Dr Jerry Schwartz (top) and Prof John Rasko (below) have crafted Two Doctors Whiskey and launched a new whiskey bar at Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains. 

The two Sydney doctors have unveiled a three-year-old cocktail whiskey made by Prof Rasko to celebrate the launch of the Two Doctors Whiskey Tavern. 

The first batch of six-year-old single malt whisky, meanwhile, is nearing the bottling stage at the Two Doctors' Hunter Valley distillery. 

At one of their early meetings in 2012, Prof Rasko discovered that Dr Schwartz operated a brewery in the Hunter Valley, and the two friends decided to establish a distillery to create the first super-premium whiskey distilled in NSW.  

Bespoke wash and spirit stills were sourced from Tasmania, and Prof Rasko set out to craft the finest pure malted barley spirit for maturation in vintage oak barrels sourced from premium Hunter Valley vineyards.  


Bottling of Two Doctors whiskey is about to get underway, with the first bottles expected to be unveiled in 2022. 

Dr Schwartz said that the partnership to create the Two Doctors whiskey brand was the result of a happy combination of his brewery in the Hunter Valley and Prof Rasko’s interest in creating a whiskey from scratch. 


“Expert barrel tastings of the Two Doctors whiskey have been universally praised and reflect both the investment we’ve made in the process and John Rasko’s passion and skills,” said Dr Schwartz. 


“What will set Two Doctors whiskey apart is that most ‘new world’ distilleries start their process with gin, vodka or rum so that they can get an early return on investment. But we are focussing exclusively on single malt whiskey and we have filled some 200 hogsheads over the past seven years. 

"No other distillery in Australia is likely to invest such high levels of dedication and patience into their whiskey. 


“As a logical extension to the production of the whiskey, I thought we should open a dedicated whiskey bar given that I had a perfect space for such a venue at my Fairmont Resort. With Prof Rasko’s integral role in our whiskey journey, the bar just had to be called the Two Doctors Whiskey Tavern.  


“There is a medical theme to the bar, with various pieces of medical equipment installed as ‘furnishings’, though we are confident that a ‘visit to the doctors’ will be a far more attractive proposition than the usual doctor’s appointment.  


“The Fairmont is a brilliant location for a whiskey bar because the Blue Mountains, with its mist and chill are very reminiscent of many Irish and Scottish locations steeped in whiskey – or whisky – heritage."


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