The inaugural release of an ongoing project with friends and neighbours, Poor Toms and Wildflower, combining each other's expertise in the fields of expressive grain fermentations and aroma forward distillations.
The end product comprises ales made with New South Wales-grown heritage grains fermented by a diversity of yeasts and bacteria from native flowers in NSW; these are then single distilled in the German-made hybrid brandy stills at Poor Toms. Originally designed to catch the delicate fermented notes in a brandy, these stills were perfect to retain the full bouquet of the slow, natural fermentations.
A product of patience and thrift, this whisky began its life in 2018 when the team at Wildflower began to select barrels which had outgrown the flavour profiles for their beer by developing excess oak or funk, and asked the team at Poor Toms to breathe new life via distillation before returning it to barrels at Wildflower, which once held beer for ageing.
This first 2023 release is made of a selection of spirits distilled between 2018 and 2020 aged in American Oak ex-muscat barrels which also once held Wildflower beer, 500 litre French Oak puncheons and retired American Oak ex-bourbon barrels.
Tasting notes: On the nose, floral notes of violet, jasmine, and a touch of banana skin, complemented by lychee and subtle buttery oak. On the palate, toasted coconut, milk bottle lollies, juicy malt, confectionary banana, and overripe peaches. Finishes with a combination of paperbark smoke, white ash, and a vibrant hint of mandarin.
We have worked with Australian artist Gemma Smith for the label, appropriately selecting her 2022 artwork titled Excess. Excess formed over many months as Gemma used leftover paint from other projects, repeatedly wiping this superfluous paint onto a new canvas. Gemma has said this about the artwork:
'Excess 2022 emerged while I was making vast luminescent, glazed acrylic paintings. The paintings consisted of one single sweeping gestural layer applied daily with a large haggard raspy brush.
Rather than wash the brush or throw away remaining paint at the end of each layer, I began to wipe the excess paint on a fresh linen stretcher situated awkwardly to the side of the studio. This painting developed over months while my attention was with other paintings. I eventually moved it to where I could view the entirety of the work - from a distance - and was startled by the composition. What a joy to “find” a painting without making judgements throughout its evolution!
I love that this work was chosen by Wildflower and Poor Toms. The affinity of process is startling. This Whisky being repurposed from excess beer.' - Topher Boehm, Wildflower Brewing