Discover Tasmanian award-winning gin

Discover the pure ingredients that make Tasmanian gin so incredibly unique during a visit with Scenic to Turner Stillhouse, just outside of Launceston. Here, we chat with founder and owner Justin Turner, about his distillery and award winning gins.  
On a Scenic handcrafted land journey during the new, 11-Day Tasmania Revealed 2022 itinerary, guests will enjoy a visit and tour of Tasmania’s multi-award winning distillery, Turner Stillhouse.  
Located in the Tamar Valley overlooking the Tamar River, just outside of Launceston, you will visit the small-batch distillery for a tour and tasting, sampling their Three Cuts Gin.  
Originally from Northern California, Justin Turner came from a family with a background in the wine industry, having owned a winery themselves. Justin met his Tasmanian wife in New York City where he was living at the time.   
“Ultimately the passion I felt for the distilling industry (having grown up around a winery) won out over my corporate life.  I moved to Tasmania three years ago to formally launch the distillery and released our first gin (Three Cuts Gin "Founder's Release") shortly thereafter,” says Justin. He is joined in the business by Tasmanian distiller, Brett Coulson who has spent many years working for Tasmania’s largest brewery and has a shared passion for quality craft spirits.  
As Justin says, he first fell in love with a Tasmanian – and then with the Tasmanian food and beverage scene. “It is a magical place with the purest ingredients and most creative, innovative producers.  While most distilleries are based in industrial yards and mostly clustered around Southern Tasmania, I found an amazing location in the heart of the iconic Tamar Valley wine region, just 15 minutes from Launceston.  I took over the lease on an old winery with amazing views overlooking the Tamar Valley,” he says.  
The architect-designed distillery was renovated from an old winery. The goal, says Justin, was to take visitors on a journey.  “We are quite unique, in that visitors can view all the production down on the distillery floor while enjoying a tasting or cocktail up above in the distillery bar, with views over the Tamar River.  We also offer daily tours for those that want an inside look at how we produce our award- winning spirits.”  
Turner Stillhouse produce an award-winning range of Three Cuts Gin as well as a number of different types of whiskies that are patiently aged in barrels for at least two years.  The portfolio of gins under the Three Cuts banner include: Founder’s Release, Distiller’s Release and two barrel aged gins.  A few other special releases are being developed for release in the coming year.
“Founder’s is slightly lighter and more versatile, where Distiller’s is the bolder gin of the two,” says Justin. “We also have a few barrel aged gins in ex-Tasmanian wine casks that have proven to be quite popular.  The highest award-winner is our ‘Distiller’s Release’, having taken out Double Gold and Gold medals in some of the most prestigious competitions internationally.” 
To prepare for his venture, Justin spent time training at a few craft distilleries in the States, as well as spending time in Scotland for some advanced education and training.  “Visiting the historic distilleries there really provided context of the history of distilling and inspiration for some of the spirits and distillery design we create,” he says.  
Evolving with new experimentations, Justin says they are currently working on a cherry gin, “utilising the best cherries in the world grown near our distillery.” They are also contemplating “playing around” with some rum distillations.   
Justin has a penchant for citrus based cocktails and currently a ‘Southside’ cocktail is his drink of choice. “The fresh lime and mint really complement our gin,” he says.  
He looks forward to welcoming Scenic guests to his special part of the world and sharing his love of gin.  
“We hope that our visitors come to appreciate the effort and unique methods and ingredients put into crafting our spirits, and by doing so understand how special spirits can taste when distilled properly in small batches,” says Justin. 

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