Welcome to the first Medical Forum distilled spirits review with the Republic of Fremantle, an urban distillery located in the historic heart of Fremantle. I was able to visit the distillery before its formal opening last year and was impressed with the Muller still and their process of producing spirit.
Oliver Kitson, Chief Distiller, has a pedigree of working at the Sipsmith Distillery in the UK and bringing his love of all things spirits to Western Australia. Using grapes to produce base spirit is not unique but does involve considerably more time and effort. Having the choice of some amazing West Australian wines to distil and impart their unique flavours to your gins and vodka is rare in the world of distilling.
The Republic of Fremantle has made a big splash in the harbour city with their grape-based spirits and I look forward to trying more of their unique styles of gin and vodkas.
Republic of Fremantle Signature Vodka
Making vodka from wine is a challenge as any small imperfection in the wine is going to run into the spirit. The Signature Vodka is double distilled in batches and non-filtered. There are some subtle citrus aromas and floral hints from the glass, the palate is impressive with a luscious feel and flavours of citrus and apricots. Definitely best consumed ice cold to fill the mouth with flavour. Certainly a vodka to consume straight or would make an awesome cocktail.
Republic of Fremantle Aromatic Gin
The first gin is the Aromatic Gin using Great Southern riesling as the wine base and distilling a concentrate, which is then blended with grape spirit and water to obtain best flavour profile. Tasted neat, the grape aromas are soft and mixed with some ginger, on the palate there is good mouth-fill and roundness to the spirit with grapefruit and ginger flavours. A splash of tonic liberated the juniper and ginger but retained the signature grape origins. Perfect for a summer cocktail.
Republic of Fremantle Full-Bodied Gin
The Full-Bodied Gin is a bolder style and distilled from West Australian shiraz adding some barrel complexity. I found some oak, rosemary and juniper aromas and the palate had some persisting heat from the pink peppercorns. For me this was my favourite, and the textural palate was well balanced, the splash of tonic helped bring out the rosemary and shiraz fruit. A gin style well suited to Vermouth based cocktails and of course a Negroni.
More info about Republic of Fremantle: https://republicoffremantle.com/