Walking into the Cuprum Distillery building, you would never guess it to be a former bus depot. We have transformed the space into a modern space that exudes charm and attention to detail. However, we have reserved parts of the building’s history, with the former service pit being re-fashioned into the distillery cellar, where barrelled Rum will be stored to age in the ideal, steady temperature.
Cuprum Distillery was born as a passion project, created in order to develop the ‘Spirit of the South West” by using local botanicals and flavours. We saw a gap in the Bunbury market, meaning it would be the only of its kind in the area.
After researching the market and the required equipment, we were hit with the reality that the waiting list for manufacturing was over 12 months long. Keen to get started as soon as possible, we decided to take things into our own hands and build Cuprum with what we could source locally. Luckily for us, we had Glen (AKA Woodsy) on our side, a very clever, retired boiler maker and copper smith who accepted the challenge to build two beautiful traditional, Alembic copper pot stills. These took Woodsy nearly 12 months to build and the results are incredible. Designed in Bunbury, they will infuse our spirits with a completely unique flavour profile – we are confident that there is nothing quite like them in the world.
The stills are essentially a copper kettle used to boil off liquids and separate alcohol from a solution. The vapour that comes off the still then passes through a chamber and is condensed back into a liquid at the other end. The complicated part of making the still was creating the Copper bulbous chamber (what we call the Onion). Woodsy made a wooden shaped mold and copper strips were then cut and formed over the mold and pressed into the Onion shape and welded together with special welding rods. This process took weeks to complete and requires a lot of skill. What we are left with is a very unique, handmade product which adds a very personal touch to our spirits.
Not only did we handmake our stills, we built and adapted all of our equipment, a mission that took around 2 years to complete. We sourced and recycled ex dairy industry tanks, and adapted these to our needs and polished them up to look like new.
But the job is not over yet. Cuprum Distillery is ever-expanding vision, and we have the parts to make a third still which we expect to have completed within the next 12 months. Our priority is to start producing our spirits so that we can get them out onto the market for everyone to experience and enjoy. The sales will assist in us growing the business and investing into more equipment to allow our next chapters to unfold. We are very excited for the journey ahead!