We started Thomson Whisky in 2009, selecting old stock New Zealand whisky as independent bottlers. In 2014, we launched the Thomson Whisky Distillery located in Riverhead, North West of Auckland. We consider it our ‘spiritual home’ and it’s where we mash and distil single malt whisky and gin.
With a 1,900-litre copper wash still and a 1,000-litre copper pot still in operation, our space hums with the aromas of all-natural ingredients and the sounds of liquid moving. We cooper our own barrels onsite and take a deep interest in the role wood plays in single malt whisky. A range of ex-bourbon barrels and ex-New Zealand wine casks form the bulk of our aging stocks.
Our pure water is sourced locally, from rainwater. Clouds formed over the Tasman Sea rain down on the forested Waitakere ranges.
The barley grown in the Canterbury plains of the South Island is some of the best in the world. The nutrients captured in the barley express the terroir of our unique New Zealand soil and climate.
The yeast feeds on the sugars in the malt and pulls together the nutrients inherent in the water and the malted barley. It also helps to create the crucial whisky flavours that we are looking for during distillation.
Believers in Craft
Starting with South Island-grown malted barley, we turn local ingredients into New Zealand single malt whisky. There is a magic in it for us, in the transformation of natural and raw materials into a beautiful and highly prized dram.
The alchemy of whisky making is our spiritual home. Working with our hands is what pleases us. When you’re in that space, and you can smell the sweet new make spirit coming off the still, you’re inside the process’.
We see whisky making as capturing moments in time and place.