Master distiller Adam Chapman and Michael Conrad try a drop as their Cavu Distillery readies to bottle and distribute its first Sunshine and Sons brew from their facility behind the Big Pineapple. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.
Master distiller Adam Chapman and Michael Conrad try a drop as their Cavu Distillery readies to bottle and distribute its first Sunshine and Sons brew from their facility behind the Big Pineapple. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.

Distillery owners take a shot at huge new operation

A BREWER passionate about local produce and supporting boutique industries is in high spirits as he prepares to ship out the first orders of Sunshine and Sons vodka and gin from his new distillery, located behind the Big Pineapple.

Cavu Distillery co-owner Michael Conrad said he and business partner, ex-Sirromet winemaker Adam Chapman, had worked full-time since November to install all the infrastructure needed to become one of Queensland's "largest craft producers".

Mr Conrad said he would be "ecstatic" to produce 50,000L of spirits in Cavu's first year, with the first orders ready to be distributed from tomorrow.

Cavu Distillery co-owner Michael Conrad has big plans to become the best rum brewer in Queensland. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.
Cavu Distillery co-owner Michael Conrad has big plans to become the best rum brewer in Queensland. Photo Patrick Woods / Sunshine Coast Daily.

Mr Conrad, formerly of Brisbane's Newstead Brewing Co, said after seven years in Brisbane's craft beer brewing scene he saw the $150 million Big Pineapple revamp as a major drawcard to establish his own Sunshine Coast base.

Mr Conrad said while it was early days, he ultimately wanted to help create a "hub of beer" on the Sunshine Coast with medium-term plans to create a microbrewery and bar within the Big Pineapple venue, which would feature other local brews on tap.

But Mr Conrad said the secret to their future success was a unique blend of organic molasses and locally-sourced spices which would sit in oak barrels, maturing for two years to become "Australia's best rum".

While they wait, Mr Conrad said Cavu Distillery would produce gin and vodka infused with local botanicals and bush foods with hopes to grow the workforce from four people to 12 by Christmas.


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