Momento Hospitality is set to open Hills Distilling Co., a small-batch distillery and bar in Rouse Hill, on Friday 15 April.

Hills Distilling Co. is producing gin, vodka and Australian white malt. The small-batch distillery is a labour of love for Momento Hospitality’s beverage team, with the idea borne out of the covid era.

“Opening a distillery in Rouse Hill is driven by our mission: to foster memorable experiences and forge lasting connections within our community,” stated Hills Distilling Co. general manager Mirza Baig.

“Our commitment to educate, entertain, innovate, and uphold quality standards ensures Hills Distilling Co. is an immersive experience. From learning about the raw ingredients to savouring the final product, we like to take the local community on a journey. It’s about cherishing moments, forging connections, and celebrating the spirit of our community.”

Hills Distilling Co. general manager Mirza Baig making cocktails.

The ethos for the distillery focuses on handcrafted excellence, using fresh, locally sourced ingredients. The gin, Article no.9, is led by juniper’s evergreen profile, intertwined with cascara berries, coriander seed, pepper berries and wattle seed.

The Australian white malt is made in partnership with neighbouring local brewery, Australian Brewing Co. Double-pot distilled from a bespoke Amber ale recipe, the amber malts create a chocolatey silkiness, and the distinctive biscuity character of German rye elegantly merges with a light caramel sweetness.

Adding to the bespoke nature of the small-batch production, every bottle is filled, polished, and packed at the distillery and signed with a mark from the maker who bottled it. Ready-to-serve garnishes and salts have also been created.

The micro-distillery set-up.

Encompassing a bar as well, the design of the venue was led by architectural firm Archebiosis, with a brief to keep it functional and industrial. The venue comprises the mezzanine level with tanks for blending and a selection of barrels for ageing different products, which will be released once matured. On the ground floor is the Cellar Door with bar, retail space and tasting table for groups of six. Gin tastings will be held every Friday from 3-6pm, with a selection of premium mixers and unique cocktails. To complement the drinks there is rotating menu of handmade dumplings by chef Sebastian Tan from JINJA.

An open plan seating area has tables for up to 12 guests and barrels for up to 10 standing, where you can book in on Thursdays, 3 – 6pm, and experience Gin production with guided tours of the production space, or gin-making masterclasses. During the masterclasses snack on Italian bites such as cheese and charcuterie by Chef Alex Keene from Sarino’s.

Hills Distilling Co. is the first opening of the year for Momento Hospitality, which is currently completing construction on the highly anticipated Oran Park Hotel in south-western Sydney. In a social media post update, the group stated that the ground floor of the sizeable hotel will be opened mid-year, encompassing a main bistro and lounge, function spaces, kids playground, a central courtyard and all-weather outdoor terrace, a pizzeria, sports bar, bottleshop and car park with a dog wash.

The second stage of the Oran Park Hotel build is expected to be completed later in the year, consisting of the upper levels of the hotel. These levels include more function space, boutique cinemas and a Jinja rooftop bar – following on from the success of Jinja restaurant at The Governor Hotel in Macquarie Park.

Archebiosis Architects are also working on Oran Park Hotel, with the build handled by Versatile Construction.

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