The hugely popular gin festival, Junipalooza, has enjoyed five successful years in Melbourne and was due to launch in Sydney in 2020, before being COVID-cancelled. But organisers are delighted to lock-in Sydney’s first festival for August this year.

Melbourne’s Junipalooza will follow in October, but Sydneysiders will get their first taste of the festival at Carriageworks on August 28 and 29.

Gin Queen, Caroline Ashford, explained to The Shout, what sets Junipalooza aside from other gin festivals.

“We have a model that is consumers first, brands second and us third, and so we always want to make sure that the consumers have the best experience possible and so do the brands. We have never been about maxing out the number of vendors, we’ve never been about maxing out the number of tickets.

“No-one wants to come to a festival and have to stand 10 deep to talk to a distiller. No one has a good time at that kind of festival, so that’s always been at the heart of everything we do.”

She added: “Junipalooza is also very different, because our mission statement has always been ‘Meet the Maker’, so we don’t sell stands to brands who cannot guarantee that their distiller will be at the event for the entire weekend.

“We don’t sell to brand ambassadors or distributors, those guys are very welcome, but it has to be distillers on the stand. That has obviously been a challenge for international brands, but two years ago Desmond Payne was on the Beefeater stand for the entire weekend. So that’s the level of commitment that we get from our brands and that’s the big point of difference for us – we want to show consumers, these are the people who are making your gin.”

Junipalooza has been a firm favourite of London, Hamburg and Melbourne gin enthusiasts since it began seven years ago, with its unique meet the maker policy giving fans access to the people behind the brands they know and love.

Talking about the Sydney event, festival co-founder Emile Ward says “We were gutted to have to delay our launch in Sydney in 2020, but with the support from our distilling friends and gin enthusiasts, we are more excited than ever to bring our unique gin event to The Carriageworks in Sydney.”

There are three sessions over the weekend, with the Sunday session one hour longer.

Tickets divided into tranches, so for those who like to get organised in advance first release tickets are $40. Second release pricing starts at $50.

Saturday 28 August: 11.00 – 15.00

Saturday 28 August: 16.00 – 20.00

Sunday 29 August: 11.00 – 17.00

Tickets are now on sale via Eventbrite, and more details about the show and what to expect can be found on the Junipalooza Sydney website.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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