Justin O'Shea and Maurice Terzini's Goldy gin is a fashionable tipple

Scarcely a week passes by these days without the launch of a new premium gin, but few will make a splash quite like Goldy.

The spirit was distilled in London but has big name Aussie backers in maverick menswear designer Justin O'Shea and fashion and hospitality entrepreneur Maurice Terzini, most famously of Bondi restaurant Icebergs.

Terzini says he jumped at the chance when approached by his good mate O'Shea to be the local ambassador and distributor for the brand.

He says it is a classic London Dry gin with juniper and citrus at the fore, in contrast with the prevailing trends in Australian distilling.

"We've been in business for 20 or 30 years and I've pretty much always served classic drinks. It's worked really well for me," he says.

"We like that classic dry style, we don't like anything too botanical. I'm not a fan of Hendrick's at all, it's not a gin that I can drink a lot of.

"It just tastes like gin," is his simple assessment of Goldy.

Goldy moment

Terzini met O'Shea when the designer had his first Icebergs dining experience several years ago.

"He was introduced by a mutual friend and I thought ʻCheck out this dude in head-to-toe Rick Owens! Thatʼs not an everyday Oz look'," O'Shea recalls.


"We soon became friends and as expected we had similar interests and shared the same views on life and business.

"When Goldy began I went to Maurice and told him about it. He was immediately down with the project. However it wasnʼt until we did the tasting that we decided to work on a bigger partnership for Australia."

O'Shea's keenness to work with Terzini is understandable given the restaurateur and publican's extensive hospitality networks.

"We're quite lucky that we're friends with people who run some of the best bars and restaurants in the country," Terzini says.

"We've got a real diverse mix [for the gin]; Two Hats, One Hat, no hat."

For the people

However, he is quick to stress that Goldy is "a gin for the people", which is why Thursday night's launch was held at his Surry Hills pub The Dolphin, rather than Icebergs in affluent Bondi.

"The fact we're launching it in the public bar seems to be the right fit, rather than some fancy restaurant or bar," he says.

"We don't really want it to be an elitist tasting where it's all about the eastern suburbs."

Gin is in

Goldy joins a throng of new gins on the market in Australia, with many of the newcomers locally owned and distilled.

"There are now over 100 Australian gins being produced but the overall reach is limited," says Kathleen Davies of specialist Australian spirits distributor Nip of Courage.

"Gin aside, more than 99 per cent of spirits consumed by Australians are foreign made and owned so there is plenty of room for growth and market share for Australian producers."

Check out our selection of the hottest new gins on the market in Australia.