The Melbourne Gin Company

From the world’s most liveable city comes its very own Melbourne Gin Company. Established in 2012, MGC sets out to create gin of flavour, character and distinction.

– Melbourne Dry Gin –

Inspired by a cultural capital, the Melbourne Gin Company (MGC) was established in 2012. Founded by Andrew Marks, a Yarra Valley winemaker living in inner city Collingwood. Andrew sought to doff his hat to London Dry Gin by creating the very first Melbourne Dry Gin, pioneering a new local industry while merging twin loves for gin martinis and his hometown.

MGC seeks to pay homage to a city celebrated for its culture and worthy of its own unique spirit. Made in stills that were designed for making perfume, the MGC makes classic gin with a twist of Melbourne. MGC takes an innovative approach to distillation. Its gins incorporate locally grown and native botanicals and fresh local rainwater.

MGC Melbourne Dry Gin was the very first Australian gin to be launched with such ambition and paved the way for the emerging local gin industry.

The MGC is an independent distillery with an artisan production approach. Our gins are hand crafted, batch distilled and non chill filtered.


Capturing the spirit of a cultural capital

While reading Frank Moorhouse’s autobiographical Martini a Memoir, MGC founder Andrew Marks was provoked by the notion that “…every time it is served, the martini represents a journey towards an unattainably ideal drink”. This resonated deeply with Andrew, who year after year pursued perfection in his wines, while understanding that perfection is an unattainable ideal.

The thought of making gin was so daunting and audacious that Andrew couldn’t resist rising to the challenge of turning a dream into a reality.
Andrew became passionate about the idea of developing a gin which paid homage to the London Dry style, while giving it a Melbourne twist. Melbourne born and bred and immersed in the culture of the city, he found the idea of creating Melbourne’s very first Melbourne Dry Gin somewhat subversive and utterly irresistible.
Gin is a refreshing and versatile spirit. The skill in making gin comes down to the distiller’s ability to conceive of, extract and blend flavours. Andrew felt confident that with 20 years of winemaking experience he had the qualities essential to making something special.

Thus commenced a journey into alchemy.


There is nothing more thrilling than taking an audacious dream and turning it into a reality…

In 2011 there were no books on how to make gin, so Andrew took a unique winemaking approach to distillation and taught himself. He distilled botanicals individually to understand the different flavours and aromas that they offered. He then put his blending skills to use, incorporating each botanical to create a harmonious recipe.
While the MGC was established in 2012, it took a year of product development to produce the first MGC release; the Melbourne Dry Gin in 2013. Each botanical was distilled individually then blended together. Thus, it takes 11 individual distillations to make a single bottle.

After 5 years of making the Melbourne Dry Gin, in 2017 Andrew felt it was time to give it an extra twist. He started exploring a new production method by distilling botanicals together in a single distillation. The goal was to use less botanicals for more flavour. To concentrate the juniper and balance it with citrus. Juniper was steeped in alcohol overnight prior to distillation for maximum flavour extraction. Fresh and dried citrus and other botanicals were added just prior to the distillation.

After another year of refining technique to develop a powerfully aromatic juniper forward gin, the Single Shot was born.

Perfume Stills

The MGC uses stills that are designed for making perfume. These stills allow the best expression of delicate botanicals through a gentle distillation process. Botanicals are placed in the “chamber of secrets” at the heart of the still which is surrounded by a water jacket. Heat is applied to the water jacket which transmits a constant, even heat to the chamber, ensuring a delicate extraction.

There are many cross-over botanicals used in both gin and perfume making, and these stills allow spirit of the highest quality to be produced.

Juniper is the foundation botanical for any gin, while citrus provides high notes and earthier tones come from orris root and angelica root amongst others. Native ingredients such as sandalwood, honey myrtle, leatherwood honey and macadamia nut make important local contributions. Fresh local rainwater is used to cut back the distilled spirit.

This heady blend of both local and exotic botanicals is the perfect reflection of Melbourne, a thriving melting pot of culture.

About the Maker

The MGC founded by Andrew Marks.
Andrew was born and raised in Melbourne and lives in inner-city Collingwood.

He is the winemaker at his family property Gembrook Hill Vineyard and makes wine under his own label The Wanderer Wines. Gembrook Hill Vineyard is situated in the Yarra Valley an hour south-east of Melbourne and is where the MGC gins are distilled.

Favourite places in Melbourne include the Royal Botanical Gardens, National Gallery of Victoria, the Melbourne Cricket Ground and the Queen Victoria Markets.