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June 29, 2023

A crowd-pleasing gin designed at the bar

Five colleagues from a bar-laden Adelaide laneway have combined powers to create a gin that aims to be, above all else, broadly appealing.

  • Words: Johnny von Einem
  • Main image: Johnny von Einem
  • Other pictures: Supplied

When two Scotts (Quick and Taddeo) and two Matts (Holding and Harrison) first discussed creating their own gin, they thought they knew exactly what they wanted.


Laneway Beverage Co.
Gin makers
Browse the range here.


All members of the quadruplet are involved in bars along Peel Street (Alfred’s, Malt & Juniper and Jennie) where much gin is served, and so, naturally, conversation often turned to what they’d do if they made their own.

“Obviously, working in the bars, we all had some kind of palate for gin, and some interest in making it,” says Matt Harrison, who works at Alfred’s.

“Me and Matty (Holding, a Malt & Juniper co-founder) would bounce ideas off each other for tasting and deciding what’s going to go on the back bar, so you’d decide what you do and don’t like.

“We purchased that little guy,” he says, pointing to a Tom Thumb pot-still above Malt & Juniper’s back bar, “put our heads together and said, ‘Let’s make some gin’.”


Beginning just before the pandemic, the Scott-Matt collective conferenced once a week in Scott Quick’s pool shed, testing different botanical combinations. The aim was to find the recipe for their ideal gin.

What they initially wanted was a bartender’s gin – complex, a real thinker. They aimed high, using a Pink Pepper Gin as a guiding light, but realised their reach was exceeding their grasp.

“None of us are distillers, but through trial and error we were finding there was just something we didn’t like in the product that we were getting,” says Scott Taddeo, co-founder of wine bar Jennie. “And researching into that more, they’ve got heaps of technology that they’re using to get there.”

Through these trials and errors, they realised they’d fallen into an ego trap regarding the type of gin they were trying to make.

“People like us are only probably five per cent of the market,” says Scott T, referring to he and his bartender mates. “So making something challenging or that appeals to our own tastes wasn’t the right idea to start with.”

The Scott-Matts changed tack and aimed for “a pretty, beautiful, citrus-forward gin”, slowly accumulating feedback from customers over their various bars as they went.

What the team ended up with as their debut product, the All Day Dry, is a “consumer-friendly gin that you want to bring on grand final day, or your lunchtime barbecue at the beach. Something that’s really sessionable,” says Scott T.

All Day Dry’s design process took years, and by the time of Laneway Beverage Co.’s launch, the group had become a quintuplet, adding non-Scott-Matt member Lachlan Harrison (who does share a surname with one of the Matts) as a sales rep.

Scott Quick, Lachlan Harrison, Scott Taddeo, Matt Harrison, Matt Holding


Since launch, Laneway Beverage Co. has added a second product: the Full Monte Gin, which is a wine-based spirit, made using Barossa Montepulciano fruit, and Matt (Holding this time) says there’s an array of drinks the crew hopes to explore in the future.

“That’s sort of why we went with ‘Beverage Co.’, so we can branch out into different styles of beverages… [We] don’t want to pigeonhole ourself into just being distillers or doing gin,” he says.

“The next progression would be to get our own site, get our own still, get our own production facility,” adds the other Matt (Harrison).

“I don’t think we’ll ever stop learning. We’ll always be tweaking, trying to improve on it.”


For Scott Quick – who, as a founder of Alfred’s, Malt & Juniper and Jennie Wine Bar, is the hub from which the Laneway Beverage Co. spokes originate – the opportunity to expand his hospitality portfolio into production makes simple sense.

“Being able to sell our own product in our own bars is an absolute win,” he says.

But it was also a way to provide further opportunities for his staff – some of whom are now business partners.

“Working with all of the guys previously, it’s that progression of when you have a good team that you can develop and move towards different things as time moves on,” he says.

Laneway Beverage Co.’s All Day Dry and Full Monte gins are currently available at the website.

Look for the stubby amber bottle on the back bar of your favourite drinkery.

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