We began filling barrels with malt spirit back on 28th July 2017.
The whisky we are tasting in our early filled barrels is truly delicious.
We know we have something truly unique to offer to our barrel owners.
Friends of Coburns
With your ownership of a barrel comes a free membership of Friends of Coburns. You will be first to receive invitations to events, dinners and whisky tastings here at Station Lane.
As a Friends of Coburns member are truly a part of the distillery’s story. Together as we watch with anticipation as the spirit matures into a world class Single Malt Whisky.
Ultimately, owners of Barrels will have their own unique bottling of Single Malt Whisky, these bottles can be personalised with your name, company logo, family crest etc.
SELECTING THE BARREL
A lot of time goes into the selection of the barrels that your spirit will be aged in.
Barrels purchases are negotiated many months in advance throughout the year. The distillery buys barrels in large quantities from in Australia as well as overseas.
We have a team of barrel brokers sourcing the just right barrels to create the flavour profile we are aiming for as a brand.
Coburns will fill over 400 individual barrels this year.
As well as your Barrel you will also receive:
An official certificate of ownership
Advanced notification of any future special bottlings
An invitation to all exclusive events we host for barrel owners
Why own a barrel of whisky
Many whisky fans buy a barrel as an investment – for instance the Knight Frank Wealth Report 2019 revealed that Scotch whisky is now seeing greater returns than classic cars, wine, jewellery, diamonds and watches. With bottles of Scotch whisky achieving more than $1M at auction in 2018, the potential for return in entire barrels has never been stronger.
Over the last 10 years, rare whisky has witnessed a 580% increase in value and Andrew Shirley, a Knight Frank partner says that;
“Nothing can be compared with whisky in terms of its profitability, it has proved its status as an alternative investment to oil and gold”
While this may be true, we have found that many more people buy barrels for consumption. Often a group of friends or family club together to buy a barrel, because they may want something to bottle for gifting in the future, perhaps to celebrate a marriage or the birth of a new baby. Others buy whisky barrels because they are fascinated by its evolution, and love to follow the progress of the spirit as it matures.
And that’s part of the attraction: whisky in the barrels goes on evolving in a way that bottled whisky does not. What’s more, every single barrel that we fill is unique: we can fill two identical barrels with the same spirit and put them in our warehouse for the same period of time, and they’ll still turn out slightly unique. This is what makes buying whisky by the barrel so fascinating.
BARREL OWNERSHIP OVERVIEW
The purchase price includes Insurance each year the barrel is maturing. All the storage cost and barrel management are included as well. There are no further charges unless you opt to keep some of the whisky at the end.
All barrels have a buyback contract attached to their sale. The barrels remain in our ATO monitored barrel store at all times.
When the spirit has reach maturity we send you a sample of your single barrel single malt whisky and a summary of the costs for you to keep bottles.
Our buy-back contract allows you keep up to half the whisky in the barrel and the distillery will buy the remainder back. We will bottle and label your whisky as per your instructions.
Imagine having a couple of dozen bottles of your own family single malt. Unlike wine, once bottled your will keep in the bottle whisky forever without significant change.
How the Buy-Back works
At maturity we buy the barrel back on a pro rata basis.
If you opt to keep 50% we will buy the remaining 50% and pay you 50% of the buy-back amount.
If you keep 10% we will buy the remaining 90% and pay you 90% of the buy-back amount.
Suitable for SMSF ownership.
At maturity we buy the barrel back and settle the account with your SMSF.
We can then offer you the option to purchase some of the finished whisky from the same. You pay the same rate per litre to buy as your SMSF was just paid per litre.
So you will not be contravening the rules around SMSF assets.
What do I get and what do I pay extra for?
When you buy a barrel of whisky, storage and insurance are included in the price. We will store your barrel until it has reached maturity at no extra cost to you. There are no hidden fees.
When we buy the barrel back you have the option of keeping and bottling up to half of the whisky to keep for yourself. Bottling does cost extra. See the table below for an estimate on the bottle costs.
Where are the barrels stored?
By law the barrels must remain in an ATO approved and monitored bond store. We store the barrels in one of our bond stores either at the distillery or nearby. The exact location of your barrel storage is stated on the barrel certificate we send out to you.
Who pays for the insurance on the barrels?
The cost of the insurance is covered by us.
When do you buy the barrels back?
Our contract with you means we will have bought your barrel back no later than the end of the buy-back term. The term varies depending on the barrel you are purchasing.
We systematically monitor the barrels on the bond store . The barrels are tasted for the first time when the spirit has been in the wood for 12-18 months. They are tasted again 12 months later and then annually until the spirit has reached maturity.
When the whisky spirit is matured and deemed ready for bottling we will send you a sample so that you can decide if you wish to keep some.
How long does it take for the whisky in the barrels to mature?
Based on experience we expect maturation to take on average around 5 years.
Can I move my barrels to my home?
This is common question. As keen as you might be it is not an easy process to get ATO approval to have a bonded warehouse at your home. Even with ATO approval the Customs and Excise officers can and do turn up unannounced to audit the spirit you have stored under bond. We know because that is what they do to us.
Can I take whisky from my barrel before it has reached maturity?
The simple answer is yes. The real question is would you really want to?
The whisky will be at its best for drinking when it has reached maturity. Up until then the whisky just keeps getting better and better, however once it is bottled it will stay the same as when you decanted it from the barrel. Whisky doesn't age in the bottle.
When the whisky in my barrel has matured can I keep some whisky or do you buy it all back?
Our Buy-Back contract allows for you keep up to half the whisky that's in the barrel at maturity. That said, we have a few barrel owners who have opted to keep all the whisky for use in their bar or restaurant businesses. So this option is possible too.
When I keep some of the whisky in my barrel, how much do you charge me to bottle it?
We charge you our cost price for bottling your whisky.
A good quality glass 700ml bottle will cost approximately $3.50
A custom printed colour label is between $3.00 - $5.00 depending on the volume ordered.
Closurer (cork) and capsule $3.00 <>
When I keep some of the whisky in my barrel, how much tax do I need to pay?
The ATO collects excise tax on all alcohol manufactured and imported into Australia. The tax rate changes every 6 months, in line with the consumer price index. Currently that tax is approx. $23 per 700ml bottle of 40% abv spirit.
As the purchaser is our name listed on the barrels insurance policy?
100% yes. We send you out an insurance certificate to confirm your barrel(s) are list on the insurance policy.
What happens if the barrel leaks while it's ageing?
Barrels don't leak very often, when they do it can often be just a small damp spot on the barrel end/head. They are fairly easy to fix and mostly very little spirit is lost.
That said, when a barrel springs a leak and we do lose some of your precious whisky there are a couple of options on how we can remedy the situation.
We can either replace your whisky with some spirit out of one of our barrels of the same age or we can swap your leaky barrel for a whole barrel of ours of the same age.
Either way we will work with you to find a solution that works for you.