Our Story

 

Distillery 031 was founded in 2008 in Durban by Andrew Rall. The name Distillery 031 was chosen in reference to Durban’s dialing code.  To Andrew Durban is a place of eclectic energy, amazing people, and a climate that is ripe with creative opportunities, a place that he wholeheartedly calls home.

As founder of Distillery 031, Andrew is passionate about creating craft spirits that offer you a distinctly Durban flavour. This unique city holds a gritty charm that reflects the authentic in all of us. Her down-to-earth beauty is familiar, yet still mesmerizing and manages to capture the collective energy of so many colourful cultures and individuals that live here. Everything from beaded jewellery to the Bluff’s Millennium Tower, from the bustling Grey Street to the grandeur of Greyville in July, from the world-class beaches to the iconic Moses Mabhida stadium, from the magnificent Botanical Gardens to Hlabisa’s Shisa Nyama, all seem to feed off one another and create an alluring blend of ‘yes please’.  Firmly rooted in Africa, the diversity of its population brings together a unique mash-up of music, traditions, foods and language, and the resulting fusion is a charisma and character that is hard to find anywhere else. The secret is that the city is filled with fascinating juxtapositions that complement each other and thrive in one of the most affable, all-year-round climates in the world.

Andrew’s journey began in 2000 after a trip to Scotland left him intrigued by the distillation process, and interested in the wide variety of flavours that could come from different single malts. Rum was always Andrew’s drink of choice and on a trip to the US he discovered premium aged rums. In 2007, Andrew converted his garden cottage into a tiny distillery, got a home distiller’s licence and began experimenting in a land that is one of the largest sugar cane producers in the world.

Andrew’s fascination with craft spirits took him to the UK, France, Norway, Brazil and the USA, where he explored very different approaches to spirits. The tiny but growing craft sprit movement, which mirrored the craft beer revolution, caught Andrew’s attention. Having perfected recipes for an initial range of spirits, Andrew had to decide whether distilling was going to be anything more than a hobby.  It was an easy decision and so he began looking for a home for Distillery 031. “Station Drive was the perfect home for the distillery and complemented my vision for Distillery 031, which is to capture the essence of contemporary Durban in the spirits we produce … Durban Distilled.” Andrew Rall