Plough's Port Cocktail

Welcome to this week's instalment of Cocktail O'Clock, where I offer you a postulated history of The Plough “barrel”.

This French oak barrel originated as a sherry cask in Spain, potentially dating back to the late 18th century.

The barrel, with its sherry contents, would have been sold to the wine merchants of London during the mid-19th century who were instrumental in exporting the much sought-after beverage throughout Europe.

Once the sherry was consumed by the Poms, the empty barrel would have been sold to a Scottish distillery to age their whisky.

Some time between 1880-1890 the barrel, full of Scottish whisky, was purchased by Brinds Distillery at Dunnstown, who used it to age their brandy after the Scottish whisky contents were sold.

Around 1927, the Brinds Distillery moved their production to the Corio Distillery in Geelong where the barrel continued to be used for aging brandy.

The empty barrel was sold in 1972 to a local winery where the barrel was filled with port. Sometime later, the barrel was cut down due to damage at one end, then re-headed.

In 2015 the barrel was rebalanced to create the perfect excuse to enjoy The Plough’s fireplaces during winter.


60 mL Barrel port

30 mL Cointreau

15 mL lemon juice

Splash of soda water

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice

Add the port, Cointreau & lemon juice

Shake well until chilled

Strain into chilled rocks glass filled with ice

Top with a splash of soda water

GARNISH: dehydrated orange


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