Local distillery owner inducted into Australian Distillers Hall of Fame

May 10, 2024 BY

VFF vice-president Danyel Cucinotta said that the project which launched in April 2020 will continue to help shift the dial towards zero on-farm deaths and injuries

BELLARINE Distillery co-owner and co-founder Lorelle Warren has been inducted into the 2024 Australian Distillers Hall of Fame.

The Hall of Fame was introduced in 2022 and honours those who have made a significant contribution to the Australian spirits industry.

The inaugural inductees included Bill Lark, Cameron Syme, Patrick Maguire and posthumously Raymond ‘Spike’ Dessert, with Lyn Lark and Stu Gregor joining them in 2023.

Ms Warren said she had no idea about the award and feels honoured to be inducted alongside those who are “legends of Australian distilling.”

“It’s a huge acknowledgement to be in the same company as people like Bill and Lyn Lark and the guys from Four Pillars,” she said.

Announced at the Australian Distillers Conference Gala dinner in Brisbane on April 30, Ms Warren was the eighth inductee.

Ms Warren owns the Bellarine Distillery alongside husband Russ Watson as well as Nicky and Craig Michael, and says have all contributed significantly to the region in providing a place for people to come and creating a sensational product.

“For our little distillery with what we’ve done down here is a huge honour, and it’s not just mine, I just happened to be the person who they awarded it to.”

Lorelle Warren is only the eighth inductee to the Australian Distillers Hall of Fame.


The Bellarine Distillery and their distillery door experience, the Whiskery, have been operating in the region for six years, producing gin and whisky.

Ms Warren was recognised for her significant contribution to the Australian distilling industry, as part of that she played a pivotal role in securing $20 million of Victorian state grants that are helping Victorian distilleries.

Now a committee member for the Victorian Spirts Association, she deals with the Victorian government and creating educational opportunities, safety and compliance within the industry.

“I’m the one that makes a lot of noise if I can try to get support for the industry and promoting it,” she said.

Ms Waren has done everything at the distillery from making the product and cooking the pizzas to doing the accounting and tax work in the office.

She now takes on more of an administration role as she tries to ease her way into retirement.

For more information, head to bellarinedistillery.com.au