Live To Ride Magazine Feature


Live To Ride Magazine

I eyed the colourful label affixed to the stylish looking bottle depicting a large saltwater crocodile, jaws agape curled around the words ‘Croc Piss -Original ‘Being a convicted rum drinker and a repeat offender at that I consider myself a seeker of truths when it come to the consumption of new spirits on offer.

My journey has been a long and gruelling search over the years to find MY drop. Oh, and there were some hard lessons and mistakes along the way. So, I felt it was important to share my most recent journey when it comes to new things in liquor.  I feel it’s my duty readers and please, there is no need to thank me.

The damp overcast Saturday afternoon up here in the far flung FNQ Tropics seemed to be the perfect time to assemble some of the nearby collection of fellow heavy weight spirit drinkers to test drive this new locally brewed drop on offer by FNQ Spirits.

It was a fairly eclectic mix of larrakins that turned up I will add. Seated around the table were lifelong Jack Daniels drinkers sitting cheek by jowl with Scotch and Bundy fans with the taste testing crew rounded out by a couple of local dedicated home brewers.

By late afternoon the back patio at Castle Del Pyro was now more a potential crime scene then an afternoon taste test of this relatively new drop. The tunes were cranked up and as tradition dictates, the fresh bottle of Croc Piss was opened with the black metal cap sent sailing into the bin.

The shot glasses were then dutifully filled and issued out to the gathered judges, and it was bottoms up then repeat. Like most of us I love a good Aussie Battler story and after having a yarn with FNQ Spirits owner and Croc Piss Brewer Troy Read, I thought I should share his story with our Live to Ride Readers.

After 18 years of working in Mental Health and Disability Services seems that Troy Read woke with one morning with somewhat of an epiphany. It was time to do something for himself, it was time to start his own local distillery here in Cairn’s and so that’s exactly what he did and when he did, he went all in and just like his products, there was no half measures.

It was no easy road just quietly; others may have given it away. But not Troy. Seems that there was a line-up of  red tape and other nay sayers that were lining up to sink the boots into his dream.

For every answer Troy had for solving some new regulation, a new one was pulled out of some one’s arse to try and stifle his progress. Now with a few years under his belt and together with assistance with his son, things are slowly going his way. The Cairns based FNQ Spirits may be a humble set up, positioned just off the Captain Cook Highway but inside it’s definitely all business, yes sir.

It’s taken a lot of hard work, but their flag ship Croc Piss is now making its way onto bottle shop shelves across QLD and interstate, The Team at FNQ Spirits are not afraid to experiment either. Coffee and Papaya Liqueurs, Vodka, Lime Zello and even a beef jerky have joined the ranks of their product range now and their hard work has paid off big time.

Earlier this year Croc Piss scored the accolade of picking up the 2021 Melbourne International Spirits Gold Award for his rum flavoured offering. This win was paired with a Silver Award for Best Vodka.

Big cheers to that eh?

Like I said, I love a great Aussie Battler story and the awards were a huge ‘up yours’s to those that sort to step over his ambitions.

Getting back to the serious business on the back patio at Castle Del Pyro, the Croc Piss test drive was in full swing. Comparisons were being made, various mixes were being added and the bottle was being drained in very short order with various critique’s being voiced with each shot.

Thanks to Troy Read for sharing your story mate and thanks to Fish, Big Red, Wilkco, Hoon and the Gee -Man for your valued assistance.



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