Rough Hands is releasing New Zealand’s first Applejack

What is Applejack?

Applejack is a traditional American style apple brandy. Fruit spirits, especially apple and peach based brandies, were common throughout the early days.

Tree ripened apples are fermented cool and the resulting brandy is stored in charred oak barrels for at least three years, so it tastes a lot more like a bourbon than a traditional brandy.

I want some! Where can I buy some of this New Zealand Craft Spirit?

We now have a site and webstore just for ELSEWHEN.

Elsewhen: Giving Applejack A Star Turn

About 5 years ago we had a dream (based on a literal dream) of turning apples into something never before made in NZ. Since then we have been quietly filling barrels, knowing that time was really the key.

Well, the wait is coming to an end. Those apples have transformed into something better than gold. If you want to be part of our launch, follow us on Insta or Twitter (@roughhandsnz), or sign up to our email list. #waitforit

Herbal Ciders

Herbal Ciders for New Zealand Cider Festival


As apple brandy makers, we are mad keen about apple based cocktails, so we began exploring the ways to make spritzy fun cocktails with apple as the base. If a spritz is traditionally an herbal liqueur (amaro) with prosecco and a bit of soda water, can we substitute cider for the bubbles? Or even better, can you make a cider that seems like bubbles with liqueur? Can you make distinctly local ciders inspired by both light bright Venetian spritzes and the darker complex amari spritzes?

The New Zealand Cider Festival gave us an excuse to keg up two of the delicious results. These herbal ciders, made by infusing premium cider with our own bespoke all natural herbal blends, will take you on an adventure you just might not expect from cider!

DAY (Herbal Cider)

Bright – Citrus – Fun

Exceptional apple cider made from local tree-ripened fruit, infused with our proprietary bright herbal blend packed with 9 traditional herbs, including lots of fresh zest, hibiscus and rhubarb. Sparkles with a sunny afternoon vibe.


NIGHT (Herbal Cider)

Dark – Rich – Complex

Premium cider from tree-ripened Moutere apples, oak aged with our own dark herbal blend full of 15 exotic herbs and spices including chocolate, artichoke leaf and warm spices. Evokes a mysterious speakeasy feel.