Morris has a global reputation as a maker of outstanding Australian fortified wines. Established in 1859, it’s one of the oldest and most awarded wineries in the country. In 2016, Casella Family Brands acquired the Morris winery and brand, bringing it back into Australian family ownership. With David Morris at the helm as head winemaker, the brand continues to tap into a 160-year lineage and expertise in fortified winemaking.
Despite Morris’ rich heritage and revered reputation, it was experiencing declining consumer awareness. The brand saw an opportunity to reignite interest by branching out into the burgeoning Australian Whisky category—an exciting progression for a brand with the ingredients to make exceptional Single Malt Whiskies. Their treasure trove of award-winning fortified wine barrels and an historic hybrid copper pot column still puts the brand in a unique position. Unlike any other whisky maker in the world, they don’t need to import their fortified wine barrels—enabling a completely self-sufficient approach.
Our brief was to reposition the brand for future growth into the whisky category and to drive its contemporary relevance, whilst being respectful to its fortified winemaking history. In partnership with the innovation team, we built the brand positioning ‘Masters of Flavour,’ a wonderfully bold statement befitting the brand’s pedigree and its full-bodied, flavoursome whiskies and fortifieds.
In analysing the previous identity, the horse stood out as the sole distinctive and memorable asset worth retaining. The new brand identity reimagines the horse with contemporary meaning. Previously presented as the Morris family’s prized show jumping horse of yesteryear, it now represents tamed power, an extension of the barrel story. This progression forward for Morris breathes new life into the brand but still honours the mastery that’s been passed down through the generations.
The client ambition from day one was to push Australian whisky forward. In order to do this, they partnered with global industry experts from coopering, distilling and design. Every aspect of the brand has been reimagined to deliver a new Australian icon of whisky to the world.