Mad Laboratory Distilling

Truly handmade using a small homebrew mill and a pump, Mad Laboratory’s vodka is triple distilled and carbon filtered from Armstrong barley and Champagne yeast.

119-618 East Kent Ave., Vancouver


PRODUCTS:

• Mad Lab Vodka
• Mad Lab Gin
• Mad Dog Single Malt White Spirit


TASTING NOTES:


Mad Lab Vodka

FRAGRANCE: Clean, light fragrance of sweet wheat, vanilla, and hints of doughy bread.
FLAVOUR: Very smooth, lightly sweet with notes of black pepper, hint of vanilla.
FEEL: Silky and dry.
FINISH: Super clean, lightly creamy.
BEST ENJOYED: Stirred, straight up with a twist.
THE BOTTOM LINE: Brand new distillery, only the 4th batch made; Mad Lab nailed it. —Wendy McGuinness, July 2016


Mad Lab Gin

FRAGRANCE: Sweet and fruity.
FLAVOUR: Clean and citrusy.
FEEL: Tickling mouth-feel.
FINISH: Spicy, biting.
BEST ENJOYED: In a White Lady (gin, Cointreau, lemon).
THE BOTTOM LINE: A six-botanical cucumber gin that is delicate and nuanced. Very clean tasting. —Robyn Gray, February 2017


Mad Dog Single Malt White Spirit

FRAGRANCE: A brewery in the morning. Lovely. 
FLAVOUR: Toasted pumpernickel bread. 
FEEL: Punchy, then round. 
FINISH: Honey. Long and sweet.
BEST ENJOYED: As a sour. Heavy on the angostura, or even with 10 ml of amaro. 
THE BOTTOM LINE: Not sure about the white whisky trend, but this is a good indicator of the aged spirit Mad Dog will produce. —Josh Pape, October 2017


Fruitful endeavour

Family-owned distillery crafts world-class spirits from homegrown harvests

With its extended growing seasons and miles of fruitful orchards and rolling vineyards, B.C.’s Okanagan Valley is known best as Canada’s wine country. The site of many a weekend winery tour and the occasional fruit stand pit stop, one can hardly say “Okanagan” without also uttering “wine.” A lesser thought of connection? Distilled spirits.

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The heat is on

Cool treats for the summer season

Put a scoop in it: Bella Gelateria mixes their award-winning gelato with classic and new cocktails. Supplied photo

The sun’s out, you’re feeling mellow. What better way to cool down without taking the chill off, than by enjoying a sweet, boozy treat?

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Tropical thunder

Kristi-Leigh Akister expands The Union’s bold, exotic repertoire

In Vancouver, you’re more likely to inherit an incredible cocktail program and back bar these days than have to build one from scratch. That said, there’s always room to improve.

Take Union bar manager Kristi-Leigh Akister. The vibrant young bartender stepped into the role established by Cascade bar manager Nick Devine and 17-year industry veteran Arthur Wynne just over a year ago, and has since established an innovative new cocktail menu and rotating draft list to pair with the restaurant’s Pan-Asian bibimbaps and bahn mis.

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Enter the dragon

Is Baijiu the new tequila?

Baijiu is beginning to make its mark on western cocktail menus. Lou Lou Childs photo

As unlikely as it sounds, the infamous Chinese firewater baijiu—a pungent brew capable of bringing tears to eyes and setting throats ablaze—could be the hot new ingredient for bartenders.

Clear, potent (50 per cent-plus alcohol by volume) and often compost-pile fetid, the centuries-old spirit distilled from sorghum and other grains is also the world’s most consumed liquor.

Never heard of it? You’re not alone.

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Gin fizz

The gin and tonic is sophisticated again

Whistler’s Bar Oso is just one of many drink-forward destinations elevating the traditional gin and tonic. Pat Allan photo

Jason Redmond expected to be impressed by many things about Spain, but he couldn’t have guessed the biggest takeaway from his trip last summer would be a new take on a humble highball.

“I was really surprised at the big signs outside all the little cafes and bars claiming they were selling the best ‘Gin Tonic,’” the bar manager of Whistler’s Spanish-influenced Bar Oso recalls.

“It was a really big deal, and one I had no idea about beforehand.”

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