How a love of gin put Victoria Distillers on the map
Almost a decade ago, Peter Hunt and his family made a decision that changed their business model forever: they bought a still. The family-run winery soon recreated themselves as Victoria Distillers, and their gin quickly became one of B.C.’s best-recognized local spirits.
In the 17th century, American colonialists replaced the whisky in their toddies with rum. Then some genius added a pat of butter to the concoction while another added baking spices, and so they created the gloriously unctuous drink we know as hot buttered rum.
Brrrr – it’s chilly out there. Must be toddy time. With the mercury plunging below zero these past few weeks, Vancouver’s bartenders have been brewing up pots and pots of toddies, mulled ciders and other steamy beverages. Open the door to just about any drinking establishment – from the pop-up Winter Terrace at Reflections (in the Rosewood Hotel Georgia) to Juniper Kitchen & Bar in Gastown – and you’ll be greeted by the seasonal aroma of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. And this is especially true at the Cascade Room on Main Street.
Smoky and tropical, this cocktail created by Katie Ingram, bar manager of L’Abattoir, is a perfect pick-me-up for a chill day.
• 0.75 oz (20 mL) Del Maguey Vida Espadin Mezcal
• 0.75 oz (20 mL) French sweet vermouth
• 0.75 oz (20 mL) Heering cherry liquor
• 0.5 oz (15 mL) pineapple juice
2 tsp (10 mL) orange juice
1 tsp (5 mL) lemon juice
2 dashes Bittered Sling Autumn Bog Cranberry
We launch our new weekly cocktail column, The Alchemist, with the hottest drinks of the season
What’s the best way to get into the festive spirit? Why, with some festive spirits, of course.
All over Vancouver, the city’s best bartenders are shaking, stirring and mulling the best seasonal flavours into cocktails designed to warm body and soul. And truly, can you think of a better way to bring this cold, dreary year to a close?