B.C. Spirits Gift Guide: 2021 Edition

Start your festive shopping now.

Photo courtesy of Okanagan Spirits

In a holiday season with some international supply-chain blips, shop local—and shop soon!—for B.C. small-batch spirts holiday gifts. Limited-edition and seasonal items sell out fast, so if you happen to miss out this season, get on e-newsletter lists or follow distilleries on social media to watch for the next drop, and be very nice (not naughty) until next year. Many items from last holiday season are bound to be available again, so check out last year’s guide, too.

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Female spirit

Meet some of B.C.’s women distillers, a group so small it begs the question: Why are there still so few?

Shelly Heppner, founder and distiller of Bespoke Spirit House in Parksville. Photo by Dayman-Langen Photography

March 8, 2020, likely passed in a blur for Shelly Heppner. Around International Women’s Day, she was firing up her brand-new stills to produce Virtue Vodka and Jezebel Gin at Bespoke Spirit House in Parksville, which received its distilling green light in February. “Gin is such a vixen! I do want to have a couple of different gins that will have female-oriented names,” says Heppner, who also plans to make small-batch eaux-de-vie from Vancouver Island fruit.

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Fernie Distillers

Fernie Distillers photo

Co-owner with her husband Andrew Hayden, Jillian Rutherford is one of the few female distillers in B.C. They established Fernie Distillers in 2006 in a historic building in downtown Fernie, where they produce small-batch spirits inspired by their vibrant community.

531 1st Ave., Fernie

Read more about Fernie Distillers:

Female spirit


• No. 9 Mine Vodka
• Fernie Fog (Earl Grey Liqueur)
• Prospector Gin
• Seasonal spirits (limited)