Got Spirits? Craft Distillery Crawling in Vancouver

Photo credit: Raelene G | Flickr

Photo credit: Raelene G | Flickr

Craft beer is so 2012.

The latest wave of Vancouver’s craft revolution is spirits.  Nearly half a dozen craft distilleries are now operating or will soon be opening around the city, offering local gin, vodka and more.

Here are a few places to sip on a unique craft distillery crawl of Vancouver:

Odd Society Spirits: Just opened in East Vancouver, Odd Society specializes in its truly homegrown East Van Vodka.  Made with 100-percent B.C. barley, it’s described as a “sipping vodka,” with more flavour than the mass-produced stuff.  The off-beat tasting room seats 20 and sits on the edge of the industrial waterfront.  1725 Powell St.  

Long Table Distillery: The first of Vancouver’s new wave of craft distilleries, Long Table is located downtown on Hornby Street, not far from the Burrard Bridge.  Behind the tasting room counter is a massive, 300-litre copper pot still, used to make their London Dry Gin (with notes of coriander and citrus) and Texada Vodka (infused with lemongrass).  1451 Hornby St.  

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Got Spirits? Craft Distillery Crawling in Vancouver

Are Craft Beer Lounges Coming to Vancouver?

Photo credit: John Biehler | Flickr

Photo credit: John Biehler | Flickr

Anyone who’s been to wine country knows the pleasure of visiting a winery, strolling the vineyards and then enjoying a glass or two in the winery restaurant.

Imagine if you could do the same thing with beer.

That dream may soon become a reality in Vancouver.  Nearly a dozen local craft breweries and distilleries have applied for licenses to open tasting lounges, according to the Vancouver Sun’s Randy Shore.  That means patrons may soon be able to sit down and savour a beer at the brewery, something nearly impossible to do now. Continue reading:
Are Craft Beer Lounges Coming to Vancouver?

Inside Long Table Distillery – Vancouver’s First Craft Distillery

IMG_20130419_082742Is Vancouver getting a Distillery Row of its very own? Long Table Distillery, Vancouver’s first craft or “micro” distillery in decades, opened doors softly in February at 1451 Hornby Street.

I recently stopped by to taste their botanical gin and Texada limestone-filtered vodka. I also wanted to catch a glimpse of the Christian Carl copper still: a gorgeous, shiny beast visible behind their tasting counter.

Although I was imbibing at 11am, nobody judged. Owner Charles Tremewen was on hand to guide my tasting and tell his story. Charles and wife, Rita, were inspired to start the business after a romp in Portland’s legendary Distillery Row. Charles has a background in local, sustainable businesses and a fine appreciation for a dry martini. In short: he didn’t see why Vancouver–with access to crystal clear mountain water and BC inputs like foraged juniper, wild ginger and mountain ash–didn’t make its own small-batch, locally-sourced spirits.

Long Table currently retails two spirits from their distillery and tasting room. Their best, in my opinion, is the London Dry Gin which runs $50 for 750ml. It’s robust, infused with with eight botanicals including the obvious juniper, with lesser notes of coriander and citrus, and floral hints from additions such as angelica, pepper and fennel.

The Texada Vodka ($45 for 750ml) stands up to sipping neat, although it would perform in a cocktail. It’s got a heavier mouth feel than your typical vodka, with a whisper of lemongrass and a mineral finish that comes from being filtered through limestone from B.C’s Texada Island.

You can try them by visiting Long Table on Fridays and Saturdays between 12 noon and 6pm. The tasting part is free.

Go behind the scenes at Long Table Distillery after the jump.

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Inside Long Table Distillery – Vancouver’s First Craft Distillery