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Issue 104 - In a Land of Giants

Whisky Magazine Issue 104
June 2012

 

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In a Land of Giants

Davin de Kergommeaux looks at the explosion of distilling in Western Canada

Suddenly, Western Canada has become a hub of whisky-making activity. It wasn't that long ago that three major whisky makers in Alberta and a fourth in Manitoba represented the full extent of Western Canadian whisky making. Yes, millions of litres of Canada's finest whisky are still made at Alberta Distillers, Highwood Distillers, and Black Velvet Distillery in Alberta, and at the Crown Royal plant in Gimli, Manitoba. These giants are now joined by a growing number of small players, the micro- and nano-distillers that patiently turn out one barrel of whisky at a time.

ALBERTA DISTILLERS
1521-34 Avenue SE, Calgary, Alberta
No consumer website
Visitors not permitted

Alberta Distillers is probably Canada's best-known distillery among aficionados. This is largely because over the past 60-odd years the Calgary distillery has produced more high-rye-grain whisky than all the rest of the distilleries in North America combined. In fact, Alberta Distillers is without question the largest producer of 100 per cent rye-grain whisky in the world. Connoisseurs know and covet Canada-only bottlings of Alberta Premium and Alberta Springs. However, many don't know that this distillery also makes the internationally popular Windsor Canadian brand, nor that Windsor too, is made with a significant amount of rye grain.

HIGHWOOD DISTILLERS
114-10 Avenue SE, High River, Alberta
www.highwood-distillers.com
Visitors not permitted

The quirkiest of Canada's distilleries, Highwood is still ba...

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