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Issue 104 - Drinking in the Garden City

Whisky Magazine Issue 104
June 2012


This article is 6 years old and some information provided may be time sensitive. Please check all details of events, tours, opening times and other information before travelling or making arrangements.

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Drinking in the Garden City

Davin de Kergommeaux takes us round this island city

It's a 60 mile trip by sea ferry to get to Victoria, British Columbia from either Seattle or Vancouver.

As the ferry threads it's way through dozens of small islands, travellers just might be lucky enough to see a pod of orcas. The aptly named “Garden City” sits, a world apart, on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.

Victoria, a pretty, impeccably well kept place with a population of just under 350,000, is a warm and welcoming city with an intimate small town feel. Its climate is Canada's mildest with pleasantly warm and dry Pacific Ocean summers and flowers in bloom year round.

It's no surprise then that Victoria attracts some 3.5 million visitors each year. Those millions of visitors and the billions of dollars they leave behind support a service infrastructure that far exceeds most cities of similar size.

A whisky drinker's tour stops no fewer than seven times. The proximity of the watering holes to each other simply begs for a good old-fashioned college pub-crawl.

Better to spread it out over a few evenings though. The drams in some of these establishments will have you lingering long over your glass.

1022 Government Street, Victoria, B. C.
Pub owner, Matt McNeil strives for service and atmosphere. “We don't have set tastings, Matt says: “rather, we have flights for our guests to try on their own.” “The whisky scene here in Victoria has a great following. A lot of younger people especially are open ...

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