There is something so warm and cozy about fall. With the arrival of brisk, sunny days, it’s the perfect time to settle in with a glass of something rich and inviting. This issue, we’re all about spirits. Along with an array of fabulous fall-inspired cocktails, we feature bourbon, Scotch and other dark spirits, all perfect pours to sip on as the season turns. We offer classic, comforting recipes with the everyday meal in mind, and menus perfect for entertaining. So, pull out your favourite sweater, curl up with a glass of something delicious and embrace the beauty of fall. With the many spirited articles featured here and the highly anticipated Premium Spirit Release just around the corner, you’re sure to fall for spirits this season!


12.5% ABV

7.0% ABV

5.9% ABV



Sipping on Sunshine

SUSIE KNIGHT CREATIVE DIRECTOR/MANAGING EDITOR Susie leads the content and creative direction of taste and holds the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Level 2 Certification. Born and raised in Vancouver, she is passionate about creating a quality magazine for BC customers and loves producing beautiful images to showcase the recipes and products. During spring you’ll find Susie sipping on a rosé spritz. CAMI TORGERSON EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Cami leads the creative strategy at BCLIQUOR, providing the overarching vision for retail store design, graphics and taste . She has always had a passion for design, creating beautiful spaces, images and campaigns that connect emotionally to today’s consumer. Her advice for design: “ever evolving, and a step ahead on the latest trends.” Cami enjoys sipping aromatic wheat ale in the spring. CONNIE HUI EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Connie leads the marketing team for BCLIQUOR and is responsible for creating innovative ideas for the brand and magazine. Her in-depth experience in marketing and consumer research allows her to capture the trends that readers are most interested in. She enjoys running and yoga and is an avid foodie. Her spring drink of choice is a crisp Sauvignon Blanc. LYDIA DEL BIANCO CDP SENIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNER Lydia has a BFA from UVic and has studied internationally at the master’s level with SVA and SCAD. She was the senior designer on taste from 2009 to 2022 and now leads the in-house design team at BCLIQUOR. Lydia is passionate about typography and branding, and enjoys gin and tonic in the spring. RAISA HASANEN GRAPHIC DESIGNER Raisa has a BDes from Emily Carr University of Art + Design and more than 15 years of experience in design. She sees life through a creative eye and finds joy in developing rich visual narratives that engage audiences. In the spring she enjoys sipping on a classic Guinness. DIANE SMALLWOOD DIGITAL IMAGING SPECIALIST Diane has a diploma in graphic and visual design and over 25 years of experience in design and production. Her specialty on taste is bringing out the best in the photos. She holds the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Level 2 Certification. Diane celebrates with rosé Prosecco in spring. KERRILYN CHENG MARKETING PRODUCT SPECIALIST Kerrilyn is an Italian Wine Scholar and French Wine Scholar through the Wine Scholar Guild and she holds the Wine & Spirit Education (WSET) Level 3 Certification. She enjoys creating fun food and beverage pairings to share with friends and readers. In the spring Kerrilyn enjoys an Empress gin sour. CAROLINE RIEDEL MENSING ASSISTANT COORDINATOR Caroline has a degree in social communication with a major in marketing and advertising. She has experience working with magazines in Brazil and is passionate about photography. She loves travelling and exploring new places. Caroline likes to sip on a White Rabbit cocktail in spring. focus on consumer behaviour. She enjoys curating food and beverage experiences for curious palates, and her culinary, travel and hospitality experiences are an asset to the taste team’s creative process. In the spring, she sips on a single malt Scotch. CAITLIN REID CONTENT & PRODUCTION COORDINATOR Caitlin holds the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Level 3 Certification and a Master of Business Administration with a

It’s time to shake of the shackles of winter and welcome spring! Let us help you transition into sunnier days with local sour beers and fresh BC ingredients. And don’t miss out on the exciting new BC VQA wines being released in BCL this April. Enjoy inspirations for entertaining and garden get-togethers, perfect for Mother’s Day, Easter and everything in between. Get ready to explore Pinot Grigio, rosé wines, non-alcoholic, low-calorie and refreshment beverages, all perfect to welcome in the season. So, pour yourself a glass and get ready to sip on some sunshine this spring!










Country of Origin refers to where the product comes from.

Santa Margherita Valdadige Pinot Grigio Italy $22.99 106450 This benchmark Pinot Grigio from Val d’Adige offers a dry and refreshing taste with distinctive aromas of Golden Delicious apple that pair perfectly with springtime meals. Santa Margherita Trevenezie Rosé Italy $22.99 447568 An ode to colourful Venetian sunsets, this rosé incorporates Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. Delicate floral aromas greet the nose, and flavours of red berries dance across the palate.

Dry includes many popular red wines (e.g., Bordeaux, Chianti, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir) and white wines (e.g., Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio). Sparkling wines labelled as Brut will also be very dry on the palate. In the former codes, wines would have been labelled as 00. Dry wines have less than 5g of residual sugar per litre. Semi-Dry wines have a hint of sweetness in the mouth and include many Pinot Gris, Rieslings, Gewürztraminers and California reds. In the former codes, wines would have been labelled as 01 to 02. Semi-dry wines have 6g to 24g of residual sugar per litre. Sweet wines will have noticeable sweetness but not enough to be considered dessert wines. Many Moscatos and German wines labelled with the terms Spätlese or Auslese will be included. In the former codes, wines would have been labelled as 03 to 07. Sweet wines have 25g to 79g of residual sugar per litre. Very Sweet wines include the famous dessert wines of the world, like Sauternes, Tokaji Aszú, port and sweet sherries. In the former codes, wines would have been labelled as 08 to 10. Very sweet wines have 80g or more of residual sugar per litre.


New products have been in market for three months or less.

Only@ BCL products are available only at BCLIQUOR stores.

BC VQA wines with the BC VQA designation are 100 percent grown, made and bottled in BC. VQA stands for Vintners

Quality Alliance.

BC Craft Beer is BC-made and small batch.

BC Spirits are distilled and bottled in BC.

Ontario VQA wine. Similar to BC VQA wines, Ontario VQA wines are 100 percent grown, made and bottled in Ontario.

Organic products with this designation are certified organic.

Kosher products with this designation are certified kosher.

To inquire about advertising opportunities, please contact Susanne Knight at taste.magazine@bcliquorstores.com. Prices are subject to change without notice. In the event of any error or omission published in this magazine, the product description and display price in the liquor store will prevail. Products in this publication will be available as of March 2024, unless otherwise noted. Quantities may be limited. Items with very limited quantities are distributed only to Signature BCLIQUOR stores. Visit bcliquorstores.com to locate any products sold at BCLIQUOR stores and for up-to-date pricing information. Prices do not reflect sales and do not include taxes or container deposit. Vintages may vary.

taste magazine is printed on 10 percent recycled paper using vegetable-based ink.

View taste online

https://www.bcliquorstores.com/ taste/current_issue

taste magazine is a publication of BCLIQUOR TM .


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taste magazine BCLIQUOR 3383 Gilmore Way, Burnaby, BC V5G 4S1 Susanne Knight 604 252 8722 taste.magazine@bcliquorstores.com


IN EVERY ISSUE 24 THE COCKTAIL MENU Featuring Asian spirits. 28 WHAT’S NEW? Find out what everyone is talking about. 50 ON TREND Here’s what’s hot for spring. 57 PRODUCT

CONSULTANT’S CHOICE Our experts share their favourites.



Explore our exclusive selections.

85 RAISE THE BAR Q&A Our expert has the answers to your spirited questions. 95 SPECIAL EVENTS 96 RECIPE INDEX 96 TASTE TEST KITCHEN 112 THE LAST WORD Featuring BC Pinot Gris.

36 MOTHER’S DAY GARDEN PARTY Celebrate mom with a sunny garden party. 40 SPRING INTO FRESH FLAVOURS 42 PRETTY PASTELS

LOCALLY YOURS 6 PUCKER UP FOR SOUR BEER There’s no better style to reawaken the taste buds for spring! 10 BC SPOTLIGHT: FORT BERENS

Check out what’s new for spring!

Cheers to the season with these beautiful spring cocktails.


What seemed like a gamble has paid off in spades for this Lillooet winery.


Cheers to St. Patrick’s Day with any of these Irish favourites.

NON‑ALCOHOLIC FOR SPRING Discover the selection of non‑alcoholic options we have in store.

12 FROM FOREST & FIELD We take inspiration from the hard-working foragers and farmers of BC. 16 LOCAL LEADERS Five leading women share their favourite products. 20 BC VQA RELEASE: SIP LOCAL WITH LOVE

74 DEVILISH EGGS A classic recipe with a twist! 76 SIPPING CONSCIOUSLY A global tour through eco-friendly wines. 80 EASTER DELIGHTS A classic yet elevated menu that’s sure to impress. 86 PERFECT IN PINK You’ll find a rosé perfect for any occasion. 88 DESSERT SHAKE UP Shake things up with these stunning Asian-inspired desserts. 93 EXPLORE LOW CALORIE Keep things light with these low-calorie options.


Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in style with a tequila tasting and a delicious menu to share.


SOUTHERN FRANCE This spring break, transport your senses to the sunny South of France.

You won’t want to miss out on these brand new offerings from BC.


These wines showcase the true expression of the place they were grown.


SUNSHINE IN A GLASS With its versatility and refreshing nature, Pinot Grigio is the perfect spring sipper!

A whimsical garden getaway, perfect for any special occasion.




It is always a delight when someone takes time to visit our estate – whether it’s a walk through the vineyard or a special occasion dinner in our wine library – this is the place where you can always come to relax. It’s also a place of discovery. A place to learn about wines in our tasting room or how to enjoy them through an evolving restaurant menu. This is your place to create new memories with old friends or perhaps to simply enjoy an introspective moment with a spectacular view.

Celebrate the true beauty of BC with our “Locally Yours” section. Along with delicious recipes featuring local ingredients paired with BC wine, beer and refreshment beverages, we bring you local stories, spotlights and talents from the industry. Discover all that BC has to offer this spring!



Spring has arrived, and it’s time to embrace vibrant, lip-smacking sour beers. In this season of renewal and regeneration, there’s really no better style of beer to reawaken the taste buds. PUCKER UP FOR SOUR BEER


JAMES NEVISON is an award-winning wine writer, an educator and the co‑founder of HALFAGLASS. He is the wine columnist for The Province, where his column “Wine Guy” appears each Thursday. James is the co‑author of seven best‑selling books on wine in Canada, including Had a Glass 2015: Top 100 Wines Under $20. Follow his wine musings @hadaglass.

“What at first sip were likely brewing mistakes have been embraced over time as delicious… beer styles.”

Why Is the Beer Sour? Let’s be clear: sour beers are sour on purpose—at least nowadays! Modern sours are intentionally “soured” during the brewing process by introducing various yeasts or specific bacteria. Typically, these are strains of probiotic Lactobacillus or Pediococcus bacteria— though adding Brettanomyces mould (a.k.a. “Brett”) can amp up a beer’s acidity. Alternatively, fruit can be added to the brew kettle, naturally introducing tartness thanks to its inherent citric acid.

been embraced over time as delicious, quintessential beer styles. We’re talking the spontaneously fermented and fruited Belgian lambics, the barrel-aged Flanders red ales (or Flemish reds), the light and tart Lactobacillus -imbued Berliner Weisse, and the refreshing herb and salted goses. Sour Beers Today While classic sour beer styles continue to be enjoyed, brewers globally have embraced their own takes on refreshing and tart brews. In British Columbia, inspiration comes through traditional methods—for example, by allowing wild yeast to work its fermenting magic. It also comes from using brewing techniques to control the souring process and reduce the risk of failed batches of beer. It can also mean incorporating local fruit into the brew kettle for unique sour beer flavours.

A Modern Twist on Tradition Some local breweries start with homage, then add their twist. Nick Andersen, strategy manager for Moody Ales & Co., explains the Lavender Sour “was initially conceived as a tribute to gruit, an ancient beer style, and evolved.” Gruit, which is infused with spices and bitter herbs, was popular before hops became widely available.

A Brief History of Sour Beers

Making sour beers has a long tradition, though historically the results haven’t always been so purposeful. What at first sip were likely brewing mistakes have

A Happy Accident, the Origins of Nectarous Sour Brent Mills, Four Winds Brewing’s director of brewing operations, recounts what led to the brewery’s award-winning sour:

Brent Mills, Four Winds Brewing, Director of Brewing Operations

“One Friday our boiler broke, and we had a kettle full of saison that was either gonna be dumped or experimented with. This was our opportunity to try this extreme procedure of souring the whole batch in the kettle over the weekend. Monday morning came, and we got our boiler up and running, and the wort in the kettle was nice and tart. We boiled for a short while, added some Galaxy hops and fermented with a wild yeast strain. Five weeks later, Nectarous was born!”

Four Winds Nectarous Dry‑Hopped Sour BC $15.99 148203 4 × 473 ml “The acid and tropical profile of

[Nectarous Dry-Hopped Sour] needs to be paired with some rich cheese: try a cave-aged Gruyère or provolone.”




Focus on the Fruit Other brewers incorporate tart and tangy using local fruit. Phillips Brewing & Malting Co. keeps the alcohol level lower while amping up the sour with a cornucopia of different fruit—from peaches to apricots, nectarines to strawberries. As brewmaster Todd Fowler explains, “Our Dinosour beers are exceptionally refreshing and fruit forward and a great alternative for those who don’t necessarily like the taste of traditional beer or who want to mix things up with ales that embrace the balance of sweetness and acidity.”

The brewery infuses lavender flowers into every batch of their unique sour beer, “producing a slightly tangy floral beer.” Similarly, 33 Acres Brewing Company starts with gose, then incorporates Vancouver Island salt as well as fresh lime zest and juice before conditioning on mezcal oak. As production manager Will Cordon explains, they wanted a beer true to “the imagery of a hot summer day with your feet in the sand, listening to the waves, [that] screams out for a margarita.” This one “is approachable for everyone to enjoy.”

Likewise, there’s no hiding the fruit in Field House Brewing Co.’s Dark Sour. Local blueberries and blackberries abound in this unabashedly bold, lip-smacking ale. Parker Reid, head brewer, explains: “This beer was made for a mini-bottle series…. Out of the series, we loved Dark Sour so much we decided to re-brew it as a stand-alone, and the rest is history.” With so many styles within the sour beer scene, your options are just as diverse. Try one or try them all!

Field House Brewing Dark Sour BC $17.29 358278 4 × 473 ml

Moody Ales & Co. Lavender Sour BC $13.99 201985 4 × 473 ml

33 Acres Brewing Exp. Mezcal Gose BC $13.99 418729 6 × 355 ml “Mezcal Gose’s acidity and lime lend themselves well to pair with spicy al pastor carnitas or to complement any beach day.”

Phillips Brewing Dinosour Jurassic Pack BC $23.29 425221 8 × 473 ml “The acidity helps to cut through rich flavours and brighten up any dish. Lighter foods like salads, brie, sushi, fish tacos, pork tenderloin and cheesecake pair exceptionally well.”

“The Dark Sour pairs really well with most desserts. And if you want to do a berry twist on a mimosa for a breakfast treat, replace your Prosecco with Dark Sour.”

“The floral and citrus notes in our Lavender Sour pair well with lemon meringue pie, dark chocolate or lightly dressed spring greens and hearty fish like salmon and tuna.”

Parker Reid Field House Brewing Co., Head Brewer

Todd Fowler Phillips Brewing & Malting Co., Brewmaster

Nick Andersen Moody Ales & Co., Strategy Manager

Will Cordon 33 Acres Brewing Company, Production Manager



BC Spotlight Fort Berens: Trailblazers

Heleen Pannekoek & Rolf de Bruin Founders

Lillooet may seem like a surprising place to find fine wine, but Fort Berens Estate Winery has been producing award-winning wines here for more than a decade. And this very dry region, which lies 180 kilometres northeast of Vancouver in the rain shadow of the Coast Range, is one of British Columbia’s (BC’s) newest designated wine-producing areas, or Geographical Indications (GIs).

The Visionaries When Heleen Pannekoek and Rolf de Bruin first envisioned their winery, they figured it would be in the Okanagan Valley. However, with vineyard values soaring there, they opted to look elsewhere—and on the advice of the late Harry McWatters, the grandfather of BC wines, they landed in Lillooet. Trial plantings of grapes on the area’s benchlands had been underway since the 1970s, with several varieties proving promising. Establishing a commercial vineyard in the region was still a bold move, a real gamble of sorts. Initially, in 2009, the Fort Berens co-founders and co-owners planted Riesling, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. They relied mainly on Okanagan fruit to make wines while their vines matured, but today Fort Berens Reserve and Small Lot wines are made entirely with estate-grown grapes. Their other wines use a high and ever-increasing percentage of these grapes.

A Growing Region Lillooet may be outside of BC’s traditional wine regions, but conditions are “just as good as in the Okanagan,” says Pannekoek. “The quality of the grapes is just fabulous,” and “tasting is believing!” The Lillooet GI extends some 100 kilometres along the Fraser River, with most suitable vineyard land on benches between 250 and 400 metres above sea level. Growers measure the heat of a climate in growing degree days, and Lillooet’s is similar to Osoyoos’s. In summer the mercury in Lillooet can push well beyond 40 C (104 F). But winds off nearby Seton Lake help keep the temperature around 35 C (95 F). Those optimal growing conditions and the potential for between 3,000 and

Fort Berens Riesling BC VQA $23.99 641357 Upfront orchard and citrus fruits lead to a juicy green apple and grapefruit palate that pairs with everything from mild curries to chips and salsa.

Fort Berens Meritage BC VQA $32.99 78113 Forward red and black berries emphasize a plush and plummy palate, with cassis and vanilla notes wrapped in approachable tannins that marry well with grilled meats and strong cheeses.

5,000 acres of cultivated land are drawing others to investigate the area. Pannekoek reckons that can only enhance the industry more.


TIM PAWSEY is a well-travelled food and wine writer at various publications, including WHERE Vancouver, Quench, SIP, Vitis, The Alchemist and others. Find him at hiredbelly. com and follow him on Twitter and Instagram @hiredbelly and Facebook @TheHiredBelly.

Raising the Bar At Cederberg, Nel won a coveted Best in Show (top 50) ranking at the Decanter World Wine Awards. He has his sights set firmly on another Decanter win. Lillooet has the right conditions: “It’s a completely dry climate that makes for super-healthy grapes. And that diurnal shift, with hot days and cold nights, is exactly what you want to make elegant styles of wines.” Also of note, winds off Seton Lake mitigate any wildfire smoke. Nel really enjoys working with Cabernet Franc and Riesling, both new varieties to him. There’s also a sparkling wine in the works, and he has introduced a more sophisticated barrel program. Nel is truly convinced that Fort Berens belongs in the same league, which means we can look forward to more award-winning wines from this blossoming region. Awards & Accolades Fort Berens unveiled their inaugural estate‑grown releases in 2012. Two years later, the 2012 Estate Riesling won a prestigious BC Lieutenant Governor’s Wine Award (beside only 11 other wines from the entire province). Since then, the winery has expanded production and increased plantings to 37 acres. Their wines continue to win notable accolades and awards from Decanter World Wine Awards, Wine Press Northwest and many more. In 2022, Fort Berens was named #3 in the Top 10 Small Wineries at the National Wine Awards of Canada.

Meet the Winemaker In 2021, Fort Berens appointed highly respected South African Alessandro (Alex) Nel as winemaker. The opportunity to make wine in an undiscovered region appealed to Nel. He and his wife, Tammy (an accomplished winemaker in her own right), had studied in Stellenbosch, and then worked in New Zealand, Sonoma, Burgundy and the Rhône Valley before heading home to the highest- elevation vineyards in South Africa. Cederberg is 250 kilometres north of Cape Town and “pretty isolated,” says Nel, which is why they were also intrigued by the chance to work in Lillooet.

“We wanted to experience a new destination, something new and exciting, which BC is: upcoming and different…. Once we got here, we were delighted to discover the outdoors and open spaces and, as it turns out, a special little spot with some great wines.”

Alessandro (Alex) Nel Winemaker



From Forest & Field

Mushroom Polenta Board


JERAMIE ADAMS is a chef, recipe developer and food stylist. After earning his chops working in restaurant kitchens for 25 years, he hung up his whites and turned to marketing, working as Culinary Lead at Picnic Creative. He is an avid collector of cookbooks, vinyl and bad jokes.

Nettle Soup with Leek Top Oil

pairs with Mushroom Polenta Board

pairs with Nettle Soup

Quails’ Gate Pinot Noir

Calliope Figure 8 White

Did you know? If you want to make this soup out of season, spinach can be substituted in for nettles, for an equally delicious dish. Pair with BC wine and you are set!

BC VQA $34.99 585760 This complex Pinot Noir is destined to match with mushrooms. Earthy potpourri notes plus flavours of red cherries, baking spice and cocoa reveal themselves in the silky medium-bodied wine.

BC VQA $21.99 333880 Named after the figure- eight flight pattern of a hummingbird, this blend of Viognier, Gewürztraminer and Sauvignon Blanc offers whimsical floral notes with pear and lemon flavours up front.



For recipes, go to bcliquorstores.com and the index on page 96.

pairs with Morel Mushroom Dumplings

Osoyoos Larose Pétales d’Osoyoos BC VQA $37.99 343103 An extraordinary value, this Bordeaux-style blend offers the right balance between fruit and volume. Gourmet red fruit, savoury spices and a kiss of oak linger on the memorable aftertaste.

pairs with Morel Mushroom Dumplings

Nk’Mip Chardonnay BC VQA $22.99 626408 Yellow apples and lemon zest notes shine in this light and creamy Chardonnay, while toasted oak and milk bread flavours work effortlessly with the salty umami richness of mushroom.

pairs with Mushroom Polenta Board

Saintly The Good Rosé

BC VQA $19.99 78989 This angelic rosé has aromas and flavours of wild strawberry, grapefruit and orange blossom. Blessed with a cheerful pink hue, this rosé is a versatile pairing with practically anything.

Morel Mushroom Dumplings



Roasted Leek & Kale Galette

pairs with Roasted Leek & Kale Galette

pairs with Roasted Leek & Kale Galette

pairs with Nettle Soup

Fern Walk Sauvignon Blanc BC VQA $18.99 593624 With a feathery fern on the label, this BC Sauvignon Blanc evokes petrichor and grassy aromas on a spring morning walk. Kiwi and passion fruit flavours shine on the palate.

Tinhorn Creek Merlot BC VQA $26.99 530725 A powerful but approachable Merlot that delivers ripe dark cherry and mulberry flavours with touches of cedar and warming spices on a medium-bodied palate, with lively acidity on the finish.

Gray Monk Riesling

BC VQA $20.99 321604 This spring, enjoy a bright and racy off-dry Riesling from a notable producer in Lake Country. Delightful notes of lime, peach and melon are balanced with refreshing zesty minerality.




British Columbia’s (BC’s) thriving beverage industry has garnered appreciation from around the world. It’s nurtured plenty of local talent too, from brewing and winemaking masters to cocktail and spirit authorities. An ever-increasing segment of these industry specialists are women. Here are five who have forged their own path and are leaving lasting impressions. leading women of BC’s beverage industry share their favourite picks

Miki Ellis Restaurateur & Sake Specialist

Miki Ellis is co-owner of Dachi, a lively bar and restaurant in the Hastings-Sunrise neighbourhood, and Elephant, an 18-seat eatery in East Vancouver. She grew up in Vancouver, in a household passionate about food and wine. At age 19, she completed the Wine & Spirit Education Trust Level 1 Certification. “I was hungry to learn more about beverages,” she says. Later, through the Sake Education Council in Portland, Oregon, Ellis learned the history of century-old producers and exciting new styles of craft sake, which she shares through sake programs and sake lists she’s been developing in Vancouver restaurants for more than a decade. “It’s an industry tied to incredible tradition matched with a new generation of innovative and brilliant brewers,” she notes. “It’s a ginjo-style sake that provides beautiful floral and citrus aromatics and a crisp, dry and refreshing palate. It’s great for a sushi party.”

Yoshi No Gawa Gokujo Ginjo Premium Sake Japan $18.79 735191 300 ml


DAENNA VAN MULLIGEN is a Vancouver-based wine journalist, but is typically found in the world’s vineyards. She is also a wine judge, accredited sommelier and international speaker. Daenna is publisher of the long-running websites WineDiva.ca and Winescores.ca. She has been published in numerous local and internationally distributed publications and is a regular contributor to Vines Magazine and, more recently, Montecristo Magazine . Follow her @thewinediva.

Julia Hanlon Director of Brewing and Blending Operations, Steamworks Brewing Co. Born and raised in BC, Julia Hanlon is a chemical and biological engineer. However, two decades ago, after a visit to Belgium where she found people’s reverence for beer infectious, she decided to make brewing her career. Hanlon got her start with Molson Brewery in 2006, during which she completed her Diploma in Brewing with honours from the Institute of Brewing & Distilling in the United Kingdom. Hanlon became Steamworks’ head brewer in 2015. “I love Steamworks because we’ve been a company committed to innovation. There’s always something to learn, and I work with committed, creative and fun people,” she shares. “Why choose one beer when you can try four? This pack contains our Flagship Hazy IPA, Pale Ale, Heroica Red Ale and my desert island beer, Pilsner.”

Steamworks Mash‑Up 8 Tall Can Pack BC $21.99 862375 8 × 473 ml

Kelcie Jones Sommelier & Wine Educator

“A classic that’s drinkable and effortless yet subtly elegant. This fresh and zesty white wine pairs with spring salads, crudos and pastas and is farmed with the utmost care for biodiversity in the vineyard.” Vancouver-born Kelcie Jones caught the wine bug waiting tables while completing her BA and MA in English literature at the University of Toronto. Instead of staying on to do her PhD, Jones flew to France to work a wine harvest. “I love how social and communicative wine is, but I missed the academic side, so I applied to the Master of ine program two years ago, which has been deeply rewarding and challenging,” she acknowledges. Jones, awarded BC’s Best Sommelier 2023 by the BC Chapter of the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers, also teaches wine courses through This is Wine School, a business she started with friends. “Being both a student and a teacher means I read and taste a lot, which is ideal!”

Tiberio Trebbiano d’Abruzzo * Italy $24.99 82402



*Visit bcliquorstores.com for availability.

We are Committed to Making a Difference Whether it is recycling glass and cardboard, saving energy or being carbon neutral, BCLIQUOR is committed to making a positive impact on the environment.


Reece Sims Owner, SIP Spirits

Benromach 10-Year-Old Speyside Single Malt

Victoria-born Reece Sims completed her Bachelor of Commerce with distinction before discovering the drinks industry in 2015 while bartending at Gastown’s famed Irish pub, The Blarney Stone; she had found her calling. Sims travelled extensively studying wine and spirits, gained experience at several Vancouver bars and started a whisky blog. Then she launched SIP Spirits, a boutique agency focused on in-person and online whisky and spirits tastings, industry professionals and brands. She also writes articles about spirits for taste magazine. “It’s great value and a fantastic introduction to the world of peated single malts. It provides an exceptional balance of fruit, maple, nuttiness, spice and smoke. It also serves as a great base in cocktails.”

Scotch Whisky United Kingdom $74.99 74548

Lyndsay O’Rourke Owner & Winemaker, Tightrope Winery Okanagan summer holidays were memorable for Vancouver-born Lyndsay O’Rourke. She’d become aware of the region’s burgeoning wine industry, but it wasn’t until she moved to Whistler that she found a true appreciation for food and wine. In the off-season, the village’s restaurants offered deals on three-course meals, and those meals fed her increasing interest in wine. A decade later, with her husband, Graham O’Rourke, she dove in. The couple studied winemaking at Okanagan College and then at Lincoln University in New Zealand, earning Bachelors of Viticulture and Oenology. Then, she explains, “we bought a 10-acre apple orchard on the Naramata Bench, which we converted to grapes in 2007.” In 2012 they started making sustainably farmed handcrafted wine under the Tightrope Winery label and built the winery in 2014. “It is fruit forward with lemon, crisp apple and pear notes. It’s a real springtime crowd-pleaser that pairs with veggie fajitas or prawns in a lemon butter sauce.”

Tightrope Pinot Gris * BC VQA $23.99 368605



*Visit bcliquorstores.com for availability.


April 6 th


On April 6, BCLIQUOR will release a selection of brand new BC VQA wines in select stores across the province. Spring is the perfect time to celebrate our local wines from the beloved Okanagan Valley to Vancouver Island, Lillooet, Thompson Valley and beyond. The release is an opportunity to showcase small, family-run wineries as well as new varieties and vintages from existing, well- loved brands. The wines will be released into 137 stores with each one getting a specially curated selection depending on its size and location. Quantities are small, and wines will be available for only a limited time, so be sure to visit bcliquorstores.com for product availability and event updates. This is the perfect chance to explore all that BC VQA has to offer.

Vanessa Vineyard Merlot 2019 BC VQA $47.99 52189 Located in Cawston and crafted from 100 percent estate-grown hand-picked fruit, this Merlot opens with a deep cassis aroma on a full-bodied palate rich with cocoa-dusted raspberries, tobacco and bramble fruit.

Black Hills Alibi 2022

BC VQA $35.99 129114 This harmonious blend of Sauvignon Blanc brings green apple, gooseberry, passion fruit and minerality, while Semillon adds sweet pear, lemon zest and baking spice with a subtle creamy and nutty undertone. Little Farm Pied de Cuve Orange 2022 BC VQA $34.99 22338 Using naturally occurring yeasts on the skin of grapes, this natural wine is orange in colour with subtle cloudiness. Expect a zesty phenolic grip with stone fruit, floral and baking spices.

Culmina Saignée 2019

BC VQA $26.99 72549 Named after a method of rosé winemaking, this wine displays strawberry, melon and stone fruit aromas on a fuller-bodied palate with generous red fruit flavours upfront and lingering floral notes.

McWatters Collection Chardonnay 2021 BC VQA $34.99 616102 A beautifully textured and creamy Chardonnay offering intense notes of toasted brioche and caramel. On the palate, baked apple pie and vanilla flavours shine. Enjoy with bacon-wrapped pan-seared scallops.

JoieFarm Pinot Noir 2022

BC VQA $35.99 885145 A pretty style of Pinot Noir previews juicy cherries, red beets, wild fennel and blood orange flavours. The subtle tannins and refreshing acidity make this a versatile pairing with almost any meal.



Sip into



The Cocktail Menu featuring Asian spirits

Dragon Eyes



DAVID WOLOWIDNYK is a Certified Specialist of Spirits and a founder of the Canadian Professional Bartenders Association. He is accredited nationally and globally, holding titles such as “World’s Most Imaginative Bartender” (Bombay Sapphire), “Canada’s Best Mixologist” (Grey Goose) and “Bartender of the Year” ( Vancouver Magazine ). David is an influential veteran in Canada’s cocktail culture.

Dragon Eyes

Presenting a thoughtfully balanced combination of dragon fruit, rice vodka, green grape soju, hibiscus, lemon and soda, this cocktail pays tribute to the Year of the Dragon.

5 × ½-in (1.25 cm) cubes dragon fruit (save more for garnish) 1 oz (30 ml) Suntory Haku Vodka 1 oz (30 ml) Jinro Chamisul Green Grape Soju ½ oz (15 ml) Hibiscus Cordial * ¾ oz (22 ml) fresh lemon juice 2 oz (60 ml) soda water

In a cocktail shaker, muddle 5 pieces of dragon fruit, then add vodka, green grape soju, Hibiscus Cordial and lemon juice. Add cubed ice, shake vigorously and fine strain over new ice into a Collins glass. Top with soda water and garnish with cubes of dragon fruit on a cocktail pick.

Suntory Haku Vodka Japan $47.99 211833

Jinro Chamisul Green Grape Soju South Korea $8.79 30195 360 ml

* To make Hibiscus Cordial, pour 10 oz (300 ml) boiling water over 2 hibiscus tea bags and steep for 5 minutes. In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup (250 ml) steeped tea with 2 cups (500 ml) granulated sugar and simmer to dissolve. Transfer to a clean bottle and allow to cool, then seal and refrigerate for up to 4 weeks. Makes 2 cups (500 ml).


Named after a bustling Japanese epicentre, this cocktail offers serenity among the chaos with a balance of Asian botanicals.

1 oz (30 ml) Suntory Roku Gin ½ oz (15 ml) Nakano Umeshu Japanese Plum Wine ½ oz (15 ml) lychee nectar (from canned lychees) ½ oz (15 ml) Jasmine Green Tea Cordial * ¾ oz (22 ml) fresh lemon juice

Place a cocktail coupe in the freezer for 5 minutes. In a cocktail shaker with cubed ice, combine gin, plum wine, lychee nectar, Jasmine Green Tea Cordial and lemon juice. Shake vigorously and fine strain into chilled glass. Garnish with edible flowers, if desired.

Nakano Kuni Zakari Umeshu Japanese Plum Wine Japan $12.99 568907 300 ml

garnish with edible flowers, if desired

* To make Jasmine Green Tea Cordial, pour 10 oz (300 ml) boiling water over 1 tsp (5 ml) jasmine green tea leaves and steep for 5 minutes. In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup (250ml) steeped tea with 2 cups (500 ml) granulated sugar and simmer to dissolve. Transfer to a clean bottle and allow to cool, then seal and refrigerate for up to 4 weeks. Makes 2 cups (500 ml).

Suntory Roku Gin Japan $50.99 211842





Roku™ Gin, 43% Alc./Vol. ©2024 Beam Suntory Import Co., Chicago, IL.


Matcha Sour

The exquisite harmony of matcha flavour is enhanced by the infusion of floral and spice elements of the Saigon Baigur Gin and Yuzu.

½ tsp (2.5 ml) matcha powder, plus more for garnish 1 tbsp (15 ml) hot water (175 F/79 C) 1 egg white 1½ oz (45 ml) Saigon Baigur Gin ¾ oz (22 ml) Nakano Obaachan’s Yuzu Shu ¾ oz (22 ml) fresh lemon juice ¾ oz (22 ml) Simple Syrup * garnish with edible flowers, if desired Place a coupe glass in freezer for 5 minutes. In a small bowl, whisk matcha powder and hot water to make matcha tea. In a cocktail shaker, combine egg white, matcha tea, gin, yuzu, lemon juice and Simple Syrup. Shake without ice (dry shake) to emulsify ingredients. Add ice and shake vigorously, then fine strain into chilled coupe. Garnish with edible flowers, if desired.

Matcha Sour

* 1:1 ratio of granulated sugar dissolved in boiling water. Allow to cool before using.

Saigon Baigur Dry Gin Vietnam $64.99 432925 700 ml

Nakano Obaachan’s Yuzu Shu Japan $18.79 235135 300 ml



fnd out what everyone is talking about

Trapiche Ed Edmundo Malbec

Victoria Distillers Empress 1908 Cucumber Lemon Gin * BC $54.99 322076 A new gin by Empress 1908 inspired by the flavours of afternoon tea. Fresh, crisp garden cucumber and lemon peel shine alongside juniper, spice and fragrant jasmine notes.

Argentina $19.99 332872 Deep red in colour, this Malbec promises notes of ripe plum and violets with a whiff of vanilla smoke. It’s an approachable medium-bodied wine to pair with grilled meats.


White Claw Lemonade Variety Pack Canada $29.99 340863 12 × 355 ml The latest from White Claw Hard Seltzer is a new take on lemonade with unique and exhilarating flavours of Limón, Blood Orange, Blackberry and Strawberry.

Whitley Neill Distiller’s Cut London Dry Gin

Selaks Sauvignon Blanc New Zealand $18.99 340048

Forged Irish Stout * Ireland $13.79 277222 4 × 440 ml From Conor McGregor, professional boxer and MMA athlete, this new- to-market sessionable dry Irish stout is super creamy and smooth, offering rich, roasted coffee notes and milk chocolate flavour.

United Kingdom $49.99 358364 Displaying a classic London Dry expression, this gin offers a backbone of juniper followed by a bittersweet candied orange flavour with a subtle floral note and an earthy spice finish.

The beautiful imagery of fruit and butterflies on the label encapsulates the spring season. Uncork tropical flavours of passion fruit, grapefruit, citrus and garden herbs in this refreshingly crisp white wine.



*Coming this April. Visit bcliquorstores.com for availability.

Pinot Grigio sunshine in a glass P inot Grigio is the wine world’s equivalent of the fabulously stylish white sneaker. It swings from cheap and cheerful to absolutely Pinot Grigio vs. Pinot Gris Many people confuse Pinot Grigio

on the vine, imparting more weight, body and sometimes sugar in the final Pinot Gris wine. Pfaffenheim Pfaff Pinot Gris from Alsace is a classic example, shining pale gold and cascading with semi-dry flavours of poached peach, roasted apricot, nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice. British Columbia also makes some particularly lovely expressions of Pinot Gris and Pinot Gris blends. Check out the Last Word on page 112 for more about BC Pinot Gris.

elevated. Now wildly popular, Pinot Grigio is loved for its crisp, lively structure, light body and lip-smacking refreshment. With its food-friendly versatility and ability to match any occasion, it might be the ultimate springtime quencher. A Quick History Pinot Grigio wasn’t always the wine we know it to be today. In Pinot Grigio’s historic heartland of Italy, the wine was traditionally fermented on the skins. Since the grapes used to make Pinot Grigio are greyish in colour, the skins imparted a greyish-coppery hue to the final wine. In 1961, the Santa Margherita winery in Italy’s Veneto region decided to remove the skins before fermentation to preserve the precious aromas, flavours and delicacy of the fruit in the final wine.

and Pinot Gris or don’t know what the connection is between those two names on a wine label. So let’s clarify. Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris are the same grape variety, just different wine styles. Pinot Grigio is a light, bright wine enjoyed all over the world for its relatively lean, crisp structure, low alcohol level—usually hovering around 12.5 percent or less—and lack of residual sugar. Most expressions are bone dry. A fine example is the Freixenet Pinot Grigio, Garda DOC, from Italy, a lively, subtle wine that nods toward lemon, lime and wet stones with a gentle salinity that leaves the palate seasoned. Good value. Although the crisp, clean white wine we know as Pinot Grigio today started in Italy, the grape itself is from France. It’s still grown there—particularly in Alsace—and called Pinot Gris. Pinot Gris wines taste slightly rounder and more ripe than Pinot Grigio wines. That’s because the grape is left to ripen longer

The wine, thus, was no longer tinted. The new style took off and became a bit of a sensation, and the rest is history. “Pinot Grigio is the wine world’s equivalent of the fabulously stylish white sneaker.”

Freixenet Garda Pinot Grigio Italy $19.99 456117

Pfaffenheim Pfaff Pinot Gris France $24.99 616144


CAROLYN EVANS HAMMOND is a long-standing wine critic. She hosts The Wine Find Talks on YouTube and The Wine Find travel TV show on ROKU on the Access Luxury channel. Each week, she contributes a wine column to the Toronto Star (syndicated) and regularly conducts private tastings in person and virtually. As a seasoned wine educator, judge and media personality with 20+ years of journalism experience, Carolyn makes it her mission to find you your next great glass.




Pinot Grigio Styles A crisp and light Pinot Grigio truly is the wine you can count on for that sunshine-in-a-glass refreshment. You’ll want to keep a bottle on hand, because no matter what you’re serving, there’s a Pinot Grigio to complement the meal. From classic to fruit forward to sun-drenched, here’s a taste of Pinot Grigio’s range of styles.

The Classic The original trendsetter, Santa

Fruit Forward Oyster Bay Hawkes Bay Pinot Grigio from New Zealand, with its brisk, citrusy zeal laced with pear, plum, grapefruit zest and a touch of seashell, works fabulously with Mexican feasts or the first grilled fish of the season.

Margherita Valdadige Pinot Grigio from Italy remains one of the most popular Pinot Grigios in the world. It’s dry and elegant, beaming with pristine, understated fruit that floods the palate with smooth, racy refreshment. A touch of minerality underpins each sip, which lingers on the finish. It’s delicious and versatile at the table.

Santa Margherita Valdadige Pinot Grigio Italy $22.99 106450

Oyster Bay Hawkes Bay Pinot Grigio New Zealand $21.99 26567

Sun-Drenched Longshot Pinot Grigio from California offers immediate sunshine in a glass. It’s a juicy-ripe style that’s semi-dry—perfect for those who prefer a more generous Pinot Grigio. In fact, there’s a splash each of Viognier and Riesling in Longshot, which adds more complexity without compromising elegance. Lemon‑lime and pear suggestions can be found on the nose and palate. And it’s excellent served on its own or poured as a cocktail ingredient in a white wine spritz.

New & Exciting Mare di Sirena Pinot Grigio from Italy is a bright, lively expression swirling with flavours and aromas of lemon zest and stone and a touch of pink grapefruit. Varietally correct and dry, this bargain bottle is new and well worth your attention. Serve it with spicy fare.

Longshot Pinot Grigio USA $16.99 225444

Mare di Sirena Pinot Grigio Italy $14.99 432123



Getting wine from the vineyard to your table involves many steps. There’s packaging, and transportation. Combined, these things account for more than half of a winery’s carbon footprint. Moving to lighter weight glass automatically reduces a wine’s environmental impact. Here in British Columbia, we’ve reduced the aggregate weight of the California wines sold by 371,681 lbs*



* Total lbs of weight saved in British Columbia by sourcing lightweight bottles of California wine. Source: CWI from ACD, Jan 2023 to Dec 2023. @CaliforniaWinesCanada discovercaliforniawines.com @California.Wines.Canada sustainablewinegrowing.org Product of California




2021 THREE THIEVES CHARDONNAY CERTIFIED SUSTAINABLE SKU 537969 Citrus, pineapple, creamy and full-bodied.

2022 MORNING FOG CHARDONNAY 92 Points The Tasting Pane CERTIFIED CALIFORNIA SUSTAINABLE VINEYARD SKU 175430 Citrus and green apple. Balanced natural acidity.

Ripe dark fruit, roasted coŒee and spice.

2022 LA CREMA CHARDONNAY SUSTAINABLE WINEMAKING SKU 366948 Bosc pears, vanilla, spices. Complex.


Black cherry, raspberry, vanilla and cinnamon spice.

Mother’s Day Garden Party


LAWREN MONETA is a chef, food stylist, recipe developer and mommy, whose culinary passion has taken her all over the world. Now based in Vancouver, she loves exploring the ever-expanding food and wine culture the West Coast has to offer.

Beet & Currant Canapé

Buttered Radish Tartine with Vanilla Sea Salt

pairs with Beet & Currant Canapé

pairs with Buttered Radish Tartine

Did you know? You can add flowers to ice moulds to create an elegantly displayed wine cooler! Try using a round mould with a variety of colourful buds for a gorgeous flower bed for your bottles.

Dirty Laundry Hush Rosé

Les Fleurs du Mal Côtes de Gascogne France $17.99 239467 Named after Charles Baudelaire’s poetic masterpiece, this quaffable blend of Colombard, Gros Manseng and Sauvignon Blanc offers grapefruit, nettle, pear and white flower notes with saline and minerality on the finish.

BC VQA $19.99 767103 Comprising a blend of

several varieties, Hush Rosé whispers delicate aromas of rhubarb while flavours of strawberry and watermelon shine alongside juicy acidity and a hint of sweetness.



For recipes, go to bcliquorstores.com and the index on page 96.

pairs with Spot Prawn Rhubarb Ceviche

Veuve du Vernay Brut Rosé France $18.99 610048 A pleasingly pink dry bubbly with notes of rhubarb and grapefruit offers effervescence and acidity to cleanse the palate, making it a perfect companion for ceviche and seafood.

pairs with Spot Prawn Rhubarb Ceviche

Ruffino Aqua di Venus Pinot Grigio Italy $26.99 425424

This Pinot Grigio from Friuli drinks elegantly with cherry blossom, white peach, sage and flinty notes. The stunning bottle design is inspired by The Birth of Venus by Sandro Botticelli.

pairs with Buttered Radish Tartine

Bartier Bros. Rosé BC VQA $18.99 35609

This soft-pink rosé has lively aromas of wild strawberry and rose alongside juicy watermelon and grapefruit flavours. Its dry finish and bright minerality pair well with lighter fare.

Spot Prawn Rhubarb Ceviche



Honey Panna Cotta with Sakura Cherry Blossom Jelly

pairs with Honey Panna Cotta with Sakura Cherry Blossom Jelly

pairs with Honey Panna Cotta with Sakura Cherry Blossom Jelly

pairs with Beet & Currant Canapé

Gray Monk Pinot Auxerrois

Hakutsuru Sayuri Nigori Sake Japan $9.79 613760 300 ml This opaque sake is coarsely filtered and shows off delicate pear, cherry blossoms and rice congee flavours with a creamy smoothness and natural sweetness on the aftertaste.

Bottega Il Vino dell’Amore Petalo Moscato Italy $19.99 580993 Delicate scents of rose petals meld with candied citrus, honeysuckle and peaches in this elegant, low‑alcohol sparkling Moscato. It’s a perfect match for fruity and floral desserts.

BC VQA $20.99 96222 With roots from Alsace, this Pinot Auxerrois from Gray Monk is bursting with starfruit on the nose. Honeydew melon, pear and apple flavours linger, while vibrant minerality refreshes the palate.



Check out these refreshing new sips available at BCLIQUOR. Perfect for your next spring soiree! Spring into Fresh Flavours

Check out these refreshing new sips available at BCLIQUOR. Perfect for your next spring soiree!

Cazadores Paloma Mexico $15.79 388111 4 × 355 ml Made with 100 percent Blue Agave tequila from Cazadores, grapefruit soda, natural flavours and a touch of agave for sweetness. This ready-to- drink paloma pairs well with grilled shrimp and fish tacos.

SVNS Lemonade Canada $15.79 383073 6 × 355 ml

Lonetree Cider Black Currant Canada $13.79 383359 6 × 355 ml Lonetree’s new flavour is here! Just in time for spring, enjoy the classic dry apple cider recipe with tart and jammy black currant flavours alongside a hint of vanilla.

Bursting with lemonade and citrus flavours, the refreshing taste of 7Up shines in this 7 percent alcohol and 0 grams of sugar ready-to- drink can. It’s perfect for any occasion.


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