The nip came before the nation. Whisky distillation came to our soils before we were called Canada. European immigrants brought stills and knowledge of distillation with them in the 1700’s. Though it’s impossible to determine who made the first hooch on our terra firma, it is documented that a James Grant was operating a rum […]

Whiskies Whiskey is distilled from grain and aged in wood. The most complex of all is scotch whisky (spelt without an “e”, as is the Canadian version while Irish and bourbon versions are usually spelled “whiskey”). Single malt comes from one distillery and is made only from malted barley and water. There are many factors […]

Vodka Poland was the birthplace of vodka over 600 years ago. On this side of the Atlantic, vodka was virtually unknown until 50 years ago. In crossing the ocean, the distillate traditionally drunk straight up and prized for its distinctive taste in northern Europe was transformed into a characterless mixer. No more. The pendulum has […]

Margaret Swaine A Danish colleague of mine, Jorgen, who jaunts about the world covering the likely combo of wine and politics, never leaves home without it. “It” contrary to what you may be thinking has nothing to do with monetary concerns but rather digestive ones. In among his weeks’ worth of undies and socks are […]

Tequila Mexico’s famed spirit is made from the spiky cactus-like agave plant, which can take up to a decade to mature. By law tequila must be made from at least 51 per cent blue agave. To find the best, look for “100 per cent blue agave” on the label. Aged tequila’s are wood matured to […]