Published Date

TORONTO, Oct. 4, 2019 /CNW/ - Duke's Refresher has officially opened its doors in St. Lawrence Market at 73 Front Street East. The new Duke's Refresher offers guests a roster of dining, drinking and playing options including new and retro arcade games, a mini basketball court, hand-stretched pizzas, 38 beers on tap – and that doesn't even begin to scratch the surface!


"This new location was heavily inspired by the more laid-back nature of the 70s and pays tribute to simpler times," said Peter Fowler, CEO, SIR Corp. "From the eclectic mix of vintage décor and retro inspired rooms, to classic arcade games, Duke's offers a lot of nostalgic elements to remind guests to not take themselves – and life - too seriously."

The new Duke's Refresher in St. Lawrence Market features delicious new food and drink offerings, with the added element of play and paint.

  • Play: Grab your coins and get after it, Duke's has over 15 arcade classics including Taxi Pinball, Galaxian, Area 51, Buck Hunter, and more! And if shooting hoops is more your style, check out the two-player mini basketball court, along with Shuffleboard, Pool and Ping Pong tables.
  • Paint: Drinks and painting more your thing? Come check out Duke's impressive gallery of velvet paintings - you can even take one home for the right price! Also keep an eye out for Duke's inaugural painting party happening this fall.
  • Drink: Duke's offers 38 beers on tap, $4 shots, 19 craft cocktails and more tallboys than you can shake a stick at.
  • Eat: Pizza and gaming. Say no more. Check out Duke's hand-stretched, thin and crispy, made-to-order pizzas, available exclusively at St. Lawrence Market.

"We're ecstatic about opening a second location in downtown Toronto and are excited to be a part of the St. Lawrence Market community that attracts both local residents and visitors," continued Fowler. "Duke's unique retro inspired vibe and entertainment provides the perfect escape for guests in the area to kick back and let loose."

For more information about Duke Refresher St. Lawrence Market, visit or follow on Instagram at @dukesrefresherslm.

Published Date

TORONTO, Oct. 3, 2019 /CNW/ - Spirits Canada today welcomed new analysis by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis (CANCEA), which demonstrates the value of Ontario's distilled spirits manufacturing and the serious consequences of artificially limiting the industry's growth potential. 


Spirits Canada President and CEO Jan Westcott, reacting to the report, commented: "Ontario promised real choice and convenience in alcohol shopping options for Ontarian adults.  Now, the government must ensure distilled spirits made here at home are given at least equal treatment as provided for imported beer and wine.

"Failing to do so," Westcott continued, "would decrease Ontario farm purchases, put jobs here at risk, and rob the provincial treasury of more than half a billion dollars in tax revenue over ten years." 

Ontario need not look far for real-world evidence of these opportunities and risks.  When British Columbia included spirits in its private liquor sales expansion, the province reaped the benefits - doubling provincial revenue and enhancing consumer satisfaction.

On the other hand, when Quebec excluded spirits from grocery and corner stores, spirits lost 65% of its market share, shuttered facilities, and shed jobs. 

CANCEA's data-driven analysis shows Ontario can expect to see the same bleak outlook as Québec, unless it delivers on Premier Ford's promise to respect adults' independence to choose what they drink and where they shop.


CANCEA quick facts:

  • For every job lost in direct spirits employment, Ontario would lose nearly five additional jobs. 
  • The closure of a single mid-size manufacturing facility would cost Ontario more than 700 jobs (7,130 job-years over ten years).
  • Growing the spirits industry would create jobs and generate wealth for Ontario.
  • Expansion of a manufacturing facility that created 150 new direct jobs, would add 800 new jobs overall. Increasing exports by 25% would add $102 million to Ontario's gross provincial product annually.

For full CANCEA report, see:

Published Date

October 2, 2019

Like all of Booker's batches, Booker's "Country Ham" is bottled at its natural proof and selected with the following characteristics:

  • Proof: 124.7
  • Age: 6 years, 4 months and 2 days
  • Batch Notes: Booker’s “Country Ham” offers a sweet aroma with a subtle hint of vanilla mingled with brown sugar notes. The flavor is sweet at first with a long, smooth finish that warms your palate.           
  • Sipping Suggestions: Booker’s “Country Ham” is best enjoyed neat, over ice or with a few drops of water.
  • SRP + Availability: Booker's® "Country Ham" is now available nationwide in limited quantities with an SRP of $79.99.
Published Date

October 2, 2019

Published Date

October 1st 2019, London: Diageo has been ranked as the number one business globally for gender equality in the Equileap 2019Global Gender Equality Report and Ranking. Diageo has improved its global ranking from 11th in the 2018 Equileap report, and is ranked as the number one business in the UK for gender equality for the second year in a row.


The Equileap report is an in-depth, cross-sector analysis of gender equality in 3,519 companies in 23 developed economies, representing 98 million employees. Equileap ranks businesses based on 19 gender equality criteria, including gender balance across the workforce, the gender pay gap, paid parental leave and anti-sexual harassment policies.


The ranking is evidence of the progress Diageo has made to champion diversity and inclusion both within the business and beyond.


Acknowledgements in the report include:

  • The work Diageo has done to achieve gender balance at the most senior levels of the organisation. Currently 44% of Diageo’s Board are women, and the company is working towards a senior leadership team of 40% women by 2025.
  • Diageo’s global parental leave policy which offers female employees in all markets a minimum of 26 weeks of fully paid maternity leave. Diageo has also set a global minimum standard of four weeks paternity leave on full rate of pay in all markets, with a significant number of Diageo’s businesses moving to 26 weeks fully paid paternity leave including the UK, North America, Thailand, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Russia, Colombia, Venezuela, and Australia amongst others.
  • Diageo’s signatory of the United Nations’ Women’s Empowerment Principles, committing to seven values-led approaches to support women in the workplace, marketplace and community.

Ivan Menezes, Chief Executive of Diageo said: “I am proud of our work to drive an inclusive culture and diverse employee base at Diageo. Our aim is to create a culture that ensures all our people thrive, as well as shaping market-leading policies and practices. But there is much more to do and we are committed to championing diversity, to make Diageo stronger and to have a positive impact on society.”


Diageo is also championing gender equality through its brands and advertising. The company has rolled out a framework for progressive gender portrayal in advertising to its 1200 marketers and advertising agencies around the world. Diageo is a member of the United Nations Unstereotype Alliance, and the business has signed up to Free the Bid to increase the number of female directors on its adverts as well as working with Creative Equals to support women returning to the creative industries after a career break.


Mairéad Nayager, Chief HR Officer at Diageo said: “At Diageo we believe that gender equality is a moral imperative and a driver of business performance. We are increasing the number of women in leadership roles across the company and have introduced new progressive family leave policies to support all our people throughout their careers. We will continue to push ourselves to improve and build on our ambitions.”


Diana van Maasdijk, CEO at Equileap said: “It is Equileap’s mission to accelerate gender equality in the workplace as a powerful and under-used way of tackling poverty and inequality. Diageo are setting an example and we commend the team for their ambitious work to champion inclusion and diversity.”


In 2019 Diageo has also been recognised as the second most diverse and inclusive workplace in the Refinitiv Diversity & Inclusion Index (previously the Thomson Reuters Diversity & Inclusion Index), and is listed on the Bloomberg Gender Equality Index.


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