Published Date

VANCOUVER, Jan. 29, 2019 /CNW/ - Innovative new Canadian whisky brand: BEARFACE Triple Oak stood bravely against the best in the country, and won 'Best New Whisky', as well as a Gold Medal for Excellence at the recent Canadian Whisky Awards in Victoria, B.C. 

The prestigious 'Best New Whisky' award was decided following a blind taste test of more than 100 Canadian whiskies by a panel of 10 independent judges. Just 5 months since its launch, the award is a strong endorsement of the brand's stated intent of challenging the traditional perceptions and tastes in Canadian whisky.

Bearface Triple Oak is the result of exhaustive experimentation. A Canadian whisky with a bold finish derived from three different oaks, each selected for the distinct flavour they impart. This exceptional single grain whisky starts life aging in ex-bourbon charred American Oak barrels for a minimum of 7 years, imparting warm smooth vanilla notes. It is then placed in tight-grained French Oak ex-wine barrels with over 7 years of use for high end, rich Bordeaux-style wines from Mission Hill Family Estate Winery, adding luscious dry fruit notes and a deep ruby colour. The final finish – a first in Canadian whisky – is with 3-year-old, air-dried, virgin Hungarian Oak, adding rye-like notes and a distinctive rich texture. The combined result: an unapologetically next generation Canadian whisky.

Commenting on the award Mark Anthony Founder and Chairman Anthony von Mandl said, "I am delighted that BEARFACE was awarded best new whisky at the Canadian Whisky Awards. To gain industry recognition at the awards against such an impressive array of incredible brands is a wonderful endorsement of our vision for BEARFACE, our Master Blender Andres Faustinelli and his team of collaborators. We created BEARFACE to challenge perceptions and elevate the craft of Canadian whisky. Recognition such as this is a great endorsement of this vision."

BEARFACE Master Blender Andres Faustinelli added "We had an audacious goal, to show the world how Canadian Whisky could lead the whisky world through innovation and flavour. With BEARFACE Triple Oak we have developed an exceptional whisky by challenging norms, being obsessive in our barrel selection and finishing it in unique and interesting ways. The response from consumers has been overwhelmingly positive and we are thrilled that the judges at the Canadian Whisky Awards agree!"

The mandate and approach for BEARFACE was deliberately different, starting out by sourcing exceptional 7-year-old Canadian whisky, before shipping it 4,000km across Canada to British Columbia's Okanagan Valley, a pristine, one of a kind, glacier fed wine region.  There, the much-awarded showcase Mission Hill Family Estate Winery allowed Faustinelli to experiment with countless barrel and wood combinations with the objective of developing an expertly hand-finished process that would give BEARFACE a unique character, distinct from traditional Canadian Whisky.

Published Date

Durham Distillery proudly announces selection by Constellation Brands, Inc. for minority investment in its craft gin distillery co-founded by Melissa and Lee Katrincic in 2013.


“We set out to create a world-class gin brand – CONNIPTION Gin – and view this investment by Constellation as recognition that we have what it takes to lead in our category, and as the critical next step towards CONNIPTION Gins’ growth,” explained Melissa Katrincic, who, with her husband and partner, Lee, will continue to be the majority owners, executive team, operators, and decision makers.


Strategic investment from Constellation enables Durham Distillery to rapidly increase production, streamline efficiencies – especially as it relates to equipment, hire more employees locally under their Certified Living Wage designation, and ultimately, gain access to new markets across the United States. “With Constellation’s support, I’m now able to devote my full attention to the distillery’s strategic goals and to the CONNIPTION Gin brand and also, our burgeoning leadership in the premium ready-to-drink cocktail category,” explained Lee Katrincic, a careered pharmaceutical chemist, and Durham Distillery’s Head Distiller, who transitioned to full time at the distillery earlier this month


No doubt, an American gin renaissance is underway, with Durham Distillery and its CONNIPTION Gin serving as a fine example of the future of modern, super premium gin. Last year, global consumption of gin grew faster than any other beverage alcohol category and sales of gin were 8.3% higher over 2017. The worlds’ spirit makers are showing a focus on gin, including Pernot Ricard’s completed acquisition of Malfy gin in June 2019, as well as celebrities, such as Ryan Reynolds, who purchased Aviation Gin in 2018. “We have created a modern gin that upholds the international standards of gin, while also showcasing it as staple cocktail spirit for U.S. consumers,” co-founder Lee Katrincic. Melissa and Lee Katrincic continue to trail blaze for gin in the U.S., and are the only distillers in the American South to be inducted into The London-based Gin Guild.


Co-Founder Melissa Katrincic Chosen for “Focus on Female Founders” Program

As President and CEO, Melissa Katrincic is also the newest addition to Constellation’s “Focus on Female Founders” Program. In 2018, Constellation Brands, Inc introduced this initiative in support of their goal to “make meaningful investments in female-founded and female-led businesses doing disruptive and innovative work across beverage alcohol.”


Melissa Katrincic promotes female entrepreneurship, served as Vice President of the Distilling Association of North Carolina, lobbied for the industry to the U.S. Congress in Washington D.C. and spoke as an invited expert on gin for the American Distilling Institute. She is also a member of Les Dames d'Escoffier and Women of the Vine & Spirits and is recognized as an authority on North Carolina spirits. As a physics graduate of Bryn Mawr College, Katrincic supports education for women, especially “STEM” education.

Published Date

August 29, 2019

Say hello to E&J Brandy, remastered. For the first time in the brand's 45 year history, E&J Brandy is launching its first holistic packaging change for each of its expressions.


The move stems from E&J's belief that there’s always a new level to reach. The new label captures the brand's spirit, sporting an iconic sunburst illustration over premium metallic paper and featuring vibrant colors and an ink-embossed E&J logo. With the E&J crest proudly displayed on the cap, the new bottle’s elongated shoulders and curved base also gives the new design a more premium, elevated look.

Download this file (EJ Brandy New Packaging.jpeg)EJ Brandy New Packaging.jpeg[ ]519 kB
Published Date

August 28, 2019

PEI Brewing Company has announced a new Oktoberfest event on October 4th and 5th. Okto-beer-feast puts a PEI twist on tradition with two days of local beer, food and festivities.

The celebrations begin on Friday, October 4th with beer stein happy hour, German-inspired food stations, food demonstrations, live entertainment and activities. Those attending Friday’s festivities will be among the first to try Gahan’s newest seasonal beer release, Scarlet Race Helles Lager, which will be launched at the event.

On Saturday, October 5th  the celebrations continue with happy hour, food trucks in the parking lot serving up local favourites, photos booths and more. Attendees can sign up in advance for washer toss, cornhole and axe throwing competitions for a chance to win gift cards towards PEI Brewing Company product.

The day wraps up with a live Hollerado show at 9pm.
Ryan Feldman, PEI Brewing Company Taproom General Manager, says “We have been wanting to do an Oktoberfest event at the brewery for some time now. With the planned release of our new German-style Helles Lager the timing was perfect. We’re excited to get beer and food lovers out for Oktoberfest with a PEI twist.”
Ticket Information:

  • Entrance $10 per day
  • Beer Lovers Ticket $15 per day *includes a full 32oz beer stein
  • Hollerado Show Ticket $30 *includes a full 32oz beer stein + entry to the show
  • Event food tickets are required to purchase food items on both Friday & Saturday

Tickets are on sale now at


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