As the shrinking daylight hours signify the arrival of fall in Vancouver, many are already looking ahead to the winter months when curling up beside the fire with a festive libation is the best way to stay warm.
This winter, try Ampersand Distilling’s creation ‘Nocino!’, which is so unlike the rum and eggnog of winters past that it’s worth a try. The celebrated distiller is bringing back the liqueur for a third season to the delight of sippers and mixers alike.
Nocino is a liqueur that originated in the Emilia-Romagna region of Northern Italy and is made from fermented unripe green walnuts. Ampersand’s version is infused with cinnamon and allspice. The walnuts are picked in the heat of summer near Ampersand’s Cowichan Valley distillery, so this Italian standard has a distinctively local flair.
This silky and aromatic spirit is especially popular during the holiday season and is a hot pick this year thanks to its recent wins at SIP Northwest’s 2019 Best of the Northwest Competition, and the 2019 Canadian Artisan Spirit Competition. Ampersand is no stranger to winning awards, as both their Per Se Vodka and flagship Ampersand Gin have been successful at both BC-based and national spirits competitions.
The Rest of the Family
Exceptional tasting spirits come from well-chosen ingredients, and Ampersand sources many of them from its five-acre farm in the Cowichan Valley. The Schact family of four comes from an engineering background, and all share their love of science, craft cocktails, and farming when they produce every bottle. Their spirits are prepared in handmade stills to ensure the highest quality for small-batch spirits.