For every bottle of Forager Saskatoon Liqueursold, $4 will be donated to the Elk River Alliance. Pictured (L-R): Jillian Rutherford and Andrew Hayden of Fernie Distillers, with George Greene, (chair), Nic Milligan (director), and Chad Hughes (executive director) of the Elk River Alliance at a tasting of the new limited edition liqueur. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

For every bottle of Forager Saskatoon Liqueursold, $4 will be donated to the Elk River Alliance. Pictured (L-R): Jillian Rutherford and Andrew Hayden of Fernie Distillers, with George Greene, (chair), Nic Milligan (director), and Chad Hughes (executive director) of the Elk River Alliance at a tasting of the new limited edition liqueur. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Cheers to the Elk River: Fernie Distillers make festive liqueur with local berry flavour

ERA volunteers havested saskatoon berries for a festive liqueur made by Fernie Distillers

Saskatoon berries harvested from the banks of the Elk River have been made into a delicious liqueur as part of a collaborative between the Elk River Alliance (ERA) and Fernie Distillers.

This past fall, volunteers with the ERA harvested over five kilograms of berries from the Elk River between Sparwood and Fernie, and gave them to the Fernie Distillers to work their magic.

From that harvest (plus a little extra from the Annex), a batch of 260 bottles of Forager Saskatoon Liqueur was created.

Chair of the ERA board, George Greene said during a tasting that it hit the spot.

“It hits the tongue with the wonderful flavour of Saskatoon berries. It’s very smooth and sweet going down,” he said.

“The saskatoon stands out, and the connection to the river is fantastic.”

Saskatoon berries are found all throughout the Elk River watershed, and were harvested specifically for their connection to the area – and their talent for being delicious.

Jillian Rutherford of Fernie Distillers said that given the time of year, the liqueur was made to be festive.

With the standout being the saskatoon berries, it also has lemon and cinnamon bark (cassia) flavours.

“It’s very distinctive and I’m really happy with the way it turned out”

The Forager Saskatoon Liqueur will be available from the Fernie Distillery from Thursday Dec. 2. $4 from every bottle sold will be donated to the Elk River Alliance, which will use the funds for its river monitoring program and education outreach.

READ MORE: Over 1,500 pieces of trash removed during annual Elk River Cleanup



scott.tibballs@thefreepress.ca
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