Jillian Rutherford of Fernie Distillers shows off their new Butterfly Pea Flower Vodka, which is a striking blue. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Jillian Rutherford of Fernie Distillers shows off their new Butterfly Pea Flower Vodka, which is a striking blue. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)

Fernie Distillers claim another award

The local distillery was named ‘Distillery of the year’ at an industry event in Vancouver

Well-known locally, Fernie Distillers are still being discovered as a hidden gem by new fans from across British Columbia, after being named as the Distillery of the Year at the BC Distilled event in Vancouver this past weekend.

The Fernie local distillery was there with another 26 distillerys from around British Columbia, with attendees picking from dozens of different spirits.

“It was quite a surprise to be named distillery of the year,” said co-owner of Fernie Distillers, Jillian Rutherford.

While the Fernie Distillery is no stranger to awards, Rutherford said that to be picked as audience favourite was something special.

“It’s meaningful in a completely different way in that it was from the audience rather than the industry … it supports our business if we’re finding new customers, and it means we can continue to be vibrant and fresh.”

Fernie Distillers secured a Vancouver retail deal out of the trip (and the victory).

“It’s a significant bump to my business potential. I ship to Vancouver, but now Vancouver customers can buy my produce closer to home.”

Rutherford took Fernie Distiller’s five year-round spirits to the event to draw in more Vancouver fans – being their Prospector Gin, No. 9 Mine Vodka, Fernie Fog Liqueur, Cinder Liqueur and Lavender Fog Liqueur.

Besides the win on Apr. 9, Fernie Distillers have also just released a new seasonal batch, being the Butterfly Pea Flower Vodka.

“It’s a very small release just to see how people enjoy it,” said Rutherford.

The seasonal vodka is a striking blue (pictured), and looks good just sitting on a shelf.

“People who like making cocktails at home will enjoy it because the color change is very dynamic.”

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



scott.tibballs@thefreepress.ca
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