While Victoria is still a small city, finding it’s way through the world of cocktails, we already have an established whisky following. With the Whiskyfest being one of the best events for the whisky geeks in the city. In saying this, we have got some attention from international magazine, Whisky Magazine. Great article from Davin de Kergommeaux, who also just released an amazing book on the history of Canadian Whisky.
It’s a 60 mile trip by sea ferry to get to Victoria, British Columbia from either Seattle or Vancouver.
As the ferry threads it’s way through dozens of small islands, travellers just might be lucky enough to see a pod of orcas. The aptly named “Garden City” sits, a world apart, on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.
Victoria, a pretty, impeccably well kept place with a population of just under 350,000, is a warm and welcoming city with an intimate small town feel. Its climate is Canada’s mildest with pleasantly warm and dry Pacific Ocean summers and flowers in bloom year round.
It’s no surprise then that Victoria attracts some 3.5 million visitors each year. Those millions of visitors and the billions of dollars they leave behind support a service infrastructure that far exceeds most cities of similar size.
A whisky drinker’s tour stops no fewer than seven times. The proximity of the watering holes to each other simply begs for a good old-fashioned college pub-crawl.
Better to spread it out over a few evenings though. The drams in some of these establishments will have you lingering long over your glass.
CLIVES CLASSIC LOUNGE, CHATEAU VICTORIA 740 Burdett Avenue, Victoria, B. C. www.clivesclassiclounge.com Despite its reputation as a high-end, high-volume cocktail bar, Clives Classic Lounge offers a well-rounded beer, wine and spirits list. Its more than 140 whiskies include a number from closed distilleries.
“We’d have more,” says lounge manager, Shawn Soole, “but we’ve run out of space on the bar.” A monthly ‘Bon Vivant Society’ brings industry insiders and casual drinkers together for seminars. “We do a brash of different topics,” says Soole, “but whisky is the focus.” “Our younger clientele has fallen in love with Bourbons, high-end ryes and Scotch. Once you have them on that then you nudge them towards the Japanese, Welsh and Indian.”