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Article: GRATEFUL TO BE. 4.



The turn of a new year means the turn of a WLD birthday. And WLD just turned 4! Oh my. Hot dang. Big whooop. It’s hard to imagine what a big birthday party feels like anymore.. But we can tell you what this one felt like.


There was no confetti. No hugs or high fives; no loud music; and no rowdy crowd enjoying tasty WLD cocktails in the distillery. But on January 6th, 2021, we celebrated our 4th year in business. And although it wasn’t the banger event that we’ve enjoyed in years past, it was fantastic. It was consistent with the year of 2020 - different - and it allowed ourselves a moment after the moment. Having this annual milestone fall immediately after Christmas and the New Year forces us into an extended pause for reflection.

What we have come into 2021 with, is a sense of gratitude. A word that is kinda hot right now; but we’re digging the heat. Grateful for community, family, friends, colleagues, and community. That’s right. Double community. Let us explain….

A toast to 4 years.

As a new distillery, here is a ridiculously over simplified flow of the start up:

  1. Get really excited about an idea

  2. Find the right team to ‘jump’ with

  3. Build your business/products/team/brand (super easy and simple)

  4. Get out there and share your idea, products, team, brand

  5. Give thanks

  6. Repeat steps 3, 4, 5.

We learned in 2020 that gratitude is a consistent element within this flow. We are grateful for finding our passion, grateful to be doing it alongside a best friend, grateful for our team, for the learning process, as challenging as it may be some days, and for those we have met along the way. All of you reading this newsletter (We’ll get to the news in a sec) fall into this group. At some point in time, we have shared our passion for WLD, shared our story, our products, our crazy ideas; and you listened, and you sipped, and you criticized or you praised, and for this we say THANK YOU!

OK, so what is new?!

Writing this amidst week 5 of a province-wide lockdown doesn’t scream ‘NEWS’, but some things have happened since we last wrote.

1. AB Crabapple Gin

We are fortunate enough to have some friends with an enormous crabapple tree in their back yard. This fall, when the apples were ‘primo’-ripe, they went to town and supplied us with pounds and pounds of beautiful fresh AB crabapples. So we did the only thing we know how to do, make GIN! The result was this year’s holiday sipper, filling flasks and shaker tins throughout the holiday season. Showing warm golden apple on the nose, sweet Alberta juniper and spice on the palate, this was the perfect pairing to an afternoon ski. Although it disappeared quickly from the distillery, here is a list of stores who might still have some in case you missed out!

AB Crabapple Gin is available in the following stores as of December 31st, 2020

CANMORE: Cellar Door - Canmore, Sobeys Liquor - Canmore, Rusty’s Liquor - Canmore

CALGARY/AREA: Britannia Wine Merchants - Calgary, J Webb 90th Ave - Calgary, Liquor Depot Brentwood - Calgary, Calgary Co-Op Wine Spirits Beer - Midtown Calgary, Calgary Co-Op Wine Spirits Beer - World of Whisky Calgary, The Beer Den - Cochrane

EDMONTON/AREA: Wine & Beyond Southgate - Edmonton, Sherbrooke Liquor - Edmonton, 7 Degrees Liquor - Edmonton, Wine & Beyond Emerald Hills - Edmonton, Liquor on McLeod - Spruce Grove, Craft Beer Nation - Red Deer

Crabapple Gin doing its best Santa impersonation.

2. New Cocktail Menu

We dropped a new Winter 2021 Cocktail Menu!! As the talent on our bar team has grown over the years, so has the attention to detail in our cocktail design and execution. Although much of this has been put on pause with the current Covid restrictions, we are still offering cocktails to-go! Visit our web-store or call to order these.

There are some absolute ‘home-runs’ on the menu. We took inspiration from our trip to NYC last year and put out what we think is our best menu yet! #bold

Kristina spinning up a “Buttered Up” cocktail off the new menu

3. Alberta Botanical Bitters

A new way to enjoy AB. These cocktail bitters are designed to impart the taste of Alberta into your favourite libation. Our Alberta Botanical Gin is a seasonal product, and there are times of the year when we sell out of this product, so we created the AB Bitters to help carry the flavours through the seasons. Wild sage, Labrador Tea, Yarrow, and Cow Parsnip Seeds give these bitters that classic Alberta profile. (These bitters are featured on our new menu)

Alberta Botanical Bitters


One of these day’s we’ll stop talking about, and start pouring it… But not yet.

There was no silver lining to 2020, but rather gold. Liquid gold. With the slowing of the season’s, we have been busy in the distillery mashing, fermenting, and distilling our favourite grains: Wheat, Rye, Malted Barley, and currently a bit of ‘smoke’. Peated Malt fills the air today at WLD, and any Scotch lover reading this should just swing by to have a sniff (no judgement).

@wldkeith looking dreamy. Or maybe just a little confused…

5. Be Engaged.

Keith and Heidi got engaged! Wahoo!

In September we took a magical trip into the Mt. Assiniboine area to hike, fish, camp, cook and laugh with great friends. Without sharing all of the deets, when the pair came down to the lake after an afternoon hike up the Nub with glazed eyes, we all shared in relishing a very special moment..

The moment after the moment.

6. The Go Forward.

As we tip toe through January, we’ll have our fingers crossed that businesses across Alberta will be able to re-open safely in the coming weeks. The compound interest of the pandemic is starting to take a toll on all of us mentally and physically. So be good to yourself :) . Keep eating your Mad Dog Curry and Valbella snacks, keep drinking your Mountain Blends and Eclipse coffee, and tuning in virtually to Practice Yoga and Wildheart.

And of course, as always, keep skiing!

Powder: The currency of the backcountry. You’re richer than you think! Kaching.

With gratitude,

- The WLD Boys

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