pie claiming bronze. The Tart Cherry and Earl Grey just came back from the Alberta Beverage Awards with the Judges Choice Award. It’s an impressive award-winning line up.

“it’s always been our motto that we’ll just do it while we love it and see what happens.”

After researching other distilleries, sorting out the paperwork and applications, finding and leasing space, they suddenly realized they were distillery owners. “We’ve never really had the conversation - are we going to do this as a business? We just did it as a hobby. We started small and it’s always been our motto that we’ll just do it while we love it and see what happens. We’re a little over two years into business now and so far, we’re just we’re loving it. We’ve been encouraged and embraced by the community,” said Andrea. Black Diamond Distillery was fully licensed and open for business on the 22nd of February 2018 as St. Albert’s first craft distillery. Black Diamond Distillery has one full time employee beyond the couple themselves. “It’s been friends and family predominantly that have come in and worked for us. They’ll work a market or one of our shows for us. We like them to tell

our story as though they’re a part of it.” The distillery is growing up with the family. The couple now have two small children, Axel, now 3 years old, and baby Ellis James, born in Sep- tember of 2019. Customers feel connected to the family. “Our customers want to see Axel, our oldest. They’ve been watching him grow up since he wasn’t even a year old,” said Andrea. The distillery currently runs a 200 litre six plate still with reflux column and recently purchased a second still to triple the capacity. “It’s a 600 liter still. It’ll be a six plate as well, reflux column – very similar with just a bigger volume. We’ll be working on that in the next few months to get it set up.” The new still is a jacketed still and steam powered. “We don’t have to filter out all of the grain. You can essentially mash it, pump it into the still and run it that way. It streamlines our processes and makes it more efficient,” said David.

After the Covid19 crisis closed all the craft markets, the Black Diamond team decided to help the community and quickly pivoted to making hand sanitizer. “We’re going to be dis- tributing hand sanitizer. Right now, we’re one of the only sources where people can get alcohol at that percentage to use as sanitizer because it’s in such short demand. We’re really just trying to support the community the best we can through all of it and this is one of the ways that we can do that,” said Andrea. To say Black Diamond products are award winning is an understatement. Currently, every bottle wears a medal. The Black Diamond Limon- cello and Tart Cherry Liqueurs stand out with their gold medals. Most of the others wear silver medals, with the wheat vodka and apple





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