BLACK DIAMOND DISTILLERY IS A NEW CRAFT DISTILLERY YOU’LL WANT TO GET TO KNOW
This article was originally published in Eat Local Magazine Pilot Issue | Fall 2018 | Subscribe Here
WORDS & PHOTOS HEATHER MUSE
When you open the doors to Black Diamond Distillery, the first thing you’ll notice is the gorgeous copper still. Give it a minute, and the next thing you’ll notice is all the beautiful rustic wood thoughtfully placed throughout. Then you’ll take in all the industrial accents and bottles of spirits, labelled with their distinctive minimalistic black and white labels. Copper. Wood. Industrial design. Black and white. All of my favourite things. As a design junkie, I could probably move in and live in their distillery and be happy for the rest of my life.
As you stand there for a few more seconds, another layer comes into focus – toys scattered on the floor, baby fences placed strategically here and there, and a matte black 1967 C-10 Chevy parked casually to your left. Not your average craft distillery.
Husband and wife team David and Andrea Scade created Black Diamond Distillery from the ground up and officially opened for business earlier this year, on February 22, 2018. With their now 18-month-old son Axel in tow, it’s been quite a ride. David had originally started making moonshine for his family and friends a few years ago, and their enthusiastic reactions to his concoctions gave him the push he needed to start thinking about distilling as a business. If he could make moonshine that delicious on his little homemade pot still, imagine what he could do with modern equipment!
And as for the name of the distillery? David wanted to put a traditional diamond ring on Andrea’s finger, but she wanted a more practical squat rack. They compromised and decided on a black diamond ring, and David had Andrea meet with a designer as a surprise to design the ring herself. They both decided the name “Black Diamond Distillery” just fit.
Since the duo opened, they’ve started selling flavours like Apple Pie Liqueur, David’s favourite for the nostalgia, and the popular Tart Cherry Liqueur. Throw in their Earl Grey Vodka, Hot Chili Vodka, Andrea’s favourite Coffee Liqueur, some seasonal specials featuring cranberries and spice, and you’ve got something for everyone’s palate. With a focus on local and seasonal ingredients, and small, high quality batches, they’ve also developed several syrups with flavours like Alberta Wild Rose for complimenting their line-up of spirits.
Besides selling at their distillery year-round, you can find David and Andrea (and often Axel!) at City Market Downtown and 124 Grand Market from May to October, and at a number of artisan markets in the Edmonton area throughout the fall and winter. You’ll also find their spirits at Liquor on McLeod in Spruce Grove, and just recently Sherbrooke Liquor started carrying them as well. If you’re not sure which one to try, they’ll also be offering gift boxes with three 200 mL bottles in each this season!
Warm, genuine, passionate and driven – just a few words to describe David and Andrea Scade. I’d also have to add extremely hardworking to the list, as David works another full-time job during the day, and often pulls long hours in the evening and on weekends, while Andrea looks after the day-to-day operations and all the design work. And while David doesn’t have much time to drive his Chevy truck these days (which he bought at 18 with his dad and has rebuilt five or six times), and Andrea doesn’t have time for weighted squats, except with Axel on one hip and a box of spirits on the other, they both wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.
Interestingly, black diamonds are also the toughest form of all the natural diamonds. Andrea’s motto, “It’s gonna be great!”, keeps them focused on where they’re going when they’re feeling overwhelmed in the moment. As parents and small business owners, while balancing another full-time job, they’re so grateful for the support and excitement that they’ve had from the community in this adventure. As for me, I’ll be following along as they grow, and I hope they won’t find it weird if I actually move into their distillery.
Head to their website: Black Diamond Distillery