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The creation of our distillery was based on the desire to produce a Quebec single malt whisky capable of competing with the best in the world.
Using only barley, local Mirabel water of exceptional quality and yeast specially selected for their aromatic profile, Matt Strickland, our internationally recognized Master Distiller, spares no effort in the production of our whisky. Working with an all-copper still, he preserves only the highest quality spirit from the heart of the distillation process, before aging it in one of the exceptional barrels acquired through our rigorous barrel selection and blending program.
The identity of our single malt depends on our distillation technique, but we are aware that the nature of the barrels plays a determining role in the unique expression of the final product. The aromas, the color, and the richness of the whisky result from the perfect marriage between our distillate and the essence of the alcohols contained in their walls.
Our inventory already includes several barrels that have been used to mature sought-after spirits, including ex-bourbons, ex-sherry olorosos, ex-sauternes, ex-port tawnys and more than thirty others. You will soon have access to a diverse range of single malts that will offer you a unique experience depending on the bottle you choose.
Barley is the grain used exclusively in the production of our single malt whisky. This is the main reason why our distillery is located in Mirabel, as this region is particularly well known for the quality of its agricultural land and is perfect for growing barley. The purchase of this fertile land allows us to select the barley seeds ourselves in order to produce a superior quality alcohol. We can thus ensure that the barley in our fields is optimally grown and harvested. This rigorous control allows us to work with the best grain possible.
The reputation of Mirabel's water goes far beyond local borders. We draw our water directly from the water table using artesian wells. Tests conducted confirm the purity of this essential natural resource. Together with barley, we have two essential raw materials for the production of a single malt whisky of the highest quality.
The stills used to produce the world's great single malt whisky are made exclusively of copper. Copper has unique properties that aid in the reduction of sulphur containing compounds and also catalyzes the formation of some highly desirable aromas in the whisky. These qualities allow us to produce a truly world class spirit.
Not just anyone can become a Master Distiller in the world of single malt whisky. The distillation process requires considerable knowledge, as there is very little room for error in selecting the best spirits. Every ingredient and every step of the production process must be mastered to obtain an exceptional product. He must ensure that he collects only the most delicate and refined portion of the distillate, avoiding the stronger fractions with heavier and undesirable characters. Finally, the new-make spirit will need to be placed in casks for several years. This maturation is a critical period where the Master Distiller has a unique opportunity to allow his product to flourish, selecting only the best barrels that will show the whisky at its very best.
This kind of expertise is exceptionally rare. Despite an intensive search locally, provincially and eventually coast to coast, we finally expanded our search internationally. After interviewing over 50 candidates from many countries, we were lucky to find Matt Strickland, a 40-year-old American who is extremely well-known in the distilling and whisky world. In addition to his daily work at the distillery, he contributes to the training of distillation students in his home country and also at the Institute of Brewing and Distilling in London, UK, where he participates in the conception of the exams for the students who finish their training there. He is also the author of several whisky and distillation books and regularly writes articles for specialized magazines. He is extremely passionate and uncompromising in his vision of producing world-class single malt whisky here in Quebec.
This is a crucial step in the evolution and maturation of a single malt whisky. We source barrels from all over the world. Every cask is vetted by our distilling team to ensure that only the best wood is used to mature our precious new-make spirit. We pay particular attention to the type and the quality of alcohol that was previously aged in these barrels, as well as the number of years they were aged. We want casks with unique flavours produced by the best coopers, from the best stave wood, and that held only high quality wine, beer, or spirits. Obviously, this policy considerably limits the number of barrels deemed suitable, but we prefer to limit our production by offering you an exceptional final product that will meet your expectations.
Our philosophy is one of quality over quantity. Our whisky will be aged in barrels whose walls are filled with an exceptional spirit and will allow for new and elevated characters to develop over time. We currently have over twenty different cask varieties giving us an immense flavour spectrum to work with. Soon we will be able to offer you several types of whisky, most of them in limited quantities.
Article in Inspiration magazine (french)https://www.saq.com/fr/distillerie-cote-des-saints Interview of Dr. François Marquis with Bernard Drainville (french)https://www.985fm.ca/audio/312509/distillerie-cote-des-saints-dr-francois-marquis
We were delighted to have hosted the managing partners of Domaine Roy & fils from Dundee, Oregon. Domaine Roy & fils is a vineyard that produces pinot noir and chardonnay. Alain Plamondon, General Manager Robert Roy, Partner Marc-Andrée Roy, President Visit them at : https://www.domaineroy.com/