October 31st, 2020

Taber ‘Berbon’ hits the shelves


By Jensen, Randy on June 25, 2020.

Greg Bobinec

Lethbridge Herald

gbobinec@lethbridgeherald.com

Taber corn will have a new taste to it as Bridgeland Distillery in Calgary is using the grain to craft a specialized bourbon-style spirit they branded Taber Corn Berbon, which is to be released today.

With some of the best grain in the world, the specialized spirit is the result of what Albertan agriculture offers best, Taber corn and Penhold wheat and barley grown by two dedicated families, the Molnars in Taber and the Hamills in Penhold.

“Mashing, fermenting and distilling a bourbon-style spirit is quite complex and technical especially considering it is done in small batches in a pot still,” says Jacques Tremblay, co-owner of Bridgeland Distillery in a release. “Considering barrel aging imparts roughly two-thirds of the flavour and aroma to the end product, we wanted to make things right before releasing it.”

The whiskey makers carefully sourced the best new American oak barrels with the right toasting profile. The result is a vibrant product packing a lot of flavour which bourbon drinkers are often on a quest to find, along with the same “Kentucky hug” you get from better known brands on the market.

“To be called a bourbon, it must be made with at least 51 per cent corn; ours is 60, distilled to no more than 80 per cent alcohol, aged in new, charred oak barrels at no more than 62.5 per cent alcohol, which we do,” says Daniel Plenzik, co-owner. “However, the word bourbon is a protected name as it can only be called bourbon if it is made in the United States. So instead, we branded our products as Berbon, as in Ber in the County of Taber from where the corn was grown. We are so excited to be able to use our amazing local grains to create this.”

With today’s launch of the new product, distillers as well as agriculture producers involved with the product are excited for this spirit to highlight the best crops found in the area.

“We are excited to get our Taber corn to be transformed into this high-quality spirit,” says James Molnar from Molnar’s Taber Corn Farm. “These distillers from Bridgeland are quite crafty and innovative when it comes to highlighting our premium crop.”

The Taber Corn Berbon will be made available for purchase today, only in 500 millilitre bottles at the distillery, as well as at select liquor stores in Calgary and Taber.

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