Here in Vernon there is a little gem of a craft distillery that is not to be missed. Okanagan Spirits is downtown and tucked away on a side street that is easy to park along.
I slipped in a couple weeks ago when I managed to get a trip to town kiddo-free and was so impressed. It's a warm, inviting space and you can do tours and tastings and it's all rather fascinating. Here in the Okanagan we get visitors non-stop and the average wine tour is so overdone. A trip to Okanagan Spirits with a tour is a great thing to do with out of towners.
I went home with a bottle of their Essential Collection Vodka to use as a neutral mix for summer drinks...
And a beautiful bottle of Raspberry Liqueur....
Our signature liqueur conveys the taste of freshly picked raspberries to you in its aroma before even touching the tastebuds where it delights with just what you anticipated.
This liqueur is ideal for those who crave a natural sweetness and is delicious on its own, in cockails or over cheesecake.
You really can't go wrong with our #1 liqueur.
(World Spirit Awards 2010 - Silver ) - taken from the Okangan Spirits page
I do love Hibiscus Tea and while I was in Mexico this spring I loaded up with Hibiscus flowers to make the super healthy and refreshing tea at home. It's very popular in Mexico and they call it Agua de Jamaica or Jamaica Tea. You can get a huge bag of dried blooms very cheap. Look for them here in Hispanic markets. It's also super healthy and a great tea to have on hand iced all summer. I had a big pitcher made so I experimented with my new spirits. A shot of vodka and a shot of the raspberry liqueur, then filled with the red tea in a tall glass with lots of ice was really yummy.
I also liked the tea with just a shot of the raspberry liqueur on ice with a squeeze of lime.
Ta Da.. A Raspberry Flower Fling is born and ready to share with anyone who comes for a happy hour treat.
Getting back to the Hibiscus Tea as at our recent Fiesta I made a big jug and everyone seemed unfamiliar and a tad hesitant I wanted to share some of the benefits...
The kidneys are the body’s trash collector and keeps waste from building up in the body. The garbage is pushed out of the kidneys, into the bladder, and then it is discarded. The kidneys are located in the middle of your back and can process fifty gallons of blood per day. According to Dr. Oz. key factors in knowing if your kidneys are working efficiently are your blood pressure and blood sugar. Both of these medical conditions, when left untreated, can cause chaos and damage to your kidneys. Dr. Oz advises drinking three cups of hibiscus tea a day can significantly lower blood pressure. Hibiscus is now the most promising herb in reducing the effects of high blood pressure.
Hibiscus tea is considered nature’s wonder drug. Recent studies concluded the different antioxidants found in Hibiscus tea may help to protect against cell-damaging free radicals. Hibiscus tea is not only recommended to lower high blood pressure, it promotes lowering high cholesterol and the richness of Vitamin C aids in strengthening the body’s immune system. Drinking a cup of Hibiscus tea immediately after meals will help in the absorption of dietary carbohydrates and assist in weight loss reduction.
Find lots of Jamaica Tea recipes and benefits on my Fiesta Love board on Pinterest.
Cherry Liqueur as I love all things cherry and Blackcurrent sounds amazing too...yes, I am the one who selfishly gobbles up the black wine gums from the bag. I am also keen to try the gin and some of the cocktails they feature using gin. I also have oodles more recipes and mouth watering beverage ideas on my Happy Hour Love board on Pinterest that look perfect for a summer evening.
So be sure to visit an Okangan Spirits location while in Kelowna or Vernon and try some of the products. These are not the sweet, syrupy liqueur you used to sneak from your parents liquor cabinet as a teen...these creations are rich with the taste of real local fruit picked at its prime. They are divine sipped alone or mixed into a cocktail.