Tag Archives: featured

A purist’s dream


(To view our March/April 2018 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

Dillon’s Small Batch Distillers introduces liquid truth with 100 per cent pure rye grain whisky

By Joanne McDonald

It’s circa 1895 and there’s a stirring of poetic alchemy, or maybe, it’s just a trick of the eye.

Prolific writer and visionary H.G. Wells is in the building.

And he’s reading comfortably from one of his science adventure novels against the backdrop of botanicals and berries distilling in copper pot stills – machinery resembling so much works of art as the hard working purveyors of spirits that carry the label of Dillon’s Small Batch Distillers.

The spirit of Wells fades back as Geoff Dillon, proprietor and distiller, reaches up to adjust a gauge on the copper columns.

A young entrepreneur with a vintage soul, he takes pride in precisely creating craft spirits from the very best ingredients, the rich bounty of local Niagara fruits and the botanicals and absinthe gardens in his own back yard – one batch at a time.

Now heading into a sixth year of production, the confluence of old school values with one-of-a-kind modern equipment and clever techniques has this small batch distillery in Beamsville carving out a big reputation on the local and international stage.

It’s been a thrill for Geoff to see his spirits on the shelf at the LCBO. “Seeing that for the first time boggles your brain a bit.”

He credits his father, Dr. Peter Dillon, a renowned scientist and retired university professor who taught biogeochemistry, as the “mad scientist” behind the wide range of unique flavours and aromatics associated with Dillon’s spirits and the distillery’s thoughtful impact on the environment. “He’s such a huge part of this, the fun part where it’s all about experimentation,” says Geoff, of his dad who grows herbs, spices, fruits and vegetables on a ten-acre hobby farm.

To read the full article, click here for the March/April 2018 ClubWest online magazine.

Right where they BEE long


(To view our March/April 2016 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

Charlie Bee Honey: Ontarios’s largest apiary

By David Erman

Farming is not an easy job. With so many variables, such as weather and prices, it can be a fluctuating and fickle business.

Mike Parker
Mike Parker

Mike and April Parker, owners of Beamsville’s Charlie-Bee Honey, Parker Bee Apiaries Ltd. know all about the challenges of running an agricultural operation.

Located south of Beamsville, near the Mountain Road and Fly Road intersection, Charlie Bee Honey is a success story, as they’re likely Ontario’s largest honey producer, as well as the province’s largest bee keeping operation, but like a lot of lot of agricultural operations have found out, it hasn’t been an easy and smooth ride.

Despite all the challenges, April Parker said she is proud of their business and their role in agriculture.

Without their bees there would be a lot less good things to eat.

Along with honey production, the business also rents out hives.

See the full article in our online edition.

Top photo:
Gail Schellenberg pours the latest fresh honey at Charlie Bee’s Mountain Road facility. Williscraft – Photo

Carruthers Printing

(To view our September/October 2014 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

For a retired fellow, Ivan Carruthers is one busy man.

Although he retired nearly two decades ago, Carruthers is still an active, connected cog in the West Lincoln community.

It was a long time ago when he broke into the community newspaper business with then-publisher of the Smithville Review George Adams at age 17 as a part-time employee. Then, in 1954, he became the youngest community newspaper publisher in Canada at age 23 when he bought the paper from Adams.

Carruthers said he may have gone into carpentry had Adams not given him his big break.

Although he had been pressed into leaving high school to earn money to help his family of 12 – his father had died and his brother was killed in WW II – Carruthers had been bitten by the
newspaper bug.

He loved his job and he greatly appreciated the opportunity afforded him by Adams, whom he looked upon as a father figure.

See the full article in our online edition.