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Alberta

What’s on Tap? – Rediscover Moonshine with Skunkworks Distillery

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5 minute read

An exciting new addition to the Calgary Barley Belt might look a little bit different than what regular patrons are used to seeing, or drinking. Skunkworks Distillery, a locally owned and operated micro-distillery, is bringing premium engineered moonshine to the craft beer party!  

Originating in 2015 as an after-work-over-drinks project idea, the concept of Skunkworks Distillery was in the works for a few years before it began to take shape with Faye Warrington and Marty Lastiwka at the helm. Skunk Works is an engineering term coined at Lockheed Martin, referring to the Advanced Development Department, which focuses on innovative and unconventional approaches to new science and technology. “Skunk Works is a department that operates outside the mainstream of their company working on weird little side science projects or on new tech stuff,” says Faye, “for Marty and I, this is our Skunk Works. This is our science project.” 

Located on the Barley Belt, southeast Calgary’s signature walking distance collection of craft breweries, Skunkworks distills smooth, small batch premium engineered moonshine that is as good over ice as it is in one of their many cocktails. Made from sugar beets refined in Taber, Alberta, Skunkworks offers three unique products: the original Skunkworks Moonshine, Hypersonic and Moonwater. With Skunkworks, Faye and Marty are committed to challenging the mason jar mentality that associates moonshine with a bootleg burn. 

“Moonshine is a good way to bring people together. We all have a moonshine story,” Marty laughs, “It’s something people can always talk about, for better or for worse.” 

The tasting room, much of which Faye and Marty built themselves, combines industrial space race vibes with a Mad Max steampunk flare that can’t be found anywhere else. Sip your Skunktail (Skunkworks cocktail) from a science lab beaker and enjoy some light snacks on a replica plane wing turned coffee table, while listening to live music from the in-house studio. 

After countless hours of planning, searching and building, the taproom officially opened in November of 2019. Launching amidst the upheaval of a global pandemic and ensuing economic crash has made Skunkworks an operation well versed in thinking on their feet. “None of the normal rules for growing a business apply right now,” says Marty, “So we’re just adapting, we’re pivoting every day.” 

Like a number of other breweries and distilleries around the city, Skunkworks transitioned to the production of hand sanitizer to help fill the gap during the height of the pandemic. The public response, according to Marty, was far more than they ever could have anticipated. “Everyone was just so desperate for it,” he says, “we were making it just to give away, and suddenly people were lined up around the block for it.” 

While this wasn’t how they exactly envisioned their first few months in operation, it turned out to be a great way for the distillery to begin connecting with the community while helping out people in need. Given the uncertain circumstances and difficulties of the last several months, Faye says the support of the community and other local distilleries has been invaluable. 

As things settle down, Faye and Marty are looking forward to being able to host live music again and are even exploring the idea of an outdoor concert on their (dog-friendly!) patio. Above all, the two are excited for the upcoming release of their latest product, a seasonal feature that is like “nothing you’ve ever tasted!” coming very soon. 

To learn more about Skunkworks Distillery and what the Calgary Barley Belt has to offer, visit https://www.skunkworksdistillery.com

 

Follow Todayville Calgary to learn more about Calgary’s unique breweries and distilleries, now featuring exclusive weekly updates from Whats on Tap? 

Alberta

Markstrom’s 32-save shutout lifts Calgary Flames to 3-0 win over Vancouver Canucks

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CALGARY — Jacob Markstrom’s 32-save shutout against his former club spurred the Calgary Flames to a 3-0 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday.

Sean Monahan, Dillon Dube and Matthew Tkachuk scored power-play goals in Calgary’s home-opener, which was the first NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome since March 8, 2020 for a span of 10 months and eight days.

Canada’s NHL clubs are playing in empty arenas to avoid the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Vancouver goaltender Braden Holtby stopped 32 of 35 shots in the loss.

Flames off-season acquisitions Markstrom, defenceman Chris Tanev and forward Josh Leivo faced their former Canucks teammates Saturday.

Markstrom played a combined 243 regular-season and playoff games for Vancouver, while Tanev played 10 seasons and Leivo his last two for the Canuck.

Both Markstrom and Tanev made life difficult for their former club. Tanev led the Flames in blocked shots with seven including three when Calgary was short-handed. 

Former Flames defenceman Travis Hamonic returned to the Saddledome wearing Canuck colours.

Tkachuk had time to go backhand to forehand on a Johnny Gaudreau rebound at beat Holtby’s outstretched right pad at 15:16 of the third period.

Andrew Mangiapane sent a behind-the-back backhanded feed across the high slot for Dube to rifle over Holtby’s shoulder at 16:22 of the second.

The hosts killed off a Canucks two-man advantage for 81 seconds in the opening period. Markstrom turned away three shots and Tanev blocked two attempts during it.

Tkachuk on Holtby’s left fed Monahan in the slot for a power-play goal at 8:31.

The Canucks (1-2-0) played their third road game in four nights to start the regular season. They play again Monday in Calgary before returning to Vancouver. 

Calgary (1-0-1) has a more gentle start to its regular season with a five-day break following Monday’s rematch.

The Flames paid tribute to team president Ken King, who died March 11, and Calgary Police Service Sgt. Andrew Harnett who was killed while working New Year’s Eve.

Notes: Flames goaltender David Rittich dressed Saturday after sitting out the season-opener because of family issues . . . Off-season acquisition Dominik Simon made his Flames debut Saturday . . . Calgary is 9-8-3 in home openers since turn of the century.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 16, 2021.

Donna Spencer, The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Petry, Tatar each score a pair as Canadiens dominate Oilers 5-1

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EDMONTON — Jeff Petry and Tomas Tatar each scored twice Saturday to lead the Montreal Canadiens to a 5-1 victory over the Oilers in Edmonton.

Jake Evans also scored for the Canadiens (1-0-1), while Phillip Danault and Brendan Gallagher both tallied a pair of assists.

Carey Price was nearly perfect on the night making 34 saves to give Montreal its first win of the season. 

Slater Koekkoek was the lone Oiler to sneak a shot past the Canadiens goalie midway through the third period. 

Mikko Koskinen stopped 30-of-35 shots for Edmonton (1-1-1). 

Montreal got on the board early and never relinquished the lead, though the Oilers attempted to claw their way back, outshooting the visitors 26-20 over the final two periods. 

Petry’s first of the night came on a power play 6:50 into the game after Edmonton’s Caleb Jones was called for interference. 

Koskinen stopped Petry’s initial shot but the rebound popped out to the other side of the net, where Petry fired the puck into the open goalmouth. 

Nick Suzuki and Shea Weber were each credited with an assist. 

Tatar widened Montreal’s lead just over two minutes into the second frame, ripping a shot slap shot from below the face off dot over Koskinen’s glove. 

Petry added another tally midway through the second period with a long shot from below the blue line that hit Oilers defenceman Ethan Bear in the rear end and bounced into Edmonton net. 

The Oilers nearly responded on a power play just minutes later thanks to a pristine shot by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, but Price made the stop. 

The Canadiens came up with the puck, leading to a short-handed two-on-one at the other end. 

Evans waltzed in and took a shot that ricocheted off Koskinen’s pads and back to the centreman’s stick. His second attempt was a success, sailing in just below the crossbar to put Montreal up 4-0. 

Gallagher sprang Tatar on a breakaway 9:47 into the third period and the Slovak winger slipped a shot through Koskinen’s legs to give the Canadiens their fifth goal of the night. 

The Oilers finally got a puck past Price 12:59 into the third thanks to a sharp-angle shot by Koekkoek that hit the Montreal netminder’s mask and deflected in. 

Despite the final score, Edmonton was first to put a puck in the net Saturday. 

Three minutes into the first period, a collision between Leon Draisaitl and Montreal defenceman Ben Chiarot sent Price sprawling out of his crease. 

Edmonton’s Dominik Kahun took advantage of the situation and shovelled the puck into the open net. 

The goal was quickly called off, with officials on the ice ruling it was incidental contact on the Montreal netminder.

Oilers sensation Connor McDavid had an opportune chance near the end of the first frame, stealing the puck deep in Edmonton territory and using his infamous speed to streak down the ice on a breakaway. He unleashed a wrist shot but Price was ready and made the save. 

Edmonton will have an chance for revenge Monday when they once again host the Canadiens in the second half of the back-to-back series. 

NOTES: The Oilers claimed goalie Troy Grosenick off waivers from the L.A. Kings Saturday. Edmonton has also placed netminder Mike Smith on the long-term injury list. … Koskinen played in his 100th regular-season NHL game. … Edmonton right-winger Zack Kassian was out for the game following the birth of his second child, a daughter named Olivia.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 16, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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