Spring has been an auspicious time for the Nova Scotia Spirit Company. Not only is the business renowned across Nova Scotia for its vodka, rum and gin – and awarded for helping promote Nova Scotia as a destination to visit – it will soon be expanding its offerings.
Two weeks ago, the Nova Scotia Spirit Company celebrated winning the Maritime Marketing Award, Destination Eastern and Northumberland Shores. Alex Henderson, marketing and events coordinator, said the award “certainly wasn’t expected,” but that the company was “honoured to have been nominated and recognized for the effort we’ve put in.
“And the win was a cherry on top. Winning came as a bit of a surprise, since all the other nominees are phenomenal, doing great work for tourism in Nova Scotia.”
The result of that effort has been meteoric growth since 2015, and Nova Scotia Spirit products in NSLC locations across the province – and more recently, in Prince Edward Island liquor stores as well.
The company is based in Hillside, near Trenton, and plans to expand its physical location with a new location opening in Stellarton for its new brewery, the Painted Boat Beer Company.
“There has been a lot of growth – it started three years ago, and since then there have been ups and downs, but pretty much always going up since then,” said Henderson. “We broke into the P.E.I. market, and since the end of last summer, things have been going awesome.”
That growth includes a physical component as well with the company occupying more space, this time in Stellarton.
On Monday, passersby on Foord Street watched as several pieces of large equipment were brought out of sea cans and hauled into what will soon be the location of Painted Boat Brewery – another addition to Pictou County’s growing array of craft breweries.
“Painted Boat is a beer brand we are launching, hopefully this summer. What they were unloading on Foord Street was fermenters and a brew house,” said Henderson. “We have been looking to move production to Stellarton, and in that bigger space we can produce more and meet more demands.”
The growth of small breweries in Pictou County is a phenomenon Nova Scotia Spirit Company has been watching for a while. Henderson said, “There are a lot of new products in the beer and spirit world, and we’re at a point where we want to give it a try.”
“We’re going to produce some awesome products, and it’s exciting to get going. We’ve been discussing this opportunity for a while, and the opportunity presented itself – so we’re going for it.”
The company has been active in the past couple of years “trying to get out and do events like tastings, farmers markets, sponsor events – those kinds of things,” said Henderson. “We are trying to give back to a county that has given us so much.”