Media Releases

Friday, October 30, 2015

Local talent thrives at annual food + drink celebration, Cornucopia


Suggested Tweet: Local talent thrives throughout the Sea to Sky Corridor – see it first-hand at Cornucopia. #Cornucopia2015 @CornucopiaWine


Whistler, B.C. – The Sea to Sky’s reputation as a haven for producing high-quality, organic and locally-inspired food and drink is based on a culmination of the passion, expertise and innovative spirit thriving within the region. Cornucopia, presented by BlueShore Financial, is proud to present a smorgasbord of home-grown talent over 11 dedicated days of food, beer, wine and spirits.

Despite the festival’s growth, the original ethos of nurturing local talent and growing awareness to the thriving culinary industry throughout the Sea to Sky Corridor remains intact – 19 years on. Explore the bounty of local gastronomic genius at Cornucopia, November 5-15.

Tyler Schramm is the owner and Master Distiller of Pemberton Distillery, an award-winning certified organic micro-distillery located in Pemberton, 30 minutes north of Whistler. The Pemberton Distillery was built in 2008 – making it one of the first craft distilleries in Canada, and the first to create spirits using 100 per cent B.C.-grown raw materials. Initially specializing in classic old-world style organic potato vodka – the only certified organic potato vodka in the world – Schramm now creates a range of small batch organic spirits, including whisky, gin, absinthe, brandy and liqueurs. His philosophy is to combine hands-on craft methods and locally grown ingredients to produce high quality spirits with distinctive terroir and style. Catch Tyler on the culinary stage during Pembytopia. Travel 40 minutes south of Whistler and you’ll find Gillespie’s Fine Spirits in Squamish. Partners in life and business, Kelly Ann Woods and John McLellan are co-owners and operators of the artisan craft distillery – needless to say, the spirits industry is alive and well along the Sea to Sky.

Eric Blouin, founder of Taste Whistler, has dedicated his professional life to wine and the pleasures that surround it. With the overarching goal of making wine more approachable and less intimidating, Blouin explains “It’s very motivating to taste wine with people, see what they’re into, make them discover a new favourite style, varietal or region... wine is supposed to be fun!“ When asked what we can expect from his up-coming seminars at Cornucopia he reiterates “Great wines, serious fun and probably lots of banter”. See Blouin and fellow ‘Whistlerite’ Samantha Rahn (2013 Sommelier of the Year, at the Vancouver International Wine Festival) when the dynamic duo team up to present at four of Cornucopia’s  wine seminars, including: Whistler’s Wine Transplants, The Cool Kids, He Said / She Said and Lords of The Dirt.

Fort Berens Estate Winery reconfirms the local areas undeniable entrepreneurial spirit; pioneering the wine industry, when breaking ground to build the first winery in Lillooet. As one of the newest additions to the regions culinary repertoire, Fort Berens continues to grow from strength to strength, winning the 2014 Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in British Columbia Wines with their 2012 Riesling. Heleen Pannekoek, co-founder and co-owner of Fort Berens states that “winning this prestigious award for a wine made with 100 per cent estate-grown grapes really proved that not only could we grow grapes in Lillooet, but that we could grow premium-quality grapes”. Taste the unique flavours of this emerging wine region when Fort Berens teams up with the culinary bravado of the Four Seasons Whistler’s signature hotel restaurant, Sidecut Modern Steak + Bar at The Fort Berens and Four Seasons Experience winemaker dinner, November 8.

Craft beer in British Columbia has experienced an unprecedented surge in popularity with a plethora of micro-breweries, brew pubs, artisan brewers and craft breweries popping up across the province. In Whistler you don’t have to go far to understand why, with the Whistler Brewing Company producing much-loved artisan brews, that are highly-reflective of the local community. Jen Smythe, Portfolio Manager of NorthAm Beverages explains “At Whistler Brewing we are passionate about making beer, we believe that it’s important to make beers that our community will enjoy and embrace”. When asked of the significance of using local produce, Smythe says that it is “incredibly important, in fact one of our newest beers – the Unique Brew Cold In Fused Coffee Brown Ale – was a collaboration with The Whistler Roasting Company. Local partnerships are an integral part of our philosophy.”

Journey down the road south to Squamish again and you’ll find Howe Sound Brewing, a brew pub that not only produces unique (and delicious) craft brews, but is implementing small changes in order to better their environmental impact. From using re-useable bottles, to channeling the bulk of spent grains to local farms, Howe Sound Brewing is taking steps to keep the Sea to Sky Corridor a beautiful and natural locale. Sip, sample and savour the delicious craft brews from the Whistler Brewing Company, Howe Sound Brewing plus many more at Cornucopia’s newest gala tasting, BREWED: The BC Craft Brewers Guild Winter Beer Market.

Expertise abounds at Whistler’s annual food and drink celebration. Taste it for yourself at Cornucopia, November 5-15. For all event and ticketing information visit:


Cornucopia, presented by BlueShore Financial is an eleven day dazzling display of gourmet food, wines, spirits and beer catering to everyone from amateur enthusiasts to aficionados. Respected industry professionals, judges and presenters headline each event, seminar and tasting, offering the best possible opportunity to garner as much information and insight as possible. Held on the cusp of the opening of each ski season in beautiful Whistler, British Columbia; Cornucopia was designed to showcase and support the local food and drink industry. Now encompassing wineries, breweries, distilleries, chefs and restaurants from Vancouver, greater B.C. and beyond, Cornucopia has become recognized as a preeminent representation of the culinary tourism industry in Canada. With widespread appeal shown through the immense variety of events available, the festival is truly a food and drink festival with a Whistler attitude.

Whistler is Canada's premier year-round leisure and meeting destination located in the Coast Mountains 120 kilometres (75 miles) north of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Consistently rated the top ski resort in North America, Whistler was the Host Mountain Resort of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The resort offers an extensive range of accommodations totaling 10,000 bedrooms among 24 hotels as well as townhomes, condos, B&Bs and chalets. Whistler also boasts more than 100 restaurants and bars, 200 retail shops, 25 spas and countless activity options from world-renowned skiing and snowboarding, mountain biking and golf, to hiking, rock climbing, and watersports. The Resort Municipality of Whistler is home to a diverse community of more than 10,000 permanent residents.

Tourism Whistler is the member-based marketing and sales organization representing Whistler, operating the Whistler Conference Centre, Whistler Golf Club, Whistler Visitor Centre, as well as 1.800.944.7853 and - Whistler's official source for visitor bookings and information. As the convention and visitors bureau for the Resort Municipality of Whistler, Tourism Whistler represents more than 7,000 members who own, manage and operate properties or businesses on resort lands including hotels, restaurants, activity operators and retail shops.

Media can visit for Whistler facts, media releases, story starters, local personality profiles and access to images and B-roll.

Broadcasters: Whistler now has the capability to take you live with our enhanced fibre network. The significantly expanded network of more than 200 kilometres of fibre optic cabling throughout the resort allows instant transmission of HD signals to any location at any time. Details on how to access, and book the fibre are available on our media site.

Media Contacts

Mary Zinck
Manager, Travel Media
T: 604.938.2702

Katie Brockett
Coordinator, Communications
T: 604.938.2726