Posts tagged “Rimouski”

coucher du soleil

By Gaëtan Vaudry

If I were to summarize my interview with Jean-François Cloutier, co-founder and co-owner of St. Laurent Distillery, in one word, it would be PASSION. The entrepreneur welcomes me to the company's new facilities, a magnificent building by the sea, located in the Pointe-au-Père district, in Rimouski. In a matter of seconds, I am immersed in the world of whiskey and gin distillation, which has built the reputation of this business employing 25 staff members.

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The micro-distillery was founded in 2015 by Jean-François and his accomplice Joël Pelletier, when their very first product, St-Laurent Gin, quickly caused a sensation and is now available in 14 countries – no small feat! “It was through discussing our passion for certain spirits that Joel and I developed the project to produce our own whisky,” Jean-François explains. “Today, we believe in it more than ever, especially when we look at the 300 barrels currently aging in our reserve. We are proud to be among the pioneers of micro-distillation in Quebec.”

Educating People

While St. Laurent Distillery produces a variety of products that delight enthusiasts, the owners have made it their mission to educate visitors on the fascinating production of spirits like whisky, gin, and Acerum, a brand-new class of spirit made from maple syrup distillation: “It was important for us to offer mixology workshops, including the history of cocktails and a theoretical overview of the spirits universe,” the co-owner proudly points out. “The basic tour is 45 minutes to an hour and includes some theoretical segments. Additionally, thanks to a coupon system, people can taste many of our products.”

Enthusiasts visiting 135, avenue Père-Nouvel in Rimouski also have access to the micro-distillery’s store, not to mention four well-appointed areas, including the establishment's bar and its terrace (with a sea view), a second terrace (the Terrasse-Nord) available during the beautiful summer season, as well as the magnificent courtyard which, also in summer, allows the St. Laurent Distillery team to host chefs who offer small dishes on site, and even musical groups and DJs.

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Acerum Festival

In our conversation, Jean-François, always brimming with ideas, talks about creating a new Acerum festival, set to debut in 2024. While the dates have yet to be announced, the concept is well underway and will be revealed soon: “This festival will be an opportunity for us to develop partnerships with collaborators and producers from all over Quebec, including several local maple groves.”

If you are not yet familiar with the products of St. Laurent Distillery, a visit to the facilities is a must. To deepen your knowledge of whisky and gin, I strongly suggest the Grand tour du proprio package (approximately 2 hours long). In any case, you will need to reserve your spot HERE, via the company's website.

St. Laurent Distillery
135, avenue Père-Nouvel
418 880-4694

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