Learn how to shake and stir your very own hand-crafted drinks in this small-group cocktail class in West Kelowna. This hour-long interactive workshop at Shakers Cocktail Lounge inside Urban Distilleries & Winery includes a hands-on experience behind the bar, and an optional behind-the-scenes tour. You will work in pairs to shake, stir, garnish and taste two unique and delicious cocktails and take home both recipe cards to make and enjoy again. Minimum age requirement is 19 years. Plan to arrive 10 minutes before the start time. Tickets are on the ‘Book Tastings, Tours & Experiences’ button on the bottom of the page.



Master Distiller Workshop, Tba, 2024

Whether you are a connoisseur of craft distilled spirits seeking to further your knowledge or an entrepreneur wishing to start and operate your own Craft Distillery, the Canadian Craft Distilling Institute will provide you the opportunity to learn the art, science and business of Craft Distilling. Our workshops are comprised of a unique blend of classroom time and hands-on experience.

Urban Distilleries operates an award-winning Distillery in West Kelowna, B.C., Canada having one 600 litre Arnold Holstein still with rectification capabilities as well as a 300 litre pot still. Urban Distilleries uses primarily B.C. grain and fruit ingredients to produce vodka, flavoured vodkas, gins, eau de vies as well as whisky style products.

Spending 4 days inside a working distillery will answer all your alcohol-related questions.

Over the first 3 days:

  • you will start off with a brief overview of the Microbiology principles behind alcohol creation
  • you will learn about the critical importance of distillery cleaning and sanitation
  • you will learn about water, its role in making beverage alcohol and how to adjust water chemistry
  • you will learn about the raw materials that a distiller can use to create beverage alcohol
  • you and your classmates will create small-scale grain mashes using both malted grain and un-malted grain using laboratory equipment
  • you will learn about the yeast cell and the fermentation cycle as you add yeast to your mashes
  • you will learn about the equipment that a craft distiller uses to make alcohol
  • you and your classmates will watch as the Distiller prepares a full-size, 1200-liter grain mash
  • you will learn in detail about the distillation process and Raoult’s Law
  • you will use 20 L copper pot stills in the laboratory to distill fermented grain mash
  • you and your classmates will watch the Distiller as he operates the 600-liter Arnold Holstein still
  • you will engage in proofing 95% alcohol down to a drinkable strength such as 40% using a hydrometer, a thermometer, and the Canadian Excise Tables

Day 4:
The focus will be on Gin. Working in small groups, you will engage in creating your very own Gin recipe and then distilling that recipe into Gin. The botanical knowledge from this Gin experience will turn you from a mere Gin drinker into a Gin connoisseur.  No question about it. These 4 intense days will leave you with loads of knowledge that will serve you well, no matter what your future goals are.

About the Course Instructor
In 2014 Malcolm Bucholtz decided to get deeper involved in the growing craft distilling sector. He wrote the Certificate in Distilling exam from the U.K.-based Institute for Brewing & Distilling. After completing his exam, he decided to create Prohibition University so he could teach others about brewing and distilling. In late 2014 he was invited to deliver a workshop at Urban Distilleries in Kelowna, BC. This event morphed into what would be 6 years of repeated workshops at Urban Distilleries. In 2017, Mr. Bucholtz decided to take a deeper dive into distillation science. While still offering courses at Urban Distillery, he began travelling back and forth to Edinburgh, Scotland to pursue his M.Sc. degree studies. In October 2020 he was officially awarded his M.Sc. degree in Brewing & Distilling. He is the author of Field to Flask – Fundamentals of Small Batch Distilling, and The Recipe – Reviving the Lost Art of Home Distilling.

  • Workshops - Image of copper distilling equipment
  • Worksops - Image of containers of grains
  • Workshops - Image of containers of additives to customize your end product
  • Workshops - Split image, once of a copper still close up, and one of a distiller's hands measuring ingredients
Canadian Craft Distilling Institute on Facebook

I am already a craft distiller and I think I will take the course again in 2 years time to learn about the latest developments in the world of craft distilling.

Adam S. , Regina, SK

…this course is great for those who have little prior experience in the alcohol business…

P.J. , Calgary, AB

I spent 3 years gathering as much credible information as I could for my start-up craft distillery. Your course filled in the information I could not find – and all in 1 week!! Your course saved me thousands of dollars by helping me avoid mistakes I would otherwise have made. Excellent!!

David B., Halifax, NS

Learned about marketing strategies, federal and provincial taxations, raw materials and the range of possible products that a craft distiller could make.

C.B., Edmonton, AB

Very good course! Leaned many practical skills!

H.W. and A.W., London, UK

…excellent course overall and I found it a valuable experience to further my knowledge…

M.E., SK

Very intensive and complete course. Excellent orators and teachers – both of you. Comprehensive information and very hands on. Thank You!

Tina T., Calgary, AB

It was an incredibly useful course. Equipment, logistics, business planning, licensing, codes etc…. I learned so much every day!

T.A., SK

…the information given is plentiful. You are very generous with the information you share. I feel I have all I need to start small…

F.A., PQ

…all my expectation were either met or exceeded…

D.N., Montreal, QC

This was an excellent course. I definitely learned the issues to avoid as I move ahead and start contemplating a craft distillery start-up.

Jackson S., Calgary, AB

Almost everything was new to me. You did a great job of covering everything and teaching me the whole process.

Daniel B., New Jersey, USA

Teaching instruction was well done. Learning from someone who has actually set up a distillery was a key component of the course.

B.S., Calgary, AB

…thank you for your time and commitment in sharing your industry knowledge with others. This is a rare quality and one that is greatly appreciated. We both found the workshop helpful and comprehensive.

L.S. and B.S., Alberta

Next Workshop is September 12 – 15, 2023

  • Location: Urban Distilleries & Winery 402 – 1979 Old Okanagan Hwy, West Kelowna V4T 3A4
  • Price: $2,499.00 + tax
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