The mid-August sun was hot and the car ride loud. Fresh air blasting through the windows, a baby on and over the verge of crying and a puke stain on my shirt, we hit the open road. For about ten minutes anyway, out to a distillery just outside of Saskatoon. The static of in-between blared on the radio, a desperate attempt at recreating white noise in hopes of buying a few more moments of silence. And then there we were, Black Fox Distillery.
Precisely 22 minutes from the door of our home to Black Fox Distillery, this adventure is accessible even if, say, you need to pull over and nurse your baby on the way. A few of us — six adults, three babies and one toddler — met out at the farm for an afternoon in the wildflowers. Babes strapped into carriers, we strolled through the rows and rows of beautiful wild flowers. Because we’re from Saskatchewan, all of us have done a little growing up on or near farms. And while our children won’t grow up directly on the farm, it’s important to us that they understand our heritage, the lineage of the land.
A distillery might not be the first place you picture taking a baby, but Black Fox Distillery is actually the perfect spot for a family outing. And not just because booze makes parenting easier. Beautiful flowers, groomed walking grounds and delicious spirits make it as fun for babe as it is for “adults.” And lord knows adults need something fun to do during those first few months of parenting. Motherhood isn’t exactly glamorous, unless you have a European nanny teaching your child multiple languages while you sip mimosas on the deck. About a week after my son was born my friend dropped by to pick up our dog. We both laughed when I opened the door in my blood soaked hospital gauze underwear and nipple ointment stained bra. Anyway, all this to say that it’s nice to add a sliver of glamour to parenthood.
When I think of the adventures I had as a kid, or when I started developing a love for nature, it all began on my grandparents farm. The vast garden taught me a love for fresh fruits and vegetables (and what kohlrabi is). Riding in combines showed me patience. Driving the gravel roads earned me a badge of caution. Spending Christmas surrounded by a huge farm family staring at the snow-covered evergreen felt like safety and warmth. And being there, just being there, created a deep inner connection to nature. Black Fox Distillery is a piece of all that.
And the kids loved it! Sure, it’s difficult to tell if babies only a few months old love something, especially if they spend half the time sleeping. But the toddler — Finn — showed enough enthusiasm for all of them! Lots of space to run around, colours, smells and tons of stimulation. Plenty of space to lay out a blanket and take in the surroundings. Or, if you need to, say, nurse your baby AGAIN (do they do anything else other than eat eat eat eat in those first few months anyway?!).
Though I’ve never been to Black Fox Distillery before, it makes me nostalgic. It felt like being on the farm, which is no surprise when you know their story.
The Black Fox Distillery & Story
The folks at Black Fox Farm and Distillery are third generation farmers. You can feel the bloodlines in your feet walking across the fields, the history imprinted on the leaves. Having been tilled for many years by many hands, this might not be the first time the bounty has turned from flower to drink. Sharing their passion for agriculture with visitors, Black Fox Distillery feels like a family home, complete with a stiff G+T on the table.
The Saskatoon distillery grows 90% of ingredients on the farm, and every spirit has been fermented and distilled by them. A rare feat, this means Black Fox Distillery’s logo has a deeper meaning. It’s a seal of approval, an artist signature on the bottle. Using different grains and flavours, the Saskatoon distillery brings out the natural flavour from the earth through their agricultural passion.
Offering tours and festivals, the Saskatoon distillery is worth the drive for the gin, vodka and liqueur alone.
Visit Black Fox Farm and Distillery
We’re locals and we love spreading local love. Saskatoon has so much to offer, and exploring it all is so much fun. Pick some wildflowers, walk the grounds., or just have a drink on the patio. We’ll be back to Black Fox Distillery for another visit.
Where is it?
A short drive out of the city toward the South, not from from the banks of the South Saskatchewan.
245 Valley Road,
Saskatoon, SK S7K 3J6
We’d love to hear your stories, see your pictures. Share in the comments or send us an email. We’re getting our social up and running but we’re not there yet.
Hours of operation:
Winter hours (October to May)
Thursday – Sunday noon till 6 pm
Summer hours (June – September)
Tuesday – Sunday noon till 6 pm