Synergy is what the pairing of Legend Distilling and the Knotweed restaurant is all about.
Early in November, Legend owners Dawn and Doug Lennie teamed up with Chef Michael Sonier to add food services to their growing craft distillery. In Sonier, the Lennies found someone who shared the same ideals about sourcing ingredients locally and from high quality organic sources around B.C.
“It just worked out great. Their concept on food and our products, the way we make our products is very similar. It’s been a really good combination,” said Dawn. “Everything they source, they know the farm it came from, a lot of them, they go right there themselves and get it.”
“We change the menu every week, sometimes every couple of days depending on what our suppliers have on hand. We use all fresh ingredients, so as the ingredients are available seasonally, we change our menu,” said Sonier.
“That is part of our concept, to always have something new to the table. People don’t really know what to expect when they come.”
The menus even include a listing of where the ingredients were sourced from this week.
“It’s a really nice complement to our products, because the same thing, we know exactly where all of our ingredients come from, and that is really important to us,” said Dawn.
Sonier grew up in New Brunswick, and says that will play into seafood being featured, along with game.
“We try to work wild game into our menus, which is one of the healthier options for proteins these days,” said Sonier. “We cook up a lot of elk, we have venison on our menus today, wild boar, lots of things people haven’t really been exposed to.”
“I think they are trying to feel out what people are interested in seeing on the menu. The food has been really well received so far,” said Dawn. “It’s a different experience each time. You don’t get bored of the menu, that’s for sure.”
Dawn said starting the food services operation in November, rather than a busier time of year, is helping them get to know each other’s workflow. July and August, she said, is really busy for everyone, so it is nice to have everything running smoothly before then.
“It gives us all a chance to work together for a little bit and work out any kinks. Get things going really nicely until we do get to the really busy season,” said Dawn.
Legend will continue to offer an array of hot and cold cocktails, made using their own handmade spirits, and a selection of local wines, B.C. craft beers and cider.
Dawn said they are planning live music nights, painting nights and other winter events, which will be listed on their website at legenddistilling.com or on Facebook @LegendNaramata. Knotweed can be found at knotweed.ca or on Facebook @KnotweedBC.
Winter hours for the lounge, restaurant and tasting room are Tuesday to Thursday from noon to 8 p.m., and 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.