Meet The Team
‘Cuz Whisky don’t grow on trees*
Okanagan Spirits would not be where it is today without its team of hard-working and talented individuals. Here is your chance to meet the faces behind the driving force of our distilleries.
President of Okanagan Spirits Craft Distilleries
Our “El Capitain” is the reason why Okanagan Spirits is what it is today. Tony’s passion for the family distillery coupled with his unsurpassed work ethic are the secret ingredients behind Okanagan Spirits becoming Canada’s most internationally awarded craft distillery. He’s also been the driving force behind Okanagan Spirit’s commitment to local, part of the reason for having two independent operating distillery locations.
Tony might credit the occasional dram of Poire William in his morning coffee, but his dedication to excellence inspires not only his family, but also the broader Okanagan Spirits team, made up of the best talent in the distilling industry. Tony and his wife Pat live in Vernon, as does their daughter, Melissa and her two little girls. Their sons, Tyler and Jeremie, as well as two more grandchildren and two grand-dogs live in Kelowna.
CEO of Okanagan Spirits Craft Distilleries
President of the Craft Distiller’s Guild of BC
Tyler has been working alongside his father Tony, as one half of the father & son team, to boost awareness of the art of craft distilling and the opportunities it provides to BC farmers and orchardists. Apart from mixing a mean cocktail, Tyler also inherited his father’s tireless energy and has worked with local and provincial governments as the head of the Craft Distiller’s Guild of BC, to support the burgeoning craft distilling industry, while positioning Okanagan Spirits as a leader in North America and on the world stage. Under Tyler’s watch, Okanagan Spirits’ success on the World Stage has been expanding from Gin, Vodka, Eaux-de-Vies, and Liqueurs to include a place at the table among the top international Whisky producers for each of Okanagan Spirits’ four lines of Whiskies. To this end, their five-year old Laird of Fintry Single Malt, and Final Proof Whisky releases won gold and silver medals, respectively, at the 2015 World Spirits Awards in Demark. Tyler lives a short bike-ride away from Okanagan Spirit’s Kelowna distillery.
Peter von Hahn
Peter is the alchemist at Okanagan Spirits. He is Canada’s most awarded Craft Distiller and the only distiller in North America to achieve not only Master Class but also World Class Distillery designations from the European Based World Spirits Awards (WSA). In 2013 and again in 2015 Peter was instrumental in Okanagan Spirits being awarded Distillery of the Year and also Spirits of the Year from the WSA in Klagenfurt Austria and the WSA in Køge Denmark. Based in Vernon, Peter is a pioneer in his profession and can often be found in his lab concocting a new recipe or further refining some of his tried and tested favourites.
Chris joined Okanagan Spirits in early 2015 to help drive their whisky portfolios forward and to help with the expansion and development of the more than 25 spirits in production at both distillery locations. Chris has a degree in Brewing and Distilling from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh and is currently in charge of Okanagan Spirits’ expansion into a BC Bourbon-style of grain-corn whisky (“BRBN”), and the further development of their much celebrated Final Proof, Master Distiller Series beer-based line of whiskies. We are always eager to hear what Chris will propose next for our 100% BC Whisky release.
Sonia is a farmer and viticulturist, who has grown and studied the flora of the agricultural world in many different settings and styles. She was seeking a new direction, somewhere new and exciting but, somewhere she could use her previous knowledge and skills to be creative. What better path than to follow the fruit? After growing grapes for wine and immersing herself in the wine industry, she has taken one more step in the process and is pleased to be Okanagan Spirits newest Distiller. She is looking forward to bringing some new perspectives and ideas to the “bottle”.
Distillery Bookkeeper and Administrator
Heidi work closely with CEO Tyler Dyck in the accounts department and helps to manage the operation of our back and front-ends at both Distilleries to make sure everything flows smoothly.
Events, Sales and Tours, Vernon
Jody is our tasting room and tour guide expert and helps Melissa out in gifting, and distillery décor and merchandise design. Jody is also the wizard behind our onsite and off-site Vernon events coordination and in her spare time enjoys bossing around the boys of the Vernon Distillery. Jody also oversees our local Vernon sales outreach initiatives and works closely in conjunction with Tyler and Craig to ensure everything we do and touch is World Class.
Tasting Room Manager, Kelowna
Papa Mike is the calming presence that gives Kelowna such a wonderful feel. Mike is in charge of smooth operation and functioning of our Kelowna Distillery’s front end and communicates daily with Craig and the crew in Vernon to ensure that both operations work together as one entity.
(Note: we have been secretly cloning his DNA in Pete’s lab to come up with our own clone army of Mikes!)
Tasting Room/Front End Manager, Vernon
Craig is our Vernon tasting room and distillery front-end manager and is also in charge of our shipping and receiving. Craig works most closely with our front-end crew to ensure that each and every person that comes through our doors or interfaces with our on-line sales receives the highest level of service possible. A fan favourite, you can see Craig’s name appear on numerous Trip Advisor reviews for his exemplary customer service!
Nairn von Hahn
Farmer’s Market Coordinator
Nairn von Hahn is in charge of our Farmer’s and Seasonal Markets. When Nairn is not milking, birthing or castrating cows (that’s right…we said castrating!), she is the force behind our farmer’s market program. You can find Nairn at markets in Kelowna, Vernon, Kamloops and beyond representing our distillery with her friendly smile.