New Brunswick

Shake this liqueur before pouring: it contains half a pound of Chicken Bones

The Moonshine Creek Distillery in Waterville, N.B. has taken an idea developed in one of its holiday workshops and created a new liqueur using the popular Christmas candy.

The Moonshine Creek Distillery in Waterville, N.B. says the idea was developed in one of its holiday workshops

Moonshine Creek Distillery has bottled only a limited supply of Chicken Bones liqueur for the first run. (Moonshine Creek Distillery )

It's the Christmas gift idea you didn't know you were looking for: a liqueur made with Ganong Chicken Bones candy.

The Moonshine Creek Distillery in Waterville, N.B., first developed the idea in one of its holiday workshops and is now bringing it to market in time for the holiday season.

"It tastes just like liquid Chicken Bones," said co-founder Jeremiah Clark. "It isn't just flavours or that we wanted to create a similar flavour. It is actually the Chicken Bones melted down with syrup and blended with our corn whiskey to make a liqueur." 

Clark said workshop participants learned to make their own liqueurs by finding things around their house. One of the suggestions was using leftover holiday candy to blend into a spirit to make a liqueur. 

"We had such overwhelming feedback from participants who suggested we should try to do that commercially," Clark said. 

The distillery reached out to Ganong and "luckily, they were on board." 

A Waterville distillery is putting a twist on one of New Brunswick's favourite candies, introducing a Chicken Bone Liqueur. Jeremiah Clark of Moonshine Creek Distillery said the liqueur is made from ground chicken bones candy, melted down with syrup. 5:35

Clark, who said he's a fan of the Chicken Bones, said the candy is a New Brunswick staple that can be found in every home during the holiday season. 

"It's such a part of our culture that I think we all relate to that candy." 

Clark said the distillery uses the broken candy, or seconds. 

"When we approached them it was really important for us to not use extracts. We wanted to find a way to repurpose their seconds." 

Work with other companies

Jeremiah Clark of Moonshine Creek Distillery said the response to the Chicken Bones liqueur has been overwhelming. (Ed Hunter/CBC)
Clark said they are always looking for ways they can work with the agriculture sector and in this case, a chocolate manufacturer. 

"What do you have that might be hard to get rid of or that might not just get used?" he said. "In any manufacturing line you have bits that are not to spec and that's what we use." 

Clark suggests people give the Chicken Bones liqueur a good shake before pouring. 

And if you want a chance to taste it, don't wait. Clark said they've only made 2,500 bottles. 

"When we had to grind down those 1,400 pounds of Chicken Bones we lost some along the way," he said. "In the end it gave us enough for 2,500 bottles."

Each bottle has about half a pound of candy in it. Clark said the response so far has been overwhelming. 

He said they've sold all they can to NB Liquor and what is in stores is all that is available from this pilot project. 

"With this kind of response, I could comfortably say that we will be doing the project again. It just speaks to … how much a New Brunswicker kind of holds that candy near and dear."

Clark said it's part of the company's mandate and a key goal to work with and promote New Brunswick culture with various spin-off products. 

"It doesn't have to be about us making alcohol." 

With files from Shift New Brunswick