We had the pleasure to meet Mr. Sivo at his distillery Sivo located in the beautiful Eastern Township region of Quebec.
Our visit there had something almost magical about it. The drive was absolutely beautiful, with adorable and colourful houses along winy and hilly roads, punctuated by apple orchards along the way. After following a country road for a while and starting to wonder where on earth were we, we turned unto an entrance road with cherry trees on both sides and what looked like a big barn at the end of it. We arrived at destination and were greeted by Mr. Sivo, Lea Messier and Manu Ruiz with whom we spent all afternoon having drinks and nibbles, walking around the property, visiting the distillery and tasting soon to be released very exciting new products.
Mr. Sivo is 75 years old and opened his own distillery as a retirement project. The man gave us the impression of being someone that has had many lives. He was a teacher in the Eastern Bloc during the Soviet Union, worked as an engineer in Tunisia, lived in Hungary, Germany, United Kingdom and probably more places, and traveled the world whether it be for work or for leisure. He has been married to the same woman since 1975 and has many children and grand-children.
How Mr. Sivo came to open his own distillery is the result of a hazardous coincidence. He was never a big drinker nor was he an expert in spirits. Like he says himself, it is not a pretty story. He is not the children of a 5th generation distillers’ family nor was it a dream that he had since he was a kid. He encountered the opportunity to open a distillery as a retirement project and he did it.
And he did well. Mr. Sivo was very humble and nonchalant about his success. But since we are writing an article about him we can be a little less humble and send him the honours we think he deserves. He has over 80 acres of land where he grows blackcurrants, blueberries, raspberries, wild strawberries, cherries, apples, a big maple tree forest and more, all of which is grown as naturally as possible and used to make his products. His work is focused on quality rather than quantity and the result is tasty, original and authentic.