Jon & James — Path to the Podium

We’re proud to sponsor Jon Dunkerley & James Cook in their path to the Paralympic podium.


The Mission

Jon and James were paired up in March of 2017. At the time they were living on opposite sides of the country (Jon in Ottawa; James in Victoria). James had never ridden a tandem bicycle and Jon had a bowl style skateboard helmet and his first pair of clip-less cycling shoes, which he was keen to try out for race day. After a couple of wobbly starts and one low speed crash, Jon and James stormed onto their first podium, taking a bronze medal and their first steps toward the 2020 Paralympic Games.


In their sophomore year Jon and James brought home a Silver Medal at the North American Continental Championships, World Cup Gold, and a Bronze medal at a World Paratriathlon Series event (the highest level of Paratriathlon racing outside of World Championships and the Paralympic Games). They finished their season with an 8th place finish at the 2018 ITU World Paratriathlon Championships, which brought their World Ranking up to 5th.

In August 2018 the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the International Triathlon Union (ITU) announced that the Men’s Visually Impaired Category (PTVI) would be included as a medal event in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. Given their meteoric rise in the sport to date, Jon and James are optimistic of their chances to not only qualify a spot for Canada at these games, but that they can make history by being the first male visually impaired team to bring home a Paralympic Gold Medal in the sport of Triathlon.

Having seen consistent improvement each and every year of his triathlon career, James is excited to see just how far he is able to go. Over the next few years he is focusing on building upon his previous performances in Half-Distance events by continually pushing for the podium and attempting to qualify for the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships. In 2018 James’ career will come full circle as he returns to the IRONMAN and begins to develop his competency with this distance in pursuit of qualification to the IRONMAN World Championships in Kona, Hawaii.


More than Sport

Even as a young child Jon loved to compete. Whether it be kicking around a soccer ball, climbing trees, or intense games of neighbourhood hide and seek, he was always up for a challenge or two. Jon is still an avid sports fan and especially enjoys trips to the driving range to unwind after a long week of training.

Upon graduating from high school, Jon attended Sheridan College in Brampton Ontario, where he attained two diplomas for Community Worker: Outreach and Development, and Animal Care Studies. Jon is passionate about animals. He is currently enrolled in a Canine Massage Therapy Program and intends to pursue a career in the field of animal health and wellness.

Outside of training and competition James maintains a Kinesiology practice at Synergy Health Centre in Victoria, BC. James draws upon his extensive background in anatomy & physiology, biomechanics, exercise, and high-performance sport to enable his patients to get to their finish lines, whatever they may be. James also enjoys volunteering at local triathlons and other athletic, and non-athletic events around Victoria and has helped coach multiple people of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds through their first triathlon experiences.

Learn about our in-store fundraising happening on June 15-July 31.

Learn more about Jon and James:

Jon Dunkerley
Instagram: @jondunkerley
Twitter: @jondunkerleycan

James Cook
Facebook: James Cook Triathlon
Instagram: @jamescooktri
Twitter: @jamescook tri

PHOTO CREDIT: Swell Social

Cocktails for Dads!


You’re a new dad

Congratulations! You may not sleep anymore, but you will wake up in interesting places around the house. A new kid is a confusing and stressful change – best to keep things simple with a boilermaker. A shot and a beer. You can’t go wrong with a classic combo like Miller High Life and Old Forester Bourbon. Or take it up a notch with Hoyne Helios and Nikka Whiskey from the Barrel.

And if you’re feeling creative, despite the lack of sleep, pick your favourite craft beer and pair it with something good. Try Driftwood White Bark with Odd Society Creme de Cassis or Sea Cider’s Ruby Rose and Sheringham Akvavit.


Russell Brewing Company Craft Lager
A Shot of Old Forester Bourbon


Kids are tying their own shoes

You’ve got a bit more time at this stage and picked up a few new buddies from soccer practice and the carpool line. These are fun years, so why not start making fun drinks? Think about mixing up something tropical, like El Diablo!

El Diablo

Glass: Collins glass filled with ice
1 1/2 oz Rooster Rojo Blanco tequila
1/4 oz Odd Society Creme de Cassis
3/4 oz fresh lime juice
Royal Jamaican Ginger beer
Garnish: lime wedge and fresh blackberry

Pour all ingredients except ginger beer into a shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into Collins glass filled with ice. Top with ginger beer and garnish with lime and fresh blackberry.


Breaking Curfew

It’s a big day when the kids begin staying out past dinner. They’re finally independent, but have you taught them enough to keep them out of trouble? Mix yourself something to nervously sip on while you wait for your kid to come home.

Blackberry Manhattan

1 ½ oz Stillhead London Dry Gin
¾ oz Woods Amaro
¼ oz Giffard Crème de Mure
2 dashes Fee Brothers Old Fashioned Bitters
Lemon twist for garnish

Add gin, amaro and crème de mure to a mixing glass filled with ice. Stir and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a twist of lemon.

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When the kids graduate

You’ve done your job and your kids are all grown up, maybe even with kids of their own! So let them mix the drinks! Ask for something that reflects all you’ve accomplished as a parent – a classic drink but with your own personal twist. Put your feet up with this variation on an Old Fashioned.


1 ¼ oz Lillet Blanc
¾ oz Stillhead London Dry Gin
¼ oz Giffard Poire William
Lemon twist for Garnish

Combine Lillet Blanc, gin and pear brandy in a mixing glass filled with ice. Stir until chilled and mixed. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Meet The Maker: Vancouver Island Brewing


Founded in 1984, Vancouver Island Brewing is celebrating its 35th Anniversary. The brewery recently undertook a series of rebrands, updating the tasting room and entire product catalogue with exciting new flavours and styles. Their new lineup combines the classic technique of long-tenured Brewmaster Ralf Pittroff with the new school approach to craft brewing of Production Manager Danny Seeton. These brewers are paying homage to their history with classics like Piper’s Pale Ale, while experimenting with modern recipes and labels that are as delicious as they are eye-catching.

All brews are now vegan friendly, with the help of a centrifuge that filters their beers without the use of fining agents made from animal by-products. Along with the switch to vegan-friendly production, Vancouver Island Brewing is also seeking kosher certification. Ralf and Danny are working towards innovation, quality, and technical precision on all their beers.

Passion and inspiration are the driving forces behind Vancouver Island Brewing. They never compromise on quality and pride themselves on offering a selection of beer that can accompany you on all your adventures. Whether you prefer the classics or are always on the hunt for the next new style, Vancouver Island Brewing has something for you!



2.4% ABV | 7 IBU | 6 SRM

An extra light radler built on the foundation of a Gose, rather than a lager. The moderate grapefruit is supported by a clean lactic acidity and a pinch of salt. This sessionable sour fruit beer allows you to bring a glass of the summer wherever you go. Citrus, Sour, Salty.



2.4-6.0% ABV | 7-57 IBU | 4.5-10 SRM

Every year Vancouver Island Brewing makes a number of one-off and seasonal brews. These are the beers they consider to be so exciting that they have no choice but to share them with you. Seasonal Series, Tidal Series, Collaboration Series, or something new they just want to try out, you'll find it anchored here in their Harbour 8 Tall Can Mix Pack!



6.0% ABV | 57 IBU | 10 SRM

This hazy IPA is anything but expected. There’s some something new to be discovered around every corner: bold citrus aromas and flavours lead to a lingering, juicy finish.


Refreshing Wines for Mother's Day!


Mother’s Day is a time to celebrate mom and everything she has done for you. What better way to show your appreciation than with delicious BC wine? We’ve selected a few of our favourite local sippers that are worthy of mom’s love.


This wine perfectly captures the essence of south Okanagan atmosphere – aromas of sage and antelope brush accompany the usual herbaceous and gooseberry notes expected from great sauvignon blanc. There’s no shortage of bright and fresh acidity, the hallmark of Okanagan wines, which is carried by a slight textural mouthfeel from brief contact with neutral oak. This wine is mouthwatering and delicious! Try pairing with white fish, grilled asparagus, or fresh pesto pasta.


Rathjen wines are the epitome of Saanich peninsula; low-intervention, sustainable growing practices, and unique varieties grown specifically for a coastal climate. The Bunker White blend is quirky, aromatic, and zippy with just a hint of sweetness. This wine features aromas of fresh orchard fruit and sea-salt minerality, and is built for pairing with local greens, seafood, and cheeses. We love this wine with oysters or as an aperitif before a special meal with mom.


Modelling themselves after Champagne, Fitzpatrick is making traditional method sparkling wines that are high quality and complex, showcasing their unique terroir. Their flagship blend is a blend of chardonnay and pinot noir aged 24 months on the lees, giving a rich and savoury mix of hazelnut and pastry dough that complements the peach and apple fruitiness. This is a versatile wine for food pairing, matching deliciously with fruit tarts, fried chicken, or spicy green curry.

Meet The Maker: Tofino Distillery

Founded in June 2018 by local volunteer firefighters Adam Warry, John Gilmour, and Neil Campbell, Tofino Distillery showcases an array of spirits with locally inspired ingredients (Cedar tips in the Old Growth Cedar Gin and locally roasted coffee beans in the Espresso Vodka), a traditional approach to their brand and a fresh approach to the industry. With a current production lineup which includes a variety of authentic Gins, Vodkas and Absinthe, there is sure to be a spirit for any occasion and everyone's taste.  

The company mandate is truly locally focused on Canada's West Coast and its inherent ethos, more specifically in regard to fulfilling modern-day corporate responsibility to the environment through sustainable practices and to produce unique, premium quality craft spirits that can be enjoyed by avid enthusiasts and recreational consumers alike.

They are proud Canadians who produce everything from grain to glass in their hometown of Tofino, on the shores of the Pacific Ocean.  They use 100% Certified Organic BC Grain and pristine water from their backyard, the heart of Clayoquot Sound.


This uniquely floral spirit imparts its deep pink colour along with its distinct rose flavour and hints of hibiscus to any mix you choose. We recommend a balance of sweet and tart topped with something carbonated!


An authentically well-balanced mixture of heat and fresh Jalapeño flavour sets this Vodka infusion apart from any others in its category. They use real Jalapeños to infuse their premium Vodka and afford the peppers as much time as necessary to achieve the unique balance. If you're feeling adventurous, try this one with mango juice and a splash of lime juice for a unique summer cocktail!


Taste the Cedar of the Coastal Temperate Rainforest in this unique, small batch gin with an unmistakably distinct texture. They use the same 10 botanicals as their Traditional West Coast Gin, then pack the gin basket full of actual Western Red Cedar Tips!  The result is uniquely west coast and demonstrates how much of an impact just one botanical can have on the flavour profile and texture of the spirit. Because our Gin is non-chill filtered, don't be alarmed if a little Tofino Fog rolls into your glass when adding ice or putting your bottle in the fridge.  It's totally cool!

New Cascadia Quadra Open!

Last month we celebrated the official GRAND opening of our new Cascadia Quadra location!  We invite you to come down and check out the expanded location. In addition to the new space, we also expanded our product selection. Another feature we are very excited about is the new education space located in our wine section. This space can comfortably seat 16 people around its tasting bar. Stay tuned for more details about our upcoming  Masterclasses !

Last month we celebrated the official GRAND opening of our new Cascadia Quadra location!

We invite you to come down and check out the expanded location. In addition to the new space, we also expanded our product selection. Another feature we are very excited about is the new education space located in our wine section. This space can comfortably seat 16 people around its tasting bar. Stay tuned for more details about our upcoming Masterclasses!