The name “Onilikan,” at once mysterious and exotic, has its origin in the ancient Nahuatl language; onili meaning liquor and kan, place. It also sets the backdrop for the beautiful interior design; Mexican all the way down to the Saltillo tiles on the floor. Larger than it appears from the outside, the complete distilling process takes place within these four walls. Onilikan uses the fresh fruits of our region and distills them into fruit liqueurs, with an emphasis on capturing the aroma of each fruit. http://www.onilikan.com

They say “Chance is the providence of adventurers,” and this aptly describes the distillery’s 10 Canadian investors and the Mexican company backing them. Director Manuel Campos is quick to point out that Onilikan has a connection with Okanagan Distillery, an international award-winning company near Vernon, B.C. When investors here queried the viability of a mango-flavored liqueur, Manuel shipped four tons of locally grown mangos to the Vernon distillery. The experiment worked – and the results are tasty! Since Onilikan only opened in mid-December, they’re still exploring different varieties of fruit, and have purchased five acres of orchard just north of Mazatlán for growing.

The mango liqueurs can also be used for cooking and make a great marinade for fish or chicken.

The operation is able to efficiently use fruit that’s too ripe to sell. Besides two mango flavors, there’s also an agave liqueur. (What we would think of as tequila) It’s illegal in Mexico to label agave products “tequila” unless they’re actually made in the city and state of Tequila, Jalisco. Onilikan’s agave liqueur is a premium-quality, smooth sipping beverage.