Earlier this year, Drake’s latest album, VIEWS, shattered the record for most streams in a single week, racking up some 245.1 million plays in the US in just seven short days. Now, nearly six months after the release of his LP, the rapper is breaking records again up north in his native Canada with the success of his liquor label, Virginia Black Decadent American Whiskey.
While whiskey-drinkers have been enjoying the booze in the US for months (First We Feast went threw an emotional roller-coaster when we decided to pair five glasses of the liquor with Drake’s new music), the artist’s Canadian fans are just getting their hands on the stuff now—and apparently, they’re going crazy for it.
According to the Toronto Star, Virginia Black topped single-day launch sales at the Liquor Control Board of Ontario on September 30, moving 1,779 bottles across 220 stores. In the weeks since the launch, 4,650 bottles of VB have been sold in the province, totaling $186,000 in retail sales. As the Star notes, Diddy’s Ciroc only sold 1,855 bottles in its first week last June.
Though Virginia Black has been marketed as a distinctly American bourbon, Drake’s popularity in Canada—not to mention Toronto, which he lovingly calls the “Six”—has surely helped the company move so many bottles in such a short period of time.
For Brent Hocking, the founder and CEO of Virginia Black, the idea was always to market an accessible, smooth whiskey that mirrors Drake’s polished image.
“In the whiskey world, the badge of honor is the higher proof, but we just wanted to make it more accessible,” Hocking told First We Feast in May. “Smooth was the word we were going for. Smooth, rich, and decadent.”