Press Releases

October 11, 2016

HMSHost Partners with Wayne Gretzky to Open New Concept at Edmonton International Airport

Elegant setting showcases Gretzky’s wine and whisky endeavours, in deal brokered by IMG

Toasting the opening of No. 99 Gretzky’s Wine & Whisky from left to right: Neil Thompson, Vice President of Operations at HMSHost; Janet Gretzky; Tom Ruth, President and CEO of Edmonton International Airport, Wayne Gretzky; and Jeff Yablun, Chief Operating Officer at HMSHost. 

EDMONTON, AB — Now taking centre ice at Edmonton International Airport is No. 99 Gretzky’s Wine & Whisky, an elegant, new full-service dining experience by global restaurateur HMSHost in partnership with hockey legend Wayne Gretzky. A grand opening was celebrated with a ceremonial wine pouring and toast led by Wayne Gretzky, along with HMSHost and Edmonton International Airport representatives.    

"I am thrilled to partner with HMSHost to bring this great new concept to Edmonton International Airport,” said Wayne Gretzky. "Edmonton holds a special place in my heart and there is no better place I can imagine being able to showcase my wine and new whisky then here with Edmontonians and the millions of leisure and business travellers at the airport."

No. 99 Gretzky’s Wine & Whisky features a sophisticated décor for travellers, with an emphasis on the wine and whisky endeavours of Gretzky’s post-hockey career. Paying homage to the sports legend, there is an iconic mural of “The Great One” to welcome travellers at the front of the restaurant.

With an inviting interior and concourse patio seating area, the restaurant and bar offers a dining experience where travellers feel as though they are lounging in a club-level suite, with leather chairs and handsome wood finishes that create a swank setting to relax and dine in style while waiting to take-off.

“With his profound effect on the global and local hockey scene, you simply can’t think Edmonton without Wayne Gretzky, making No. 99 Gretzky’s Wine & Whisky a natural addition to Edmonton International Airport,” said HMSHost Vice President of Business Development Kent Vanden Oever. “We are honoured to partner with Wayne Gretzky and Edmonton International Airport to spotlight this legend’s great wine, whisky, and food in a fantastic, relaxing atmosphere for the world travellers that go through the airport on a daily basis.”

“Wayne Gretzky is clearly an iconic part of Edmonton’s history, and having Gretzky’s Wine & Whisky right here in the heart of Canada’s fastest-growing major airport means we’ll be able to add great food and great service to that Edmonton legacy into the future. We know passengers will look forward to the chance to experience Gretzky’s signature wines and whisky as part of their travel at Edmonton International Airport,” said Tom Ruth, President and CEO of Edmonton International Airport. 

Guests are never far from the action on the ice as sleek televisions surround the bar area where travellers can gather to take in the game while relaxing with a drink from a broad selection of beers, cocktails, and wine. The restaurant features an extensive wine list with offerings from around the world and a strong focus on the local Canadian region with wines from the Wayne Gretzky Estates in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley.

For travellers who want to taste one of Gretzky’s exclusive, signature wines, Wayne Gretzky Okanagan No. 99 “The Icon” Single Barrel 2012 BC, VQA, Okanagan Valley is available by the bottle or coravin pour and can be enjoyed with a cheese platter of Canadian cheese, nuts, spreads, and toasted bread.

The restaurant also offers a worldly selection of whisky including Wayne Gretzky’s recently released No. 99 ‘Red Cask’ Canadian Whisky which is made with locally-sourced grains that are individually distilled, matured and blended, then finished with premium red wine casks from the Wayne Gretzky winery.

No. 99 ‘Red Cask’ Canadian Whisky can be enjoyed neat, on the rocks or in the signature cocktail, “The Great One,” made with No. 99 ‘Red Cask’ Canadian Whisky, cherry herring, orange juice, and sweet vermouth. A variety of other signature cocktails are also available including the Maple Mule and the Canadian 99.

Not to be outdone by the vast drink offerings, the menu brings a variety of the beloved hockey great’s favourite foods sure to satisfy any Edmonton traveller. Some of the not to be missed Gretzky signature favourites include Perogies, Penne Ragu, and Polish Sausage. Travellers will also find a selection of salads such as the Grilled Steak Salad, to sandwiches and burgers including the Brie Burger, to entrée plates such as the Roasted Canadian Halibut.   

Young travellers have a dedicated kid-friendly menu with appealing options. Have an early morning flight? A breakfast menu reflects morning favourites to get you on your way, including Gretzky’s signature Breakfast BLT with an over-easy egg, smoked bacon, lettuce and tomato on a croissant with herby potatoes.

No. 99 Gretzky’s Wine & Whisky is located in the Domestic-International Departures area at Edmonton International Airport. The deal was brokered by IMG, Wayne Gretzky’s exclusive licensing agent.

HMSHost Leading the Industry

HMSHost has been recognized by the industry as the top provider of travel dining with awards such as 2016 Best Overall Food & Beverage Operator (for the ninth consecutive year) and Food Operator with the Highest Regard for Customer Service (for the seventh year) by Airport Revenue News. HMSHost has also been recognized by Airports Council International-North America, receiving First Place for Best New Food and Beverage (Full-Service Concept) for 1897 Market at Charlotte Douglas International Airport and First Place for Best Innovative Consumer Experience Concept for its Channel Your Inner Chef live culinary contest at Chicago O’Hare International Airport.

About HMSHost

Global restaurateur HMSHost is a world leader in creating dining for travel venues. HMSHost operates in more than 120 airports around the globe, including 44 of the 50 busiest airports in North America. The Company has annual sales in excess of $2.8 billion and employs more than 37,000 sales associates worldwide. HMSHost is a part of Autogrill Group, the world’s leading provider of food & beverage services for people on the move. With sales of around €4.3 billion in 2015, the Group operates in 31 countries and employs over 57,000 people. It manages approximately 4,200 stores in over 1,000 locations worldwide. Visit www.HMSHost.com for more information. We can also be found on Facebook at fb.com/HMSHost and on Twitter at @HMSHost.

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