This weeks Binny’s New Brew is sure to please. The recommendation comes from Chris Aiken, beer manager at the South Loop Binny’s.
When did you get Perennial Aria in?
Why are you recommending it?
Perennial was one my favorite breweries to come into the market last year and with this as their flagship, I see them doing even better this year.
How does it taste?
A nice fruity Belgian Pale Ale with hints of Pear and Apple. There is a very subtle note of funk near the end to help it finish dry.
Sounds pretty awesome. Okay, now your turn. How long have you been with Binny’s?
Three years. I came over with the Sam’s buyout.
What’s your favorite part about working for Binny’s?
I get to talk to people about beer all day. Plus I get to visit breweries. It’s a rather nice gig.
February 27th is National Kahlua Day. Yeah, it’s a thing. Kahlua was created in 1936 by chemist Montalvo Lara. It means “House of the Acolhua people.” Lara used coffee beans from the fields of Veracruz, which were grown by a pair of brothers, the Alvarez. In the 1950’s, Kahlua became popular and began global distribution. It wasn’t until the 1960’s though, that it hit North America, and of course, the U.S. fell in love with its creamy and distinctive Mexican flavored goodness. From there, it grew and grew. Since 2007, Kahlua joined the flavor craze and added flavors like french vanilla, hazelnut, mocha, gingerbread, peppermint, pumpkin spiced and salted caramel. Facts courtesy of Kahlua.
Start collecting those corks… we’re getting crafty!
Lots of corks!
Hot glue gun
String of yarn
Cardboard wreath (You can find this at your local craft store)
Or… try cutting a circle out of a thicker cardboard box
Every week we like to feature a new brewski that hits our shelves. This week our Skokie beer manager, TJ, recommends: Grainstorm Black Rye IPA from Boulevard.
This American Black Rye IPA earned a 91 point rating from Beer Advocate… and we couldn’t agree more! Be ready for a spicy, smokey and herbal mix. The big roasty malt body holds a lot of flavor until it ends with a delicious citrus bitterness.
This new brew is only available in store for the low price of $8.99 per bottle. Not bad, eh? It’s a winter seasonal, so it will only be around for a limited time. Be sure to check back weekly for our latest Binny’s New Brew!
Join winemaker Matt Smith, who oversees all Bordeaux varietals at Kendall Jackson, at a blending seminar and tasting of some of the finest wines crafted in California. Matt is a graduate of the University of Michigan and UC Davis and has traveled and studied winemaking in France and Spain. Since 2006 he has been in charge of all Bordeaux-style wines.
With Matt’s direction, you’ll fashion your own blend with Grand Reserve Cabernet component wines from KJ’s Knights, Alexander, and Bennett Valley vineyards. Seating is limited and reservations are required.
Binny’s in Bolingbrook
Wednesday, February 27th, 6pm
Reservations Required, Call 630-972-1187
$10 w/Binny’s Card, $20 non-members.
The South Loop Tasting Room
Binny’s South Loop
Thursday, February 28th, 6pm
Reservations Required, Call 312-768-4400
$10 w/Binny’s Card, $20 non-members.
The Whiskey Hotline’s next stop on the road through Kentucky and Tennessee? Kentucky Bourbon Distillers. You might remember our visit last summer. What has changed since? When we were there last July, the first floor of their newly renovated Warehouse A was half full of barrels. Now, the entire warehouse is nearly full. The place is buzzing. On our last visit, they were gearing up to build a grain mill and two bed & breakfasts. The mill is finished – a shipment of corn arrived and we got to watch it go up an auger and into a hopper. That was cool. And at least one of the B&B’s is done. It seems like they start a project every week, and finish one every four.
What did we taste? KBD resumed distilling in January of 2012, and we got our first taste of their young rye and bourbon after just 13 months in wood. Excited to taste them over hte next few decades. Also, they’re distilling using seven different mash bills – we were able to sneak back a bottle of their wheated bourbon recipe white dog. And it’s fantastic. After our delicious (and popular) last batch of Willetts, you know we want another round. So keep an eye out for more Binny’s Handpicked Willetts in these ages: 4 year, 6 year, 7 year, 8 year, 9 year, 10 year, and 22 year (!!!).
You might think that the month of February already has too many holidays. Well, here’s a holiday we can all get behind. Join us this Friday as we celebrate National Margarita Day.
Yep. It’s a thing.
To prepare, we headed to our South Loop Tasting Room and asked our crack team of cocktail specialists for their best custom margarita recipe. Check it out:
The Binny’s Margarita
2oz Don Julio Blanco
3/4oz Gran Torres
1/4 to 1/2oz Agave Nectar (Add more or less to taste)
2 1/2oz Fresh Lemon/Lime juice blend (Add more or less to taste)
Give it a quick shake, strain over ice and garnish with a slated rim and lime wheel.
That agave nectar is the secret to a great margarita. It’s cleaner in taste and naturally lower in calories than sugar or high fructose corn syrup based mixers. Special thanks to Josh, our bartender, for sharing his awesome Margarita recipe!
Day two on the Whiskey Hotline’s road trip? Corsair Artisan Spirits’s Nashville, Tennessee distillery. These guys are doing exciting things.
Listen, we’re always the first to knock the use of smaller barrels. You just can’t make a traditional bourbon, put it in small barrels, and expect it to taste good. That’s what makes Corsair different. While they do age in 15 gallon barrels, they play with the rest of the formula too: using experimental grains (quinoa?!), flavoring with hops, trying new mashes. At the same time, Corsair mostly produces mostly whiskies from malted barley, and have experimented with fifty different smoked barleys and seventy different hops.
By the way, Corsair just filled their first 30 gallon barrel last year. We tasted it; it isn’t ready, but when it is, there’s a good chance it winds up being a Binny’s Handpicked cask. We’ll revisit it soon. Did we bring back anything else? Watch for more of their delicious Triple Smoked.
Also, somebody at Corsair hearts monkeys.
Brewery Ommegang has collaborated with not another brewery, but a television network in HBO to create a beer around one of the most watched shows in HBO’s history, Game of Thrones. Iron Throne is a 6.5% ABV Belgian-style blonde ale that will be available at Binny’s mid-March. Stay tuned to the Binny’s blog for more information about the release.
As promised, The Whiskey Hotline spent the weekend scouring Kentucky for only the finest handpicked barrels of whiskey.
First stop? Pogue in Maysville. We’re getting an incredibly small amount of their white dog rye. Binny’s is the only place to get it outside of KY and NY. Very good stuff too… lots of farm/hay/grass with a little fruit.