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Quick Flight, Small Pours

3D ice cubes rock.

 

Hot in the news: powdered alcohol.

 

Lagunitas in Chicago? Their first batch was bottled this month!

 

Thoughtful reflection on the job of the wine critic, by Asimov.

 

IPA, stout, and lager lollipops? Of course.
Other flavors include cocktails, wine, sriracha bacon. Blue cheese.

 

This story with Jim Koch has raised some eyebrows.
In short, he suggests you eat yeast in yogurt to not get drunk.

 

If you have Parker access, absolutely read Neal Martin’s Bordeaux 2013 report.

 

The cutest beer story in years.

 

…Thoughts?


Beer Buzz: Half Acre Expands Distribution

This announcement has been a long time coming: We are proud to report that Half Acre beers are now available at all Chicagoland Binny’s locations.  For years, thirsty beer drinking Binny’s shoppers in Orland Park, Willowbrook, Algonquin, McHenry, Naperville, St. Charles, Glen Ellyn, Plainfield, Downers Grove, Bolingbrook, and Evergreen Park have been deprived of delicious offerings such as Over Ale and Gossamer.  But the suburban Half Acre drought is now over, and in our opinion there is no better way to celebrate than with a cold 16oz can of Daisy Cutter.

Half Acre at Binny's

 


Cigar Spotlight: Achilles Eternos


Achilles Eternos

 

Labeled as Curivari’s ultra-premium line, Achilles is the latest release from this highly acclaimed boutique cigar manufacturer. It finally hit the market late in 2013 after years of working on the blend to perfect everything about it. Consisting of all Nicaraguan tobaccos, the cigar is covered with a silky wrapper grown in the famed Jalapa valley of Nicaragua. The Eternos measures 6.25×52 and has a natural box-press that adds charm to the feel of the cigar. It’s medium to full in body with a meticulously balanced full-flavored profile. The leather and graham cracker core are accompanied with flavors of café con leche and roasted nuts. The cigar intensifies with every puff and finishes extremely long on the palate. It’s evident that the cigar uses well-aged tobaccos that derive from 2007 and 2008 crops. Construction is immaculate with a perfect draw and a laser straight burn. There are many cigars released from different manufacturers on a yearly basis, yet very few of them display the type of sophistication that the Achilles does.

 

Achilles Eternos


World of Whiskies 2014

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Last night, Binny’s hosted World of Whiskies 2014, the best whiskey event of the year, and it was a bigger success than ever. You know the story: we get a bunch of the most innovative and exciting spirits producers (no, it’s not just whiskey) together under one roof to show their latest and greatest.

 

One very special feature of last night’s event was the release of Four Kings Bourbon. You’ve heard of it, right? It’s a collaborative bottling from Few, MRDC, Journeyman and Corsair. This limited edition whiskey is only available at a handful of Chicago hotspots including Fountainhead and Delilah’s, and only available for purchase at a Binny’s location near you. This stuff won’t last, so head in and grab your bottle soon.

 

The other real star of the night – if we can be so bold – is the newly expanded Binny’s Lincoln Park. Guests were blown away by our newly expanded location, including the Champagne Depot and Lincoln Park Tasting Room. We knew we had something great, but there’s just something special about witnessing honest reactions to the location. Binny’s Lincoln Park – Seeing is Believing.

 

Pictures tell a better story than words, so click through for more pics of the event, and check out even more pics on this gallery on the Binny’s Facebook Page.

 

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Bourbon Women Night Recap and Photos

Bourbon Women Night was a fantastic evening of education, networking and of course, oodles of bourbon!

Jim Beam Binny's

 

Fun whiskey enthusiasts enjoyed samples from a large selection of bourbon, whiskey and craft spirits. It’s tough to name our favorites because they were all so amazing. A few highlights included a Vosges chocolate and Koval bourbon pairing, craft spirits from our friends at North Shore Distillery and incredible single malts and cask strength Signatory bottlings from the Stoller profile. We also had some sweet treats (Bourbon Manhattan cupcakes to be exact) from our pals at Cakes Under The Influence.
Photos and more after the jump! Read more


Hennessy Black Bottle Engraving

With father’s day just around the corner, this is a great opportunity to start shopping for Dad. Hennessy is stopping by a few Binny’s locations for free bottle engravings with the purchase of Hennessy Black. You’ll also have the opportunity to taste the smooth Cognac. Be sure to try it with one of the recommended cocktails below.

 

Hennessy Black

Dates and times after the jump… Read more


Wine Hotline Hits the Road: Bordeaux Day Four

A small group from Binny’s visited Bordeaux, tasting samples of the 2013 vintage and more, with stops at chateaux and negociants. Find the rest of the trip here. Binny’s Wine Guru Steve Reiter concludes with day four:

 

Not everything is about the 2013 vintage. Our first stop is with Francois Thienpoint. While we taste a couple 2013’s, our focus here is more on previous vintages, mostly 2010-12, that are now bottled and ready for sale.

 

A few stand outs include the 2011 Roques de Jean Lice which offers nice dark plum, dried herbs and clay notes with a light spicy oak on the finish. The 2012 Manoir de Gravoux is equally nice with plum, hints of black cherry, light cocoa and soft tannins. The 2011, 2010 and 2005 La Violette are wonderful, exhibiting warm flavors of black cherry, cola, clay earth and light clove. But the best by far is a barrel sample of 2012 La Gravette de Certan, the second wine of Chateau Vieux Certan. With a heady perfumed nose of blue and purple flowers and fruit, hints of clove, followed by lush blue and black fruit, all balanced and round. This is what Bordeaux offers that no one else can!

 

Bordeaux Bottles

 

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Wine Hotline Hits the Road: Bordeaux Day Three

A small group from Binny’s visited Bordeaux. They tasted samples of the 2013 vintage, with stops at both chateaux and negociants. Find previous reports here. Steve is back with more:

 

Chateau Pichon Baron

 

Day three starts with an appointment at Pichon Baron to taste and have lunch. We also have the distinct pleasure to taste with the winemaker, and to tour this lush and iconic chateau. Just check it out:

 
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Wine Hotline Hits the Road: Bordeaux Day Two

A team from Binny’s visited Bordeaux, one of France’s most famous wine regions. They tasted samples of the 2013 vintage – now available en premier – visiting chateaux and negociants. Read yesterday’s report here. Steve is back with more:

 

Day two and we’re on the right bank in St. Emilion and Pomerol. Vineyards spread out along the countryside, but upon reaching St. Emilion, the city is right on top of the vineyards. In fact, Chateau Ausone is on a hillside above their vineyards just 500 meters behind town. Just like we saw on the Left Bank yesterday, the local population and the vineyards are completely interwoven. Towns have grown as a result of the success and history of the wine region, which again is so different from the other regions I’ve visited. St. Emilion especially is a gorgeous old commune straight out of a fairy tale. Old with buildings staggered over steep hills, narrow passageways, vineyards enclosed by stone walls. A tourist destination and certainly worth the visit.

 

Vineyards and Towns in Bordeaux

 

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Wine Hotline Hits the Road: Bordeaux Day One

Binny’s Wine Managers Steve Reiter and Chris Speir joined Wine Buyer Barbara Hermann on a trip to one of France’s most famous wine regions, Bordeaux. They tasted barrel samples of the 2013 vintage – now in the early stages of its en premier campaign – visited Chateaux and negociants. Steve reports from the road:

 

Binny's in Bordeaux

 

 

First Impressions

 

I expected the city of Bordeaux to be large (the 9th largest in France) but not quite the expanse that it is. We’re staying in a charming, modern sprawl radiating from the river with a modern, urban feel. However, the “Centre” or old part of Bordeaux, is just as large, and definitely has the rustic feel I expected. With stone buildings, colored shades of earthy white, grey, orange and green, it reminds me a lot of Venice. Old churches and architecture dot town squares where people pass time. We wander a few hours through the alley-like, brick-layered streets. I would hate to have to park here. No wonder there are so many bikes.

 

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