Ben Morgan, customer service manager and resident beer geek at Binny’s Lakeview recommends Smuttynose Baltic Porter. It only seems fitting as winter doesn’t seem to want to leave Chicago.
Alright, so when do you expect to get this fantastic porter in?
It’s hitting the shelves of Binny’s this week!
Why’d you recommend this particular brew?
Smuttynose rarely disappoints, and this beer is one of their best, and it’s only $5.99 a 22 oz bottle at 9.2% ABV. It’s the perfect dark beer to help pass this abysmally overlong winter, haha!
Yeah, about that… So, how does it taste?
The color is an opaque black that lets in little to no light, with a lovely brown lacing that invites the drinker in warmly. The aroma is reminiscent of a freshly made chocolate fudge, or a really good glass of chocolate milk and just a hint of dark fruit such as bing cherries or dried dates. The taste definitely has the fudge quality that you get in the nose and a little bit of caramel, a touch of coffee, smoke and a little raisin. The creaminess of this beer is what really sells it for me. You can barely detect the 9% alcohol until you reach the end of the bottle, leaving you wanting another one!
Well, you sold us! What’s your history with Binny’s?
I started working with Binny’s in September of 2007 as a cashier at the Buffalo Grove store. I have since worked at Lakeview, Lincoln Park, Skokie, Glencoe (for 1 day, lol), and now I’m back at Lakeview as a Customer Service Manager. I love working at Binny’s because there is a wealth of information at your fingertips and there’s a really great sense of community in the company. Most of my best friends have worked or are currently working for this company.
Couldn’t agree with you more! What sparked your interest with beer?
I actually didn’t have any true interest in beer until I started with Binny’s. I majored in Music Education at Indiana University and have a special affinity for Upland Brewing in Bloomington, IN. (Note: Please distribute to Chicago soon!) It wasn’t until my assistant manager at Buffalo Grove at the time, Chris Berger, introduced me to the Gouden Carolus Cuvée Van der Keizer Blauw (Thanks Chris Aiken for the shout out for this beer a few weeks ago!) that my eyes were truly opened to the beauty and complexity of beer.
Fantastic! So what’s your go-to beer on a Friday night?
I have 2, depending on my mood. Either Half Acre Daisy Cutter if I want something refreshing that I can drink more than one, or Bockor Cuvée Jacobins Rouge if I’m in the mood for an excellent Flemish Red ale that’s not difficult to find.
Interesting choices! Any hidden talents?
I can play more than 20 musical instruments! Unfortunately, not at the same time…unless I’ve had a few Daisy Cutters
That is very impressive! Any other perks to being in the beverage industry?
Meeting people who are as excited and interested in beer as I am.
Have any more questions for Ben? Shoot him a tweet: @Benjiehorn