Wine Hotline: Ask The Wine Guy

This month, our “wine guy” is actually Barbara Hermann, Binny’s fine wine buyer. Barbara has traveled all over the globe and has decades of experience under her belt. She is an eight-time winner of Geja’s blind wine tasting. So we went to her with this month’s Ask the Wine Guy question. Check out Barb’s answers after the jump.
 

“I sometimes hear wine drinkers use words like ‘jammy’ or ‘buttery.’ Are these typical wine descriptions?
Do they literally mean what they sound like?”

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Confessions of a {Festive} Mixologist: Fruity Wine Spritzer

You know that expression, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” We hear that wine has that same effect, too. So why not mix them together? This custom cocktail is fresh, crisp and sure to put some pep in your step this Valentine’s Day! This white wine spritzer is perfect for a party of two – or twenty!
 

Fruit Wine Spritzer

 
Fun fact: This wine spritzer was created with love by Dan’s fiance. Awwww! <3
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Wine Hotline Hits The Road: Jerez

Sherry Barrel Room

Binny’s Wine Buyer, Bob Calamia traveled to Jerez to seek out Spain’s top sherry and learn a thing or two about this timeless region. Bob reports from the field:

 

World headquarters for sherry is Jerez in Southwestern Spain. Two things make sherry unique – its proximity to the Mediterranean and the high level of chalk in the soil. The chalk gives sherry some of its characteristic mineral flavors, but the soil’s biggest contribution is its ability to retain moisture. Jerez gets most of its rain in the fall and winter, and the chalk sustains the vines in the dry spring and summer. The climate is warm enough to ripen palomino fino – the primary grape of the region – and when grown in the chalky soil, it achieves a quality found nowhere else.

 

More photos and info after the jump!

 

Cutting the sherry grape vines

 

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Taste Chateau Angelus and Chateau Daugay at Binny’s Lincoln Park

Chateau Angelus and Chateau Daugay Open House Tasting

 

BINNY’S LINCOLN PARK PRESENTS

Ch. Angelus and Ch. Daugay
Open House Tasting
Tuesday, January 14th, 5-7pm

 

Join us on January 14th from 5-7pm to meet Jean-Bernard Grenie, owner of the legendary Bordeaux estate Chateau Angelus and Chateau Daugay. Mr. Grenie will treat you to several vintages of Daugay and Angelus (recently promoted to Premier Grand Cru Classe “A”), including Daugay 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010 as well as Angelus 2006 and the 99-point 2009, which Robert Parker called “a candidate for one of the finest Angelus produced to date.” Don’t miss out on this special opportunity.

 

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Luxury Wine Gifts

Whether you’re impressing the boss, giving the perfect gift to your loving significant other, or just finding a special bottle for the holidays, Binny’s has the answer. Sure, we have hundreds of high end wines. But our friendly, knowledgeable and good looking wine consultants will help you find the perfect wine gifts without the dreaded stress. A few ideas to get you going:

 

Gift Ideas

 
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The Hottest Wine Gift of 2013

It’s called the Coravin, and you can get it at Binny’s. If you’re already in the know, then you’ll be excited to learn that Binny’s is pretty much the only retailer anywhere between New York and California where you can buy this thing. Check it out on binnys.com.

 

If you’re not in the know, then you’re probably wondering what kind of device famed wine critic Robert Parker would refer to as:

 

“The most transformational and exciting new product for wine lovers
that has been developed/invented in the last 30+ years.”

 

Holy cow, right? What could this amazing device be?

 

Coravin Banner

 
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Our New Favorite Value Bubbly

It’s called Henri Leblanc, and we think it’s the best thing going for under ten bucks.
 
See, sometimes, we feel like real consumer advocates.
 
We weren’t happy with inexpensive bubbly in general. We wanted to offer a value – something clean, fresh and easy to drink. We already have a good product in Cuvee Tradition, but we wanted to offer a step up in quality that’s still a great value. Something wine nerds would drink, and something they wouldn’t mind popping on a Wednesday. So we went to work.
 
It took five months. Five months of combing catalogs, tasting samples, beating up suppliers. We narrowed it down to just a few possibilities, then tasted them blind against the best of the category. That’s when we found our bottle:
 
Henri Leblanc Brut Blanc de Blancsleblanc-12-12-2013

Orchard fruit on the nose, with citrus over granny smith apple and some cream. Creamy on the palate, with bright green apple and mineral undertones. Warm and inviting, vibrant and energetic. Drink it on its own, but we won’t mind if you mix it in a mimosa or bellini. – Binny’s Tasting Note

 

For more wine news any time, check out the Wine Hotline.

Confessions of a {Festive} Mixologist: Kir Germain

Everyone knows the classic cocktail Kir. It’s a mix of sparkling wine and raspberry liquor such as Chambord. Use Champagne and you have a Kir Royale. We are taking it a step further with the inclusion of one of our favorite herbal liquors, St. Germain Edelflower. Dan Culen, our mixology enthusiast at Willowbrook Binny’s added St. Germain because the herbal liquor adds a bit of sweetness to the cocktail. Not only is it a signature drink for the holidays, but it’s easy to make and sure to impress your friends.

Champagne Cocktail
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