Barrel Report: 2014 Binny’s Handpicked Single Malts

The committee gathered, tasted and voted, and now the 2014 Binny’s Handpicked Single Malts are on their way. Brett’s annual trip to Scotland yielded excellent whiskies this year. Now that we have sorted through all the options and honed the selection to just the best of the best, we can hardly wait for these selections to arrive (and they always take months and months, of course). Until then, get your wish list ready:

 

Binny's Handpicked Single Malts

 

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7th Annual Binny’s Homebrew Contest Winners Recognized

Another 2014 Binny’s Homebrew Contest has come to an end. We’re blown away with the incredible homebrew talent and beers that we had the chance to judge this year. We expanded the contest to four locations with a total of 200 entries. The first five to place at each location went on to the final judging at Binny’s in Lincoln Park. Congratulations to Sean for winning two tickets to the Great American Beer Festival and to all of the homebrewers who placed or took the time to handcraft and homebrew their entries for the 7th Annual Binny’s Homebrew Contest sponsored by Samuel Adams.

 

Binny's Homebrew Contest

Winners announced after the jump! Continue reading

Confessions of a Mixologist: 5 Sangria Recipes You Need To Try

Wine + Fruit = Perfection.

 

There really is nothing better than a warm summer night, a chilled cocktail and good company. Next time you’re hosting or want to whip yourself up a refreshing drink, try one of these exciting sangria recipes. Share ‘em with your friends and let us know what you think online. Click here to see more of our favorite cocktails.

 

Tropical Frozen Sangria

Sangria
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Confessions of a Mixologist: Cocktail Ice Cubes

Have you ever thought about dressing up your ice cubes? They are the boringist (it’s a word) part of the cocktail and it’s time to step up your game. Try these ice cube substitutes in mixes ranging from sangria to wine spritzers to mojitos.

 

Minty Ice Cubes

Fruit Ice Cube

via designlovefest.com
 

Simply just slice and dice your fruit, mint or herbs and add them to water in your ice tray. Freeze over night and voila – fun and colorful ice cubes that will add an extra spark of flavor to any cocktail.
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Whiskey Hotline Hits the Road: Cedar Ridge

Ever heard of Swisher, Iowa? It’s home to Cedar Ridge Vineyards Winery & Distillery and most importantly, where we picked our latest batch of Handpicked bourbon barrels. Yup, plural. We just couldn’t pick one. But more about Cedar Ridge first.

 

Owners Jeff and Laurie Quint have built quite the distillery/winery. Located in eastern Iowa, it’s just a short drive from Cedar Rapids or Iowa City. Jeff serves as Master Distiller and Master Winemaker. In addition to crafting award winning small batch spirits (like our Handpicked barrels), Cedar Ridge produces wines from their own estate-grown grapes. Fun fact: Cedar Ridge is the first licensed distillery in the state of Iowa since the age of prohibition.
 

Cedar Ridge

 
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Wild Turkey and Anderson Valley Extravaganza!

Here is your chance to talk shop and have a drink with Jimmy Russel himself. Yes, that Jimmy Russel.
 
Meet Wild Turkey Master Distiller and living legend Jimmy Russel, plus owner of Anderson Valley Brewing Company, Trey White. Why these two? Anderson Valley has an exclusive partnership with Wild Turkey, making them the only brewery getting Wild Turkey’s gently used bourbon barrels for beer aging. And let us tell you, they make for some tasty beer.

 

Info after the jump…

Jimmy Russel Wild Turkey
 
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Wine Hotline Hits the Road: Italy

Just returning from Italy, on a trip to experience and discover and bring that energy back to you, Barb S, Binny’s Des Plaines Wine Manager, reports from the road:

 

The variety across regions is striking. Starting in the south, the region of Puglia has almost tropical heat humidity, yielding forward wines that are juicy and jammy and just a little rustic. But as we went north to Chianti in the heart of Tuscany, the heat became arid and dry. Then, on the west coast in Bolgheri, the air cooled with a nice breeze from the sea.

 

We came back with an overwhelming impression of the charming hospitality and incredible scenery. Even if you don’t care about the wine (which we do!) the sweeping landscapes, the color and beauty of the countryside are an incredible experience. We also came back suffering prosciutto withdrawl.

 

 

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Beers of the World to Fill Your Cup

Beers for the World Cup

 

كرة القدم الهدف! Fußballtor! Objetivo de fútbol! Fotballmål!

 

GOAL!

 

Goal! However you say it, say it at the top of your voice with a cold brew in your hand. Whether you’re taking this opportunity to try some new worldly beers, add some theme to your soccer party, or just impress other soccer fans, we have you covered. Here are a few of our favorite beers from around the world to fill your cup! Beers after the jump…

 
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