World of Whiskies 2013


We tell this story every year, and it gets better every year.


Last night was the 10th annual, big big Binny’s World of Whiskies event. It was bigger and better than ever. There were 75 tables holding more bottles of whiskey than we could count. There was a cake shaped like Mark Twain. Pop Tart wrapper space suits and a rocket. Live cigar rolling. A whole crowd of friendly whiskey enthusiasts. Cookies. All our rowdy friends in the spirits industry. Kilts. Cocktails. And then more whiskey.


Tons more pics of the event after the jump.


If you made it, be sure to head over to the Gallery on the Binny’s Facebook Page, where you’ll find even more pics, including pictures of you in front of the Binny’s logo wall. Tag all your friends! And like us while you’re there. See you in 2014!


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Meet Your Local Binny’s Beer Guy: Lincoln Park

Adam Vavrick is the resident beer expert at our Lincoln Park location. He has worked at what some locals refer to as “Castle Vav” for the past three years. Among other accolades, Adam is a certified beer server in the Cicerone program, has tasted for the 2011 and 2012 World Beer Awards, and has been a panelist for the Beverage Tasting Institute since 2010. He is well known in the local beer scene, having been featured in Ale Street News, The Chicago Tribune, The Red Eye, Metromix, BeerDownload, The Chicago Sun Times, and WGN Radio.


Adam is originally from Washington DC, turns 30 on October 2nd, and is engaged to a Windy City Roller. Besides beer, Adam’s other love is the audio industry. He owns a modular synthesizer, and used to work in the audio industry doing synthesis, sound design, and audio engineering.


Adam is a valuable asset to the Binny’s team to say the least.  You can find him in the aisle at the Lincoln Park Binny’s, or on twitter @beeradam. We wanted to dig a little bit more into the interesting life he lives, so we lined up a few questions for him:


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The Secret of El Dorado Rum

Surely you’ve heard of the “Liquid Gold of Guyana?” No? For years the award-winning lineup of El Dorado Rums have been the best kept secret on our shelves. Not only are they delicious, but these rums are rich in history as well: Demerara sugar cane molasses is the base of rums from Guyana, named for the 17th century Dutch colony, that imparts a trademark rich, fruity sweetness in these rums. El Dorado distills in 18th century wooden stills, including one of the earliest examples of continuous distillation. There’s just too much info to post here. You have to come to this event.





The Secret of El Dorado Rum
Seminar with Brand Ambassador Stefanie Holt
Thursday, August 9, 6-8pm
$10 with Binny’s Card / $15 without
A Lincoln Park Tasting Room Event
RSVP: 312-664-4394



El Dorado Rum brand Ambassador Stefanie Holt will lead us through the history and production that makes El Dorado so special. Stef earned this position through experience and passion: she started out tending bar at Edinburgh’s finest cocktail bars, earning herself a series of awards and industry recognition. She has climbed to international brand ambassador for Demerara Distillers Limited, earning the “UK Brand Ambassodor of the Year” trophy at the Golden Rum Barrel Awards. Don’t miss this opportunity to soak in her knowledge and passion for such a special collection of the world’s finest rums.

Ardbeg Rocket Tour

UPDATE: The Saturday morning rocket appearance has been moved to the Downers Grove Binny’s Beverage Depot.


Ardbeg has a 30 foot rocket. They’re bringing it to Binny’s.


Sure, Binny’s has hosted events featuring horsesmotorcyclescarsmore motorcycles, and a truck, but we’re pretty sure this is the first time we’ll see an extra-terrestrial form of transportation. Pretty sweet, yeah?


In late 2011, a rocket blasted off the face of the Earth with some precious cargo: a research experiment by Ardbeg. No, they didn’t launch whisky into space. What they did launch was an experiment involving aromatic and flavor-active compounds called terpenes, to test their interaction at the molecular level with charred oak in the low gravity environment of space. It gets a bit sciencey. Will this radically change the way we age spirits?


Anyway, they’re touring the country with a full-size replica of the rocket. Binny’s is honored to be the launching pad for the 28 week tour. Along with the rocket, Ardbeg will be taking names for their committee and sampling out some of their recent single malt offerings. Don’t miss it!

Locations and times after the jump…

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Meet Tom Bulleit

After 30 years in the legal field, Thomas Bulleit was able to fulfill his lifelong dream of starting his own distilling enterprise. He took his great-great-grandfather’s 175 year-old bourbon recipe and founded the Bulleit Distilling Company of Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. That was in 1988. Now he’s coming to Binny’s.

Meet & Greet with
Tom Bulleit

Tuesday, May 1st 5-7 pm
Binny’s Lincoln Park

Binny’s is honored to host Mr. Bulleit in our store. Come taste the whiskies of Bulleit – still the fastest growing “Small Batch Bourbon” in America – and meet the man behind the bourbon!

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Meet Riazul Tequila Founder Inaki Orozco

Riazul Tequila has made quite a splash over the past three years, since finding a place on Binny’s shelves. We would like to offer you a chance to taste all three expressions of this intricately crafted, designer tequila, and to meet the man who literally put Riazul on the map. Come meet Riazul founder and CEO Inaki Orozco on his mini-tour of Chicago Binny’s locations:


Meet Riazul Founder Inaki Orozco

Binny’s Chicago – South Loop
Friday, April 27, 5:30-7:30 pm
Binny’s Chicago – Lincoln Park
Saturday, April 28, 1:30-3:30 pm 
Binny’s Chicago – Lakeview
Saturday, April 28, 4:00-6:00 pm 


Riazul is produced from 100% blue agave grown in the Jalisco highlands of western Mexico. Inaki has compared the agave plants to wine grapes, in that the best grapes and agave both have an important relationship with the soil and place where they are grown. Check out the history behind Riazul tequila here, or better yet, come meet him in person at Binny’s!
These are meet-and-greet events and are free of charge.

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Meet and Greet With Greg Koch

At 11:00am on Saturday, March 31st, Greg Koch from Stone Brewing Co. will be hanging out at Binny’s in Lincoln Park.  The Stone Brewing Co. founder will be signing bottles, and according to our beer manager Adam at Lincoln Park, making Greg faces.  Greg will be bringing some Archive brews with him that will be available for purchase and signing, such as 2008 Imperial Russian Stout and 2009 Old Guardian Barley Wine Style Ale.  We hope you can make it out!


World of Whiskies 2012

Last night was our Annual World of Whiskies event, held at the Lincoln Park Binny’s Beverage Depot. The event sold out a week in advance, and it looked like everybody made it.


What a tasting! There were just shy of sixty tables, representing more distilleries, bottlers and producers than we could count. Food samples were provided by neighborhood favorite Franks ‘N’ Dawgs, delicious cake from Tipsycake (see that Jameson bottle in the pictures below? That’s a cake from Tipsycake), plus cheeses and more.


The pictures below don’t do the event justice. They just can’t. It isn’t the sort of thing you can capture with a lens. So next year, when you hear rumors that Binny’s World of Whiskies is happening again, be sure to RSVP right away.


As always, a huge thanks to all the producers, importers and distributors who pour themselves into these great spirits. And a huger thanks to everybody who made it to Binny’s on a Thursday night to taste some of the best whiskies on the planet.


More pics after the jump…

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Binny’s World of Whiskies


World of Whiskies

Thursday, March 22nd 5-8p

at Binny’s Lincoln Park

$50 w/Binny’s Card, $60 without

RSVP: 312-664-4394


If you’ve been, then you already know. If you haven’t, then you’re missing out on a massive whiskey open house featuring over 30 (closing in on 40) producers. This is your chance to rub elbows with some of the top luminaries in the whiskey world and sample some special and exceptional bottlings.

RSVP soon because this event will sell out.


Glenmorangie Seminar with Dr. Bill Lumsden

   Spirits lovers, Scotch lovers, fans of malt whisky. You must save the date of Thursday, February 9th for this can’t-miss seminar:


Glenmorangie Seminar
with Dr. Bill Lumsden
Thursday, February 9th, 6 – 7:30 pm
Binny’s Lincoln Park
$15/$10 with Binny’s Card
RSVP: 312.664.4394

   This is going to be a really cool seminar. The event will feature the benchmark Glenmorangie portfolio, including the brand new, limited-edition Glenmorangie Artein. More on that below. Our host will be Dr. Bill Lumsden, Head of Distilling & Whisky Creation at Glenmorangie. Lumsden has revolutionized wood aging program with lots of experimental and exotic casks and has left his fingerprint on the Glenmorangie portfolio.

   The new Glenmorangie Artein prominently carries a “15 Years Old” age statement. It is two thirds 15 years old whisky with an additional third aged 21 years and includes maturation in Super-Tuscan wine casks. The result is a complex and nuanced whisky with notes of berry fruits, honeysuckle, mint, roasted chocolate and more. It’s a limited release that collectors are sure to buy up. Don’t miss your chance to taste Artein and more at this seminar event!