Cider Week Events: Zeffer Cidery Tasting

zeffer_blogIf you haven’t jumped on the cider bandwagon phenomenon yet, maybe this will change your mind. Josh Townsend, from arguably one of New Zealand’s best cider producers, Zeffer, is coming to Binny’s. He’ll share Zeffer’s fine ciders, including Apple, Pear, and Slack Ma Girdle.


Not only is their fruit sourced directly from New Zealand growers and freshly crushed on site at the cidery, but the entire small operation is run by a cute husband and wife team, Sam Whitemore and Hannah Bower. They produce their ciders in small batches with the intent to interfere as little as possible, allowing natural flavors and aromas to develop for a unique cider.


Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room
Thursday, February 6th from 6-8pm
No RSVP is required.


Can’t make it? Don’t worry. Josh and his team will pour their delicious fruit fizz at Chicago’s Cider Summit (sponsored by yours truly) on Saturday, February 8th. Click here for tickets.

Kendall Jackson Grand Reserve Blending Seminar – RSVP Soon!

Join winemaker Matt Smith, who oversees all Bordeaux varietals at Kendall Jackson, at a blending seminar and tasting of some of the finest wines crafted in California. Matt is a graduate of the University of Michigan and UC Davis and has traveled and studied winemaking in France and Spain. Since 2006 he has been in charge of all Bordeaux-style wines.


With Matt’s direction, you’ll fashion your own blend with Grand Reserve Cabernet component wines from KJ’s Knights, Alexander, and Bennett Valley vineyards. Seating is limited and reservations are required.



Binny’s in Bolingbrook
Wednesday, February 27th, 6pm
Reservations Required, Call 630-972-1187
$10 w/Binny’s Card, $20 non-members.


The South Loop Tasting Room
Binny’s South Loop
Thursday, February 28th, 6pm
Reservations Required, Call 312-768-4400
$10 w/Binny’s Card, $20 non-members.


Tapping a Firkin of Hopslam

 fir·kin  (fûrkn)


1. A small wooden barrel or covered vessel.
2. Any of several British units of capacity, usually equal to about 1/4 of a barrel or 9 gallons (34 liters).


 hop·slam  (hp slm)


1. That awesome, hopped-up beer from Bell’s that everybody wants right now.


Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room 
Thursday, January 24th
6:30 – 8:30pm

$10 Buys your first pour of Hopslam
Six packs available for sale
Reservations are required. 312-768-4400

Modelo Mexican Independence Day Pub Crawl

Admit it: you thought the Mexican Independence Day was Cinco de Mayo, didn’t you? Not so, compadre! May 5th was the day the French were defeated in Mexico, but Mexican independence is celebrated around September 16th, the anniversary of the Grito de Dolores. The more you know.


To celebrate this auspicious occasion, Grupo Modelo is throwin’ a bar crawl, and the Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room is stop numero uno. Join us at this free event for Modelo and Victoria on tap, great food and maybe some free prizes, too.


Modelo Presents a Mexican Independence Day Pub Crawl
Thursday, September 13, 5:30 pm
Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room


Everybody will meet up and hang out at Binny’s for a while before heading out for a full-blown pub crawl. We aren’t certain on the rest of the stops, but it’s going to be a heck of a night. A fiesta, if you will.


Taste Leopold Bros with Scott Leopold

We’ve been ranting over on The Whiskey Hotline for a while about the greatness that is Leopold Bros. We offer a good selection of the Leopold portfolio – from their whiskies and white spirits to some of our guilty favorites – their delicious fruit liqueurs.


Now we’re excited to host one of the Leopolds in person at our South Loop location. Scott Leopold is bringing a grab bag of some of his fine spirits with him, and will shake hands and pour samples:



Leopold Bros Meet & Greet & Taste
with Scott Leopold
Binny’s South Loop
Friday, July  27 5-8pm



Scott Leopold cut his teeth in the manufacturing business, specializing in environmentally sustainable processes. He’s the one on the right, in the polo. His commitment to the environment carried over to the creation of the Leopold Bros’ Denver distillery. With Scott’s emphasis on manufacturing, combined with his brother Todd’s brewing and fermentation experience, Scott designed and developed a distillery with a focus on creating delicious, complex and earth-friendly spirits. Be sure to stop by, say hello, and taste some amazing stuff.

Meet Randall Grahm

Randall Grahm is a revolutionary winemaker, author and personality. He is big on brains, humility and sincerity. Randall has left an impression on the entire wine industry through his work at Bonny Doon Vineyard, through his collected writings and through his general accessibility. I’m saying this … me – Greg V. at Binny’s … that Mr. Grahm is a wine industry icon you should care about if you care about the wine industry.


Anyway, he’s coming to the South Loop Binny’s Beverage Depot to pour his Bonny Doon wines and to generally meet and greet folks. Details:


Meet Randall Grahm
Wednesday, May 23rd 6-8pm
Binny’s South Loop



Mr. Grahm will pour wines including  &  and a few others that we don’t usually offer at Binny’s, including Cigare Blanc, Cigare Gris, Contra Red, and Albarino. By the way, our Really Big BIG SKY Event is happening more or less simultaneously, so the whole night should be a lot of fun. See you there!

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Really Big BIG SKY Event

Big Sky Moose DroolWe’re excited to announce our next big beer event at the Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room! This time we’re hosting our friends from Montana:


Really Big BIG SKY Event
Wednesday, May 23rd 5:30-7:30pm
Free Tasting Event, Plus Exclusive Beers on Tap
Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room
RSVP required: 312 768-4400


We’ll have six Big Sky beers available on tap – plus a firkin. You’ll be able to purchase pours of Big Sky’s All Souls Ale,  Five Valleys, Cream Ale, Double IPA, Moose Drool and Ivan the Terrible from the bar tap, plus a firkin of Big Sky IPA.


On top of that, Big Sky is offering FREE samples of some special brews from 750mL bottles, including Olde Bluehair, Kriek, All Souls Ale and Five Valleys. Again, this is a free event. It’s going to get busy and we’ll have to cap the attendance, so call in your RSVP soon!

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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Goose Island Tap Invasion

UPDATE: This event has SOLD OUT

Get ready for another great event at the Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room. This time we’re teaming up with Goose Island to bring your a fun evening and a great lineup of brews.


Goose Island Tap Invasion
Wednesday, April 25th 5-8pm
$5 Buys Your First Pour of Nut Brown Ale
Binny’s South Loop Tasting Room
RSVP: 312 768-4400


The highlight of the night has to be the taplist. Along with the great Goose Island Vintage line and the crowd-drawing Bourbon County Brand Stout options, we’re excited to showcase the new Fulton & Wood line. This new series from Goose Island offers teams of brewers creative license to brew whatever they can dream up. Fulton & Wood beers are brewed in small batches and are only available on draft in Chicago locations.


Nut Brown Ale
Pere Jacques
Pepe Nero
Bourbon County Brand Vanilla Stout 2010
Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout 2011
Big John 2010
Lolita 2010
Fulton & Wood Old Town Yard Helles
Fulton & Wood En Passant


Be sure to RSVP soon, and we’ll see you at the Tap Invasion!



The South Loop Binny’s Gourmet Grocery and Cheese Shop wanted in on this cool event too. During the tap takeover, we will offer BLTs for seven bucks each. These are gourmet BLTs, folks. Plus, if you want to make a beer float, we’re offering the chance to add ice cream for a buck.