Several Binny's employees, led by Binny’s Wine Buyer Barbara Hermann, traveled to the Rhone Valley and Southern France, in search of the greatest wines the region offers. Joining them was legendary importer Peter Weygandt. Binny's South Loop Wine Manager Don Sheil shares the experience:
The business part of our journey begins when we meet Peter Weygandt, an importer of European artisan wines, in the hillside town of Chateauneuf du Pape. First stop, Domaine Raymond Usseglio, where we tour the vineyards and taste wines with Raymond's son and heir apparent, Stephane. The impressive array of 2011 cuvees and 2012 barrel samples show the quality and care of this vigneron. Surprisingly, at least to me, the 2012 whites are amazing - lush and balanced with rich tree ripened fruit.
Our day continues with a stop at Domaine de Cristia, in the town of Courthezon, where we taste through several 2011 and 2012 blends including Chapelle St Theodoric, a joint venture of the Domaine and our host, Peter Weygandt. These wines have ample richness and ripe, fragrant fruit. The 2011 Le Grand Pin is particularly impressive, and the 2012 blends look very promising....
There's more to this journey. Check out more Wine Travels across France
on the Binny's Blog here.
What makes Binny's Beverage Depot the best place to find your new favorite wine? Is it our low prices? Our breathtaking selection? We like to think it's because we have the friendliest, most knowledgeable wine staff around. So we turned to our Downers Grove wine department for their favorite holiday recommendations.
reg. $19.99 ... w/Binny's Card - Save 10%
"As the holidays approach, friends and family gather to celebrate. This sparkling red caters to everybody with soft berry notes and light sweetness. All you need to add is a few frozen berries, and suddenly it's a party in a glass."
2010 Jonata The Paring Red Blend
Binny's Price: ...
"From the owners of cult winery Screaming Eagle comes a unique red-blend from Santa Ynez Valley. This full-bodied, cabernet-based blend has black fruit aromas, savory tannins and a long, mellow finish. A red meat dish would accentuate this dense, chewy yet balanced wine."
2011 Chapoutier Banyuls
Binny's Price: ...
"90% Grenache, 10% other red varieties. Hand-harvested when grapes are very ripe. Stewed fruits on the nose. On the palate, candied fruits such as orange, plum, currant and cherry. Pair with duck, foie gras terrine, or with chocolate desserts and tiramisu. Not as sweet as you would think!"
2012 Chateau Ste Michelle Riesling Eroica
Binny's Price: ...
"The late 90's brought a partnership between Chateau Ste. Michelle and Ernst Loosen, one of Germany's best wine makers. Doctor Loosen was so impressed with the winery's Cold Creek riesling that he wanted to create a wine with them. The result was a labor of love for two of the world's great Riesling producers. Mixing Old World and New World philosophy and technique to craft an extraordinary riesling from Washington state grapes, with flavors of white peach and sweet lime compliment the subtle minerality. And it's named after Beethoven's third symphony."
2012 Seghesio Zinfandel Sonoma
Binny's Price: ...
"This classically styled zinfandel with an emphasis on balance has offered consistent value for decades. It combines the lush, spicy zin of the warm Alexander Valley with the structure and focus of the cooler Dry Creek Valley for balance and elegant structure."
TV cooking shows don't make risotto look easy, but here's a secret: it is. If you can saute onions and stir, then you can make risotto. There are infinite ingredient combinations, and almost all of them are savory. Our variations are often derived from a fridge full of leftovers, though some are the result of divine inspiration. Here is an easy risotto for your winter rotation. It's low-fat, not quite as sweet as pie, and far more interesting to serve to guests. Plus the wine and spirit possibilities are endless.
This recipe makes about 6-8 small portions. If you're already a risotto master, just substitute apples for onions and cider for broth. You know the rest.
2 honeycrisp apples, peeled and diced
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup Arborio rice
2 1/2 cups hot apple cider
2-4 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Warm butter on medium-low heat in medium saute pan. Add apples and cinnamon and stir to coat. Cook about 4 minutes, until apples are soft. Add rice to pan and stir thoroughly. After about a minute, add 1/2 cup hot cider. Stir constantly. Once the liquid is absorbed, continue adding cider 1/4 cup at a time, until the rice is al dente. Don't overcook it - remember it will continue cooking and thicken as it stands. Remove from heat, add brown sugar to taste (don't overdo it if you're using a sweet spirit) and walnuts if desired, and stir another 1-2 minutes.
Now, the best part: the spirit. There are many ways to finish this off. Calvados does the trick, as do rum, bourbon and RumChata. Or get crazy with Fireball Whiskey, Evan Williams Apple Orchard, or Midnight Moon Apple Pie Moonshine. Stir a couple ounces of any of these into your finished risotto, serve and enjoy the warmth. Just a few wine pairing ideas:
Neige Apple Ice Wine Piper Heidsieck Sublime
Mia Dolcea Moscato d'Asti Sonoma Cutrer Late Harvest Chardonnay
Lustau East India Solera Sherry Pere Magloire Calvados
High West American Prairie Reserve Bourbon Nocello
Bubbly means celebration, so get ready to celebrate! Taste Champagne and sparkling wine from around the world, from best buys to the very best bottles. Sample Cava from Spain, Prosecco from Italy, the best of the U.S. and of course, Fine French Champagne, including luxury cuvees like Dom Perignon.
|Thursday, November 21, 6-8:30pm|
|Highland Park||Friday, December 6, 5-8pm|
|Naperville||Saturday, December 7, 1-4pm|
|Arlington Heights||Friday, December 13, 5-8pm|
|Bloomington||Friday, December 13, 5-8pm|
|Evergreen Park||Thursday, December 26, 5-8pm|
|Champaign||Friday, December 27, 5-8pm|
|Friday, December 27, 5-8pm|
|Bolingbrook||Saturday, December 28, 1-4pm|
|* prepaid reservations required|
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*Prices valid with Binny's Card until November 30th, 2013, or while supplies last. Not responsible for misprints or typographical errors. Advertised items limited to quantities on hand. Sizes 750ml unless otherwise stated. Not all wines are available at all Binny's locations.