GSN Alert: January 24th – National Beer Can Day

National Beer Can Appreciation Day is celebrated annually on January 24, the day the first canned beer went on sale in 1935. On this date, Krueger Brewing Company’s Finest Beer and Krueger’s Cream Ale debuted in flat top tin cans manufactured by the American Can Company. After Krueger’s limited success, other big brewing companies followed. The sale of cans continued to grow, especially during World War II, when they could be easily stacked and shipped overseas to soldiers.

Today, bottles of beer outsell cans, but the increase of can sales is now faster than that of bottles, the Brewer’s Association reported last year. People are changing their perceptions of quality, taste and value when it comes to canned beer. Cans also allow for cool artwork over the entire package, instead of being confined to a label on the front of a bottle.

Excerpted from The Scratch & Sniff Guide to Beer: A Beer Lover’s Companion by Justin Kennedy. Copyright 2017 by Quintet. Published with permission from Harper Design and HarperCollins Publishers.

GSN Alert: Chilcano Week – January 23-30

The Chilcano cocktail is celebrated each January with a week-long festival known as Chilcano Week. The Chilcano was created in the 1880’s by Italians that migrated to Peru. They replaced the Italian grappa they used with Peruvian Pisco in an Italian drink called “Buongiorno.” The “Buongiorno” comprises grappa, fermented ginger, and lime. Peruvian Pisco, which discards the pomace (stems, seeds, pips, and skins) and uses only wine for distillation (unlike grappa) was a local and more refreshing option, too! The Chilcano cocktail was named after the Chilcano soup–a Peruvian delicacy, fish-head soup–that was believed to revive one after a long night of partying and enjoying pisco.

CHILCANO
2 oz Peruvian Pisco
½ oz Lime juice
4 oz Ginger ale
2 Dashes of Angostura bitters
Lime wedge

Method: Combine all ingredients except ginger ale in a tall glass. Add ice and top with ginger ale. Stir gently and garnish with lime wedge.

Variations: Instead of lime juice, try another fruit. Such as 1/2 oz. grapefruit, 1/2 oz. blood orange, or 1/2 oz. pineapple juice to make three different variations garnished with each fruit.

GSN Review: A. G. Perino Vermouths

Crafted by acclaimed winemaker, Hal Landvoigt, A.G. Perino has been 15 years in the making. Inspired by late-night cocktails and conversation at a bar in Dusseldorf, Germany, Precept Founder and CEO Andrew Browne challenged Landvoigt to create vermouths of exceptional quality and value. What followed was over a decade studying production methods; consulting with expert craftsman, winemakers, and bartenders; and tasting samples from around the world in a journey to create the best vermouth for everyday use.

A.G. Perino uses California wines and natural herbs and botanicals to produce vermouths in classic Italian and French styles. A.G. Perino Sweet Vermouth is nuanced with layers of botanical aromatics. Golden caramel in color, it leads with woodsy notes of balsam and clove and follows with warm flavors of walnut husk, vanilla, honey, and Ceylon cinnamon. Enjoy on the rocks with an orange-peel garnish or mixed with straight bourbon, rye whiskey, and other full-bodied spirits. A.G. Perino Dry Vermouth is fresh, bright, and herbal. It leads with notes of citrus zest, followed by flavors of bay leaf, lemongrass, cucumber, lanolin, grapefruit pith, and white pepper. It pairs well in bourbon, rye whiskey, gin, and tequila cocktails or on the rocks with a lemon twist.

GSN’s Thoughts: The Dry Vermouth is crisp, herbal and refreshing. We particularly like the high notes and the light mouthfeel. The balance of botanicals is excellent and there is a light woodruff flavor that segues into more of the citrus notes. Perfect for Martini, Obituary and Brooklyn cocktails. GSN Rating: A

The Sweet Vermouth has a lighter body than most, which is really ideal for a 2-3 drink session. Although it is in the sweet style, it is not sugary as many vermouths unfortunately are. As well, none of the sometimes “burnt” flavor is here, but rather fresh and appealing. Try this in Manhattans, Boulevadiers and Negronis. GSN Rating: A

For more information go to: A.G. Perino

GSN Spirited News: January 19th 2021 Edition

Coalition Whiskey, a new series of rye whiskies finished in Bordeaux barrels, has launched in seven states across the U.S. The brand, created by former Russian Standard USA CEO Leonid Yangarber, was distilled at Kentucky Artisan Distillery and enters the market with three expressions—one finished in Margaux barrels and bottled at 45.4% abv, another finished in Pauillac barrels and bottled at 46.3% abv, and one finished in Sauternes barrels bottled at 47.1% abv—all retailing for $90 a 750-ml. In addition, the brand’s unfinished rye is available at barrel strength (54.4% abv) for $130. The whiskies are rolling out now in New York, New Jersey, California, Florida, Kentucky, Illinois, and Colorado.

Double Cross Vodka has launched a new ad campaign and redesigned bottle. The campaign, Dare to Differ, will debut online and on social media channels throughout the first quarter. The new bottle abandons the brand’s original rectangular shape for one with sloped shoulders and an easy-to-handle neck while retaining Double Cross’ etched and metallic branding. The new bottles are rolling out now in 750-ml. and 1-liter bottles ($35 and $40, respectively), with 50-ml. and 1.75-liter bottles to follow in the third quarter. Double Cross vodka is produced from estate grown Slovakian wheat and is imported by Old Nassau Imports.

MGP Ingredients has announced the 2021 iteration of Rossville Union Rye’s single barrel release. This year, the company is offering rye whiskies distilled from three mashbills (up from two for the 2020 edition) and bottled at cask strength. The release is available to pre-order until March 15 and will be delivered to retailers and other accounts by August. MPG is hosting virtual tastings so that interested customers can choose their preferred mashbill and will also allow buyers to customize the whiskey’s label.

Lansdale, Pennsylvania’s Boardroom Spirits has released three new bottled cocktails. First up is Winter Citrus Crush ($38), a 20% abv cocktail made with vodka and orange liqueur along with lime, grapefruit, and blood orange juices. The second release, Chocolate Hazelnut Espresso Martini ($42), comes in at 18% abv and blends vodka, orange liqueur, and hazelnut liqueur with amaro and locally made cold brew coffee. The last cocktail is Boardroom’s Hot Toddy, made with Bourbon, rye, and cinnamon whiskies, vermouth, lemon, demerara sugar, and blanc vermouth. It’s bottled at 22% abv and sells for $38.

Tanteo Tequila has launched a new Espero expression. Retailing at $30 a 1-liter, Espero is a 100%-agave blanco bottling aimed at the premium well Tequila segment. It’s rolling out nationwide both on- and off-premise. Tanteo is known for its higher proof Blanco offering as well as three spicy expressions infused with hand-cut peppers: Jalapeño, Chipotle, and Habanero.

MGP Ingredients has announced its George Remus Bourbon single barrel releases for 2021. Now available for pre-order (through March 15), they were distilled from two different mashbills. This year’s George Remus single barrels will be bottled at cask strength and buyers can attend virtual tastings with MGP to choose between the available barrels. The 2021 single barrel release of George Remus Bourbon allows retailers to customize the whiskey’s label and orders will be fulfilled by September.

Glen Rock, New Jersey’s Opici Wines has entered the non-alcoholic beverage space with MeMento, a new sugar-, gluten-, and alcohol-free spirit. The Italian import is also vegan and is described as a distilled aromatic water, made from rosemary, rose, and bay laurel, among other botanicals. MeMento is now available across the U.S. for around $37 a 750-ml.

Courtesy of Shanken News Daily

GSN Brews News: January 19th 2021 Edition

Escondido, California’s Stone Brewing has added Neverending Haze as the newest low-abv beer to join Stone’s year-round lineup. The 4% abv ale is brewed with Mosaic and Citra hops, and a yeast strain that produces citrus flavors. The brew is now available on draft and in 4-packs of 16-ounce cans across the U.S. Neverending Haze is the second beer from Stone’s Pilot Series to make the jump to year-round availability, following last year’s Buenaveza Salt & Lime Lager.

Clackamas, Oregon’s Portland Cider Co. has launched Ciderade, a new sessionable and low calorie cider made from locally sourced apples with added sea salt for electrolytes. The brand will feature several releases each year with a lemon-lime flavored cider as its initial offering. The 4% abv cider comes in at fewer than 100 calories and has 3.5 grams of sugar. The lemon-lime release will be available through April and will be followed by a strawberry-flavored cider for the summer and an orange-flavored cider for the fall. The series will be available in 6-packs of 12-ounce cans, individual 19.2-ounce cans, and on draft in Oregon, Washington, and northern California.

Oregon-based Full Sail Brewing has introduced Haze of the Gods Double IPA as the latest release in its Strong Current Double IPA Series. Brewed with Strata and Mosaic hops, the newcomer is at 8.5% abv and will be available from now through April in four-packs of 16-ounce cans. Haze of the Gods will be followed in the Strong Current series by Lazy Summer Haze Double IPA, an unfiltered brew that will be available from May through August.

Courtesy of Shanken News Daily

 

GSN Recommends: Custom Bar DIY – Designing the Perfect Home Bar

If you enjoy the occasional adult beverage, you’ve probably visited a few bars in your lifetime. Thanks to the “new normal” that focuses on staying safe at home, it’s a perfect time to consider designing your very own custom bar that you can enjoy in the comfort of your own home.

Setting up a bar in your home can be as simple or as elaborate as you wish. With a few simple steps, you can easily design a custom-built bar so you can mix, sip, and mingle to your heart’s content. From the build to making sure you have the most important drink essentials, read on for some tips that will inspire you to design a new custom home bar, DIY-style.

Start with the space you have

Before you start working on your home bar design, you’ll need to designate a space for it in your home. Whether your house is large or small, it’s easy to start setting up a home bar that’s both fun and functional. Make sure that your bar space is comfortable and that there’s ample room for storage, mixing drinks, and serving. Determine what your bar budget is in advance. This will make it much easier for you to decide where the bar will be as well as its total size.

Larger homes with an extra spare bedroom, a room over the garage, or a basement offers you endless possibilities. However, if you happen to live in an apartment or condo, you can still enjoy a home bar in a corner of your living room or a section of the eat-in kitchen. Do a quick walkthrough of your home to get a few ideas for the location of the bar. Once you start the process of designing and building your bar, you’ll have a blast coming up with fun ideas and designs — no matter how large or small it is.

Designing and building your bar

There really are no rules in terms of creativity and style when it comes to building a DIY bar. While there are certainly a few must-haves, you’re free to design and build a custom bar any way you see fit. If you’re in doubt or need a bit of help with the build, don’t hesitate to call in a DIY-ing friend or family member, or hire an expert.

No matter how you do it, this project will give you a real sense of pride every time you concoct your signature cocktail. You can purchase a pre-built bar cabinet at your local or online furniture store, but for those who want to truly DIY, here are a few important details you’ll need to consider.

Bar dimensions

Bar height. Your bar should be 42 inches high with an overhang of at least 8 inches.

Bar width. The average bar top is between 16 and 20 inches wide, but you can always make yours wider if you have the room or narrower if you don’t.

Barstool height. Standard barstools are typically 30-inches tall, but it’s best to look for stools after you build the bar to ensure a proper fit.

Materials

Wood. Use high quality lumber and plywood for the frame and top of your bar. Connect the frame using standard wood screws.

Bar top. Here’s where you can get super creative. You have endless choices for the finished top of your bar, including wood, stone, tile, and stainless steel. You can also:

  • Build a shallow frame, fill it with anything imaginable — pennies, poker chips, poppies — and encase it in clear resin.
  • Pour a concrete top. You can embed it with broken glass, dye or etch it, or polish it to a high shine — or all of the above.
  • Construct a top from reclaimed barn wood, an old bowling alley floor, or a vintage Formica countertop.

Bar molding. Depending on the construction and style, molding can make a bar look finished and attractive. Your best bet is pre-cut molding, which you can stain or paint.

Bar front. Like the bar top, the front of the bar can be just about anything — try galvanized steel for a modern, industrial look; tin ceiling tiles for a vintage vibe; fabric for a warm, cozy feel; or DIY-stained glass made with plexiglass panels and stained-glass paints and lit from behind.

Tools

Before you start building, make sure you have all the tools and fasteners you’ll need. That list may include the following:

  • Miter saw, table saw, circular saw, and/or jigsaw.
  • Drill and wood or metal screws.
  • Nail gun and nails.
  • Hammer and finishing nails.
  • Level, tape measure, pencil, and T-square or carpenter square.
  • Hand sander and sanding paper.
  • Adhesive and caulk gun.

Don’t forget the must-have safety gear!

  • Gloves for hauling wood and heavy things.
  • Protective eyewear for using power tools.
  • Ear plugs for using loud saws.
  • A first-aid kit, just in case.

Bar essentials

Now that your custom home bar is complete, it’s time to stock it with the essentials to make it functional.

Bar furniture. Purchase some padded bar stools for you and your guests — the ones with a back are the most comfortable. Stools with a footrest are even better. Swivel bar stools make it easy for people to rotate and enjoy great conversations. If you need extra storage, a separate bar cabinet is another great addition to your bar area. And if your bar area is large, populate it with loungey furniture.

The right lighting. You don’t want your bar area lit by overhead fluorescent lights, no sir. Give your bar area a moodier vibe with lamps, pendant lights, or even color-changing LED string lights.

Music. Set the right mood, and keep the party going with music. Whether you prefer an old-school record player or want to pair your phone to your wireless speaker, get it all set up before your first shindig. 

Glassware. Stock your bar with a variety of glassware, such as beer steins and pint glasses for your favorite brews, low-ball and highball glasses for spirits, and shot glasses for shooters. If you can trust yourself and your guests with stemmed drinkware, hang your wine and champagne glasses upside down from the bar if you can. If you doubt, they’d still be upright by the end of the night, opt for stemless, egg-shaped glasses for the wine and bubbly.

Mixology Tools. To properly make cocktails, you’ll need a few essential mixing tools. Stock your bar with a mixing glass, shaker, jigger, and a Hawthorne strainer. A hand juicer is great for cocktails that include fresh citrus, while a nice vegetable peeler is great for garnishes. Don’t forget the bottle opener and wine bottle opener. Throw in an ice bucket if you want to avoid trips from the bar to the fridge and back.

Spirits: Keep things fresh and exciting by stocking your bar with a variety of spirits, including a good bottle of rum, vodka, tequila, brandy, Scotch, gin, and bourbon and your favorite mixers. If you’re on a budget, start with a couple of your favorite liquors, and grow your bar from the basics as time goes on.

Storage

Make sure that your home bar has the proper storage to hold and protect your tools, bottles, and drinkware. Store your spirits in a cool, dark place out of direct sunlight. Too much light can affect the flavor of your drinks and cause them to taste watered down.

Store your mixing tools in a drawer behind the bar or in a big pitcher or vase on top of the bar. Store your glassware on shelves behind or under the bar, and keep your beverage napkins, stirrers, and straws in a caddy on top of the bar.

Take your home bar to another level with an under-bar fridge, ice maker, wine cooler, sink, or beer tap setup.

Entertainment in your new bar space

Mingling and sipping drinks is always fun, but adding a few classic forms of entertainment will make your bar more exciting, a place where everyone can gather, celebrate, and enjoy. Here are tips for entertainment you can include at your bar so that it’s always a great time, whether you’re reveling in a corner of the living room or have the entire basement for your play space.

  • Classic games like dominos, chess, checkers, and playing cards are always welcome at a bar.
  • Board games make for great bonding times and loads of fun with friends.
  • A karaoke machine makes you the star of the show. Make it even more fun with some colorful flashing lights, a disco ball, and a wireless sound system.
  • Add a dartboard, foosball table, or pool table to your bar area for hours of fun.
  • A jukebox is a fun and unique addition to any bar area.
  • A flat-screen TV behind the bar is icing on the cake if you’re a big sports fan or enjoy watching movies while sipping a cocktail at the bar.

The devil is in the details

Dress up your bar with some accessories, like an oversized mirror, a fun painted mural, or a beautiful tile backsplash. Hang a few framed movie posters, sports memorabilia, or rock ‘n’ roll poster art to make your bar unique to you. Put a large chalkboard on the wall where your friends and family can have fun doodling and getting creative as they sip and mingle. When it comes to the small (but mighty) details, the sky’s the limit, so remember to have fun and make sure that your custom home bar is a place where people will have hours of fun together — and always remember the good times they had.

Whether it’s a huge custom bar in your sprawling basement or a charming small corner of your den, creating a bar at home is an extremely rewarding experience. Look online for inspiration, and plan your bar out thoroughly before you begin building. With a little creativity, you can add some unique finishing touches that will make your home bar burst with personality. Throw in some entertainment, and you’ll be content to spend time at the bar without ever having to leave the house.

Originally Posted in Porch.com

GSN Alert: January 17th – National Bootlegger’s Day

41cf7728141719b1ff5ab0cf6d1ce999When Prohibition outlawed the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages on January 17, 1920, many enterprising residents of a small town in Iowa chose to become outlaws – producing a high-caliber and much sought-after whiskey known as Templeton Rye, or “the good stuff” to those in the know. Alphonse Kerkhoff (seen at left) was one of those Templeton outlaws. Over the course of its storied history, Templeton Rye became Al Capone’s whiskey of choice, quickly finding its way to the center of his bootlegging empire. Templeton Rye is based on the original Prohibition era Kerkhoff recipe. January 17 is not only the birthday of Templeton Rye, but it’s also the birthday of Al Capone as well as the original Bootlegger’s son Meryl Kerkhoff.  Please join our community of enthusiasts at the Bootlegger’s Society: www.bootleggerssociety.com

Here’s an original cocktail created by Blair Frodelius of Good Spirits News to celebrate National Bootlegger’s Day.

Kerkhoff’s Payoff 

1.5 oz Templeton rye
0.5 oz fresh lemon juice
1 tsp green Chartreuse
1 small egg white

Shake vigorously with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain into ice-filled Collins glass and top with soda water. Add lemon wheel garnish and a straw.

#TempletonRye #BootleggersDay #TheGoodStuff

GSN Alert: January 17th – National Hot Buttered Rum Day

cocktail_spirit_hot_buttered_rumIn honor of National Hot Buttered Rum Day, Good Spirits News is happy to share a selection of videos by the Small Screen Network.  Filmed in the Seattle area, these videos feature our friends Robert “Drinkboy” Hess, Kathy Casey and Kacy Fitch from the Zig Zag Cafe making their versions of this iconic winter cocktail.  Cheers!~

GSN Review: Barrell Bourbon Batch 027

Barrell Bourbon Batch 027 started with 6-year-old fruit forward barrels from Tennessee and 5-year-old spice forward barrels from Indiana. After these were blended together, 13 and 15-year-old barrels with more wood tannin and depth were layered in and a select number of 9-year-old barrels with a higher rye content were
blended in for spice and assertiveness. Finally, 5 and 8-year-old wheated bourbon barrels were added to soften the batch, brighten the front palate, and solidify a cohesiveness to an otherwise extremely complex flavor profile. It was bottled in KY at cask strength (115.7 proof).

Barrell Craft Spirits is an independent blender and bottler of unique aged, cask-strength sourced whiskey and rum spirits, that is recognized for its blending expertise. The company selects and blends products that explore different distillation methods, barrels and aging environments, and bottles them at cask strength. Every batch and single barrel is produced as a limited release and has a distinct flavor profile.​

GSN’s Thoughts: Having reviewed the previous Barrell Bourbon release here, we were curious to see what differences there might be in this latest expression. Again, a high proof brings out some intense darker elements of espresso, dark chocolate and cola syrup. But, this is a less sweet spirit, and more cask driven. Some of the hidden softer elements come out to play with a splash of water, bringing a playful conviviality to the game. At first intense, with some dilution, it suddenly is very amiable and warm with prickly notes of rye appearing at the tail end. Overall, an interesting whiskey that has a deep complexity and a strong personality.
GSN Rating: A

For more information go to: Barrell Bourbon

GSN Review: Root Crafted Organic Cocktail Mixers

ROOT Crafted, an award-winning, woman-owned organic cocktail mixer company, creates several products that can be paired with any spirit as well as beer, wine and sparkling wine. Each bottle makes eight to sixteen cocktails. As the company says, “ROOT makes refined effortless, you simply mix 2 parts ROOT to 1 part spirit of your choice and have a fabulous cocktail!”

GSN was sent a bottle of The Lemongrass which includes the following ingredients: Filtered Water, Elderflower Syrup (Organic Cane Sugar, Elderflower Extract), Organic Lemon Juice, Organic Lemongrass, and Organic Lemongrass Extract.

ROOT Crafted is currently available in over 65 retail locations in seven states including CT, DE, FL, NJ, NY, MD, and PA. ROOT Crafted can also be purchased on Amazon and RootCrafted.com and shipped nationally.

GSN’s Thoughts: This is one tasty mixer. You can taste the quality of the ingredients, and the elderflower makes a lasting impression of subtle loveliness. Most mixers are overly sweet, to the point where that’s all you can taste. With ROOT’s The Lemongrass, the flavors are lasting and not in the least muddied by the cane sugar. We also appreciated the substantial size of the bottle (16 oz) which will make 8-16 drinks. We enjoyed this with sparkling water, lager, bourbon, vodka, tequila and rum. ROOT have somehow captured summer in a glass. I’ll toast to that! GSN Rating: A+

For more information go to: Root Crafted

GSN Review: Harridan Handcrafted Vodka

har·ri·dan |herəd(ə)n
n. a bossy, and/or belligerent old woman

Harridan Vodka is a female-founded, female-owned brand. They champion those who lobby for equality, and commit to policies that promote it for all, regardless of gender expression and identity, sexual orientation, or biological sex. They are not just advocating for traditional, binarily-defined “women,” but for all of those with defiant hearts.

They are committed to seeking out, championing, accommodating, and welcoming a diverse group of people as both our consumers and as our employees. From sustainability to labor practices, they understand that they are a part of a global community and that their decisions as a company have an impact beyond ourselves.

Distilled in New York from locally sourced ingredients, Harridan is 88.8 proof, made from organic corn, and made with the sense of craftsmanship usually reserved for whiskey or tequila. Founder and CEO of Harridan, Bridgette Taylor worked with Joe Myer of the Myer farm located in Ovid NY. The final product is organic and gluten-free made with ingredients grown by fifth-generation farmers. With their appreciation of craftmanship, the spirit is bottled in handblown recycled glass crafted by artisans in Mexico.

GSN’s Thoughts: The spirit is unusual for a vodka, in that it has a lot of flavor and character. Less minerality than most, but an almost caramel/toffee-like character that hints at a slight sweetness. The body is round, velvety, and warming. The bottle is definitely striking and beautiful and makes a fitting vessel for a spirit that has some kinship to agave spirits.
GSN Rating: B+

For more information go to: Harridan

GSN Spirited News: January 12th 2021 Edition

St. Louis, Missouri-based Luxco is introducing Ezra Brooks 99, the newest addition to the line of whiskies. Bottled at 99 proof, it’s a Kentucky Straight Bourbon aged in oak barrels and charcoal-filtered. Ezra Brooks 99 will join the brand’s Straight Bourbon, Straight Rye, Old Ezra, Blended Whiskey, and Bourbon Cream when it launches nationwide this month, priced competitively within the premium tier. The Ezra Brooks lineup is a product of Luxco’s Lux Row Distillers, located in Bardstown, Kentucky, which opened in 2018 and produces other Luxco Bourbon brands including Rebel, Blood Oath, and David Nicholson.

Minneapolis, Minnesota-based Tattersall Distilling has debuted single-serve versions of its bottled Manhattan and Old Fashioned cocktails. The new cocktail shorties are packaged in 100-ml. glass bottles, and both feature Tattersall Straight rye whiskey, which is made from 100% Minnesota-grown rye and aged in charred American white oak barrels. The cocktails are bottled at 35% abv and retail priced at $6. Additional Tattersall single-serve cocktails are set to debut in the coming months.

Country music star Thomas Rhett is launching a new ultra-premium Tequila brand, Dos Primos. Translating to “Two Cousins,” the brand is a partnership with Rhett’s cousin, pecan magnate Jeff Worn. An ultra-premium blanco Tequila, Dos Primos is distilled at Destiladora González Lux, located just outside the city of Arandas, Mexico, in the highlands of Jalisco. Sales and marketing are being handled by Luxco, which is rolling the brand out in select markets this month.

Courtesy of Shanken News Daily

GSN Brews News: January 12th 2021 Edition

Skagit Valley, Washington-based Garden Path Fermentation is releasing its first 100% spontaneously fermented beer. Called The Spontaneous Ferment, it is a single year blend of three batches of coolship inoculated beers from winter 2018 (a coolship is a historic method for cooling a beer before adding yeast, commonly used today by brewers working with spontaneous fermentation). It’s at 6% abv, was bottled in May of last year, and is available now from Garden Path’s taproom and in retailers throughout the region. Garden Path was founded in 2016.

The Boston Beer Company has launched Truly Iced Tea Hard Seltzer, the latest extension to the popular seltzer brand. Like the original Truly lineup, the hard iced teas come in at 5% abv and 100 calories per serving. The new RTDs come in four flavors—lemon, raspberry, peach, and strawberry—and are made with iced tea and other flavorings. Truly Iced Tea is now available in variety 12-packs of 12-ounce cans and individual 16- and 24-ounce cans of the lemon flavor.

Costa Mesa, California’s Chihuahua Cerveza is now available in Oklahoma and Kansas, with the brewery announcing further expansions to follow throughout the first quarter of the year. This month, the brewery will add distribution in Arkansas and New Mexico, too, before adding Colorado, Alabama, and South Carolina over the next few months. Following the expansion, Chihuahua Cerveza will be available in 12 states across the southern United States.

Anheuser-Busch InBev has announced Bud Light Seltzer Lemonade, the newest addition to brand’s entry into the hard seltzer category. The 5% abv releases come in at 100 calories per 12-ounce serving and will initially launch in four flavors: peach, black cherry, strawberry, and original lemonade. The new releases are launching on January 18 nationwide. The launch will be accompanied by two new commercials—titled ‘Tire’ and ‘Family Jewelry’—that feature the new seltzer alongside drinkers commenting that it’s better than their grandmothers’ lemonade.

Courtesy of Shanken News Daily

GSN Alert: All-New Spirits Tasting Competition Targets Fledgling Distilleries

With the latest program offered by Distillery University, small distilleries now have a way to get noticed in an industry dominated by big brands.

Visit https://distilleryuniversity.com/tasting-competition/ for more details

Distillery University, the long-time provider of online and hands-on education for craft distillers, announced today they would be offering a new Tasting Competition for the industry with a unique twist. Unlike other similar competitions, entrants would be limited to those licensed distilleries that have been in business for five years or less (international entries are also permitted). Registrations are opening soon for a variety of competitive categories, with the Competition taking place in May 2021 in Spokane, WA.

“Our goal is to create a platform for new distillers to get the insight, promotion and exposure they might not otherwise have access to.” – Rockwell Rutter, CEO, Distillery University

With other competitions, the winner’s circle is often dominated by big brands and deep pockets; they’ve had years with which to perfect their recipes and can afford top-quality ingredients. This can make it difficult for the startups and new operations to compete at the same level. Distillery University plans to level the playing field by offering the truly talented small distilleries a chance to show off their best products and get some well-deserved promotion. At the same time, this is a great opportunity for those same distilleries to get an unbiased critique and analysis of their spirits from a group of experts.

Providing that analysis will be a blind panel of approximately 15 judges, all hand-picked by DU as leaders in their respective fields. For example, the judging panel will include sommeliers, brewers, chefs, journalists, bartenders and more. Over the course of several days in May 2021, these judges will critically sample each spirit submission and provide not only a rating score, but also tasting notes that will be released to the distillery. Distilleries will be awarded medals based on their resulting scores, while select winners will be offered a product placement meeting with a large spirits retailer.

“We believe the Next Great Distillery has yet to be found, and this is how we plan to do it.” – Rockwell Rutter, CEO, Distillery University

Distillery University is the premier provider of online and hands-on education for craft distillers. Since 2012 they have offered a fully comprehensive curriculum for those wishing to enter the industry, or those with a desire to broaden their existing skillset. Distillery University’s nearly 1500 students enjoy a wide

range of course topics, covering everything from product development to business management. Students can choose to learn online through self-paced video courses, livestreaming webinars, or in-person at a multi-day Hands-on Workshop. Distillery University’s main goal is to make it as easy as possible for true craft distillers to realize their dream of making phenomenal spirits in a successful business.