Tuesday, February 3, 2015

More Whiskey Warm Up Weekend: Estes Park, CO February 2015

We are getting excited for Estes Park's 2015 Whiskey Warm Up! The main Tasting Event is Saturday February 7 from 1-4pm at Riverside Plaza. Alison Gdovicak, lead coordinator for this event, answered a few questions about it for us:

The Whiskey Chick: Will participating distilleries be selling full bottles of their spirits at the Tasting?

Alison GdovicakRambo's Longhorn Liquor carries many of the distilleries' products already, and they are working with many of the other distillers to have product on hand for sale. Rambo's will be present at the event; they can tell you what they'll have in stock. Even though they'll be at the event to speak with, the product can only be purchased at the store itself. 

The Whiskey Chick: How did you choose this year's distilleries?

AlisonWe first reached out to the distilleries that were here last year for our first Whiskey Warm Up event, and we also reached out to those suggested to us by participating distilleries. Each distillery is required to fill out and return a registration form so once that was received, they became confirmed.

The Whiskey Chick: Will the participating distilleries be sampling only their whiskeys?

AlisonMany of them will bring other spirits as well but we are focused primarily on whiskey.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Whiskey Warm Up Weekend: Estes Park, CO

February 7th & 8th, 2015

Join Estes Park for the Winter Warm-Up Weekend with family activities downtown around the ice rink all weekend. Stay for Whiskey Warm-Up on Saturday, February 7th, a whiskey tasting event and celebration - sure to get you toasty from the inside out. Special whiskey-themed events, packages and specials will be happening throughout the weekend.
Friday, February 6th:
Start off the weekend with dinner and live music throughout the village!

Saturday, February 7th & Sunday, February 8th:
Family Activities:11am - 4pm. $5 entry per child/per day at the door. Free entrance with purchased Whiskey Warm Up ticket.
Saturday & Sunday family activities abound near the Riverwalk location of the Ice Skating Rink. Children and adults alike can enjoy a face painter, pony rides, a s'mores bar, sandy candy, photo cut-outs and more. 

Whiskey Warm Up Tasting Event- Saturday, February 7th Only
1pm - 4pm 
Riverside Plaza, outdoor area
The Whiskey Warm Up is a true celebration of the tradition of warming up from the inside out. Dress warm to sip on selections of Colorado whiskeys from a variety of local distilleries next to the heat of one of the fire pits in the beautiful outdoor Riverside Plaza. Browse local cigar shops selling special handmade stogies and watch expert demonstrations of the fine art of hand-rolling cigars! Sway to the toe-tapping sounds of live music from the popular bluegrass band, Chain Station
Learn more about the styles, tastes and smells of whiskey from a local distillery's knowledgeable educators, who will be presenting live snapshot seminars throughout the event:  
  • Feisty Spirits will be hosting the Organic Grain to Glass Distillation Discussion and Tasting. Expert, Alex Mackewich will bring newly released spirits to taste during the seminar. She'll go over their process and then offer a guided tasting of a limited release whiskey!  
Taste spirits from these Colorado distilleries: Breckenridge Distillery, Golden Moon Distillery, KJ Wood Distillers, Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey, Feisty Spirits, Laws Whiskey House, Syntax Sprits, Dancing Pines Distillery, Distillery 291, Spirit Hound Distillery and Peach Street Distillers.
After the event, head over to Dancing Pines Distillery's tasting room (located next to Bond Park and within walking distance from the Whiskey Warm Up Event) to enjoy an finale reception with buy one/get one free drink specials and fun from 4:30pm - 8pm. 

Ticket prices:

Single Ticket, $45
Pair of Tickets, $80

For more information, please contact 970-586-6104.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Roundhouse Spirit's Bourbon Whiskey Project

Roundhouse Spirits' Bourbon Project

Great news: Mike Palasciano, Brand Ambassador at Roundhouse Spirits, announced this week that they have begun a bourbon project with W. L. Weller. Roundhouse President and Distiller Ted Palmer developed the mash recipe. The American oak barrels have a #2 char and are resting right here in Boulder. You can see the barrels on a free tour of the distillery. 

If you have a group of bourbon loving friends, consider going in together to purchase an entire barrel in advance; you'll also get the experience of bottling your barrel. Contact Michael Belochi, Director of Sales & Marketing, if you are interested in more information on Roundhouse Spirits' Buy a Barrel program. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Hot Liquor

whiskey colorado

These unseasonably warm winter days remind me how much I love spring. I feel eminently better in freeing dresses & swishy skirts than betrothed to bulky sweaters & bound up in pants. I want the warmth of the sun always on my skin. & I prefer hot yoga, like Baptiste or Bikram, to 'regular' yoga. I've even been known to carry my own tiny bottle of Tabasco in the pocket of my purse. Too, the charred oak burn of a brown liquor almost always trumps vodka or gin—no matter the season.

If you visited my liquor cabinet, you would see at this moment one tequila, three sotols, two gins, an akavit, & no vodka at all. But you would first see seven whiskeys, ten bourbons, & three tongue-curlingly hot ryes. & eight, yes, eight bitters—bitters, after all, being the babouches & handbags of the whiskey-slanted wardrobe.

Ayurvedic doctors would surely name me a Pitta-type: light, warm, ambitious, & determined. Precise. Passionate. Principled. But above all, having a heat-seeking, fiery nature that manifests itself throughout the body & mind. & I'd have to say that that's true. & then I'd tip my spring bonnet & drink to it.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Whiskey Chick's Ras el Hanout Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

2 oz rye
2 dashes Ras el Hanout bitters*
1 sugar cube
1 splash of water or club soda

In an Old Fashioned glass, gently dissolve the sugar cube in the bitters & soda. Swirl the glass with the mixture. Pour in the rye, preferably over a large cube of ice. Serve.

  Ras el Hanout bitters

1 bottle filtered vodka
1 tablespoon cardamom seeds
1 tablespoon grains of paradise
2 tablespoons dried rose petals
1 teaspoon diced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon grated cinnamon
1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
½ teaspoon cloves
½ teaspoon orris root
½ teaspoon gentian root
½ cup filtered water

In a large bottle or jar, combine the vodka & spices. Let sit in a cool, dark place for eight days, rotating the jar once a day. On the eighth day, strain, add the filtered water & bottle. Let stand two more weeks before using.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Cured Spirits

whiskey Colorado

With locavore culture all the rage, we of the drinking classes inevitably want to take our hobby home with us. So where in Colorado does one track down the finest locally-produced spirits needed for a do-it-yourself Sazerac or Manhattan? Easy: at Cured Boulder.

It was the paucity of retail outlets devoted to local craft ales & spirits that led Will Frischkorn, a former professional cyclist living in Spain, to set up a bottle shop, Cured Wines, a glassed-in boutique within his larger market that is Cured Boulder. With its exposed brick walls & distressed plank flooring, Cured Boulder offers over 80 hand-selected cheeses, 22 different types of charcuterie, heirloom tomatoes, greens & fresh eggs from nearby farms, as well as luxurious grilled cheese sandwiches. 

In addition to a small, sharply edited vino selection, Cured Wines is also a passionate paean to the culture & history of the local hard stuff. Will carries an ever-growing line-up of Colorado-produced spirits; developing personal relationships with purveyors is the core of his work. So whether you're looking for a bottle of Leopold Bros. American Small Batch Whiskey as an elegant gift for out-of-state friends or are thirsting to stir up your Old Fashioned with Colorado Straight Bourbon, Cured has something local & liquor-ish to warm your belly after a long day.

Cured, 1825 Pearl St., Boulder; (720) 352-2331. 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Drinking Bourbon in Colorado

Bourbon whiskey Stagg Kentucky
George T. Stagg 2011 Release
Drenched from a fast, cool mountain rain, I open the front door to the Frank-Lloyd-Wright-meets-Dwell-magazine condo in Stapleton―my temporary home at the base of the Rocky Mountains. I lean out the window; the late March light is a cool blue, streaked with pink. Across the street, I see two newish friends wave to me, & I run downstairs to open the door for them & for their bourbon―a 2011 George T. Stagg Kentucky Straight: 18-year, 142.6 proof.

We gather around the granite kitchen island & begin talking cask-strength bourbons―bourbons that are bottled at the proof at which they come out of the cask. Because cask-strength bourbons, such as George T. Stagg, aren't chill-filtered, their mouthfeel can be oilier, thicker, rawer. & cask-strength bourbons have 10%-15% more alcohol than regular bourbons, which shows up immediately in the nose. Sipping them can be like ingesting pure fire.

Three tiny cups are brought to our kitchen island 'bar'―with matching tiny water backs for those who like to unlock the subtleties of their bourbon with a splash. My own Stagg is neat, & the warm butterscotchness is followed by a bit of smoky wood. Fragrant notes of leather & tobacco & dried vanilla linger.

I put on some music―early Art Blakey with Clifford Brown blowing brass―& pour a second round. We sip it silently; Stagg is holy stuff. & since discovering it, I frequently crave this primitive elixir―not just the indulgence itself but the experience of consuming it, the slowing down, the savoring.