Monday, June 24, 2013

Christine Celis at B&L!

On July 1st, from 7-10pm, Bangers & Lace is hosting a casual meet & greet (you know we can’t resist an ampersand!) with Christine Celis, co-founder of Authentic Beverage Management Imports. We’ll even have a few beers from Christine’s portfolio, newly imported stateside and ready for your discerning palate:

You may recognize Christine’s surname if you’re into legendary beer lineages: Her father Pierre Celis was the man who put the small Belgian town of Hoegaarden on the world beer map. In the 1960s, Pierre single-handedly revived the town’s cloudy wheat beers made with spices and fruit, saving the “white” brew from extinction in the face of mass-marketed lagers.

That passion for beer was passed down to his daughter, who began ABM Imports with a simple goal: to match the love, energy, and passion each of their brewers pours into their creations. Christine seeks high quality and interesting brews with their own signature style and story, and next Monday, you’ll be able to hear (and taste!) for yourself why each of the specially selected beers she’s bringing to Bangers & Lace fits those strict qualifications.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Yep, the Guy in the Shorts

You’ll surely recognize Eric, one of our longstanding bartenders. He’s easily identifiable as the the guy perpetually wearing shorts even in the dead of winter. You know you can count on him for a solid beer recommendation, sure, but there’s a few things you might not know about him. For instance, Eric’s a two time Oprah makeover veteran.

Go ahead and pick your jaw up off your keyboard and get ready to know Eric a little bit better over the next few paragraphs.

Eric, a New Jersey native, moved to Chicago in 1998. That means you’re welcome to try spouting Springsteen lyrics at him to see if he can finish the line (the traditional test of a true New Jersyan). He’s not only a bartender, he also helps manage the daily operations at Bangers & Lace, having been on board since our salad days. Eric installed our sound system, did some additional wiring and was on the painting crew before we even opened our doors.

We tap him regularly for his awesome insight into the North American Craft scene, and always spotlight his current favorite on line #18 on our sixpack. That’s because Eric has always been into beer: he brewed in college and attended his first Craft Beer event in 1994. But he also spent about a decade in yield management at Hertz Car Rental. Maybe those shorts he’s continuously sporting are a symbol of his freedom from corporate America, or maybe his legs are especially heat sensitive. The world may never know.

Monday, June 10, 2013

‘Hot Sünner Nights’ at Bangers & Lace

Starting now, every Thursday at Bangers & Lace will be a ‘Hot Sünner Night!’ The historic beer of Cologne, Germany, Sünner Kolsch is traditionally served in a bottomless glass—that is, as the customer drinks his or her beer down, servers bring a fresh one to replace it without being asked. This continues until the happy beer drinker puts a coaster over their glass to signal the server they can cool it with the refills. 

As each beer is served, a mark is made on the coaster, which is then used to calculate your bill. On every Hot Sünner Night, Bangers & Lace servers will make their rounds equipped with authentic Kölsch Kranz serving trays filled with the traditional 200ml serving glasses (called Kölsch Stange), all to replicate the Cologne experience right here in Chicago.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Saison Season!

When you really think about it, Chicagoans have a lot in common with the seasonal Belgian farmworkers of yesteryear. Okay, maybe not that much other than this one integral thing: We want a light, refreshing beer that we can drink in large quantities. So we both (the seasonal Belgian farmworkers of yesteryear and today’s Chicagoans, that is) go to the Saison. Brewed during the winter and used to hydrate farmworkers during the busy summer months, it’s typically a bit lighter (5-8% abv), complexly flavored (hops, malts, fruits and spice!) and just a bit earthy.

It was necessary for the farmworkers because of the lack of potable water, and what better way to quench your thirst than with an alcoholic beverage guaranteed to refresh, but not incapacitate? Sure, we now have access to safe drinking water, but we’re also currently thawing out after a Chicago winter and looking to leave heavy stouts and potent whiskies behind. On second thought, maybe we do have a lot in common with the seasonal Belgian farmerworkers of yesteryear? 

We're going to make it easy for you to taste your way through some of our favorite Saison examples by pairing one of them perfectly every week with a dish from Chef Adam Wendt. Check in every Tuesday in June as we announce that day’s pairing, then come on in, eschew the water glass, and dive into an effervescent Saison.