Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Bangers & Lace + Une Annee Brewery: Round Two

For everyone who has been so patiently waiting for our next collaboration with Une Annee, your time is now! We brewed a really spectacular Belgian Wit-style beer for all of your summer drinking needs because let’s get real, there is nothing like a crisp, refreshing Wit on those muggy summer nights. This batch is most sessionable, with the moderate abv you need to make this truly all-day- and-all-night drinkable.  So you can imbibe to your heart's content and then be reasonably sure to make it out of here on your own two feet.

We took the classic wit recipe to the next level by introducing cascara (cherry coffee leaves) into the blend, which gives each taste a tobacco-ish spice to balance this summer crusher. So you can keep on with the pilsners and sours for a few more days, but take heart, because we’ll have your new favorite beer pouring by the end of the month.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Chef Adam Wendt on 'Chowmasters'

We’re constantly saying ‘wow’ after bites of Chef Adam Wendt’s menu items. Really, he’s asked us to stop. So we can’t help but share this throwback video to the time Adam appeared on the Travel Channel’s “Chowmasters” show and put all the other Chicago dogs to shame with his Venison Sausage dog.
Some choice quotes: 

“Is that a ‘wow’ I’m hearing in there.” “The venison sausage is amazing. Great texture, a little bit of light smokiness, gaminess, the fruit ... a little chutney is just happening for me. It definitely took me there.” “It’s heat and sweet and I love that, man.” “An elevated comfort food I found to be delicious”

Want to try this at home? Go right ahead. Want to skip the work and the dishes? We serve the Venison Sausage dog each and every day here at Bangers & Lace.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Summer Drinking: Cocktails, Anyone?

You’re probably sick of your wintertime cocktail at this point, and sunny days have you searching for a new favorite. We got you. Our Summer Cocktail menu is ready for you to take it for a spin. So if you didn’t have any plans for the weekend, now you do:

Turkish Prison - Death’s Door Vodka, curry spice, pineapple, lime
Fishin’ With Deaner - Leblon Cachaca, Giffard Pamplemousse, lime, grapefruit
Who You Calling Hipster - Rittenhouse Rye, Malort, Averna, lemon bitters
The Montiel Guey - Herradurra Anejo Tequila + Sangrita
Creepy Uncle Nate - Letherbee Gin, strawberry-sage compote, lemon
Barrel Aged Louisville - J.W. Dant Bonded Bourbon, Lillet Rouge, Lillet Blanc

*All cocktails have been patio-tested, and patio-approved.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

CCBW: Brew Steel

Our Brew Steel event tomorrow night is kind of like a Grand Finale to our Chicago Craft Beer Week programming. We’ve turned over 5 lines each to Solemn Oath, Penrose and Perennial ales. And the fireworks really happen when Chef Adam Wendt pairs one brew from each brewery with an awesome dish.

And our collaboration with Solemn Oath + Emporium, ‘Goth Syrup,’ is still our $4 CCBW pour. What we mean is, join us on Friday, May 23rd and cheers to a totally awesome 2014 edition of Craft Beer Week. Then join us next week, and the week after. Because it’s always Craft Beer Week at Bangers & Lace.

Friday, May 23rd
More than just being ridiculously really really goodlooking, these guys also make handsome beers.

and ... $4 Pour of Goth Syrup
A Solemn Oath + Bangers & Lace + Emporium collaboration
SOB’s ‘None More Black’ Black Farmhouse Ale with Intelligentsia Zirikana Rwanda Coffee!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Where Every Week Is Craft Beer Week

Here at Bangers & Lace, we live every week like it’s Craft Beer Week, which is why we host awesome events with all kinds of breweries and stock incredible and unique beers all the time. And then every year or so, it really is Chicago Craft Beer Week!

So here’s what we’ve got in store for you this time around — and we’re just going to get some our most exciting news out of the way, because it’s too hard to just sit still here till you read all the way to the end. Prepare to get stoked on this: Our collaborative effort with Solemn Oath + Emporium, Goth Syrup, makes its debut this week, and it’s a truly magnificent beast of a beer.

Sunday, May 18th
A Barrel-Aged Showdown
Bourbon Country Stouts & Funky Sours
with Brewmaster Brett Porter

Wednesday, May 21st
We’ve got East Coast IPAs, so think Maine Beer Co, Victory, Smuttynose, Thornbridge and more! Please visit Small Bar Division for your West Coast IPAs needs, and catch up with a sandwich and a Midwest IPA at Jerry’s.

Friday, May 23rd
More than just being ridiculously really really goodlooking, these guys also make handsome beers.

and ... $4 Pour of Goth Syrup
A Solemn Oath + Bangers & Lace + Emporium collaboration
SOB’s ‘None More Black’ Black Farmhouse Ale with Intelligentsia Zirikana Rwanda Coffee!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Spring Patio Sippers

You may have taken advantage of the few nice days that Spring 2014 so graciously granted us and enjoyed the patio we — the eternal optimists — set up weeks ago. But maybe you’re waiting for the stars to align (a warm, sunny day with nothing on your agenda) before you take our outdoor seating for a spin.

We’ve seen a few 60+ degree days in the forecast, so we feel the timing is right to let you in on what we think is the perfect Spring patio pairing:

Our House Barrel of Old Forester is easily enjoyed as a shot or a neat pour, guaranteed to charm your palette and warm you up. In fact, it’s the perfect complement to our collaboration with Une Annee Brewery: Freres, an India Saison Ale. We brewed this first collaboration batch to be totally drinkable — it’s only 6.1% — and incredibly refreshing!

Put those two together and what have you got? A pairing both warm and refreshing, or, exactly what you need to bask in the chilly glow of Chicago’s Spring.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Chicago Speed Rack!

When we introduced you to Cristiana a few weeks back, we may have mentioned that she’s one of the top bartenders in the city. She’s also a veteran competitor in the now annual Speed Rack competition. Sure, she looks all sweet and welcoming, but she is a fierce competitor.

What’s Speed Rack, you ask? Well. It’s a national competition that places female bartenders on a platform to showcase just how badass they are while simultaneously raising money for breast cancer research. In a few short years, they’ve raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for a worthy cause.

You can check out the history of the organization in this cool Village Voice feature.   
Last year, Cristiana made it to the Top 8 (the competitors go up against each other March Madness, bracket-style), only to get ousted by fellow Drawing Room bartender Liz Pearce. Not too shabby, considering that Liz went on to win the whole thing.

Cristiana is heading back into the ring this year — and we can’t wait for her to take home the big prize!  

It’s a seriously competitive, crazy, boisterous, fun event. And you’re invited!

Sunday, April 13th
Joe’s Bar
940 W. Weed Street

Friday, March 28, 2014

Bangers & Lace + Une Annee Collaborative Brew!

Earlier this month, we very subtly hinted at an upcoming collaboration between Bangers & Lace and Une Annee Brewery. And now, we think you’re ready for the big news!

We spent some time tasting through numerous styles of beer — hey it’s our job — before deciding on what was exactly right for us. Eric was on the committee, so you knew it was going learn towards an IPA. And Une Annee pays particular attention to Belgian styles, and that’s when the magic happened and the Bangers & Lace + Une Annee ISA was born.

Our ISA (India Saison Ale) is an IPA brewed with Saison yeast — so it’s totally drinkable in mass quantities — just in time for summer and Chicago’s beloved patio season.

Our collaborative brew will be regularly available at Bangers & Lace, but you can also find it in select retail spots — you know, just in case you can’t pry yourself away from your episodes.

And save the date for the Release Party on April 1st — no foolin’ — when Une Annee takes over our famous Chalkboard 6 Pack!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Special Guest: The Lagunitas Couch

We’re tapping a special delivery of Lagunitas’s Fusion Ale Thursday, March 20! It’s a Brownish Ale, made with music fest goin’ beer lovers in mind. And one of our own music fest goin’ beer lovers -- you remember Eric, right -- will be spinning Blues/Psych/Funk & Fusion tunes all night.

And the couch featured in that very cool video we posted up there? It’s become the unofficial mascot of the Lagunitas team, having traveled from California to DC to Nashville to Austin. The couch will be at Bangers & Lace tonight, too, along with some of the Lagunitas crew making their way back from SXSW.

Stop by, raise a glass, have a know the drill.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Chicago Reader's Spring Cocktail Challenge

Remember when Nick killed it in Chicago Reader’s biweekly cocktail challenge? Oh, sure you do, because he made you do what no one else has ever convinced you to do: consider mixing up a cocktail with Miracle Whip in it.

In the spirit of a little healthy competition, The Chicago Reader throws a cool bash that brings together the crème de la crème of Chicago mixology, this time letting them use non-gross ingredients, pitting their best cocktails against one another.

On Friday, March 21st, we’ll be rooting for our own Nick O! He, along with a bunch of cocktail-making peers, will be mixing up a fabulous Spring-inspired cocktail. So ditch those plans to chug green beer with the college students, because you could be enjoying an array of grown-up green cocktails instead (the theme is green and we’re betting more than a few bartenders will opt for matching that shade).

While you’re busy sampling the 20 mixologists' best springtime libations and deciding who pulled off the most impressive drink, you can also enjoy complimentary wine from City Winery, beer from Shiner, and bites from Chop Shop.

Grab your tickets here, so that you can join us in Nick’s cheering section. Not convinced? Check out the video from the Fall 2013 event to see how much fun we had at the last one!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Monday, February 17, 2014

On Tap This Week

Ronnie Higgins Guests Bartends! (Tuesday, February 18)*
We’re finally getting around to our staff holiday party, because it’s oh...February. But we wouldn’t be so cruel as to close up shop entirely just because we’re taking a little time off. We called Ronnie Higgins — a trusted friend — to babysit you man the bar. He’s been busy over at The Revel Room, but we promised we’d pay him in bangers.

Which brings us to our next point: our kitchen will be closed tomorrow night, but we called a food truck near and dear to us — Chubby Wieners will be onsite to fulfill your need for encased meats.

*Tuesday hours: 4pm-2am

George Dickel (Thursday, February 20)
The best medicine for cabin fever is a shot — of Dickel. We’re serving up $7 George Dickel Tennessee Whisky pours — including rocks and highballs — and $8 George Dickel Manhattans.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Meet and Greet with 4 Hands Brewing Co.

Barrel aging is all the rage, but we all knew that already, didn’t we? This Wednesday, we’re adding to the hype when we host a Meet & Greet with the Founders and Head Brewer behind 4 Hands Brewing Company, from St. Louis, Missouri. They’re making beers inspired by the American craft movement that push the limits of creativity, particularly via a barrel -aging program that will knock your socks off.

Meet & Greet with 4 Hands Brewing Company
Wednesday, February 12th

We’ll have six 4 Hands Brewing Company beers in our Chalkboard’s six-pack! Notables include (but not limited to):

Cuvee Ange
Inspired by the French Oak wine barrels that once housed all French wine varietals, fermented with wild yeast and aged in a combination of Cabernet, Merlot, and Grenache barrels with raspberries and blackberries. Cuvee Ange is a fruity, tart, complex ale that pours a bright rose with aromas of fruit, funk, and wood.

Beyond the Bricks
This new debut, a Belgian Strong Golden Ale, is aged with apricots in Chardonnay barrels.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cheers, Cristiana!

Cristiana DeLucca isn’t exactly a new face around Bangers & Lace, but we thought you needed a little pick-me-up in the middle of this snow-filled and freezing Winter. Cristiana is no stranger to the service industry, but she spent a bulk of her pre-Bangers & Lace career at the notable cocktail haven, The Drawing Room. She began her stint as a server, absorbing everything about the place before the siren’s song of cocktailing lured her behind the stick. She apprenticed under Charles Joly for years, and when he moved onto greener pastures, Cristiana took over his position as Beverage Director.

Some time later, when Cristiana knew it was time to move on to a new spot, she put her beer goggles on —  as in, she wanted to learn more about beer — and what better place to settle down than Bangers & Lace?

After asking a fair amount of questions and trying everything that was put in front of her, she’s got an awesome handle on her beer game. Right now, Cristiana is particularly fond of Sours and Imperial Ales and isn’t naturally drawn to the super-hopped styles — we expect Eric has something to say about that — though she’s constantly trying to test her palette with challenging spirits and styles.

Cristiana calls herself a “situational drinker” so while she’s got a rhyme and reason to her personal booze selections, there’s no definite favorite in the mix, though she does admit to going for something a bit bigger (like lines 20-26 on the chalkboard) when she’s got the night off.
Educating drinkers and spreading good taste is not something Cristiana takes lightly, she’s also a Portfolio Embassador for The Back Bar Project, where she orchestrates recipe sharing, tastings, 
education and training.

You’ve got three chances every week (Wednesday, Friday and Saturday) to grab a cocktail from this master mixologist and expert beer provider! 

Thursday, January 16, 2014

100 Best Beer Bars

We love beer. Did you know that? Well, we do. And one of the industry publications we pour over is Draft Magazine. It’s one of the very best out there. Each year, they name the top beer spots in the USA, and it’s a list we look forward to reading every year. 

We couldn’t be happier to tell you that we’ve (once again) earned a spot as one of the 100 Best Beer Bars in the country. 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Judas Feast: A Solemn Oath Beer Dinner

A Solemn Oath Beer Dinner  
Wednesday, January 29, 2014

It’s the beer dinner you’ve all been waiting for! We’re teaming up with Solemn Oath Brewery, located right around the corner in good ol’ Naperville. We’ve been into their awesome beers since from the minute they started brewing, so we’re extra excited to give them five lines for their stellar product and devise the perfect dish to pair with each.

If you didn’t buy tickets based on the flyer alone, here’s a sneak peek at which Solemn Oath beers we’re pouring:

Butterfly Flashmob - (Belgian IPA - 7.5%abv) - Copious amounts of piney, citrusy American hops make a light malt sweetness their bitch in this full-flavored Belgian IPA. Aggressive bitterness, massive hop flavor and super fruity Belgian yeast. Now with new hops: Columbus, Simcoe, Centennial, Citra, Mt. Hood.
Combat Marshmallow - (American Double Stout - 8.5%ABV) - Full bodied, black in color. Big roasted malt presence with notes of dark chocolate and coffee balanced by a resinous, piney hop girth. No marshmallows.
Big Pern - (Barrel Aged Belgian Rye Brown)
Interrobang - (Belgian Triple - 9% ABV)
Death By Vikings - (Imperial IPA)

You’ll want to stick around after dinner, because it’s rude to eat and run — but we’re also turning our draft chalkboard into a Midwestern Wonderland, with all lines going to some of our favorite nearby breweries: Solemn Oath Brewery, Three Floyds Brewing, Revolution Brewing, Half Acre Beer Company, Surly Brewing Co., and Off Color Brewing.

Five beers + five courses. Tickets available here (limited quantity)!