Monday, July 29, 2019

'Lost Palate': How an Unfortunate Situation Became the Unlikely Inspiration Behind Goose Island's Newest Beer

A brand ambassador's cancer diagnosis led to an unlikely concoction that became so successful, it's about to launch nationwide

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Last year, 33-year-old Jonny Coffman was told he had less than a year to live.
"Three to 12 months realistically," he said. "They said, 'We would be shocked if you saw 2019.'"
A brand ambassador for Goose Island Beer Company, Coffman was battling metastatic melanoma. At Lurie Cancer Center at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Coffman tried a new immunotherapy drug and underwent radiation.
"Unfortunately, one of the side effects is its impact on his taste buds," said Dr. Sunandana Chandra, Coffman’s oncologist at Lurie Cancer Center.
"I have never eaten cement, but I can imagine that’s what it would taste like," Coffman said. "Anything, pizza, steak, mac & cheese — it tasted the exact same."
The beer lover couldn’t taste a thing for months, until one morning when he mixed oatmeal with Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal, mangos and honey.
"I could taste the cinnamon first, then the juiciness of the mangos and the honey. It was love at first bite,” Coffman said.
Coffman was so excited about his breakfast concoction because he could actually taste it. But he also had a bigger idea, to brew it as Goose island’s first hazy IPA.
"It’s the hot style. We’ve never made one and Jonny loves them, so of course we were going to accommodate," said Todd Ahsmann, president of Goose Island Beer Company.
Coffman worked with the Goose Island Brewmasters and came up with "Lost Palate."
The canned beer is being sold in the Goose Island Tap Room with some of the proceeds going to the Lurie Cancer Center.
"Emotional...emotional because it was something I ever thought if it did happen, maybe brew a two barrel batch of it," Coffman said of the beer being made in his honor.
Since then, two amazing things happened: the immunotherapy drug worked, leaving Coffman cancer-free and "Lost Palate" is set to launch nationwide. 
"We decided the beer turned out so good and Jonny’s health is back, so we are going to launch it nationally come the beginning of the year and continue to donate proceeds to the Lurie Cancer center," Ahsmann said. 
"People are drinking it in Chicago, liking it, and now when I see people, they can smile and be happy because I’m cancer-free," Coffman said.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Facebook to Expand Restrictions on Sales of Alcohol

Original article from:

Facebook to Expand Restrictions on Sales of Alcohol  Primary Image
Much to the surprise and likely disappointment to the countless beer trading groups that are active on Facebook, the social media company announced earlier today that it had updated its policies to prohibit the sale of alcohol (and tobacco products) between private individuals. 
The site had already prohibited the sale of alcohol and tobacco in its Marketplace section of the site, but this regulation change extends it into groups and what the company calls “organic content," which includes comments and posts. 
CNN first reported the change on Wednesday morning and Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine independently confirmed the policy shift with Facebook. 
“We are updating our regulated goods policy to prohibit the sale of alcohol and tobacco products between private individuals on Facebook and Instagram,” a Facebook Spokesperson wrote in an email to Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine. “Our commerce policies already prohibit the sale of tobacco or alcohol in places like Marketplace but we’re now extending this to organic content.” 
Facebook has become a go-to for beer traders with public and private ISO:FT groups surrounding nearly every major city and region as well as individual breweries. Online beer forums and other Internet sites still do a robust trading business, but the sheer size of Facebook and Instagram, the first and sixth largest social media sites in the world, make them obvious fertle ground for beer trades.Wednesday’s announcement comes on the heels of Instagram beta testing the hiding of its “like” counter, which was designed to make that platform less of a popularity contest but has frustrated some influencers, who rely on those numbers to help promote products on behalf of companies. 
This change only applies to the sale of alcohol and tobacco, and it's unclear how Facebook intends to apply these rules to bartering and trading, but posting pictures in groups dedicated to appreciating or discussing the products is not restricted. So for now those glamour shots of Naturdays you have loaded up from this weekend’s bash are good to post.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Can a cocktail made with wine-based liquor still be called a cocktail?

Original article by. Jean Le Boeuf via News-Press

Q: Why are restaurants allowed to advertise “cocktails” on their websites and menus when clearly they do not have a full-bar license? These offerings should be called “mocktails” or “wine-based cocktails!" I feel deceived. — Sincerely, Sandy M. 
A: Sandy, I share your pain. Nothing ruins Taco Tuesday like ordering a margarita only to have a glass of syrupy wine water delivered. 
Sadly, there's not much recourse.
While the Department of Business and Professional Regulation does enforce so-called "truth in menu" laws — rules that ensure your Gulf snapper is indeed Gulf snapper and not Asian-farmed tilapia — those regulations don't apply to what can or can't be called a cocktail. Cocktails must contain alcohol, yes, but the strength of that alcohol doesn't matter. 
As the department's communications director Patrick Fargason pointed out via email, "the term 'cocktail' isn't defined in the Beverage Law.
"According to DBPR’s Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco, simply calling something a 'cocktail' wouldn't rise to the level of misrepresentation any more than calling something Butterbeer without there being any beer present would."
The "Melon Dramatic" is a nonalcoholic mocktail served at Husk in Greenville, South Carolina. (Photo: JOSH MORGAN/Staff)
There are, however, some basi1. Drink at big restaurants. Most restaurants must have more than 150 seats (inside and out count) in order to secure  a liquor license. If you're at a restaurant with fewer than 150 seats, then it probably only has a beer/wine license — hence the wine-based substitutions. That said, it's not impossible to be small and sell liquor. The owner of Nevermind in Cape Coral, for example, has a full-liquor license purchased through Florida's liquor license lottery. That allows him to sell full-test gin, rum, you-name-it, even though he only has a few-dozen seats.
Grapefruit rosemary mocktail (Photo: Courtesy Henry Ford Health System)
2. Look for a bar. If a restaurant has a full-liquor license, that's a huge moneymaker. They'll want you to know about it. You will almost always find a traditional bar setup at a full-liquor restaurant; bottles on display alongside draft taps and the like. Don't see a bar? You're probably getting a wine-based cocktail.
3. Ask. If a little side-street taqueria is offering margaritas, or if a mom-and-pop diner has Bloody Marys on the brunch menu, I will ask the server: Is it made with tequila/vodka or with wine-based liquor? Servers will almost always tell you the truth. If they're unclear, ask a manager. I'd much rather have a mimosa than some unexpected wine-based cocktail that will sit unfinished.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Heineken fined $1.25 million for NY state liquor law violations

Heineken beer bottles. (AP photo).

Global brewing giant Heineken USA will pay a $1.25 million fine to the New York State Liquor Authority for violating state laws prohibiting gifts to retailers that carry their beer.The authority found that Heineken USA, the American division of the big Dutch brewing company, illegally provided special patented draft systems to more than 800 bars and restaurants to help persuade those retailers to carry Heineken products.The system, called BrewLock, only fits Heineken beer kegs or those from Heineken-affiliated brands, like the Italian beer Moretti. 

Each BrewLock is worth about $500.State liquor laws prohibit alcoholic beverage manufacturers or wholesalers (distributors) from giving away anything of value to “artificially incentivize sales,” according to a liquor authority news release.
In addition to the BrewLock giveaways, which occured from 2014 to 2015, the liquor authority accused Heineken of illegally using a third party to conceal a transaction with at least one retailer for a different Heineken draft beer system called Blade.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Permits And Licenses – What You Need To Open The Door

Permits And Licenses - What You Need To Open The Door

Congratulations! You’re ready to open a restaurant. You’ve got the menu, your restaurant concept, the location, investors, and your marketing materials. You’re ready to open your doors, right? Not so fast.
Before you can welcome those first diners, you have a bit more legwork. In this article, we look at permits and licenses and what you need to open the door to your restaurant.

Step 1: The Business License

The first type of license you need is the business license. Every single restaurant needs this before they can open and operate their restaurant.
This is what tells the federal government that you’re a new business. It legitimizes you, and it makes your restaurant official. Above all, it gives you permission from the government to open and operate your restaurant.
The business license is issued to your restaurant from your local city or state government, and you can’t open your restaurant without this. You’ll find it accompanied by a fee that includes both your registration fee and your filing fee. Count on paying up to several thousand dollars for this license.
In addition, you’ll find that the cost and regulations around your licensing vary state by state. You can get your license by doing an internet search. You can also check the Small Business Administration’s website for more information. If you’d rather forego the internet, go to your city hall and get your license in person. Don’t forget to renew this license on an annual basis.
Do note that if your restaurant sells alcohol, you will also have to obtain a federal business license in addition to your state business license.

Step 2: The Foodservice License

The health department in your city is where you’re going to go for this license. You will need to fill out a lot of paperwork to get the ball moving on your foodservice license.
Many restaurant owners feel some anxiety about this license because it involves someone coming and checking on your restaurant to make sure you are following all food safety regulations. Do remember that they will come back to your restaurant on occasion to double check you are still abiding by all the rules.
To apply for this license, you can also apply online with your city. The fees for this permit are usually based on the size and classification of your restaurant and its location. Count on paying anywhere from $100-$1000 for your foodservice license.

Step #3: The Liquor License

If you’re going to sell liquor at your restaurant, you will have to have a liquor license. Like the foodservice license, this one comes with many strings attached. (tweet this)
To sell liquor, you have to maintain this license on an ongoing basis. To find out what you have to do to get this license, and how to keep it, you’ll need to check with your state.
The liquor license is not an easy license to procure. It’s also very easy to lose this license in an instant. To get and keep this permit, you have to make sure you’re following your state’s ABC (Alcohol Beverage Control) laws. They regulate the sale of alcohol in every state.
You can lose this license for many reasons including selling liquor to minors, over serving people and having them get too drunk, disorderly conduct, allowing underage servers to serve liquor, selling at unauthorized times, and many others.
It only takes one mistake to lose this license, so do everything you can to stay above the law.
Finally, the cost of the liquor license varies from state to state, but it usually comes with a hefty price into the tens of thousands and more.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Ways to make your restaurant stand out from competition

Ways To Make Your Restaurant Stand Out From Competition4 min read

Original Article on "Restaurant Den"

With so many culinary options and different dining styles available to customers these days, competition in the restaurant industry is fiercer than ever. To build a thriving, successful, and long-term business in food service, restauranteurs have to start getting creative to make their restaurants stand out from the competition. Whether you’re opening a new spot for foodies or have been running a restaurant for years, here are some ways to make your restaurant stand out.


Most restauranteurs have already adopted the essential mantra: Location. Location. Location. While having an optimal street address is important to the success of your business, it’s time to extend that idea one step further to truly help you stand out.
While location is a crucial first step, standing out from all the other businesses on your street means boosting your curb appeal. What do we mean by that? Curb appeal to real estate marketing what presentation and plating is to a top-tier chef. Extend the interior style, mood, and ambience of your restaurant to its external façade. An unconventional paint colour, creative window décor, or bold signage can all make a customer stop and take a second look when they might otherwise have passed you by.


Consider opening a booth at a local music, food, or craft festival. These types of events offer the infrastructure and built-in crowds you need to introduce your food and your business to a whole new demographic of customers. Not only do pop-ups provide additional exposure, they also give you the opportunity to test new food items and menu ideas. Because these events are traditionally not known for culinary excellence, your pop-up is sure to stand out and make diners think seriously about visiting your restaurant.Continue Reading

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

The First-Ever All-Inclusive Resort In The Florida Keys Offers Bottomless Booze And Gorgeous Views

Original article by. Brittany Anas

Vacations are all about splurging and indulgence, which is why all-inclusive hotels are so alluring. Another round of poolside piña coladas or an afternoon taco plate? Both, thank you very much!
While the Caribbean and Mexico are rich with all-inclusive options, those of us in the U.S. have mostly been deprived of such luxury in our tropical locales — until now.
That’s because Bungalows Key Largo is a fabulous adults-only resort on the northernmost island in the Florida Keys. The cocktails keep coming, the views are stunning, and the infinity pool is an ideal perch for watching sunsets. Bungalows Key Largo will be the first all-inclusive resort in the Keys when it opens in December, with rates starting at $399 per night.

There Are Three Restaurants, Plus A Food Truck

Guests can make an event out of dinner with six-course meals and wine pairings at Bogie & Bacall’s, the on-property fine dining spot. Fish Tales is a resort-casual eatery overlooking the ocean, with a vibe inspired by the Italian island of Capri. Or, you can grab tacos and margaritas at Sea Señor. The resort also has a food truck; go to Largo Larry’s for quick beach bites.

Bungalows Key Largo

You Can Drink on a Floating Tiki Bar

The resort also features two floating tiki boats, each with six seats and a full bar. Their names? S.S. Rum Runner and S.S. Margarita. If you prefer to stay on land, you can enjoy a tropical cocktail at the Sunset Tiki Bar.

Bungalows Key Largo

Guests Can Enjoy a Balance of Fitness and Relaxation

Zip around the resort on a Huffy cruiser — each bungalow comes with two bicycles. If you like a more sedentary way of getting around, a golf cart transportation service can shuttle you around the resort.
For those who prefer to stay active on vacation, the Fitness Tiki Hut is outfitted with Peloton cycling equipment. Yoga classes are held daily. Plus, you’ve got unlimited access to aquatic equipment like snorkeling gear, kayaks and paddleboards. Afterward, nap in a waterside cabana.

Continue Reading

Friday, July 12, 2019

Carnival's "Fun Ships" aren't the booze cruises you think they are

By. Jason Leppert

Admittedly, I used to write off Carnival Cruise Line as nothing more than a booze cruise. That was until I actually sailed with them for the first time and my eyes were opened to the truth. The “Fun Ship” brand is indeed just that – fun – and in a variety of wonderful, unexpected ways.
Carnival, winner of Best Ocean Cruise Line in the 2019 Readers' Choice Awards, has come a long way since its wilder days. They've swapped out older ships with a decidedly 1980's Vegas aesthetic – gaudy decor, garish colors, dated lighting and endlessly repeating fixtures – for remodeled or brand-new ships that are pleasantly subdued.
Take, for instance, the line’s latest Carnival Horizon. Like its Carnival Vista sister ship, a fresh beach resort aesthetic offers a welcoming setting for cruisers of all ages. Guy’s Burger Joint from celebrity chef Guy Fieri grills up some of the best gourmet burgers with sides of fries at sea, while kids can spiral down speedy themed water slides with the Cat in the Hat and friends. Best of all, both are entirely free.
The playful Dr. Seuss WaterWorks water park on <em>Carnival Horizon</em>
Such brand partnerships bolster festive programming that is remarkably consistent across a fleet of over two dozen vessels. Some hardware features like the SkyRide – a suspended cycling course perched high on the outer decks – are available only on the newest ships, but most of the software is familiar from one to the next as they are continually upgraded.
Even the act of drinking has been elevated thanks to the Alchemy Bar. The popular watering hole is staffed by apothecaries who "prescribe" elixirs to suit each patron’s mood. Molecular techniques mix exotic ingredients into delicious beverages, whether alcoholic on non-alcoholic.
Also going beyond a mere bucket of beers are full-scale onboard breweries as found on the aforementioned Vista and Horizon – the RedFrog Pub & Brewery and Guy's Pig & Anchor Smokehouse | Brewhouse respectively.
Guy's Pig &amp; Anchor Smokehouse | Brewhouse elevates beer on <em>Carnival Horizon</em> with craft varieties
Since Carnival’s core concept has always centered around fun, the playful persona begins with its crew. From the cruise director to your wait staff, everyone is friendly and upbeat, and the aura extends to shipboard performances. The Punchliner Comedy Club is a hilarious rotating showcase of world-class stand-up comics, and Playlist Productions puts on creative stage shows with high-energy singing and dancing. Horizon has even reintroduced the backing of an ace live band.
Passengers are a diverse cross-section of Americans simply looking to have a good time. It’s where single friends, married couples and family reunions can all come together and find something for everyone, including accommodations. Staterooms run the gamut from budget interiors to palatial suites with options for connecting cabins, accessible staterooms and additional bathrooms for larger groups.
Public spaces cater to this diverse crowd, with venues like exclusive clubs for kids (Camp Ocean), tweens (Circle C) and teens (Club O2), an area for those 21 and over (Serenity Adult Only Retreat) and plenty of spots for everyone to mingle. Regular cruisers will find at-sea staples as well, such as trivia contests for the chance to win a "ship on a stick," and the sublime Cloud 9 Spa for relaxing onboard. My personal favorite activity is taking in a first-run movie at the IMAX Theatre (for a reasonable fee).Continue Reading

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

The Wine Room tasting place with 2,500 rare wines coming to Delray Beach


The Wine Room tasting place with 2,500 rare wines coming to Delray Beach
The Wine Room Kitchen and Bar in Delray Beach will feature more than 200 wines from Enomatic machines, which preserve wine for about a month by replacing oxygen with nitrogen. (Enomatic Wine Serving System / Courtesy)

This contemporary bistro, expected to open by August, will feature a vestige from the legendary 32 East that shut down on Atlantic Avenue last year: general manager John Bates.
“The clientele in Delray Beach has taken a step back from fine dining and moved toward a more upscale, casual approach,” says Bates, who was 32 East’s general manager for 19 years. “I look forward to hosting my previous clientele at this beautiful new concept. It truly is an environment unlike any other.”
The restaurant, which replaces the former Caffe Martier, will become the second location of the 13-year-old Wine Room in Winter Park. It will boast more than 200 wines dispensed from Enomatic machines, along with 80-plus cheeses and 2,500 bottles of rare wines.
“We will also have a retail store selling 60 selections of cheese and a large selection of quality wines and accessories,” says managing partner Bruce Simberg, a lawyer and Boca Raton resident. “Delray is almost twice the size of Winter Park.”
The location affords a larger kitchen and a full liquor license with two bars for craft cocktails. The historic building once housed the Arcade Tap Room in the 1930s. 
“The project turned into something much larger than first thought,” says Simberg, who says upgrading the historic building delayed the opening for months. “We had to demolish the roof, the floors, the electric, plumbing and AC. Everything is new except the speakeasy, which we restored to its original condition as much as we could.” 
Amid stone walls and a wine barrel-themed ceiling, patrons can load cards with money to insert into Enomatic machines, which will offer a choice of three pour sizes. 
“The cost of an ounce is $1 to $100, and the average price is $2.50 to $4. Each wine has a card in front of it that has a full description and the tasting notes,” Simberg says. “We have wine lovers with all levels of experience. This is not a snobby place but a place for learning and enjoying. Our staff will answer questions and educate.” 
Daily lunch and dinner, plus weekend brunch, will include classic French and American dishes such as ravioli with caramelized onion and confit duck ragu; wild mushroom flatbread with triple-cream brie, goat cheese fondue and black truffle; sea scallops with sweet-corn beurre blanc; and orange blossom cake.Continue reading original article

Monday, July 8, 2019

The 8th Annual 97X Craft Beer Experience is coming to The Mahaffey Theater this August

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By. Jenna Rimensnyder

The 8th Annual 97X Craft Beer Experience will be hosted at The Mahaffey Theater on Saturday, August 10. T
ickets are officially on sale, and you can snag one to grab unlimited samples of over 150 samples of craft beers, ciders, meads, and wines. 
The event runs from 4-8 p.m., with each participating brewery pouring up an exclusive release. 
Great Bay Distributors the leading wholesaler in the beer industry is the official partner for the experience and is bringing in heavy-hitting local breweries like Green Bench Brewing Co.3 Daughters BrewingTampa Bay Brewing Co. and Big Storm Brewing
Beer enthusiasts can buy their tickets online at, by phone at 727-300-2000, or in person at The Mahaffey Theater box office for $45 each. 
Proceeds from the Craft Beer Experience benefit the Bill Edwards Foundation for the Arts

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Brewers Association Declares July 3 “National Independent Beer Run Day”

Don’t forget the independent craft beer this Independence Day 

Original article by. The Brewers Association

Boulder, Colo. – Honoring the spirit of summer and beer’s biggest holiday, the Brewers Association—the not-for-profit trade association dedicated to small and independent American brewers—has declared July 3 “National Independent Beer Run Day.” The celebration calls on beer lovers to seek the independent craft brewer seal and purchase craft beers produced by small and independent breweries for their Independence Day festivities.
The campaign will be amplified by social media assets including a series of videos in which people forget some Fourth of July essentials—except, of course, the independent craft beer. Audio spots and summer-themed sponsored playlists will also appear on Pandora Radio. Additionally, the Brewers Association will stream a world record attempt at the longest cheers ever, toasting all 7,300 small and independent U.S. craft breweries.—the Brewers Association website for beer lovers—will also support the effort with a collection of informative content. Beer lovers are invited to join the National Independent Beer Run Day Facebook Event for updates.