Folks who paid $85 to attend Garden & Gun’s Jubilee today, tomorrow or Sunday bought the chance to enjoy a sunny day at Charles Towne Landing; mingle with the editors of the swanky magazine; and meet many of the craftsmen who’ve been profiled in its pages. Mostly, though, their tickets allowed them to shop, much the way an airline trip comes with a SkyMall catalog.
Just in time for Christmas, Garden & Gun has assembled the world’s classiest flea market of handmade Southern goods, including a section devoted entirely to food and drink. Hot sauces from Baltimore; mustards from Asheville and chocolates from Charleston – among dozens of other edibles — are tagged for sale. The beer samples, though, are free.
According to my story about the Southeast’s brewing sake scene, which ran in today’s print edition, rice spirits never made much of a splash in the lowcountry. That’s technically true, but food historian and sake connoisseur David Shields points out that rice beer had a very big year in 1893.
As Shields explains, three years before Ben Tillman told voters he’d skewer President Grover Cleveland in the rump with a pitchfork, he persuaded Prohibitionists to support legislation making South Carolina a control state. But the governor’s bill defined alcoholic beverages as drinks with an alcohol content of at least 2.5 percent, which meant the state couldn’t stop the private sale of near-beer.
“The Palmetto Brewing Company of Charleston, a self styled ‘soft drink’ company that had begun manufacturing a rice brew acceptable in prohibitionist southern locales in 1888, began manufacturing oceans of “Rice Beer”—a light beer with an alcohol content under the legal ceiling,” Shields writes. Continue reading “South Carolina’s Year of Rice Beer” »
“They are some of our personal favorites, especially the wines from Barolo and Barbaresco,” says Emerson, who this year launched Communion Wine Club as an umbrella organization for his consulting services and events.
Emerson and Kevin Kelley will pour more than 20 “hard-to-find” wines at the Dec. 13 event at High Wire Distilling Co., 652 King St. Wines will be available in three- and six-ounce portions; customers can also purchase wines by the bottle.
As Emerson says in the ad, the Nov. 14 event will feature Sicilian wines, including a few varietals which Emerson surmises many potential tasters have never heard of. He’s quite possibly right, since I can’t make sense of the two grapes he mentions before Nero d’Avola: I’d like to blame his British accent, but suspect my knowledge of southern Italian varietals is failing me. (Here’s a comprehensive list of the region’s varietals if you need any help playing along.)
Butcher & Bee is selling take-out snacks for the pop-up, or guests can purchase wine by the bottle and tote it with them to the nearby restaurant. The party runs from 6 p.m. until “late.”
Touting its pretzels and convivial atmosphere, Bay Street Biergarten opened today, giving drinkers four days to celebrate one of the year’s beeriest months in Bavarian style.
(Munich’s Oktoberfest wrapped up weeks ago, but football and Halloween help keep stateside beer consumption healthy — so to speak — during October.)
Although the bar at 549 E. Bay Street took menu and decor inspiration from traditional beer halls, Bay Street Biergarten has modernized the concept with on-table, self-service taps. Beers now on rotation include ales from Palmetto, Westbrook and Holy City. Continue reading “Bay Street Biergarten is Now Open” »
On Nov. 9, restaurants including Fat Hen, Rosebank Cafe, Stono Cafe, Seanachi’s and Tomato Shed Café will converge on Wadmalaw Island to prepare their finest versions of the iconic dish. Tickets cost $5, and all proceeds will be donated to the Frierson Elementary After School Program and The Center for Women.
Other activities on the 12 noon-5 p.m. schedule include live music; pony ride; wine and spirit tastings and a sugar cane crushing. Admission is $10 per car; call 559-6867 to learn more.
Proof calls it a “pop-up wine bar.” Less trendy drinkers might call it a visit from a sales rep. Either way, starting next week, the King Street bar is offering downsized samples of wine on Tuesday afternoons – and plans to keep pouring until the vino’s gone.
Unlike most pop-ups, the wine program won’t completely take over the venue: Proof’s standard cocktail menu will still be available.
The wine list at Sip, Greenville’s impressive new rooftop lounge, would be intimidating under the best of the circumstances: The dozens and dozens of wines offered by the glass are identified only by varietal and place of origin, giving little guidance to the drinker who just wants something floral and light. But the situation’s nearly untenable on the weekend nights, when the attractive patio fills with revelers – most of whom are drinking beer and liquor.
The most common wine order during the hours when the service staff can’t talk guests through their choices is “just give me a Riesling,” High Street Hospitality beverage director Chad Musick admits.
During its first summer, the six-month old bar sold 20,000 glasses of wine. But Musick says he plans to tweak the list just as soon as the opening craziness subsides: His list of edits includes ramping up the domestic selection.
Reality television thrives on wardrobe makeovers, in which professional stylists assess bewildered women’s contours and devise dressing plans to flatter them. With his latest venture, advanced sommelier Patrick Emerson is proposing to do the same for wine drinkers and their palates.
“One of the things I enjoy doing is working with individuals and giving them tests,” says Emerson, the former Maverick Southern Kitchens wine and beverage director who transitioned to freelance consulting earlier this year. “Most people know what they like in terms of taste, but they have a hard time describing it.”