So we checked in with Marc at Beverage Warehouse
for some holiday recommendations. Comes through as always!!!!
1. Suddenly, seltzers are gaining popularity. What would you recommend picking up heading to a holiday party?
I’m not sure it’s quite so sudden anymore, but seltzers have still been on the rise in the past year, with more brands focusing on new flavors and twists, being more than just a low-cal summer refresher. For the party goers, I’d say check out Collective Arts’ line of sparkling teas or Pro Pig’s Swine Cooler Series for a little taste of something different.
2. What wine is right to bring with you when you’re going to friends or family for Christmas dinner?
If you just want everyone feeling festive, Boyden Valley’s Glögg would be welcome on anyone’s table to add a little warmth and spice to the dessert course. But for that classic Christmas dinner pairing, full-bodied reds are your safest bet. Napa Cab (Pine Ridge, Honig), Rioja Reserva (Muga, Bodegas LAN), and Bordeaux of all sorts (Chateau les Barraillots Margaux, Cru Monplaisir Superieur) are all fair game.
3. It’s incredible what’s going on with ciders now. Anyone lately that sticks out for the holiday season?
Shacksbury has been on fire with their limited bottle series, with the last two creations, Luna, and Terra, being just so beautifully woven together with locally grown grapes. If you’re more of a traditionalist, grab a 4-pack of Mountain Mac for a super refreshing blend.
4. What new craft beer releases would you recommend trying over the holidays?
Anyone who hasn’t tried either of Wunderkammer’s two newest releases, Figure 3, and Garten, should do that ASAP, just so much complexity from such simple ingredients. Also, Buffalo Plaid is finally back from Four Quarters, which is one of the best spiced holiday beers out there; definitely give that a go.
5. Time to ski, snowshoe, winter hike, snowmobile, whatever gets us out there and enjoying a beautiful winter day. But when we’re done and ready to chill, what would you suggest grabbing?
Some people prefer a Hot Toddy (maybe with a little Smuggler’s Notch Bourbon), or a mug of hot chocolate with a splash of Vermont Ice Maple Crème to add a little local flavor, but a tall glass of stout next to the fire is the finest way to apres ski for me. Get your hands on Zero Gravity’s Bear Snores On, Green Empire’s Black on Black, or Collaborative Brewing’s Who Let the Oats Stout to wind down your day in the snow.
6. Local Vermont made spirits are incredible! The variety, new twists on favorites, and some you never heard of before. Any of these stand out to bring to friends to try this holiday?
Mad River Distillery’s PX Rum is a favorite of mine if you can find it (try the Mad River tasting room in Burlington for a real treat). It has the elegant spice of their base Cask Rum, but with the depth of almond and stewed fruit characteristics, imparted by the sherry cask, which make for such an elevated expression. Or for the whiskey lover, our 3-man tasting team had the privilege of putting together our very own WhistlePig Bevie Blend, they call it “Triúr Cairde”. It’s, uh, yeah, it’s pretty awesome.
7. Lastly, the Bevie is known for selection and knowledge, what’s the cool things you see coming down the road in Vermont Craft Beer, Wine, Cider, Spirits?
There certainly are a handful of new producers on the scene worth keeping a close eye on. Wild Branch had an excellent opener on the VT cider scene with The Spinney, and it sounds like founder Cedar Hannan has some twists in store on the horizon. Kendra and the fam over at Ellison Estate have been cranking out some gorgeous low-intervention wines, with some releases in the Regeneration Pet-Nat series of particular note. And after some ado, David and Lauren Keck will finally be debuting Stella 14*, a new wine project sourcing their fruit from the Boyden Valley vineyards in Cambridge, bringing organic practices, and some of their own flair, to some of Vermont’s hybrid varietals.