Master distiller Lance Winters produces delicious small-batch gin, absinthe, whiskey, rum, and more at St. George Spirits in Alameda, CA. We recently chatted with Winters about what he's drinking, how he got started in the distilling business, where craft distilling is going in the US, and a few fun projects he's releasing soon.
'interviews' on Serious Eats
We chat with Robert Simonson, cocktail writer for the New York Times, about what he's been drinking lately, how he got into the spirits-writing business, and where he sees the cocktail scene going next.
What if we took the craft cocktail experience out of a bar—and dropped it into something closer to a concert? Drinks as one part of a stage show, traveling between cities? That's what Aaron Polsky (Amor y Amargo, Neta, Manon) and Damon Boelte (Prime Meats) are going for. We chatted with Polsky about his plans for Cripple Creek, the talent involved, and what exactly a "live multi-sensory cocktail experience" means.
In today's edition of our brewer interview series, we're checking in with Wayne Wambles of Cigar City Brewing in Tampa, Florida. He has some exciting new beers and collaborations in the works, so let's join him for a pint.
We met our Behind the Bar columnist, well, when he was behind the bar—SENY editor Carey Jones was on assignment for New York Magazine, reviewing Ward III when it first opened. Carey found her way back there often enough to become a regular, and soon the rest of us followed. Now Michael is an important member of the Drinks team, sharing his insights on bartending and the cocktail world each week, so we decided to give him a little Q&A treatment so y'all can get to know him a little better.
Since the 1980s, Farnum Hill Ciders has been at the forefront of the American cider revival. Their commitment to revitalizing the growth of heirloom apples in the United States is unsurpassed, and the nuanced beverages they produce are a reflection of that commitment. We recently had a chance to chat with Louisa Spencer, the self proclaimed 'mom' in this mom and pop outfit.
Fred Dexheimer's motto when it comes to wine is "you only live once, so try everything you can!" By doing so, he earned the prestigious and fairly rare title of Master Sommelier; in 2007, he become the 79th Master Sommelier in the United States. Despite the fancy title, Fred's easygoing, down-to-earth attitude allows him to spread the grape gospel to newbies and experts alike. Fred took some time to share his advice on how to learn about wine and the perfect pairing for a cheeseburger.
Some may think that Stephanie Moreno has the dream job: tasting spirits made all over the world and deciding which to stock at Astor Wines & Spirits, one of New York's biggest and best liquor stores. Stephanie might agree. This native Texan and former fishmonger has turned using her tastebuds into a career through focused education and tasting, tasting, tasting.
For many of us on the East Coast, Smuttynose beer is a standby. Dave Yarrington and his crew make dependably delicious beers in a number of different styles. I'm thrilled to welcome Dave to Serious Eats—he's got some wise things to say about craft beer and some exciting news about some possible new large-format beer releases!
Matt Steinberg has been pretty busy the past few months getting his fledgling brewery running, but he took a minute to check in with us and tell us how it's going over at New Jersey's newest microbrewery.
Among beer nerds, few brewmasters are more revered than Tomme Arthur, the magician behind the crazy-sour, oak-aged, fruit-spiked, microorganism-inoculated beers of Lost Abbey. A taste of one of his beers will expand your palate (and quite possibly blow your mind.) Thanks for answering our questions, Tomme!
If you live in the New York area, you may have spotted Captain Lawrence beers on tap at restaurants around town. We highly recommend you give them a try—next thing you know it, you may find yourself on the Metro-North train at an ungodly hour making your way the brewery for a special limited-edition beer release. We caught up with Captain Lawrence's owner and head brewer Scott Vaccaro for the latest in our brewmaster interview series.
In 1993, Dan Carey left a job with Anheuser-Busch to start his own brewing company, New Glarus Brewing Company, with his wife, Deb. Since then, Carey's beers (including some unusual spontaneously-fermented fruit beers) have won countless awards and garnered attention from beer lovers around the globe. We're so glad that Dan had a minute to chat with Serious Eats.
"We never set out to have our beers become cult favorites among beer enthusiasts—it's just something that sort of happened." Vinnie Cilurzo and his wife Natalie. [Photographs: Russian River Brewing Company] [Flickr: freeloosedirt] The beers from Russian River Brewing Company...
Kelly Taylor makes interesting, usual beers in Brooklyn, including Flemish-style sours, a beer brewed with Valrhona chocolate nibs and orange peel, and a collaboration with Blue Hill at Stone Barn that once included farm-fresh roasted beets. Nice guy that he is, Kelly joined me for a beer and the following interview.
Garrett Oliver has been brewing at the Brooklyn Brewery since 1994. He's known not only for his flavorful beers, but also for his eloquent writing on craft beer and his genius for finding delicious food and beer pairings. We're big fans of his book, The Brewmaster's Table, and were thrilled that he was willing to answer a few of our burning questions.
Shane Welch founded Sixpoint Craft Ales in 2004 and has been brewing some of our favorite beers ever since. We chatted with Welch about his sources of inspiration, the beers he loves, his place in the craft brewing scene, and the ups and downs of running a small brewery in New York City.
Sean Wilson has a vision for the beer scene in the American South. Using heirloom grains and other ingredients from North Carolina farms, he and his collaborator, Chris Davis, hope to create a distinctly Southern style of beer.