In Good Spirits
Get ready to eat (and drink) your heart out with these tempting new menus from two of Illinois’ popular hotels. First, Le Méridien Chicago – Oakbrook Center now offers uniquely themed break menus, all inspired by local touchstones. For your next meeting or event you can choose from:
Illinois Farm Table: Local crops are the focus with fresh ingredients, such as kale carrots and beets used to make smoothies, juices and pastries. Chalkboard signs and straw accents round out the theme.
Stem, a speakeasy located in Northeast Minneapolis, has introduced a new menu that will include small lot wines, craft cocktails, artisan beer and appetizers.
“The neighborhood in Northeast Minneapolis is known for its beer,” says Ivy Taheri, owner. “We wanted a place where people can socialize and be comfortable in an upbeat atmosphere. We can’t wait to surprise our guests with unique wines from around the world, craft cocktail creations and fun events to suit everyone’s needs.”
The rise of "foodism," or the enthusiasm for and interest in the preparation and consumption of good food, as chef Dave Barrett defi nes it, has transformed the food and beverage landscape for meetings.
“(Guests) want good food and knowledge,” says Barrett, executive chef at the Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa. “They want to know more about what they’re eating, where it came from, how it fits with local culture.”
If the extent of your cocktail knowledge is building the perfect rum and coke, there’s a new service that can help you become a mix master and wow guests at your next event. Founded in Chicago last fall, Cocktail Courier aims to “demystify the craft cocktail process” by delivering foolproof kits right to your door stocked with premeasured ingredients (with no skimping on the premium liquor) and an easy-to-follow recipe card stirred together by award-winning bartenders.
Texas liquor laws relaxed for the first time since Prohibition in 2013 when Texas legislators passed significant changes to the alcoholic beverage laws that allowed Texas distillers to sell their products directly to consumers in limited quantities. This opened the door for craft-style distilleries to take root and flourish. From El Paso’s recently launched coffee and cocktail bars to Houston’s nitro-muddled mint and hand-chiseled ice, Texans are making their mark with homegrown liquors and crafty cocktail combos.
John Scott Bradstreet, from whom Bradstreet Neighborhood Craftshouse gets its namesake, was a local tastemaker in the Twin Cities area in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He was an architect and interior designer, travelled widely in Europe and Asia, and was friends with Oscar Wilde and Louis Comfort Tiffany. His influence makes its way in to the cocktails of the Bradstreet Neighborhood Craftshouse today.