The inaugural Chicago Craft Spirits Week Launches October 1, 2012

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Small batch and craft distillers from across the country are participating in Chicago Craft Spirits Week starting October 1, 2012 with events across Chicago

In conjunction with the Independent Spirits Expo, Chicago Craft Spirit Week will bring the best of small batch, craft distilled spirits from artisans around the country to Chicago. The highlight of the week is the Independent Spirits Expo on Wednesday October 3 at Carmichaels Warehouse (1052 W. Monroe St, Chicago) from 6:30 to 9:30 pm, with a VIP hour from 5:00 - 9:30 pm. Attendees will have an opportunity to meet distillers from around the Midwest, and the country, as well as a few artisanal importers, and try their amazing spirits.

On top of the main event on Wednesday, the week will start off on Monday October 1, 2012 at Jerry's (1938 W. Division, Chicago) with a Chicago-area distillers event for members of the restaurant and bar industry in Chicago, and will feature all six of the area's craft distilleries - Few Spirits, Koval Distillery, North Shore Distillery, Tailwinds Distillers, Letherbee Distillers, and Quincy Street Distillery. This event will run from 7 to 10 pm, with the opportunity for industry members to meet the distillers, as well as get a cocktail made by the distillers themselves.

On Tuesday, October 2, 2012, the festivities will include individual distillery events, as well as multi-distillery tastings and cocktail parties around Chicago. Stop at your favorite bar and meet a new distillery, or try a new restaurant featuring your favorite, or try something completely new. Koval Distillery will be pouring samples at Fountainhead (1970 W. Montrose) starting at 7 pm. At The Whistler (2421 N. Milwaukee), North Shore Distillery, Let There Be! Distillers, St. George Spirits and several other distilleries will be celebrating the diversity of gin, while Few Spirits and several other whiskey makers will be tasting and discussing whiskey at Jerry's Sandwiches. Later in the evening, distillers will be pouring some of their more unusual creations at an event called "Bring Your Weird" at Watershed (601 N. State, Chicago). During the day, obtain mezcalero certification with Barbara Sweetman at Binnys South Loop (1132 S. Jefferson St, Chicago) from 11 am - 4 pm. Or learn all about bourbon from the fabled Michael Veach (Columbia Yacht Club, 111 North Lake Shore Drive) from 9:00-5:00.

After the main expo on Wednesday, October 3rd, the distillers and interested consumers and industry folk will gather at Delilah's (2771 N Lincoln, Chicago) for a casual after-party.

Then, on Thursday, October 4, 2012, distilleries will be participating in a number of cocktail dinners across Chicago. For example, enjoy a whiskey dinner with Paul Hletko of Few Spirits at Fountainhead (1970 W. Montrose). Other dinners are in the works at a variety of venues around Chicago, with a variety of distilleries participating. Later in the evening, there will be an absinthe tasting and discussion at The Savoy (1408 N. Milwaukee, Chicago).

Friday, October 5, 2012, enjoy a tasting at In Fine Spirits (5420 N. Clark St.) or Printers Row Wine Shop (719 S. Dearborn), and at a variety of other locations around town, and bring bottles of your favorite spirits home. Distillers and brand representatives will be on hand to talk about the spirits. Later that night, join us at Everleigh Social Club (939 W. Randolph, Chicago) for "Naked Girls Reading Across Time and Place," where great poetry will be paired with delicious spirits of different types and places.

Finally, on Saturday, October 6th, visit one of the six area distilleries during a distillery open house from 2 to 4 pm, or try some spirits at a range of in-store events around Chicago.

You can stay up with all the events on our new website, at: or on Facebook at

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Paul Hletko
Few Spirits
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