Stillwater Artisanal Ales

May 26, 2011 at 11:40 pm (Beer, Current Events, Geek, Interviews, Our Favorite Things) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

LUSH West Town
1412 W. Chicago Avenue
Chicago, IL 60642

The original gypsy brewer, Brian Strumke, popped in to LUSH West Town for an impromptu tasting of his Stillwater Artisanal Ales.  Based in Baltimore, Maryland, this rockin’ beer dude makes beer all over the world.  He has paired up with 12% Imports, headed by Brian Ewing, to form a most dynamic duo.  Alas, no brewery.  But, no problem.  Following suit to Mikkeller ‘in’ Denmark, Stillwater beer is crafted on borrowed time with borrowed space in breweries far flung.  It is about good beer. And good relationships. And beer.

We tasted American. English. And Belgian style brewing.  Beautiful (and creepy) labels catch the eye. The rest happens in the bottle, in the glass, and with friends.  It is all about collaboration. So, join LUSH and Mister Strumke for an epic evening of beer…swing by to check it out. More special, rare, and delicious gypsy ales jumping onto the shelves soon.

jip-sē brü-ər
modus operandi:
‘A sincere artist is not one who makes a faithful attempt to put on to canvas what is in front of him, but one who tries to create something which is, in itself, a living thing.’ -Sir William Dobell

‘The goal of Stillwater Artisanal is just that, living art. Although packaged within a medium often overlooked for its artistic merits, our desire is to offer something new and intriguing. We present more than just a fine crafted beverage, rather an occasion that evokes an emotion and inspires contemplation. For art is not a sum of actions but rather an approach to life. We draw our inspiration from the world around us, whether that be a season, location, or even humanity itself. Our intent is to encapsulate this muse exhibiting an artistic rendition to the best of our abilities.’  –


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What to do while moving. [What to drink, rather].

May 6, 2010 at 1:55 pm (Current Events, Geek, Travel, What we are thinking, What we're drinking) (, , , , , , , )

by erin

For people sound of body, brain, and spirit, moving from one domicile to another is an activity that inspires the worst feelings imaginable: dread, preemptive exhaustion, crabbiness, irritability, and leg cramping. Okay, maybe the leg cramping happens after moving. Go eat a banana, girl! Read the rest of this entry »

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TimeOut Chicago EatOut Awards 2010

March 4, 2010 at 12:46 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

Rock the vote…
LUSH has been nominated as one of the best wine shops in the city. Please excuse us while we fan ourselves and try to remain calm…eeeeee! So exciting. Please share your love and support of all things LUSH by voting. The TimeOut Chicago 2010 EatOut Awards are about indulging in the good and booze, with a close pulse on the city and what is brand spanking new or established and still performing wonders peddling deliciousness. Vote your most bestest favorite restaurant, chefs, bartender, blogger…and wine shop! We heart you!


TEXT ‘Wine 1’ to 46786.

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LUSH Halsted: Come and Drink!

January 17, 2010 at 9:06 pm (Current Events) (, , , , , , , , , , )

LUSH on Halsted officially has been graced with a tavern license from the City of Chicago, meaning we’ve set up some stools and are assembling a small, curatorial list of wines to offer by the glass. This is new territory for us, so let’s have fun together and see what we can whip up! Look for new selections coming out on a weekly basis, with a focus on variety and seasonality. Or, just buy a bottle, get cozy at the bar, and sip! We will also feature one draught beer that we hope to switch out regularly for whatever’s fresh, new and fun. So grab some friends and get to sippin’ at LUSH on Halsted!

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Pucker Up: Sour Ales

December 17, 2009 at 11:07 am (Beer, Geek, Our Favorite Things) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Sour Ales
Ah, the world of beer…so interesting, so fun, so crazy!  Over the past year, I have to say that I’ve taken way more of an interest in beer.  Just like wine, it’s amazing what those brewers can do.  Probably one of my most favorite discoveries this year – along with many other people – was discovering how much I enjoyed sour ales.  My mouth is watering just thinking about it.  From the slight funky tartness all the way to feeling like you just sucked a sour patch kid raw, I love it all!  And it seems I’m not the only one, more and more sours are popping up from all over, which makes my taste buds do a little dance of joy. Read the rest of this entry »

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LUSH: West Town Launch PARTY

December 3, 2009 at 1:53 pm (Current Events, Our Favorite Things, Special Events, What we are eating, What we're drinking) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

1412 West Chicago Avenue

Launch Party
Friday, December 4th

LUSH West Town was licensed and we cranked it up, whipped that shop into some sort of presentable shape, and are OPEN. Doors are open everyday at noon until 10pm. Now, mind you, this is Lush in the raw…partially stocked, lacking our signature rolling carts, mounted wall art, and some supplies…but WITH open bottles, very excited Lushies, and lots of super geeky bottles and two, yeah, count ’em, two!, beer coolers.

CELEBRATE our launch, the holidays, or just for the hell of it. Please join in the wild and raucous celebration THIS FRIDAY, December 4th, 6-9pm, as we open to the holiday and revel in the sweet sweetness of having a shiny, brand spanking new play thing. This is absolutely a LUSH style shindig with many bottles open and flowing…wine, beer, and perhaps a bit of HUM and bubbly, too…small nibbles and a very warm welcome to neighbors, friends, and lushes all. Yeehaw, it’s a party.

YOU are invited.  And you.  And all your friends.

P.S. Ms Kelly is celebrating her birthday, as well.  Make sure to wish her a happy celebration!

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Shower beer.

September 8, 2009 at 4:42 pm (Beer, Current Events, What we are thinking, What we're drinking) (, , , , )

by Erin

There are plenty of Friday nights when the rest of the world is out pounding the pavement, drinking it up at bars, clubs, rock venues, and house parties all over the city. Drinking, and probably drinking too much. After all, it’s the weekend! What we work for all the week. A time to unwind, be social, and do things ill-advised for tamer evenings, like Tuesdays.

Unless you work in the hospitality industry, that is. We of the bizarro schedules are usually working our hardest on Fridays and Saturdays, while early on in the week–school nights!–are usually the best times to really tie one on, if so inclined. It is a fine balance; plenty of my friends work ‘normal people hours’ and as such they expect me to come hit it, hard, with them on weekend nights. And sometimes I join them, occasionally making a visit to Jim’s Original before the Sunday shift a complete and total restorative necessity. All that said, there are plenty of weary Friday evenings when I refuse to join the crowds and instead opt to settle in, have a glass of wine, maybe two, and conk out.

When thinking of drinking, I feel like many people have some idea about when it ‘should’ occur. Of course, this idea varies tremendously across different cultural groups. Many French will drink some wine with lunch, while here in the States, we joke about having to wait until 5 PM to have a cocktail–and then go get obliterated. For me, I sometimes opt out of when it’s ‘normal’ to have a few drinks, like on the weekends. But I do sometimes just want some wine, or a beer. In the morning. And so, if I am not heading to work, I have one! And that, my friends, is balance– don’t drink if you don’t feel it. And have a beer if you want one. I recommend the lazy morning shower beer, personally*. Try it out sometime!

*A special occasion variation is the shower flute of Champagne.

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LUSH Interview: 10 Questions with Ms. Erin

June 10, 2009 at 10:11 pm (Interviews, Our Favorite Things, What we are eating, What we are thinking, What we're drinking) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

Thanks for agreeing to be a part of the Lush Wine and Spirits blog. Please answer the following questions in whatever way you see fit. We want your voice, personality, and opinions to come through!

BIO (penned by the ever-lovely Rachel Driver, LUSH general manager): On the streets of Philadelphia, born and raised, Ms. Erin Drain now spends most of her days slinging wine at LUSH in University Village or pounding the streets of Pilsen exploring the good eats and fun times to be had in the ‘hood.  Surly, but sweet, Erin is super passionate about the business of wine drinking and education, the preparation and consumption of delicious eats, and creating a fun and exciting vibe at LUSH.  With a penchant for big knives and chopping veggies, drinking and researching wild brews, concocting quirky cocktails, and sipping on dirty, earthy, and mysterious wines, this lady is quite the imbibing enthusiast.  She is on a mission to teach you a thing or two about fermented beverages and the craft of wine, as well as challenge you to try something new and unusual.  Erin is the life of the party at LUSH on Halsted, with street smarts and general savvy.  Trained as a linguistic anthropologist, Erin has traveled far and away, picking up a colorful palette of experience, flavors, and weird booze along the way.  She brings a bit of grrr and no-nonsense wine geek to the shop.  Swing by LUSH to visit her, sip on free samples, and perhaps catch a glimpse of her new rescue pup, Kedzie.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Dark Lord Day

May 12, 2009 at 10:53 am (Beer, Current Events, Our Favorite Things, Special Events, Uncategorized, What we're drinking) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

by Mr. Brent Shumard, Lush beer nerd

Dark Lord Day…the name has ominous overtones and conjures up images of people summoning evil things from the nether-regions of the universe to serve their dastardly purposes…but it shouldn’t.

Say those three words to a beer geek and expect to hear a gasp, a smile, and possibly a couple of stories if they’ve managed to make it there. Read the rest of this entry »

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Things I heart, take 2

February 4, 2009 at 9:49 am (Beer, Our Favorite Things) (, , , )

by: Employee of the Year, Kelly

Allagash is a great brewery out in Portland, Maine that was founded by Rob Tod back in the early 90s. It began as a one-man operation when the great Mr. Tod noticed a lack of Belgium-styled beer within the American market. He built a 15 barrel brewhouse and used that to brew traditional styles of Belgium beers and sold it’s first batch in 1995. Since then, they have grown and become one of the “industry’s most distinguished and well-respected brands” of Belgium-styled beer (according to their website – and after tasting their grand cru, I can see why). Read the rest of this entry »

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