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The Sip

From beers and breweries to specialty cocktails and wine, here's the latest news from the beverage industry around Chicago and around the world.

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French wine that spent year aboard Space Station is for sale for $1 million

Christie’s said Tuesday it is selling a bottle of French wine that spent more than a year in orbit aboard the International Space Station. Proceeds from the sale will fund future research by Space Cargo Unlimited.

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Bronzeville’s Turner Haus Brewery, Sip & Savor to open Chicago’s lone Black-owned brewery

The brewery signed off on sharing space within local coffee shop chain Sip & Savor’s location in the historic Rosenwald Court Apartments.

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Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark: behind production of top-selling bourbons, a new push to go green

Beam Suntory, producer of top-selling Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark, is committed to planting 500,000 trees annually by 2030, with a goal of planting more trees than are harvested to make barrels to hold its aging whiskeys.

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Pepsi Blue is coming back in May for the first time since 2004

The berry-flavored soda, first released in 2002, will be sold in 20-ounce bottles and multi-packs while supplies last.

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Ex-Jack Daniel’s master distiller Jeff Arnet to make new whiskey in Tennessee

Company Distilling will first open a 4,000-square-foot (3,712-square-meter) tasting room and restaurant in Townsend, Tennessee.

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Budweiser giving away free beer with proof of COVID vaccination

Now through May 16, or while supplies last, U.S. residents 21 and older can enter the "Reunite with Buds" giveaway with proof of vaccination.

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Brewers take a cue from Gatorade, adding electrolytes to lower alcohol beers

After a workout, beer-makers want you to think about having a beer with electrolytes added to it rather than swigging water or Gatorade to replenish what you sweated away.

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Professional tasters savor fine wine that orbited Earth

Researchers in Bordeaux, France, are analyzing a dozen bottles of the precious liquid — along with 320 snippets of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapevines — that returned to Earth in January after a sojourn aboard the International Space Station.

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New wave of bars without booze creating plenty of buzz

Aimed at the growing number of people exploring sobriety, the bars pour adult drinks like craft cocktails without the alcohol.

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Black-owned Turner Haus Brewery aims to set up shop in Bronzeville

After rave reviews from family members, brewery co-founder Steven Turner decided to make his beer dreams a reality.

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Giant lemon can snag you a free bike from Goose Island Beer

The company is giving away 50 bicycles to celebrate "312 Day" on March 12, to anyone who can find and redeem one of 50 giant lemons strategically scattered across Chicago, to coincide with the release of 312 Lemonade Shandy beer.

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Moet Hennessy, Jay-Z Champagne brand launch partnership

Jay-Z’s Armand de Brignac, known familiarly as Ace of Spades because of its distinctive label, is produced in France’s Champagne region by a father and son who are 12th- and 13th-generation wine growers.

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McDonald’s Shamrock Shake returns Feb. 15, alongside Oreo Shamrock McFlurry

The light green shake is made with vanilla soft-serve ice cream, artificially flavored Shamrock Shake syrup and whipped topping.

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Haymarket Brewery’s Harold’s ’83 Honey Ale to be sold in cans

In March 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the city, craft beer makers Jay Westbrook and Sam Ross created one of Haymarket Brewing’s best-selling beers.

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Coca-Cola rolls out new soda infused with coffee and big-time caffeine fix

All 12-ounce cans have 69 mg of caffeine while Coca-Cola says the same serving of a Coke has 34 mg and a Diet Coke has 46 mg of caffeine. The average cup of coffee has 95 mg.

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French wine, grapevine snippets headed home after year in space station

None of the bottles will be opened until the end of February. That’s when Space Cargo Unlimited will pop open a bottle or two for a wine tasting in Bordeaux by some of France’s top connoisseurs and experts.

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Mountain Dew going pink — launches first new soda flavor in more than a decade

Mtn Dew Major Melon will give soda fans a watermelon flavor, and will also be available with zero sugar.

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Does a hot toddy really help relieve cold symptoms?

One expert says that the ingredients that make up a hot toddy can help you feel better — though he doubts a doctor would prescribe the drink as a "cure-all."

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Adler Planetarium, Empirical Brewery launch new beer

As part of an ongoing partnership, 25% of proceeds from the sale of Space for Everyone beer will support the planetarium’s digital programming.

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Kosher wine: Some history and traditions about the Hanukkah celebration staple

One expert helps explain some of the history behind kosher wine, a popular drink for the eight nights of Hanukkah celebrations, which starts on Dec. 10 this year.

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Small Brewery Sunday: Love, or possibly lose, your local brewpub as pandemic slows down sales

Amid the pandemic, celebrate and support America’s small and independent breweries through carryout, curbside pickup, delivery, pop-ups, local retail outlets and more.

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Pepsi launches new soda with cinnamon and apple flavors — via sweepstakes

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Tab, the iconic diet cola, will be gone by end of the year

Tab debuted in 1963 as Coca-Cola’s first diet soda. Sweetened with saccharine, and promising zero calories, it was initially targeted to women. Though it was eventually surpassed by Diet Coke, it held onto a loyal band of fans for nearly six decades.

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Mountain Dew’s ‘Dew Garita,’ its first-ever cocktail, will be served at Red Lobster

The "Dew Garita" will be rolling out to select restaurants throughout September and is expected to be available nationwide by the end of 2020.

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‘Harry Potter’ bottled Butterbeer available online, in select stores in UK; US fans out of luck?

The non-alcoholic, butterscotch-flavored beverage is brewed in the U.K. and comes in souvenir glass bottles with a collectible label.

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Craft distillers see sales evaporate amid pandemic

The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States found that nationally, craft distillers will see an estimated 41% of their sales — worth more than $700 million — evaporate because of the pandemic.

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Beer, hard seltzer and other spirits take center stage in spiked slushies — summer’s coolest drink trend

Drinkers — both at-home and at restaurants — are moving beyond margaritas and frose and adding beer, hard seltzer and other booze to their alcoholic slushie repertoire.

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Champagne losing its fizz as global coronavirus pandemic clobbers sales

France’s Champagne producers expect about 100 million bottles to be languishing unsold in their cellars by the end of the year.

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Blue Island Beer Co. launches ‘Massive Political Corruption’ beer

The beer’s name is an ode to the days of Prohibition.

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Campaign brewing to remove name of Hindu god Brahma from beer brand

The group, which includes representatives of the Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu and Jain religions, is calling on Belgium-based brewing giant Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV to rename its Brahma line, a favorite in Brazil.

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African American entrepreneurs launch a craft beer named after Harold Washington

Harold’s ’83 Honey Ale is named for the year Chicago elected its first Black mayor, Harold Washington.

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What beers are we drinking during the coronavirus pandemic?

Corona is selling big, but so are Coors Light and Miller Lite, and consumers are buying in bulk, with sales of cases of beer on the rise.