Distill America XII, a benefit for the Wisconsin Distillers Guild, which represents the state's craft distillers, is set to take place Saturday, Feb. 22 from 6 until 9 p.m. at The Edgewater Hotel on the shore of Lake Mendota in Madison.
This celebration of American distilling is described as part tasting, part educational event and part trade show and the list of participating distilleries – nearly 100! – is extremely impressive.
In addition to Badger State distillers like Aeppel Treow, Yahara Bay, Death’s Door and Great Lakes – to name but a few – there are also craft distillers from around the country, like Koval, Kings County and Rogues Spirits, but also the big boys like Four Roses, Heaven Hill and Jim Beam.
"We strive to open the hearts and minds of the public, to the many facets of craft distillation," reads a statement from the organizers. "From the international giants to the boutique microdistillers, we want you to taste it all. Journey to Madison Wisconsin to join us at a World Class and memorable evening where you will be able to sample a bit of what the Legends of Distillation bring."
Tons of industry folks will be there, including the likes of the Bourbon Boyz podcasters, who will be interviewing up everyone they can for future podcasts.
Although the two VIP options are already sold out, you can still get $65 tickets that allow you to sample spirits from all the participating distillers and nosh on hors d’oeuvres, too.
A $20 designation driver ticket gets you all the book and non-alchoholic drinks you want.
Tickets can be purchased online here. There are no day-of ticket sales.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.