Friday, July 22, 2016

You Friday Grab Bag

TGIF!  It's going to be a super hot weekend here in Jersey, so be sure to stay hydrated while enjoying your preferred beverages from Joe Canal's!  What will you be drinking this weekend?  Leave a comment below or pop on over to our Facebook page and give us a shout out. was in our Woodbridge store earlier this afternoon for the weekly "Drink on Us" feature.  We love having them, and David is always ready to educate our customers, either in front of the camera or in person at the store.  Today he showed us how to make a refreshing twist on a summer classic.


- 1 1/2 parts Jagermeister
-3 parts Pina Colada Mix
-2 parts Pineapple Juice

Combine all ingredients in a blender with ice and blend until smooth.

Be sure to like us on Facebook to keep up with the Drink on Us series as well as stay informed of all the great stuff we have going on in our Woodbridge and Lawrenceville stores.

Ripped from the Headlines
It's no secret among those of us "in the know" that Cava is a great value alternative to Champagne, but it seems to be catching on!   Click here to read on shanken news how this delicious Italian sparker is giving Champagne and Prosecco a run for their money!
Our stores are stocked with a great variety of Cava, and this steamy weather is the perfect time to enjoy some! 

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Our Weekend Events are Hot Hot Hot

We just posted our weekend wines!  Visit our events page at Woodbridge and Lawrenceville to see what our Wine Managers have chosen for you this weekend.

At Woodbridge, we're featuring two great Pierre Moulin wines as well as the Pinot Project Rose, all of which also happen to be some of the items that we're offering coupons for (visit the WB coupon page here)!  On Saturday, our friends from Weyerbacher will be here, so be sure to stop by and beat the heat with some cold Weyerbacher beers.

Visit us in Lawrenceville and try four wines that are new to our store, including a crisp and refreshing sparkler as well as a plump and round Sauv Blanc.  We've also got some beer for you on Saturday from 12-2, so come in and taste some Heineken!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Hooray! These Great New Spirits are Here!

On the lookout for something new to try?  There's never a shortage at Joe Canal's - there's always something exciting being brought in!   This week we'll feature a few of our newest spirits for you.  Don't forget that you can place your order ahead of time on, and it will be waiting for you to pick it up!

Magic Moments Vodka
How does Magic Moments make it possible for you to embark on such lovely flights of fantasy? By choosing only the finest grain, triple-distilled to create a smooth and crystal liquid that's more than a just a drink... it's a moment of magic in every sip!

Available in a variety of flavors, such as Chocolate, Peach, and Lemongrass, Magic Moments Vodka is stocked at both of our locations and line priced at an amazing $9.99 in our Bottle Club®!

Havana Club RumsBlanco: Distilled and aged in Puerto Rico under the Caribbean sun for 1 year in oak barrels. Aged rums are blended together, then the blend is aged for a second period in oak barrels for at least 2 months. A medium-bodied aged white rum.  Notes of pineapple and banana, hints of vanilla and oak.
Available in both locations for only $19.99 in our Bottle Club®!
Anejo Classico: Distilled and aged in Puerto Rico under the Caribbean sun for 1-3 years in oak barrels.  Aged rums are blended together. The blend is aged for a second period in oak barrels for at least 3 months Smooth and velvety finish, with notes of apricots and pineapples, complimented by oaky notes with hints of almond and vanilla.  Only $21.99 in our Bottle Club®!

New Amsterdam Apple VodkaAlso in both locations is a new flavor to the New Amsterdam line, apple!  This is a great quality vodka for a super low price. It is available in 750ML and 1.75L sizes.

The story behind our premium vodka and gin isn't a history. It's a story that celebrates what's next. It's not about where you've been as long as you make an entrance.  We craft spirits for the places that move fast and don't look back. The places where the city is celebrated.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

It's a Weyerbacher-palooza!

This Friday in Woodbridge from 3-5pm, we're pouring some great brews for you to taste from our good friends at Weyerbacher!  We hope you'll join us!

Here are just a few of the beers we may be featuring.  These are all also available in our Lawrenceville location.  Be sure to call ahead to make sure they haven't sold out if you're planning on making a special trip, because our craft beer department is hot and these brews can go fast!  Also, don't forget that you can visit us online at to place an order for pickup!

Tarte Nouveau with Blood Orange

We’ve taken our session sour, Tarte Nouveau, and added blood orange. The result? The pour has a nice, effervescent head with a big citrus aroma. First sip has a tart bite with a lingering orange/citrus flavor. The finish? Clean and crisp. 3.9% ABV.

Line Street Pilsner

Sure, we love our big beers, but sometimes we just want something lighter without sacrificing flavor. That’s Line Street Pils. A hoppy pilsner with great flavor and a not-so-menacing ABV. This brew pours a bright and deep yellow with a pleasant, light citrus aroma. Our twist on a Czech pils using Centennial and Mandarina Bavaria hops, this beer has a crisp, refreshing bitterness up front that fades into a dry, palate quenching finish. Bright, crisp and hop forward – that’s Line Street Pils.  5.3% ABV

21st Anniversary

Weyerbacher is celebrating our 21st with a delicious chocolate cake with bourbon bacon icing (in a glass...). Cocoa nibs and cocoa powder give this big beer its rich chocolate flavor. Vanilla beans and Munich malts add a cake layer of flavor. Where's the icing? We're blending this already amazing beer with its bourbon barrel aged counterpart, while smoked malts bring a touch of bacon.

In Weyerbacher's traditional celebratory fashion, this big stout comes in at 11.9% ABV.
In addition to the above from Weyerbacher, check this also just in from our distributor!
Evil Twin Brewing Even More Jesus
A few times in the history of craft beer it has happened that a highly praised beer rises beyond mortal stardom into a higher godly league. Usually the recipe to make such heavenly drops is thick fudge-like body, pitch black color, amazingly overwhelming aromas of chocolate, coffee, dark fruits and muscovado sugar, obviously only made in limited amounts and most crucial of all - it must taste rare!  12% ABV. 
Evil Twin Even More Jesus is only available in our Woodbridge location.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Refreshing Summer Sangrias

We've had a bit of a staff change here in the Internet Marketing Department at JC's WB & LV.  Your Bottle Blogger for the last three years, Steve, has moved onto greener pastures and can be found working in the Lawrenceville location.  If you see him, say hello, and send him best wishes and many thanks from the New Old Marketing Girl.  My name is Shannon, and I'm taking over for Steve, who took over for me three years ago.  I'm back in the Web Seat, bringing you blogs, social media updates, and your favorite email newsletters, among other things.  I'm also six months pregnant, so this will be an exercise in self-torture, as well as a checklist of sorts for when I can enjoy the perks of my job again in a few months. 

My inaugural Mixology Monday blog is going to be about one of my greatest cravings so far this summer, sangria.  I've been cool missing out on crisp roses and summer IPAs, but when I'm in a restaurant and a server walks by with a pitcher of iced fruit goodness, I can't help but salivate.  Here are a few recipes I've come across and filed to enjoy next summer.

Pina Colada Sangria
1 750ml bottle of your favorite light white wine, such as Dark Horse
2 cups pineapple juice
1 cup seltzer
1 cup chopped pineapple
1/2 cup coconut rum
1/4 cup maraschino cherries

In a pitcher combine ingredients and refrigerate until chilled.  Serve over ice, garnish with pineapple and coconut shavings.
Rose Sangria Spritzer
2 bottles of cold rose wine, like Barton & Guestier Rose d'Anjou
1 green apple, thinly sliced
1 orange, halved and sliced
1 pint raspberries
2 tblsp simple syrup
2 cups club soda

Combine ingredients and refrigerate until chilled.  Serve over ice and garnish with fresh mint leaves.

Mango Peach Sangria
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
1 cup Grand Marnier
2 peaches, cut into wedges
1 bottle of a great white blend like Wolftrap White
1/3 cup water
1 mango, diced
1/3 cup sugar

Cook the water and sugar in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves.  Transfer into a pitcher and refrigerate until cold.  Stir in the Grand Marnier, wine, mango, peaches and mint and serve over ice.  Garnish with a strawberry slice.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Mid-Summer Classic

If baseball's All-Star game can be the Mid-Summer Classic, why can't this blog post claim the same title? It's not like they're the NFL, with their trademark on the term "Super Bowl". Anyway, the point of this blog post is to keep you informed, so let's roll out some information.

Events in Lawrenceville

Astute blog readers will note that we did not do an Events post yesterday. We just had that travel info to share instead.

It's a simple events weekend at our Lawrenceville store. We'll have our standard wine tasting today, from 4-6pm. Tomorrow, we're offering samples of Palm Breeze Sparkling Alcohol Spritz, from 11am-2pm.

Palm Breeze Sparkling Alcohol Spritz is from the Mike's Hard Lemonade team. Ruby Red Citrus contains the taste of fresh-cut citrus and grapefruit with a light carbonation. Pineapple Mandarin Orange is a blend of pineapple and orange, and pairs well with ginger. And don't miss the Palm Breeze Hummer in the parking lot!

Events in Woodbridge

So many people get to leave work early on summer Fridays, we decided to start our wine tasting early as well. Our wine tasting will run from 1-3pm today. Click here for the tasting menu.

Another reason why the wine tasting is early is because we're offering samples of The Botanist Islay Dry Gin, from 4-7pm today.

If you use gin in any cocktail, you owe it to yourself to experience something delicious and different..

For this, "The Botanist" Artisinal Islay Gin, we use nine of the classic gin aromatics - orris root,
cassia bark, coriander seed, etc - and augment these with a heady harvest of 22 local botanicals, hand-picked by our expert foraging team from the windswept hills, peat bogs and Atlantic shores of this Hebridean island of Islay.

Saturday also brings a "twofer" tasting. We start with our regular wine tasting, from 1-3pm. Click here for the tasting menu. Up next, scheduled for 4-6pm, is a tasting of fresh beer from New Jersey's Forgotten Boardwalk Brewing Co.

                                                               New Products

Magic Moments Grain Vodka. How does Magic Moments make it possible for you to embark on such lovely flights of fantasy? By choosing only the finest grain, triple-distilled to create a smooth and crystal liquid that's more than a just a's a moment of magic in every sip!

Nose : Clean and Fresh with subtle aroma of neutral grain spirit
Palate : Delicate and Neutral taste
Finish : Crispy and short finish

We're now stocking the unflavored Magic Moments vodka, as well as the Apple, Chocolate, Ginger-Lemongrass, and Peach flavors. Each variety is only $9.99 in the Bottle Club®.

Avery Raja. Brazenly bitter. Dashingly dry-hopped. Raja is an audacious addition to our lengthy lineage of intrepid IPAs. Hops for all! All for hops! Double IPA, 8% ABV. Limited availability.

Cocktails On Us

Part of our summer session with on Facebook. The link will be available later today on our Facebook page as well. This recipe is courtesy of David Rudd, Store Manager for our Woodbridge location.

Seargeant Pepper
1 oz pineapple juice
1 oz lime juice
1 oz orgeat
1 oz cumin/pepper simple syrup
4 oz Hixson gin
1 pinch cayenne

To make the simple syrup:
1 tablespoon whole cumin seeds, toasted, 5 whole peppercorns and 1/2 cup each sugar and water. Simmer for 15 minutes.  Strain and chill.

Combine ingredients in a shaker with large ice cubes and shake vigorously for 15 seconds. Strain into a coupe or martini glass. Garnish with a pineapple.

Ripped from the Headlines

Will low or zero alcohol beer reach the predicted 20% of sales in less than 10 years? Click here for the story in Fortune.

A Personal Note

As your blogger for the last three years, I've enjoyed sharing a wide range of information with you. Our company has made some changes, and we're moving back to the Joe Canal's location in Lawrenceville. A new blogger will occupy this space as of Monday, with free rein to make this an even better project. Cheers!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

#Roadtrip, Part 2

Your blogger recently had the opportunity to visit some of our partner properties in California. Part 1 of this report was on Monday. Today, we report on winery visits in Sonoma County.

When we began planning this trip, we had always planned on visiting Sonoma. We'd visited Napa on our last trip to Northern California's wine country, so it was time for a change. We picked a hotel in the quiet town of Healdsburg, and visited wineries within about 20 minutes of there.

If you're thinking about visiting Healdsburg, here are some pro tips. Most importantly, the town closes fairly early. By 9pm, there aren't a whole lot of places still open in the center of town. It's very walkable, with plenty of tasting rooms all around the square. In addition to the tasting rooms, you'll find the Bear Republic brewery just off the square. As we were told on our first visit to Sonoma, it takes a lot of beer to make a good wine.

Our first stop was the Francis Ford Coppola Winery. This is a full-on entertainment destination, with movie memorabilia, a swimming pool and restaurant. We started with a taste of the Sofia Blanc de Blancs sparkling wine, and then went on a tour of the facilities. Since it was early July, the harvest hadn't started, but the bottling line was humming along. After our walk-through, we returned to the tasting room for samples of several additional wines across their extensive portfolio.

The tasting really just confirmed what we already knew: Coppola produces solid wines that are excellent values at every price point, throughout their extensive portfolio. We wrapped up our visit with a pairing lunch at Rustic, the on-property restaurant. Three courses, paired with the appropriate wines. We could get used to that kind of lunch.

Next on our agenda was the Sbragia Family Vineyards, which was barely 10 minutes from Coppola. We don't currently stock wines from Sbragia, but they are available via special order. The peacefulness of this part of Sonoma was a welcome companion to the outstanding wines. Sitting out on the terrace and talking about the various Sbragia wines was a great way to wind down after a hectic day. The Sbragia tasting room is also a short drive from the Lake Sonoma recreational area, and we took a nice ride through the mountainous area.

Whether you prefer white (Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay) or red (Cabernet, Zin, Merlot), there's a lot to like in the Sbragia portfolio. Since the tasting rooms all have to close by 5pm, we limited our official agenda to two wineries per day.

On our last day in Sonoma, we started off at the Quivira Vineyards. At this point, we only carry their Dry Creek Zinfandel, but their portfolio is certainly larger than that. They practice Biodynamic agriculture at Quivira, part of which means that a percentage of the land must be devoted to uses other than the grape crop. At the entrance, you'll find an extensive flower, herb and vegetable garden. The property also includes bee colonies, along with an assortment of farm animals.

We were given a bit of salumi to accompany our tasting, and we went home with four of their wines. Your blogger is partial to Rhone wines, and they excel at those varietals at Quivira. This was probably our favorite stop, even though we started the tasting at 10am. Hey, it was 1pm according to East Coast time.

Our final stop was down in the Russian River Valley, at the Gary Farrell winery. Where most of Sonoma is typically hot and relatively dry, the Russian River Valley has more of a maritime influence, with much cooler nights. We watched the afternoon fog roll in from the Pacific, which also impacts the overall climate.

That cooler climate means that Russian River vintners tens to specialize in Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. We tasted through the Gary Farrell range of both varietals, all while relaxing on their beautiful terrace. These are outstanding wines that are standards of their varietals.

Like every other winery, the Gary Farrell tasting room closed at 5pm. We decided to follow the Russian River down to the Pacific, and follow the coast road back to San Francisco, for the flight home. Napa might have mystique, but for wine travel, your blogger can highly recommend Sonoma County as a desirable destination.