News Bites: New Sons of Liberty Flavored Whiskies / Anchor & Hope Wins Four Awards / RI Seafood Launches New Site and App / Help Giusto Donate Lasagnas / Neon Marketplace Opens in Providence

by David Dadekian

Current news releases—Eat Drink RI is not the source for these items—please follow any links for more information.


Sons of Liberty Launches New Flavored Whiskey Line

Rhode Island’s Sons of Liberty Introduces 4 Flavored Whiskies – Maple, Honey, Apple, Coffee

EDITOR’S NOTE: Sons of Liberty Spirits Co. was kind enough to provide samples so there’s already an Eat Drink RI Tasting video on YouTube for you to view: https://youtu.be/z8kWdDHfmuI

Sons of Liberty Spirits Co. has released a new line of flavored whiskies that are now available throughout Rhode Island and select stores in Massachusetts; the four year-round flavors are Maple, Honey, Apple, and Coffee. The 750ml, 70 proof offerings are all crafted with real ingredients and are on store shelves for a suggested retail price of just $29.99. This line release comes on the heels of Sons of Liberty’s recent brand-refresh after nearly 11 years in business.

Sons of Liberty is no stranger to flavored whiskey having produced various award-winning flavors dating as far back as 2012. Their most notable awards include World’s Best Flavored Whiskey, Best Flavored Whiskey in North America (both awarded by Whisky Magazine’s World Whiskies Awards) and a handful of gold medals from prestigious competitions. 

“We’re really excited with how these turned out,” said Sons of Liberty’s President and Founder, Mike Reppucci. “You don’t feel like your teeth are coated in sugar after enjoying them.” Contrary to some other flavored spirits in the market, Sons of Liberty prides itself on using real ingredients to flavor their whiskies, no chemicals or flavor substitutes. Real honey, real maple syrup, real apples, and real coffee beans. “It just tastes better that way.” Mike explained.

The flavors themselves provide for many ways of enjoyment. “They’re very versatile whiskies,” said Rachael Soderberg of the Product Development Team. “Delicious on their own or with an ice cube since they aren’t overly sweet, but also excellent in fun cocktails since the whiskey itself can hold its own.” The team at Sons of Liberty has numerous cocktail recipe suggestions on their website (https://www.drinksol.com/cocktails).

Sons of Liberty has already shipped a second batch to market and are currently working on a third as the initial response has been very positive. To find retailers near you for any of Sons of Liberty’s flavored whiskies, visit https://www.drinksol.com/where-to-buy. Or order ahead and pick up at Sons of Liberty’s retail shop (tasting room remains closed): http://shop.drinksol.com

Please check out the Eat Drink RI Tasting video on YouTube: https://youtu.be/z8kWdDHfmuI


Anchor & Hope Wins Four Awards at Boston Wine Competition

Four Varietals Receive Medals, including a Best in Class for Winery’s 2020 Riesling 

Anchor & Hope, a craft winery located in Rumford, Rhode Island, is proud to announce that it was awarded four medals at the inaugural Boston Wine Competition, which began on November 4.   

Anchor & Hope’s grapes are grown on small family farms in Germany, California, Oregon, Rhode Island, and New York, and blended, aged, and packaged in Rumford. All their wines are farmed sustainably and made using minimal intervention practices, resulting in elegant, easy drinking, and food-friendly wines.

All four Anchor & Hope wines submitted scored highly in the judging criteria of quality and diversity. Its 2020 Riesling received Best in Class for the category and a platinum award for receiving unanimous gold medals from the judging panel.  Grown on a historic vineyard site, the off-dry Riesling is mineral-driven and bursting with ripe fruit and floral aromatics. Winemaker, mentor and grower Eckehart Groehl produces this wine with earth-friendly farming,native fermentation in stainless steel tanks, and some skin contact before pressing. His vineyard hangs on the historic red slate and sandstone cliffs of Nierstein, Germany along the Rhine River. 

The just-released 2021 Pinot Gris received a gold medal for its rich, honeyed and tropical fruit flavors, salty minerality, and almond pastry note that is derived from aging on the native yeast with some skin contact. The grapes are grown on the rolling hills above the Rhine River by the Groehl family, where the sediment of prehistoric, calcium rich shells, volcanic rocks, and red sandstone make Rheinhessen an incredible place for Pinot varietals.

The 2021 Sauvignon Blanc from the Foxhole Vineyard in Rheinhessen, Germany, won a silver medal for its bright and refreshing flavors of citrus and fresh herbs, salty minerality, and crisp acidity. Clean winemaking, extended skin contact and slow, cold fermentation in stainless, it is the culmination of more than 15 years      of collaboration with grower, mentor and co-winemaker, Eckehart Groehl.

Lastly, the 2020 Pinot Noir received a bronze medal for its ripe flavors of cranberry and raspberry enhanced by aromas of cocoa and leather. These Massal Selection vines were planted and grown sustainably by partner winemakers Nico and Laura Espenschied on their family estate in Flonheim, Germany. The grapes were hand-picked and fermented in open tonneau by native yeasts before softening and aging for 18 months in large oak tonneau.

The Boston Wine Competition showcases wine diversity across the globe, spotlighting wines that earn renowned recognition. Judges score wines highly, based on the winemaker’s ability to balance the art and science of winemaking, while making sound, quality wines that consumers will love. 

Raye Bouschet, Executive Director and co-founder of the Boston Wine Competition says, “Our competition celebrates wines that capture the essence of art and science in the glass, from vine to bottle. This competition not only analyzes quality, but places emphasis on what differentiates it from the pack. We’re on a mission to showcase winemakers that express grape and regional diversity and celebrate what each winemaker brings to the table.”

The judging panel at the competition was made up of sommeliers, buyers and writers with extensive commercial buying responsibility. During the judging stage, judges determined which entries were worthy of a platinum, gold, silver, or bronze medal. Entries that received a gold medal from all judges on a panel earned a platinum award. On the final day of the competition, platinum and gold winners advanced to the sweepstakes round to determine Best in Class and Best in Show winners.

“In today’s competitive market, and with more sophisticated consumers who prefer diversity and uniqueness in their wine, a well-made wine is not enough to win over a customer. This competition awards wineries that express the grape’s potential in its given region, appellation, and vineyard, making these awards incredibly significant for us as a growing brand,” said Anchor & Hope co-owner and winemaker James Davids. “Not only does this recognition show that we are making the types of wines that customers will enjoy, but that we are also making quality wines that stand out in a crowd.”


RI Seafood Launches New Website Tools And “Fishline” App To Help Local Consumers Find Fresh, Local Seafood

The Rhode Island Seafood Marketing Collaborative has launched a mobile app and a redesigned website to heighten Rhode Island consumers’ awareness of the value, appeal, and year-round availability of fresh, local Rhode Island seafood, the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) announced today. Developed in partnership with the Commercial Fisheries Center of Rhode Island, the new app, FishLine, lets consumers search for fresh seafood to buy from seafood markets, farmers’ markets, and restaurants, as well as directly off the boat from fishermen. The FishLine app and newly updated SeafoodRI.com website are examples of ways that the state is trying to boost its commercial fishing and seafood industry, and strengthen Rhode Island’s local food system and food economy.

“Making it easier for people to find and buy Rhode Island seafood is good for everyone,” said Governor Dan McKee. “It supports the thousands of hard-working men and women of one of the Ocean State’s oldest industries, celebrates the restaurants and seafood dealers and food businesses that have made Rhode Island such a ‘foodie’ destination, and ensures a steady supply of fresh, healthy, locally caught seafood, which is a cornerstone of our state food security strategy.”

“From calamari to oysters to various species of finfish, Rhode Island seafood is already known around the world; what we’re trying to do is jolt interest in and demand for our seafood right here in Rhode Island,” said DEM Director Terry Gray. “Through the new FishLine app and website, DEM wants to help connect local consumers and especially younger consumers to local seafood because local is fresh and fresh is delicious.”

“Access to fresh Rhode Island seafood is now, literally, at the fingertips of all Rhode Islanders,” said Robert Ballou, Chair of the RI Seafood Marketing Collaborative. “Increasing consumer awareness of and demand for Rhode Island seafood products in Rhode Island increases in-state sales, spurs growth of the local seafood economy, and supports a stronger, more resilient local food system that is less dependent on less reliable out-of-state sources. Shorter supply chains, or food miles, also have smaller carbon footprints, thereby helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change.”

The new FishLine app and SeafoodRI.com list more than 40 restaurants, seafood markets, grocers, and direct sellers that offer local seafood, profiles about local species and harvesters, and tips for how to cook and enjoy it. Direct sellers and other seafood retailers can use the app to post real-time updates on landings and sales opportunities, helping consumers geo-locate the opportunities to purchase and enjoy RI seafood closest to where they are located. Simply go to SeafoodRI.com and click on the RI Seafood Finder to get started or download the FishLine app from the Apple or Android app store.

Both tools are initiatives of the RI Seafood Marketing Collaborative and industry partners to promote and market fresh Rhode Island seafood. The trademarked RI Seafood brand logo is a core component. Over the past year, the RI Seafood logo has been featured in a variety of online and print advertisements across Rhode Island and at public events including the Charlestown Seafood Festival, the Newport Seafood Festival, and most recently, the Taste of Rhode Island, where Chef Frank Terranova demonstrated how to prepare locally landed monkfish to nearly 1,000 attendees.  The 2022 RI Seafood Marketing campaign is supported by a federal Saltonstall-Kennedy grant awarded to DEM and the Collaborative by NOAA Fisheries last year.

Established by the Rhode Island General Assembly in 2011, the RI Seafood Marketing Collaborative is a public-private body that aims to support local fishermen and seafood farmers and increase awareness and consumption of locally harvested species by the public. Its membership includes representatives from all key sectors of the commercial fishing, aquaculture, and seafood industries joined by representatives from URI, RI Sea Grant, and state agencies including DEM, which chairs the group, and the RI Commerce Corporation, Rhode Island Department of Health, and RI Coastal Resources Management Council.

Rhode Island has a diverse and dynamic commercial fishing and seafood industry. Steeped in tradition, the industry continues to thrive thanks to the health and abundance of locally available fishery resources and the ingenuity and sweat of thousands of hard-working men and women who harvest seafood and make it available to consumers in Rhode Island, across the United States, and around the world. Annual wild harvest landings total over 80 million pounds, valued at over $100 million (ex-vessel). These landings yield a total economic output valued at over $400 million and support over 4,000 jobs, according to a URI study. In addition, shellfish farms in RI waters produce more than 8 million oysters annually, with a farm-gate value of nearly $6 million. The commercial fishing industry has rebounded after huge challenges posed by the COVID pandemic, with 2021 landings, valued at more than $102 million, up by 31% over 2020 landings (ex-vessel), according to the DEM Division of Marine Fisheries.

Follow RI Seafood on Facebook or Instagram (@RI.seafood) for timely updates. Sellers of RI seafood interested in joining the RI Seafood Marketing Campaign can sign up on the RI Seafood website. For more information on DEM programs and initiatives, visit www.dem.ri.gov. Follow DEM on Facebook, Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM), or Instagram (@rhodeisland.dem).


“Buy One, Give One” Lasagna Promotion Returns at Giusto

Now in its third year, the “Buy One, Give One Lasagna” promotion is back for the holidays. Giusto is selling their ready-to-bake lasagnas to support the MLK Center in Newport. For each lasagna purchased, Giusto will donate one to the MLK Center. There are two variations available, Meat Bolognese and Mushroom Ragu. Each lasagna serves 6-8 people and costs $75. To order: 401-324-7400 (with 24 hours notice).


Neon Marketplace Opens in Providence; marks Occasion with $10,000 Donation to Hasbro Children’s Hospital

New Location is the Growing C-Store Brand’s Sixth Store, and its Fourth in Rhode Island 

Check Presentation: Tracey Wallace, Vice President, Pediatric Services, Hasbro Children’s Hospital; Michele Brannigan, Senior Major Gifts Officer and Campaign Manager; Bahjat Shariff, Brand Leader, Neon Marketplace; Ralph Izzi, Vice President, Corporate Marketing & Public Affairs, The Procaccianti Companies.

Neon Marketplace, the newest, most innovative, and elevated brand in the convenience store industry, with locations in Warwick, Rhode Island and Seekonk and Freetown, Massachusetts and express locations in Middletown and Portsmouth, Rhode Island, is pleased to announce the opening of its newest store at 288 Kinsley Avenue in Providence. 

Neon celebrated the grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony with Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza, Mayor-Elect Brett Smiley, and Providence City Councilman Oscar Vargas, as well as a $10,000 donation to Hasbro Children’s Hospital.

The first 100 customers at the Providence location also received a special winter-themed gift with purchase.

“We are thrilled to open our doors in the Capital City,” said Bahjat Shariff, Brand Leader, Neon Marketplace. “With our convenient location, competitively-priced gas, Tesla charging stations, and chef-inspired food and beverage choices, we hope to become the go-to stop for the local community and visitors alike.”

Neon Marketplace offers a full array of dining options, including its signature artisan, hand-pressed pizzas. Developed in conjunction with James Beard award-winning chef and restaurateur Michael Schlow, Neon’s pizza pies are baked light and fluffy onsite in Neon’s traditional brick ovens. Each hand-crafted pizza pie starts with dough that is proofed for several hours to give it a light and airy texture, and is then baked in Neon’s brick ovens. On “Pizza Twos-day” Tuesdays, customers can pick up any two of Neon’s Roman-style specialty pizzas topped with house-made sauce and Neon’s signature three-cheese blend for just $15.00 at the Providence, Warwick, Seekonk, and Freetown locations.  

In addition to its signature pizzas, Neon offers a variety of made-to-order and grab-and-go options, including gourmet coffees, breakfast sandwiches and baked goods; hand-made grinders and sandwiches; salads; snacks; fountain and cooler drinks; as well as delivery and catering services for any size group and for any occasion.    

Soon, guests of the Providence location will be able to enjoy Neon’s new chicken sandwiches, which feature a choice of a buttermilk-battered crispy chicken breast or a tender sous vide chicken breast grilled to perfection andtopped with tangy pickles and the slightly sweet, slightly spicy, and always creamy Neon sauce served on a toasted brioche bun.  Guests can make their sandwiches deluxe with the addition of crispy bacon, American cheese, green leaf lettuce, sliced tomato, and onion.

Neon also recently added new menu items inspired by the flavors of the holiday season, including Peppermint Hot Chocolate: extra rich dark hot chocolate with a kiss of peppermint and finished with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and crushed peppermint candies; a Peppermint Mocha: Neon’s smooth and rich espresso infused with chocolate sauce, wintery peppermint, and steamed milk and finished with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and crushed peppermint candies; an Iced Peppermint Mocha: smooth and rich espresso infused with chocolate sauce, wintery peppermint, and milk, poured over ice, then finished with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and crushed peppermint candies; and an indulgent Candy Cane Cookies & Cream Milkshake: creamy vanilla soft serve ice cream blended with peppermint and Oreo cookies and topped with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, and crushed peppermint candies.   

Seasonal baked goods, made fresh in-house daily, will feature the Cranberry Orange Nut Muffin packed with juicy cranberries, tangy orange pieces, and toasted walnuts, and the decadent Red Velvet Cookie with white, dark, and milk chocolate pieces, available warm.

Neon Marketplace caters to today’s modern traveler by delivering a uniquely refreshing and stylish experience designed to create loyal customers. Neon locations are targeted to areas where the convenience store customer is currently underserved and in areas where growing populations and/or business growth has resulted in increased vehicle traffic and consumer demand.   Guests are also encouraged to download the Neon Rewards app on their iPhone or Android device to receive special discounts throughout the year. Neon Rewards members who also join Spot Pay will receive 10-cents off every gallon of gasoline purchased for the duration of their membership. Spot Pay offers all participating members discounts and instant reward payments on fuel purchases. 

Leave a Reply