News and Press

Art in the Age at Portland Hunt & Alpine Club

10/09/2013
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Art in the Age (short for Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction), is a Philadelphia-based retailer/artists collective that is best known for its highly distinctive, artisanal spirits. Root, Snap, Rhubarb Tea and Sage were conceived by Art in the Age founder Steven Grasse, who, it's worth noting, was also responsible for revitalizing Narragansett beer, as well as creating Hendricks gin and Sailor Jerry rum.

The four spirits will be featured Thursday, Oct. 10, at Portland Hunt & Alpine Club, 75 Market St., from 4 to 7 p.m. Art in the Age's brand ambassador will be on hand to create cocktails together with Hunt & Alpine club owner Andrew Volk and his crew.

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Four Square Blocks: Philadelphia

10/09/2013
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It is a peculiar quality of the district here called Old City that the proprietors of many of its galleries and shops complain about the floors.

They slant.

“It’s always been a problem for us,” said Robert Aibel, the owner of Moderne, a vintage furniture gallery at 111 North Third Street. But “most people don’t notice, unless a piece of furniture looks crooked.”

At the Roche Bobois showroom, at 313 Arch Street, Natalie Suresch, the manager, said the floors tilt four feet from back to front. “You feel like you have vertigo,” she said.

Such are the wages of historicism.

Old City, the home of Benjamin Franklin and Betsy Ross and the temporary residence of George Washington before he moved south, was the kernel from which the rest of Philadelphia grew. Established in the late 17th century by William Penn, this area on the Delaware River evolved into a prosperous 19th-century manufacturing center and then declined into a 20th-century derelict port.

Things took a turn for the better around 1976, the year of the Bicentennial, when interest flared up in Philadelphia’s federal past. “There was a sense of a reconnecting with the earliest history of the city,” said Nathaniel Popkin, a local urbanist writer and the editor of the Web siteHidden City Philadelphia. Mr. Popkin believes that the term “Old City” was coined in those days. “It had an ‘e’ on the end of ‘Old’ originally,” he said.

Today, Old City’s narrow brick buildings house an assortment of design and fashion boutiques, along with some remaining wholesalers of textiles and heavy-duty kitchen equipment. Factories are now condominium complexes with names like the Castings to acknowledge their manufacturing heritage.

And the floors? They, too, are a legacy of an industrial past. Mr. Aibel believes that his hundred-year-old building, where he installs exhibitions of American craft furniture, was once a tobacco warehouse in which water flowed down the incline and out the door. Similarly, at the 1875 petticoat factory that is now the home of Roche Bobois, slanted floors are said to have helped workers move goods and equipment around.

This week, DesignPhiladelphia, a citywide festival, will begin its ninth season, offering some 120 events, including exhibitions, workshops and studio tours. So it seemed a fitting time to zoom in on Old City, where many of those events will take place, and focus on design in this cradle of artisanal and manufacturing culture. On a recent Friday — the first in October, which meant that shops and galleries were open late — a reporter and a photographer made a door-to-door survey of the area extending from Arch Street to Race Street and from North Second Street to North Fourth Street. (Technically, the area comprises more than four blocks, but if we’re loose in our definition, so were Philadelphia’s early planners, who had a habit of introducing alleys at any opportunity.)

Those blocks contain the reputed former residence of Betsy Ross, who is also rumored to have lived in at least two other houses nearby; the remains of a wood-turning company founded in 1868 that closed its doors several years ago, leaving generations-old equipment behind; and an art gallery built on the site of the city’s first synagogue. There is even a restaurant with a sloping floor that serves a truffled egg salad sandwich called a Betty Draper, garnished with a tiny package of candy cigarettes.

Philadelphia may be what one local dealer of 20th-century furniture described as an “overwhelmingly Early American town,” but Old City dishes up thick slices of a history, layering muscular industrialism and modern loft living on its Colonial origins. This is no neat terrine, and the mixture can be surprising. When the Betsy Ross House screened a movie the other evening, it wasn’t “1776.” It was “Night of the Living Dead.”

Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Its Web site has a picture of Walter Benjamin and a manifesto attacking our era of easy commodification and shallow spectacle, but Art in the Age, as it is conveniently known, is above all a really nice shop in a vintage building that has been left as intact as functionality and liability allow. Offerings include clothes, fashion accessories, exotic spirits and household goods produced with friendly materials in blameless ways. The space also hosts exhibitions and performances.

116 North Third Street, (215) 922-2600
artintheage.com

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The Deli Magazine's 5th Anniversary Bash

10/08/2013
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Art in the Age at BLD Soda Fountain

10/08/2013
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SNAP Apple Crisp Cocktail

10/08/2013
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Snap Apple crisp, yes it is fun to say. It is also an incredibly easy cocktail to make... Seriously it is time to take notice to American spirits that are making noise!!

Okay it is fall, yes I am going to use too much apple juice, but only quality apple juice. It makes a hell of a difference hand pressed farmers market apple juice is amazing and allows one to play with and add layers to a cocktail whereas Dole apple juice nice to drink not a great cocktail ingredient. Please take that into consideration when making this cocktail.

Next is {ginger} Snap form Art in the Age a fully organic spirit out of Pennsylvania. This ginger style of spirit is perfect for the next 6 months in cider, tea, and hot coco... this is a fall/winter spirit. With that said it is because of the fact it shines during this period for people not thinking what they could use a {ginger} Snap for! Really you can drink it straight or on the rocks and enjoy it all the same.  Adding this to one of your favorite fall items is just a better idea.

2oz. Art in the Age {ginger} Snap

5oz. Organic/Farmers Market apple juice

2 dashes of Apple Bitters

¼ oz. of lemon juice

Slice of ginger or a slice of apple for garnish

Directions

Take a 2oz. shot of the {ginger} Snap pour over ice then add a ¼ oz. of lemon juice, 5oz. organic apple juice finish with a dash of apple bitters in a pint glass grab a tin smack it down and shake hard. Strain over ice in a highball glass or double strain into a cocktail glass to sever up. Garnish with an apple slice or a couple of slices of ginger. Then enjoy!!!

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The Punk-Rock Prince of Small-Batch Spirits

10/04/2013
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