Thursday, September 20, 2012

Beer and history and NY.

Let's face it, modern art is hard.  Asking people to pay $12-a-pop to go look at this stuff is asking a lot of many, many people.  This is work by Imi Knoebel and you can see it at the swanky Dia:Beacon - another converted Nabisco Factory on the Hudson River in upstate-ish New York.  We were sitting around the house wondering what to do and decided to go check this place out.

Then I saw there was an exhibit at The New York Historical Society and Museum called Beer Here: Brewing New York's History.   $15 to get in, but there would also be beer there.

Now a dilemma was born...big, colorful shapes for twelve bucks, or beer?

 Okay first, this...chandelier? the gift shop is kind of fun.  That's like art.

Also, what's the deal with the big head of Lincoln?

 So, obviously we went to the thing with the beer in it.  Sadly we weren't allowed to take any pictures inside.  These pictures are from their Tumblr page.

(*click on images to enlarge*)

"This is a page from an Account Book that belonged to New York City brewer William D. Faulkner. According to this document, Faulkner sold beer to both the American Continental and British armies during the Revolutionary War in 1779."

This guy's handwriting is really beautiful

 This is what I was deeply looking forward to.  These are old brewing recipes, and I was thinking at the end of the exhibit, the beer available would be these - re-created historical recipes.  And how awesome would that be? 

It would have been very awesome, were that how it went.  Sadly, it went not that way.  At the end of the exhibit we could purchase instead very modern microbrews.  Which we did with some sullenness.  When I asked the young "bartender" why they hadn't recreated the recipes of the exhibit, I swear this kid scoffed with such abandon I think he dislocated something in his larynx.  In due time he managed to recover enough to answer that those beers were, like, so undrinkable!  OMG!

 When we sat down with these two beers, my niece called the bartender something unprintable. 

I'm not a lager fan, I think.  The Saranac IPA was much more interesting.  Orange peel and coriander, the label reads.  I'm not sure about that, or where it falls in the range of IPA's, but it was easy to enjoy.

PS. $12 is not even vaguely unreasonable to spend a few hours at this place.  People go to the mall all the time and spend more.  I'll take The Dia:Beacon over the mall any day.