For a product launch: Felt + Fat Ceramics and Reanimator Coffee have teamed up to unleash a seasonal clay coffee mug — perfect for all the piping hot coffee and cocoa you’ll be sipping. From 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Art in the Age (116 N. 3rd St.), shop the mug and other items at the Felt + Fat sample sale, while sipping on some coffee cocktails.
Feel like celebrating local food and drink, businesses and nonprofit organizations? Visit Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction‘s flagship store in Old City for this pair of must-attend December events.
Thursday, December 11: Launch of the ReAnimator Mug
From 6–8 p.m., Art in the Age will be hosting ceramics studio Felt + Fat and Philadelphia roasters ReAnimator Coffee to unveil the first item in a collaborative line of coffee-centric wares: the ReAnimator mug. Join them for coffee cocktails, raffles and the first ever Felt+Fat sample sale.
Thursday, December 18: Benefit for AFT
Return to Art in the age the following Thursday from 6–10 p.m. for Night at Standard Tap, a benefit for the American Farmland Trust (AFT). The bar will feature four Art in the Age cocktails, priced at $6 each, as well as Art in the Age food menu items. A portion of the proceeds from these specials will go to the AFT to help to further their mission of preserving family farms across the country.
Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction is located at 116 North Third St. in Philadelphia; phone: (215) 922-2600.
I, Madame Barfly, am here to help you with all of your booze-loving needs. As a nine-year veteran of the restaurant business, I’ve learned a worthy trick or two. In this monthly column I’ll share trade secrets and scope out what’s shaking at local bars.
Craft cocktails are all the rage right now — bartenders everywhere are using complicated, multiple-item recipes and house infusions to put a personal, artisanal stamp on their cocktails. With the holiday season in full swing, it’s a great time for creative inspiration. This time is marked by warming, wintry flavors, often including pine, allspice, brown sugar, and winterberries.
We all have our go-to cocktails — our “old faithfuls,” as they say — but the holidays are a great time to spice them up. Take mine, for example: the Tanqueray and tonic. It’s simple and it always does the trick, but around this time of year I start to crave a little something more. I find the Art in the Age Sage, an organic 80-proof “tea” you can find in the liqueurs and cordials section, a pleasant addition. By itself, Sage is dry and floral — hints of pine, lavender and fennel mingle with a dominant sage flavor. For most, it doesn’t make for great stand-alone sipping, but it pairs nicely with gin and vodka tonics.
Also by Art in the Age, Root and Snap are welcome additions to any holiday mix. Snap is especially festive — flavors of ginger, vanilla, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg meld to create a strictly adult version of gingersnap deliciousness. Snap is great on the rocks and also pairs well with spiced rum. Add some to your Captain and Coke to make things more interesting. Root — fermented with black birch, cinnamon, clove, anise, and allspice — also goes nicely with the darker distilled liquors. Use it to spice up your whiskey and Coke, or drink on the rocks with Bailey’s and reminisce about your childhood root beer floats.
St. Germain, a popular French liqueur made from elderflower, is a sweet and tasty addition that fits the holidays. Many elder-lovers add a splash to their bubbly, or make a cocktail of it by stirring it in with Prosecco and vodka. Little known fact: St. Elder, a Boston-based company, makes a delightful version of the French favorite that packs in even more elderflower flavor and is actually less expensive.
GrandTen Distilling — also Boston-based — makes Amandine and Cranberry liqueurs that are worth a try. The distillery, which joins Art in the Age and a number of distilleries in a trend that veers away from the overly sweet, manages to capture the essence of almond and cranberry in the two products without making them sickeningly syrupy. For those in the mood for sweet, remember you can always add simple syrup.
Craft cocktails are often expensive, thanks to a number of pricy ingredients, but not necessarily. Take Johnny’s Tavern in Amherst, for example — they’ve infused vodka with Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal for a fun spin on a White Russian. You can add dimension to your home cocktails by infusing liquors with your favorite flavors. Steep chunks of leftover pecan pie in your bourbon for a tasty holiday treat — allow to sit for two to three hours and strain before drinking. Shake that up with some Rumchata — a creamy spiced rum liqueur—for a luscious pecan pie a la mode martini.
And to the next point of creative opportunity — simple syrup is becoming, well, more than simple. Classically, sugar is melted into boiling water on the stove to create a syrup that blends easily in cocktails. Now, bartenders and home cocktail creators are putting together flavored syrups that can add another layer to your cocktails. Add mistletoe extract to your simple syrup and shake it up with your favorite vodka for a martini worth kissing under.•
I write this as someone who typically eschews any form of crunchy cookie: These chocolate sables from the Kitchy Ktichen’s cookbook are amazing. And, though the lovely Claire makes them into sandwich cookies with salted caramel, I wanted a little something extra.
So I spike some whipped cream with Art in the Age’s SNAP liquor (that would be a liquor distilled from gingersnaps. YES.), and used the lovely Haleakala Creamery’s Goat’s Milk Cinnamon Caramel. Holy wowcats. This bizness is life-changingly good.
I’m not including a make-your-own caramel recipe here—hey, if I got lazy and used a premade caramel, so can you. However if you do make your own, I typically turn toBon Appetit for guidance.
Ps, did I mention you can now get your favorite K&C baking photos as a set of gorgeousgreeting cards, with DIFFERENT WHIPPED CREAM RECIPES on the back of each card? Ohemgee it’s too much goodness. Limited run, so get yours now.
And now for that cookie recipe.
makes about 15 cookie sandwiches, or 30 small cookies
Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
Adapted from The Kitchy Kitchen
6 oz. (1 1/2 sticks) salted butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. kosher sea salt (or coarse salt)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup grated or finely chopped bittersweet chocolate
flaky sea salt, for garnish
1/2 cup caramel sauce of your choice, I used some Haleakala Creamery Goat’s Milk Cinnamon Caramel that I picked up at the farmers market while I was home for Thanksgiving
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon (if your caramel isn’t already flavored)
Boozy Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tbsp. SNAP liquor, spiced whisky, or the like
1 Tbsp. powdered sugar
Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, and sea salt. Add the flour mixture into the butter mixture gradually, beating on low. Finally, add the vanilla and grated chocolate, and mix until the dough is a deep brown.
I had some trouble getting the dough to homogenize with the beater, but my bare hands worked like a charm. Form dough into a flattish disk and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350º. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
After 30 minutes, roll out the dough on the plastic wrap it was tucked into. (If the plastic wrap doesn’t provide a large enough surface, you can lightly flour another dry surface for rolling.)
Roll the dough into a 1/2” thick square. Cut dough into 1 1/2” squares using a sharp knife. You could measure them out with a ruler if you’re feeling fancy, but I was happy to go a little rogue. Place squares on parchment lined baking sheet.
Bake for 15 minutes or until firm. As soon as they come out of the oven, sprinkle each with a pinch of flaky sea salt. Cool completely.
While cooling, beat ingredients for whipped cream in a large bowl until soft peaks form, 2-3 minutes.
To form cookie sandwiches, place a dollop of whipped cream on the bottom of one cookie, drizzle liberally with caramel, and top with a second cookie. EVERYTHING.
We’ve all got a healthy foodie in our life: They call you crying when their food processor breaks, they jump with joy when they spot an organic cocktail on a bar menu, and they probably made their own mayonnaise the last time they invited you over for lunch. To help you find the perfect gift for the healthy foodie in your life, we enlisted Philly blogger Sherrie Scaglione Castellano, who writes all about being a healthy foodie over on her blog With Food + Love. Here, her top five picks for holiday gifts for the healthy foodies on your gift list.
1. Art in the Age Spirits, $32.99.
“Because if you’re going to imbibe, you should do it in style. Art in the Age Spirits are made from the finest organic ingredients and are naturally gluten-free. They include SAGE, RHUBARB Tea, ROOT and my favorite for the holiday season, SNAP. This is a great gift for your friend who likes a quality cocktail.” Note: You can find Art in the Age Spirits at many liquor stores around Philly.
2. Online cooking classes at ROUXBE, six months of classes for $99.99.
“ROUXBE Cooking School is an online learning platform that offers cooking classes to home cooks, culinary professionals and health-and-wellness enthusiasts. No matter your level of expertise, ROUXBE has a class for you; they offer courses on everything from plant-based cooking to stir-frying to how to make the perfect egg. This works as a great gift for foodies in your life, both near and far.”
3. Ohio Stoneware Crock, $29.99.
“Fermented food is so major right now. If you aren’t already brewing your own kombucha and lacto-fermenting your veggies at home, you need to start now. This crock will make the perfect gift for the DIY-sauerkraut-loving pal in your friend group.”
4. Blendtec Blender, starts at $279.
“Green smoothies are a part of my daily routine, and I don’t know what I’d do without my Blendtec. High-powered blenders can be somewhat of a splurge, but thanks to Blendtec’s certified refurbished blenders you can give the health-conscious foodie in your life the luxurious gift of a blender without breaking the bank.”
5. Philly FoodWorks CSA Share, starts at $243 for 17 shares.
“What’s better than gifting a full winter’s worth of fresh, local produce and artisan foods to your loved ones? Philly FoodWorks, which just so happens to be one of the most flexible CSA programs around, has pro-rated winter shares still available for purchase.”
Though the official start of Winter is a couple of weeks away, there are plenty of reasons to enjoy these cold and frosty times. One specifically delicious reason is Zauber’s craft cocktails, created and served by their team of awesome bartenders, using a variety of seasonal (and seasonal-themed) spirits and ingredients. Like the Spring drink menu, Zauber’s Winter cocktails are full of flavor, easy to drink, and epic in every way, from presentation to taste – truly spectacular taste.
After the dryness of the Manhattan, the Rootbeer Float follows a different path completely. Made with OYO Vanilla Vodka, Art in the Age Rootbeer Liqueur, and almond milk, this drink is ultra creamy, and just as herbal. The Rootbeer liqueur (simply named Root), offers up a laundry list of herbs and spices to create that rootbeer flavor. Additional heat from the vodka creates an additional rawness that butts heads with the almond milk for control. A slight sweetness allows a hint of vanilla to emerge, but not enough to diminish the herbal punch.
Another using an Art in the Age neutral spirit, Grandma’s Pie brings Art in the Age Rhubarb, Grand Marnier, Jackie-O’s pumpkin beer, cinnamon, and nutmeg together as a mighty powerful drink. Initially boozy and in your face, the fruity sweetness of the Rhubarb liqueur cuts the burn and allows mild pie spices to mellow on the tongue. The beer adds a decent amount of body, giving each drink a palpable mouthfeel.
Merry Crunkmas, cuties! It’s *that* time of year again, and we’re throwing a party to celebrate! Swing by the store on Tuesday, December 9th from 6-9pm for 30% OFF STOREWIDE and free boozy libations from our friends at Art in the Age! Bring your friends!
Plus, RSVP to this event page to be entered to win one of several prizes and swag bags! We’ll hit you up on Facebook the day of the party if you’ve won.
Big discounts on must-have winter fashion and rad holiday gifts WHILE sippin’ on free cocktails? FOR SURE.
Can’t wait to see you there!
XOXO, The Gang at Life:Curated
Art in the Age spirits are easily my favorite libations. For years, they were the forbidden temptress, nowhere to be found in my southern state. I would dash to dark, sultry bars in New York when I would travel and order whatever the bartender would make with the Philadelphia liquor. So, admittedly, when they agreed to sponsor our WILD party in Portland, I was a bit giddy. I encourage you to try each and every one of these cocktails. And if you want to know which one is my favorite…..It’s Snap.
ROOT Old Fashioned
2 parts ROOT
4 dashes Angostura bitters
1 part simple syrup
Stir and combine all ingredients in a rocks glass over one large piece of ice. Garnish with a lemon twist.
THE FARMER’S DAUGHTER
2 parts SNAP
3/4 part lemon juice
fresh apple cider to taste
fresh apple slices
Combine all ingredients into a highball glass, garnish with fresh apple slices and a cinnamon stick.
Also makes a great punch! Float cinnamon sticks and apple wheels in the punch bowl for garnish.
SAGE AND TONIC
2 parts SAGE
3 parts Tonic Water
Fresh rosemary sprig