Barcades adults just wanna have fun
Global Warming and its devastating effects on the wine industry
Moonshiners and and the legality of the â€œillegal spiritâ€?
October 2017 $3.99
Craft Brewer ies and the domination of the beer industry
Editorial/Creative Director: Julia Rose Editor-in-Cheif: Ty Herzog Creative Director: Sven Kruger Designer: Alyssa Mulhall Assocate Editor: Eliza Sanchez One Hundred Percent Publications 124 Anarchy Ave Redwood, CA 01234 tel: 124-555-1234 fax: 124-555-1122 www.100percent.com Produced by One Hundred Percent Publications ÂŠ 2017 One Hunderd Percent Publications All credits specified under pictures. This publication has been edited for accuracy at the time of publication. Information contained here is subject to change. Opening page by Jeffrey Thompson 2
What's the Sip? Barcades p. 2 The Art of the Craft p. 6 Backwoods Bootleggers p. 10 Global Warming p. 14 Winter is Coming p. 18
Inside Barcade on St. Marks Place in Manhattan, diehard gamers and newcomers alike take a trip to the past. All around the venue, walls are lined with an array of vintage cabinets, ranging from machines from the golden era of the late ’70s and early ’80s like Donkey Kong and Ms. Pac-Manto contemporary classics like The Simpsons and Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker. Glows from cathode-ray display screens bathe players’ faces, and glitched-out sound effects circulate through the venue. In between fishing for tokens and watching the points rack up, players sip cocktails or pints of craft beer. Some simply stare in awe at the screens occupied by seasoned players, many of whom spent their youth mastering technical games like Mr. Do!, created 4
decades before some Barcade patrons pixelated graphics, have discovered were even born. Regardless, the appeal these games make the perfect add-on for to participate is universal. an adult playground: Pairing them with alcohol draws a wide-ranging crowd. The connection between booze and arcade machines dates back to the origin Portland, Oregon’s Ground Kontrol, of the arcade itself. “The experience one of the first arcade-style bars in the of the arcade — it isn’t necessarily United States, is expanding for the third nostalgia,” says Paul Kermizian, one time this year, doubling its current space, of Barcade’s founders, noting that so it can house large-scale games like newcomers who barely meet the legal the new Star Wars Battle Pod and the drinking age had probably never seen ’90s driving simulator Lucky & Wild. games like Tapper before. “They were Barcade, whose first location opened so popular, so they must’ve touched on in Brooklyn in 2004, has expanded something social.” to Pennsylvania and Connecticut, with plans to open new venues beyond the Arcades began shuttering in the late East Coast, including in Los Angeles 1990s, but bars centered around coin- and the Midwest. operated video games are giving these machines a second life. A number of Pairing games with craft beer might seem arcade collectors, recognizing the like a novel idea, but the connection universal appeal of simple controls and between suds and arcade machines
the new adult playplace By Mat t Sedacca
Photograph: Martha Williams
dates back to the origin of the arcade itself. In 1971, Atari’s co-founder Nolan Bushnell unveiled one of the first video game arcade cabinets, Computer Space, a cabinet version of the 1962 computer game Spacewar! Earlier that year, he discovered that Bill Pitts and Hugh Tuck, two students at Stanford University, had also converted Spacewar! into a coinoperated machine, which they called Galaxy Game. (At a talk at the Museum of Moving Image in New York, Peter Samson, one of Spacewar!’s creators, said that “[the game] was open source because we didn’t have any choice. You couldn’t copyright software then.”)
Frontline, Bushnell installed Computer Space at the Dutch Goose, a bar near Stanford, to see how his product fared among students compared to the rival machine. Pitts and Tuck’s game was a hit: They had hour-long waits in the union, and a second version of Galaxy Game was developedthe following year. The hardware, however, was so expensive that it could not be scaled, and the console remained in the union building until it was retired in 1979.
produce their arcade console and develop subsequent games like Pong. In the coming years, Atari would continue to use bars as testing grounds for their coin-operated machines. Gauntlet, a fantasy-themed hack-and-slash game released in 1985, was calibrated so that most players would have three to five minutes of gameplay. “That’s the time loop that makes it ideal for bar play, and most video games used that
“The experience of the arcade — it isn’t necessarily nostalgia”
Pitts and Tuck installed Galaxy Game in the Stanford University student union, and according to Simon Parkin, author Meanwhile, Bushnell and his business model,” Parkin says. “If it were a 10- or of Death by Video Game: Danger, partner Ted Dabney used inexpensive 15-minute commitment, that would work Pleasure, and Obsession on the Virtual hardware, enabling them to mass- less well. Bars wouldn’t sell as much beer; 5
people would get tired.” Pong machines were notorious for averaging $200 a week, and it’s common lore that the test machine in Sunnyvale, California’s Andy Capp’s Tavern broke down: The coin mechanism stopped working because it was flooded with quarters.
According to Keith Feinstein, the founder of the arcade museum Videotopia, parents cited concerns about students skipping school to play games, fueled by fears of gaming addiction. Parkin also notes that newer arcade games shifted from skill-based gameplay
as they were in the ’80s ... would not be successful as is,” says Ground Kontrol co-owner Anthony Dandrea. “There had to be a twist.” Although Ground Kontrol initially banked on nostalgia, also selling old VHS and CDs, they realized that people were most interested in playing
“We’re only charging 25 to 50 cents per game, but for a beer and sandwich, it’s $15.” Eventually, arcade cabinets became so popular that they branched out from bars into spaces geared toward the under-21 crowd. The most common kidfriendly spots for these cabinets were amusement arcade venues, which were also home to pinball machines, claw cranes, and air hockey machines.
their historic gaming cabinets on the nights that alcohol was involved. “By turning it into an arcade for grown-ups it became a popular destination.” In Los Angeles, childhood friends Scott Davids and Noah Sutcliffe opened the coin-op bar EightyTwo three years ago. Davids, who’s in his 30s, spent years But in recent years, the quarter eater collecting arcade machines, which he But after years of popularity, arcade has resurfaced, albeit with some boozy culture slumped in the mid-’90s. additions. “Just bringing back the arcades stored at his house, in a warehouse, and at friends’ homes. After throwing
(where a single quarter could last you hours of gameplay, depending on your skill) to experienced-based gameplay. Players flocked to home consoles like the SNES and Sega Genesis, and, as a result, arcade culture’s popularity fell out of fashion.
Photograph: Katie Sokoler
Photograph: Logan Square Emporium
a number of parties where friends played games and drank brews — and witnessing the still-present allure of these machines at local gallery iam8bit. In their new home, his 40 original cabinets light up six nights a week, their decades-old parts still whirring. All of the bar owners noted that the majority of their revenue stream comes from snacks (like Tetris-shaped tater tots) and alcohol. “We have locations where the games only do, say, 10 percent of the revenue, and other locations where it’s 20 to 25 percent,” Kermizian says. “We’re only charging 25 to 50 cents per game, but for a beer and sandwich, it’s $15.” The level-up from a run-of-themill pourhouse to an alcohol-fueled video-game center is an expensive one. According to Davids, the cost of original arcade cabinets has increased in response to the growing demand. At any location of Texas arcade-bar chain
Kung Fu Saloon, the collection is valued between $30,000 and $50,000. Nowadays, cabinets cost between the upper hundreds to one thousand dollars, on average. While there’s now the option of renting cabinets, the “authentic” arcade-style bars own their collection. This, however, adds on the cost of maintenance, which can run around $250 per visit from a decent technician, a couple times a month, says Kermizian. (Sending individual cabinets to the shop is a little cheaper, he claims, and costs around $75 to $150.) And while your local dive bar just needs bartenders to keep everyone happy, these venues require managers and a team of on-staff technicians with knowledge of how to unjam a joystick or fix the coin mechanism.
Many of these self-ascribed “hardcore” arcade-style bars use the original arcade cabinets, meaning some of their games were manufactured as far back as the late ’70s, making their parts susceptible to natural breakage.
Over the past five years, which correlates with the growth of the arcadestyle bar venue, Leung has noticed an increase in traffic to their site. The 16bit hype, Leung explained, is providing job opportunities for technicians with the niche knowledge of how to repair a 1983 Millipede cocktail cabinet, many of whom are finding themselves backed up with repair requests. Leung, who does repairs in his spare time, handles one to two requests a week, and many technicians are busy three or four days a week. “The thing is, it’s “You really have to want to do this,” says not just the games, it’s the environment,” Kermizian, alluding to the misconception says Dandrea. “The games, the people, that it’s easy to open and run a the bloopy noises, that’s all part of it. pourhouse with a video-game selection You don’t have to play the games to stretching beyond Big Buck. experience the environment.” 7
Photograph: Columbia Sportswear
THE ART OF THE CRAFT microwbreweries in bloom By Chris Morris The David and Goliath battle in the world of beer is starting to tip slightly in David’s favor. Craft beer production was up 9.6 percent in 2013, while overall beer production fell 1.4 percent, according to Technomic’s “2014 Special Trends in Adult Beverage Report: State of the Industry” report. And that continued popularity of specialty beers is paving the way for a new crop of beer makers. “Over the last couple of years, the number of new brewery openings has been at near unprecedented levels,” said Bart Watson, Ph.D., staff economist at Brewers Association, a craft beer industry group. “We’re seeing breweries open at about a rate of 1.2 per day.” While the 1990s and early 2000s saw a big rise in brew pubs, the trend today leans more toward microbreweries that aim to distribute their product. That puts them up against the giants of the beer industry—like Anheuser-Busch and Molson Coors—as well as national craft brewers who are nearly as well known, including Boston Beer Co., maker of Samuel Adams, and privately held Sierra Nevada.
innovative nature of these craft brewers has driven this market,” said Watson. “Every brewer in the market seems like they’re brewing something new that you’ve never heard of.” Holy City Brewing in Charleston, S.C., certainly fits that mold. The company’s “Notorious P.I.G.” is a bacon-flavored smoked porter that was recently praised in Food Network Magazine. Since opening its doors in July 2011, Holy City, which is distributed to bars and restaurants around the state, has created 65 different styles of beer. That diversity, said co-owner and head brewer Chris Brown, has helped the company thrive. “It’s a big plus,” said Brown. “Instead of asking just for a Pluff Mud Porter (the brewery’s most popular beer), people ask what Holy City is being served. They want to know what’s on tap, since it’s always changing.” Other unusual craft beer flavors include Jalepeno Cilantro, from Charleston’s Frothy Beard, Key Lime Pie from the Shorts Brewing Co. in Michigan and Peanut Butter Cup Coffee Porter from Ohio’s Willoughby Brewing Co.
There are more than 2,700 craft breweries operating in the U.S., the highest total since the 1880s.
Craft breweries have a few things working in their favor, perhaps the most important of which is a customer base that’s financially well off. Nielsen reports that 58.9 percent of craft beer drinkers have annual incomes of $75,000 or more. Most of those customers have grown tired of light lagers, which is what fueled the craft movement.
Though much of the success of craft breweries and microbreweries (which make less than 15,000 barrels) can be credited to shifts in public taste, those in the industry say they’ve learned a few truths along the way that have aided in their success.
First, don’t be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to distribution. Craft beer might be growing, but the category still holds just 7 percent of the overall beer market. To help grow that, many microbreweries have put off plans to bottle or can their beer and compete for grocery-store There are more than 2,700 craft breweries operating in shelf space, focusing instead on winning over the taps of the U.S., the highest total since the 1880s. And every year, bars and restaurants. hundreds more are opening. In 2012, the most recent figures available, the industry provided an estimated 108,440 jobs Many brewers also take part in regional beer festivals to in the country, according to the Brewers Association. “The raise awareness of their brands. Meanwhile, liquor laws 9
among states vary wildly. Some states, for instance, allow beer sales at grocery stores and convenience stores, while others do not. And any alcohol in Utah with a greater than 4.0 percent alcohol by volume, must be sold in a state-run store.
and pub patrons. And even Budweiser’s distribution arm is now including craft beers from other breweries. Again, local beer festivals have been helpful in building interest in the beers, but many craft and microbreweries are becoming gathering spots of their own.
That confusion has prompted some brewers to begin exporting their product beyond U.S. shores as an expansion method. “It’s easier for me to sell my beer overseas than it is across state lines,” said Brendan Moylan, proprietor of Marin Brewing Co. and Moylan’s Brewing and Restaurant, both based in California. Moylan ships his products to 25 states and seven different countries, including Chile, Brazil, Italy, England, Japan, Australia and Canada. Also, establish a strong local customer base before thinking of expanding. Finding a local craft-focused distributor isn’t particularly challenging these days, given the growing demand for craft beer among restaurant
Craft brewers in many states run brewpubs as a central point to distribute their product. Others simply have taprooms in the breweries, bypassing food options. In either case, establishing a social hub amid the steel fermenter tanks lets brewers draw in customers. Craft beer lovers also tend to stay abreast of local trends in the market and are generally eager to try something new. If they like what they taste, they quickly spread the word, meaning hometown customers can quickly become evangelists for a brewery’s product as they visit and move to different cities. “Our focus has always been [to] take care of local first,” said Holy City’s Brown. “My opinion is that
if you take care of the locals and support the community, even if your growth is contained [to regional growth instead of national], you’re going to make a bigger impact on those other markets as you expand.”
starting to quietly put out craft-flavored beers like Shock Top, which is brewed by Anheuser-Busch in Saint Louis, Missouri., or Blue Moon, which is a MillerCoors product, though many fans of either beer don’t realize either is
“If you take care of the locals and support the community, you’re going to make a bigger impact on those other markets as you expand” And while brewers compete with each other in the technical sense, they regularly work together on new projects, sharing ideas to keep the creativity of the craft movement alive. That collaboration is especially important as big breweries are
made by the industry giants. “The sharing of knowledge has always been there in the craft brew scene,” said Moylan. “The guys who say otherwise don’t know what they’re talking about.”
Photograph: Jeffrey Thompson
and the timeless illegal spirit By Josh Sanburn
Photograph: Getty Images
For decades, most people had never even seen a jar of moonshine, let alone tasted it. These days, you can find it at stores and restaurants around the country thanks to loosened liquor laws and changing consumer preferences. Even the industry’s biggest distilleries are experimenting with moonshine. Moonshine has been distilled in backwoods Appalachia since the 1800s. By its most traditional definition, the term means “illegal spirit,” and many families in that historically independentminded, libertarian-leaning area of the U.S. made a living off making it — partly because the liquor could be produced and sold quickly, as it didn’t require years of aging in barrels. (That, by the way, is also what gives the hooch its oftentimes harsh character.) Today, moonshine is generally used as a catchall term for unaged white whiskeys, many of which are made in Tennessee and North Carolina.
legal only in a handful of Tennessee counties. But in 2009, the state legislature opened dozens of other counties to the business, including several in eastern Tennessee that had been home to unlawful moonshine production for decades. One of the biggest operations is Ole Smoky Moonshine Distillery, which opened in 2010 in Gatlinburg, Tenn. Roughly 250,000 to 280,000 cases of moonshine were sold in 2012, a jump from 50,000 in 2010 and 80,000 in 2011, according to food-andbeverage-analysis firm Technomic. (A case holds 12 750-ml jars.) Ole Smoky accounted for 100,000 of the cases sold in 2012. Ole Smoky founder Joe Baker expects the company to sell 250,000 cases (3 million jars) this year. Baker attributes Ole Smoky’s growth to a number of big-box stores, including Walmart and Sam’s Club, deciding to carry the spirit “because it’s an American-made product from a small family business and because it was a well-known product that had been previously unavailable.” Ole Smoky is now available in 49 states.
Another difference with modern-day moonshine is that the people distilling it aren’t operating outside the law. Making moonshine is now legal in Tennessee and is quickly gaining popularity around the country. When the recession hit in 2008 and 2009, While the very existence of distilleries a number of states looked for ways like Ole Smoky can be credited to to generate employment and keep loosened liquor laws, the popularity
“Consumers are looking for a unique drink, that unique flavor you can’t get anywhere else, not something people are drinking all the time” tax revenue rolling in. One way to accomplish both goals was to loosen laws regulating distilleries. For years, the production of distilled spirits was 14
of the product can be attributed to increasing consumer demand for products that are distinctive, novel and perceived as local. “Consumers are
looking for a unique drink, that unique flavor you can’t get anywhere else, not something people are drinking all the time,” says David Henkes of Technomic. Ole Smoky, for example, comes in Ball mason jars, the way moonshine did (and still does in some places) when it was sold illegally. It’s distilled right in the moonshine heartland, and the product’s outlaw backstory alone piques consumer interest. “When I went off to college, one of the first questions I was asked by anyone who found out I was from east Tennessee was, ‘Well, can you get us some moonshine?’” Baker says. “That interest in the culture of the area where I was raised kind of pushed me along to embrace it.” Ole Smoky’s unique flavors also play into another reason for the product’s popularity: 65% of its moonshine sales are flavored, and the distillery has even advertised flavored moonshines as Mother’s Day gifts. The company’s lineup includes apple pie, blackberry, peach and cherry flavors — all of which, Baker says, are authentic to the spirit’s heritage. “We tried to embrace the rich knowledge and expertise of this area instead of just basing it on my granddad’s recipe,” Baker says. “We took the best of a lot of different recipes and came up with a product that we think best represents the area.” Frank Coleman, senior vice president of the Distilled Spirits Council trade group, says the recent distillery legalization in states like Tennessee, coupled with the popularity of smallbatch distilleries elsewhere in the U.S., has led to the recent explosion of moonshine distilleries. Ole Smoky is just one of a number of distilleries to have popped up in the Appalachian region in recent years, including East Tennessee Distillery, Short Mountain Distillery and Asheville Distilling Company in
Photograph: Ole Smoky Moonshine
neighboring North Carolina. “You’ve had a lot of people come into the business,” Coleman says. “There’s a little bit of a gold-rush mentality.” The growth of those distilleries has even gotten the attention of Big Whiskey, despite the fact that moonshine represents just 1% of the American whiskey sales. Earlier this year, Jack Daniels released its own white whiskey, Unaged Tennessee Rye, and Jim Beam released Jacob’s Ghost, a white whiskey that has been aged for only a year. (True straight moonshine is unaged. Regular Jim Beam bourbon, by contrast, is aged for four years in charred white-oak barrels, according to the company, which is what gives Beam and other aged whiskeys their golden brown color.) Bill Newlands, the North America president of Beam
Global, admits that the company’s new white whiskey is a direct response to the popularity of distilleries like Ole Smoky. “We certainly saw that moonshine had quite a pickup,” he says. “The question that we had around it is, ‘How broad-based would the interest be?’” Newlands says his company isn’t quite convinced that white whiskey is the next big thing, but sales are being closely watched.
at a fast clip. That’s leading the big breweries to introduce their own “crafty” beers, like MillerCoors’ Blue Moon. As moonshine creeps into the mainstream, however, there are some in Appalachia who question whether a spirit that’s aboveboard can truly be considered moonshine. It may be unaged whiskey. But is it really good ol’ ’shine? “I think there are people out there who feel that if you’re paying taxes on it, it’s not moonshine,” says Ole The growth in moonshine is somewhat Smoky’s Baker. “And sure, if you pay akin to what’s happened in the beer taxes, you lose a little bit of credibility. industry over the past decade, during But I think most folks — certainly people which big-brewery sales of beers like who are familiar with how we make Bud Light and Miller Lite have been our products and people who have flat or declining while craft breweries been to our distillery — they see that like Deschutes, Brooklyn Brewery we do it the same way that it’s been and Dogfish Head continue growing done around here forever.” 15
Photograph: Tom Hyland
GLOBAL WARMING vino in a vulnerable state By Jason Horowitz
On a road winding through the heart of Barolo country, Michele Reverdito pulled his car over and stepped onto a sloping and sickly vineyard. “Look at the wilting leaves and how small and shriveled the grapes are,” he said, holding a sad bunch of nebbiolo grapes in his hand on yet another hot August day. The 48-year-old winemaker explained that unlike his own nearby vines, which were old, with deep roots, these vines were unable to tap the earth’s underground reserves of water, leaving grapes vulnerable to this year’s drought and brutal summer sun. “Nebbiolo means ‘the wine of the fog’ because you picked the grapes in November,” he said. “Now we pick in September! The world is changing.” In vino veritas. The warming temperatures, shortening of the seasons and unseasonal storms brought on by global climate change are hastening the harvest of perhaps the most venerable crop of Western civilization.
The vexing possibilities are worthy of contemplation over a fine wine: What is Bordeaux if it becomes inhospitable to cabernet franc or merlot? What is Burgundy without pinot noir? What if southern England supplants Champagne as a home to sparkling wine? In Italy, a heat wave this year, given the name Lucifer, is blamed for an expedited picking and reduced yields of Franciacorta sparkling wine. Wine production overall is expected to drop up to 15 percent nationwide. Here in Piedmont, where an ancient ocean enriched the land with minerals and the sun kissed the hills in just the right way, the Italian news media noted with shock the harvesting of grapes for white wine in July. The local chapter of Coldiretti, the Italian agricultural lobby, noted that the harvest of grapes for Barolo, which often used to reach into November, now took place weeks earlier. A worker pouring harvested pinot nero grapes into the press at Castello di Neive. A thermometer planted in one of the estate’s vineyards in mid-August showed heat in excess of 104 degrees Fahrenheit. “People are picking grapes in their bathing suits, and they used to be in gloves and overcoats!” local wine enthusiast Piero Comino, 63, said over a straw-colored glass of arneis in Neive. On the hills under the Castello di Neive, six workers moved in pairs in mid-August, expertly cutting bunches of pinot nero grapes and dropping them in plastic red crates. A week earlier, they had already cleared an adjacent vineyard of the delicate grapes used to make their bubbly Spumante. “It’s 20 days earlier on average due to climate change,” Ion Bruno, 50, a worker who has been picking the grapes for the last three decades, said as he clipped a stem. Drought, more than heat, threatens the grapes, he said, adding that instead of steady rainfall, precipitation now comes in downpours that run off the
“People are picking grapes in their bathing suits, and they used to be in gloves and overcoats!”
Wine producers in this prized territory debate the impact on the end product, but there is a general acknowledgment that the heat and hail and the extreme weather in between present an annual challenge. Bruno Novelli, 58, center, wearing a cap, tipping grapes into the cleaning machine under the eye of owner Italo Stupino, 81, second from left. Mr. Novelli remembers harvesting when there was snow on the ground; Mr. Stupino said he believed in climate change “up to a certain point.” A 2016 study by NASA and Harvard of grape harvest dates going back to the 1600s found that climate change pushed harvests forward drastically in France and Switzerland in the second half of the 20th century. Other studies have suggested that traditional wine-growing regions in Europe and around the world will become too hot for the berries traditionally linked to their earth and climate, or terroir, and will be forced to adopt varietals built for heat.
hillsides and do little to slake the thirst of the vines. “Decades ago there would be snow on the ground in November,” said his partner Bruno Novelli, 58, as they moved to a new vine. “And now it doesn’t snow anymore.” Those changes require careful management from winemakers, several of whom said that, if correctly harnessed, the heat could improve their product.
He said that they knew how to deal with anomalies, but that if intense heat waves became permanent, “We’ll have to plant bananas and pineapples.” That would be a tragedy to the world’s wine connoisseurs, who have come to worship this region’s Barolos and Barbarescos, nebbiolos and barberas. The wine has also been good to its best producers.
Vineyards of nebbiolo grapes near Alba. The region is renowned for its Barolo and Barbaresco wines. Claudio Roggero, who as enologist at the Castello di Neive, decides, among other things, when to pick the grapes, strolled with satisfaction through the corridors of vines, saying the grapes looked perfect. “If I left these grapes another week they could have been like this,” he said stopping in front of a rare sunburned bunch. “It’s very dangerous.” In the middle of August, a thermometer planted in one of their vineyards showed heat in excess of 104 degrees Fahrenheit. “It went off the charts,” the wine estate’s owner, Italo Stupino, 81, said as he looked over the hills. Mr. Stupino also pointed at vineyards destroyed by a hailstorm in April, and yet he expressed doubt that global warming drove the change. “I believe it up to a certain point,” he said with a shrug. “The temperature goes up and down. We had hail in April, and I remember some hot, hot Augusts as a boy.” That sentiment ran through the hills. In Monforte d’Alba, just outside the town square, Giovanni Rocca stepped out onto his hills and happily chewed a grape he picked from his vineyard.
An enclosed observation deck hangs like a giant helicopter cockpit over the hills of Alba at the headquarters of the Ceretto family, which produces nearly a million bottles a year. The company’s employees will be out in the fields a week earlier than usual to pick arneis grapes for its wildly popular Blangé white wine, said Roberta Ceretto, 44. A view of the dry bed of the Tanaro river, which runs through the Piedmont wine regions. Drought is a threat to the grapes. But she was mostly unbothered by the heat, saying that while her employees might not be able to go on vacation in August in the future, the quality and culture of the area’s wines would survive.
While some skeptics thought 2017 would be recalled as the vintage of climate change hysteria, some leading winemakers were thinking hard about how to adapt to the new abnormal.
“Nebbiolo means the wine of the fog because you picked the grapes in November,” said Michele Reverdito. “Now we pick in September! The world is changing. The grapes are beautiful, the heat’s good for them,” he said, arguing that the vintage, which he said would probably come 10 or 15 days earlier than usual, was likely to yield a lower-quantity but higher-quality Barolo. His son, Maurizio, 37, also spoke of the benefits of the sunshine. But he added that temperatures above 100 degrees “are not good for the wine; the berries become unbalanced and too fat, with too high an alcohol content.”
“The dinosaurs didn’t go extinct in 20 years,” she said with a smile. Not everyone is so optimistic. In Barbaresco’s wine store, set up in a deconsecrated church, Michela Adriano, a young winemaker, said that while some skeptics thought 2017 would be recalled as the vintage of climate change hysteria, some leading winemakers were thinking hard about how to adapt to the new abnormal. Angelo Gaja, perhaps the area’s most famous producer, has spoken often about the potential consequences of climate change on the area and its wines, Ms. Adriano noted. And Mr. Reverdito, who has hung green nets to protect his own nebbiolo grapes from hail, said the nets had the added benefit of reducing damage from the scorching sun. But he feared that the lack of interplay of warm days and cool nights threatened to overproduce the sugar and alcohol of a Barolo wine that should be elegantly composed, like “a symphony. There is no more balance,” he said, lamenting the vanishing of the seasons. “And this is a disaster for us.”
Photograph: Rascioli Salumeria
WINTER IS COMING
When does a bar stop being a bar and night, the throne had its own waiting start becoming a theme park for condo- list, managed by Deke Dunne, who dwelling, Scotch-drinking grown-ups? said that at times he felt like the guy in charge of loading people onto the Maybe when it has a room with an roller coasters at Six Flags. “My main animatronic smoke-breathing dragon. concern has been: Are you too drunk to Or maybe when you have to wait ride this ride?” Dunne said. “Thankfully, 45 minutes for the main attraction there’s no height requirement. Then — which, in the case of Shaw’s new Tyrionwould have been screwed.” This pop-up “Game of Thrones” bar, is the is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, opportunity to pose for Instagram photos but with swords instead of wands. This in a replica Iron Throne. On Thursday is the adult version of breakfast with 20
Mickey and Minnie at Disney World. This is “like a miniature Renaissance fair in a bar!” one guy said to his friends as he ordered a drink in the bar Eat the Rich, which has been outfitted to look like the HBO show’s King’s Landing, with banners representing the kingdom’s houses. And this is what we want from our bars in 2017: an exhilarating escape from reality. Except instead of rides, we want photo ops.
creating a pop up bar By Maura Judkis
Photograph: Drink Company
“It’s purely for the Instagram,” said Lara Paek, 28, waiting with her sister in line outside the bar before it opened. “You saw it at the Renwick,” said Emma Poltrack, 31, referring to the photo frenzy in popular immersive attractions at the museum. “It becomes more of a photo op than an experience.” Lines form outside the bar more than an hour before opening. Brian Rowe, 31, of Silver Spring, takes a selfie for Facebook in front of the bar’s Hall of
Faces. There’s a competitive aspect to it, too. Waiting outside before the opening, 31-year-old Dyle Hein planned to make a beeline for the bar and “take selfies everywhere,” he said, a little sheepishly. “So far, nobody on my Instagram has been in yet. I missed Infinite Kusama,” he said, referring to the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s “Infinity Mirrors” exhibit at the Hirshhorn Museum. “I’m hoping I can inundate everyone with ‘Game of Thrones’ selfies.”
And the bar-as-theme-park concept (or museum-as-theme-park — look at the National Building Museum’s summer attractions) is expanding rapidly. The District has seen Donald Trump bars, a Will Ferrell bar, a “Seinfeld” bar. Derek Brown, the man behind the “Game of Thrones” bar, has previously hosted a “Miracle on 7th Street” Christmas bar and, more recently, a Cherry Blossom/Super Mario Bros. bar. When Brown opened the latter, he told 21
The Washington Post that he served between 800 and 1,200 customers a night. [Gimmicky theme bars with a short shelf life are the hottest nightlife thing]
drink the same wine without a wait. The Remembers,” a potion of Scotch, sherry, Rosé Garden has become a destination. coconut and falernum that comes in a horn-shaped tankard. If you want Inside the “Game of Thrones” bar, one, you’ll have to leave an ID with there are small photo ops within the the bartender, because those tankards Other pop-up concepts don’t even give larger one. You can pose, as one man are so likely to be stolen. They look you anything to drink or anywhere did, looking as if you’ll be set on fire great with your throne pose. Another to sit. Take Diner en Blanc, an all- by the elaborate dragon mural on the drink, the tequila-and-grapefruit tonic white picnic held every summer in wall in the City of Mereen. When the “Shame,” is a nod to a moment on Washington, which has a waiting list of 20,000(!) people eager to pay $45 for the privilege of providing their own food, beverages, table and chairs, all adhering to an exacting list of standards set by the organizers. Other special bars are lazy, knowing that people will wait in line for just about anything that offers a photo op. For instance, the Rosé Garden, at Whaley’s in Yards Park, is just a small patio with some nice views. What makes it more worth the wait than other patios is that the color of the umbrellas shading the tables is pink, like your wine. Never mind that there are dozens of other patios in the District where you can
You can pose, as one man did, looking as if you’ll be set on fire by the elaborate dragon mural on the wall in the City of Mereen.
animatronic dragon breathes smoke, all the phones go up. The tiki-inspired cocktails — a sunny non sequitur to the show’s dark subject matter, but hey, it’s summer — are $13 to $15 apiece, and another chance for photos. One of the most popular is likely to be “The North
the show when Cersei Lannister must walk naked through an angry mob as punishment. Whenever it’s ordered, the bartenders yell “Shame! Shame!” and ring bells, and everyone else joins in — as they Snapchat it. A third drink, “The Dracarys,” comes garnished with a tiny
Photograph: Drink Company
plastic dragon figurine. That drink was placed before one woman sitting at the bar who took a picture of it for Snapchat and captioned it: “I came here just to steal this dragon.”
of names on an iPad for the 45-minute wait. The throne itself was blocked off with the kind of barriers used to control airport lines. One woman took her throne photo in a tangled-up yoga pose, her foot behind her head. A man Customers order specialty cocktails in stood behind it and rested his chin on one of the pop-up’s bar areas. Back a sword, as if it was slitting his throat. at the throne, Dunne was taking a list “Some guy yesterday came wearing a
huge cloak,” Dunne said. “He sat there and got drunk and let people borrow the cloak” for their photos. Brown said that the iPad system could eventually be used to manage the line outside the bar — not a long one on this particular night, but people have been known to wait three hours for his pop-ups. If only there were FastPass, like at Disney.
Photograph: Drink Company
SINGLE ESTATE BLENDS PRODUCED IN SMALL BATCHES DOUBLE DISTILLED for unique character and a smoother taste. Every step of the process is strictly supervised by our Maestro Tequilero â€“ from the seeding and harvesting of the agave to the approval and labeling of each bottle with the signature of the Maestro.
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