Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Art of Craft Beers

They say that making a craft beer takes a certain kind of artistry, blending the subtle sweetness of malts with the bitter balance of hops. Add to this a diversity of brewing techniques, and you get a true work of art in a bottle, ready for consumption from the discerning connoisseur (and people that just plain like beer!). But while sipping a frosty craft beer like Fire Island Beer Company’s Lighthouse Ale, have you ever taken the time to look at the artwork on the bottle?

In a very special show entitled “Design, Drink and Be Merry: The Craft Brew Art Movement,” selected craft breweries will have the opportunity to showcase the imaginative and creative artwork that goes into their visual identity at the GoggleWorks Center for the Arts. Joining the show this year is the artwork from Fire Island Beer Company’s Lighthouse Ale. This design features the signature Fire Island Lighthouse in the background with a deer somewhat whimsically drifting along the foreground in a boat. The lighthouse depicted on the label is the well known structure standing at the tip of southern end of Fire Island, which in days gone by, welcomed immigrant ships as they came within reach of America. The deer was chosen as a logical ambassador of Fire Island Beer’s Lighthouse Ale due to their sizable population throughout the island’s natural landscape. And the boat? Well, why not? Can’t deer ride in boats?

A sampling of several other craft brewers participating this year event includes visual art from the Erie Brewing Company, with historical imagery set in Western Pennsylvania and Canada, the Atwater Block Brewery, featuring depictions of Nordic motifs and devilettes, and the East End Brewing Company, with a madcap design of a cowboy resembling a recent Republican president.

Each of these designs will be reprinted in large frames, so attendees of the show won’t have to worry about squinting at a tiny label on a bottle of beer. However, if you would like to check out the artwork in its native state, never fear, because beer from Fire Island Beer Company and each of the other featured craft brewers will be offered at a beer tasting event during the showing.

Photo by Michael Mastroianni

This year’s Design, Drink and Be Merry exhibition will be held on Saturday, June 27th at 5 p.m. at the GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in Reading, Pennsylvania. Tickets can be purchased for $20 in advance and $25 at the door. For more information, please call 610.374.4600 or visit the event website at: http://www.designdrinkandbemerry.com/ .

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