Retro boozemakers Art in the Age prep a top-secret fifth liquor

The Old City-based outfit doesn't just mix flavors—it mixes old-fashioned authenticity with 21st-century product savvy.

By Jared Axelrod
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 3 | Posted Sep. 25, 2013

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The new old-school: Greenbar Distillery, the organic facility where Art in the Age liquor is made.

Photo by J.R. Blackwell

“Integrity is also a luxury,” Grasse suggests. Art in the Age products, he notes, are expensive because they cost a lot of money to make. “We should be comfortable spending money to make sure the craft is correct. People are willing to buy the story and go on a journey with you, if you’re being sincere. People are willing to go the extra length for something unusual.”

It’s not uncommon these days to view older ways of life as incompatible with the present. Technocrats sneer at how things used to be done as increasingly irrelevant to the digital age; meanwhile, others lament that society has lost some precious je ne sais quoi in our rush to the future. But for Grasse, Khosrovian and the people who work with them, those either/or perspectives aren’t just reductive but inconceivable. They prefer, rather, to carry their history with them into the future with each new bottle they create.

I’m not surprised, then, that when Grasse describes his ideal custome, it’s someone who does the same: “I want the bearded Civil War enthusiast to get Root, to fall in love with the story, and then bring it to his friends.”

Follow Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction’s blog at artintheage.com.

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1. Anonymous said... on Sep 25, 2013 at 11:12AM

“Its nice to see that the Weekly is now doing advertorial.
Are you kidding me with this article?? Anyone who has lived in this city for more than 5 years know Steve Grasse made his money working for big tobacco- for 20 YEARS!!! Not to mention, burning 100's of creative people in the process. Did this writer do any homework or did he just pull directly from a press release?? A Ridiculous article and a fine example of how the alt weeklies are dying a weak death.”

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2. PW said... on Sep 25, 2013 at 11:50AM

“Yes, Anonymous, god forbid we discuss what Grasse is doing right now without rehashing the long feature story about his career that PW years ago already reported and published.”

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3. ItalianMktRes said... on Sep 26, 2013 at 01:23PM

“Interested in his comment about how he wouldn't use PA water due to fracking. Are the fracking byproducts in the Philly reservoir/water supply? I thought it was mostly happening in Central and Western PA?”

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