I love "living history" and find it to be one of the most personal ways to engage with, and be inspired by, history. How better to connect with the people of the past than to recreate how they lived on the most basic level? What they ate, what they drank, the occupations they had, the clothing they wore. As I have mentioned in prior blog posts, I have a passion for looking at history through a holistic anthropological lens, and I love that museums are taking initiatives to do more of that in their public programs. I have also stressed the importance of engaging with audiences on their level - most people are not experts in history or art. Most prospective audiences are average joes, and what average joe doesn't love to crack open a cold one with friends!?
The Field Museum has worked with Off Color Brewing to create specialty beers that reflect their collections, and this week they are releasing a new beer "QingMing" at a special event at the Field. This beer will reflect the brewers take on brewing techniques and ingredients that would have been apparent in the Zhou Dynasty, and as visitors explore actual artifacts of this time period - they can get their sense of taste engaged as well.
I love history, I love beer, who will I see there?!
QingMing is a beer inspired by artifacts discovered during archeological digs in Taixi and a Changzikou tomb dating from the Late Shang/Western Zhou Dynasties circa 1600-722 bce. Many of the ingredients and flavorings being used at the time are not currently legal to use in beer production, so Off Color Brewing has created an amalgam based on the lessons learned from both archaeological sites.