Strange Bedfellows: Gaudí In-Spired

Brooke Newberry
(Photo: )

Examining architecture is about embracing fixed structures frozen in time that soundly and exuberantly define time, place and emotion.  We consider Antoni Gaudi, the Catalan architect, designer and initiator of Catalan Modernism.

In our new weekly feature, The Savory Food Editor Brooke Newberry and Cocktail Editor Pete Capella will give their inspired recommendations based on three works by the same artist. This week, we compiled three of Gaudi’s architectural masterpieces to enkindle food and drink recs for each structure.

 

Casa Batlló

Brooke’s Food Rec: Gaudi’s highly individualistic skull-and-bones renovation of this Catalonia family home mixes carcass-like visceral lines with colorful mosaic. Try some sautéed rainbow chard with garlic, lemons and pine nuts. Eclectic “rainbow chard” is actually a mix of red chard, Swiss chard and golden chard, and therefore has a unique mix of flavors sold in one bunch: earthiness, slight bitterness and tempered nuttiness. Much like the aesthetic of the Battlo, the texture of the chard’s stalks remains grainy and stark while the colors of the chard seemingly balance any edge or bitterness.

Pete’s Drink Rec: This building is both haunting and playful at the same time. It is colorful and imaginative all while being called the “House of Bones.” I love the fact that it has no straight lines anywhere on the building. It reminds me of something straight out of the twisted yet wondrous mind of Tim Burton. Nothing says fun yet evil like a Death in the Afternoon. Take 1.5 oz of absinthe and jigger into a champagne glass, then fill the glass with chilled champagne. Every building will look like a Gaudi after a few of these cocktails.

 

Sagrada Família

Brooke’s Food Rec: Walk up to the Basilica and you kind of feel like you’re about to enter Queen Frostine’s palace from Candy Land. The strange fluidity and rough, fervid textures of the Sagrada’s lower arches reminds me of dessert. Yep, chocolate mudslide pie to be exact. Think a creamy, smooth interior underneath a layer of nuts, cookie crumbs and and caramel.

Pete’s Drink Rec: This was Gaudi’s interpretation of gothic architecture taken to an extreme. To me the entire building, in all of its intricate detail, looks like it is melting. Maybe a testament to the power of faith with so much structure despite the chaos around it, or maybe just because Gaudi was a mad genius. The texture of the building is my inspiration to suggest a Sherry Flip. The presence of a whole egg in the recipe lends the drink the sort of thickness that is embodied by the building, and the complexity of the sherry wine reflects the details of the structure.

Sherry Flip Recipe

  • 1 1/2 oz Cream Sherry
  • 2 tsp Light Cream
  • 1 tsp Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Whole Egg
  • Garnish with Nutmeg

Shake all ingredients 52 times with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Shave fresh nutmeg on top for garnish.

 

Artigas Gardens

Brooke’s Food Rec: Rocks are piled and placed in this whimsically entertaining and curvaceous bridge formation that gives the entire park a playful yet elemental feel. Structured nature makes me think of grass fed beef jerky. One simple ingredient (beef) is dehydrated and sold in fun little packages for our chewing pleasure.  

Pete’s Drink Rec: These gardens are prototypical of Gaudi’s work, incorporating the surroundings into the structures. It is all so welcoming and gives a sense of movement throughout. But I can’t get past the fact that it looks exactly like The Shire from the Lord of the Rings movies. Structures of stone and wood built directly into the landscape keeps everything native and natural. This is why I would drink a bottle of Bison Brew Organic Hop Cuvée. Crisp and citrusy with a pine-like bitterness, these suds come from a certified fully organic brewery that is also a certified B corp (meaning they are deemed a socially and environmentally responsible company).

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