Manhattan, NY, January 16, 2016 --(PR.com
)-- An FBI agent and an Actor walk into a bar… no wait, they opened a bar. In fact, they’re now opening their second location. That’s right, former Special Agent Don Borelli, and actor, writer, producer Robert La France have teamed up to create their newest Arts and Crafts Be at 1135 Amsterdam Avenue, across the street from the entrance to Columbia University. The official Grand Opening is Wednesday, January 20th, with the doors opening at 5pm.
What seems like an odd couple actually turns out to be an effective partnership, with both men sharing a passion for the fine arts and a love of craft beer. Don and Robert met at a midtown bar a few years ago over a pint of Lagunitas India Pale Ale. It was months before either of them had any idea of each other’s previous lives. Borelli is a former FBI executive with a distinguished 25-year career in national security and law enforcement. “I’m still passionate about national security issues, but I also love a good IPA,” says Don. La France is an award-winning food writer, Theatre producer and actor. “The glamorous life of an actor means I’ve worked in restaurants most of my adult life,” says Robert with a smile on his face. “While I had a good amount of success on stage, I usually found myself behind a bar or waiting tables between gigs.”
Over the past six months, Robert, Don, and their newest partner, Phil Cunningham, have transformed the space, formerly known as Camille’s Trattoria, into Arts and Crafts Beer Parlor-SoHa. Arts and Crafts Beer Parlor (ACBP) is not your typical beer joint or sports bar. Rather, ACBP is the antithesis of a sports bar: an extension of your living room - a place to entertain guests with quality conversation in a warm atmosphere over a pint of great Craft Beer or a glass of fine wine. It is a cultural center where the art adorning the walls changes as frequently as the 24 beers on tap. Designed by architect Jorge Arias, a Columbia Graduate, the space conception and millwork details take us back to the days of the Arts and Crafts movement. From the hand-crafted wooden table tops and fireplace mantle, to the Frank Lloyd Wright and Tiffany bronze light fixtures, to the classic Bradbury & Bradbury wallpaper; every element in the space was designed to create an elegant and highly distinctive atmosphere. “As an architect, I wanted to create a space true to the iconic style of the movement. And as an artist, I wanted to create a highly flexible, functional, and warm art gallery space,” said Arias.
While the main focus is craft beer, you won’t leave hungry. ACBP will feature an expanded menu of “comfort food for beer.” Items such as a meatball boat, pesto speck flatbread, or pork belly pops will compliment the 24 rotating beers on draft, fine wines by the glass, and delicious ciders.
The first artist on exhibit is Sean Bowen whose works can be described as a cross between Matisse and Picasso with a modern approach. His work possesses a unique style and figurative quality of its own, creating expression through mood, color and image. He primarily works in acrylic or oil stick, but it is not unusual for him to incorporate a "mixed media" approach. “Artist Night Meet and Greet” will be held the evening of February 2nd.
Arts and Crafts Beer Parlor will open daily at noon, and is located at 1135 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10025. For more information visit their website, Facebook or Twitter.