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Scandinavian Spirits

  • Museum of Food and Drink 62 Bayard Street Brooklyn, NY, 11222 United States (map)

Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Iceland share a spirited history of drinking traditions—most notably around aquavit. At Scandinavian Spirits, Tova Brandt, curator at the Museum of Danish America, will examine the cultural history of this beverage, explore the drinking traditions now common in Scandinavian-American communities, and answer questions like “What IS aquavit, anyway?” and “How do you ‘skål’ correctly?” 

Through stories, images, and even a song or two, learn about the world of Scandinavian spirits and the traditions that have grown up around them. Sample the unique flavors of the spirits throughout Tova's talk followed by a modern acquavit cocktail from Jacob Grier and bites of the Nordic-inspired foods from Smörgås Chef that compliment these beverages. 


About Scandinavia House

Scandinavia House was created by the American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF) to promote the artistic and intellectual influence of the Nordic countries: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. As the leading center for Nordic culture in the United States, Scandinavia House offers programs that illustrate and illuminate the culture and life of the Nordic countries. The diverse programs include exhibitions, film series, concerts and other performances, readings, lectures, language courses, and activities for kids and families. Designed by the internationally renowned Polshek Partnership Architects and inaugurated in October 2000, Scandinavia House has welcomed over 2 million visitors.


About Tova Brandt

Tova Brandt works as the Albert Ravenholt Curator of Danish-American Culture at the Museum of Danish America in Elk Horn, Iowa. From 2001 to 2009, she was a curator for Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in Decorah, Iowa. In her current position, Tova is responsible for the Museum of Danish America’s exhibitions and public programs. She curated the national traveling exhibition “Skål! Scandinavian Spirits” and edited the accompanying catalog.  


About Jacob Grier

Jacob Grier is the founder of Aquavit Week and educates bartenders and consumers about the spirit for Linie and Aalborg throughout the United States. His first book, Cocktails on Tap, is the definitive resource on making cocktails with beer. His writing has appeared in Slate, The Atlantic, Reason, Imbibe, and many other publications. He lives in Portland, Oregon, and also accepts either credit or blame for popularizing the bone luge.

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About Arcus

Arcus is the world’s biggest producer of Aquavit. Linie is the oldest Aquavit brand in the world and also one of the oldest existing brands in Norway, dating back to 1805. Aalborg is the biggest spirits brand in Denmark and is made from original recipes, dating back to 1846.


Our Aquavits cover the original Nordic traditions, with clear Aquavits from the Danish tradition, mild organic Aquavits from the Swedish tradition, and cask matured Aquavits from the Norwegian tradition. Leading the World of Aquavit comes with the responsibility to innovate, while keeping tradition and authenticity at the heart of our efforts. S KÅL!


About Brennivin America

From our home in Jackson Hole we're the exclusive importers of Brennivin—The Original Icelandic Spirit. Find Brennivin at your favorite bar, restaurant, liquor store, and other select establishments across these United States—we're starting small and growing fast. Be a good Viking – always drink responsibly.

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About Rowhouse Spirits

Rowhouse Spirits is a tiny artisan distillery in Pennsylvania that produces very small batch Gin and other herbal spirits, including their Nordic Akvavit.


About Smörgås Chef

Smörgås Chef is one of the most recognized Scandinavian and Nordic restaurants in New York City. Smörgås is proud to serve a fresh and unique menu based on the principles of "New Nordic Cuisine," using local, sustainable, and all-natural ingredients. Smörgås also owns and operates a 150-acre farm in the Catskills. 


This program is part of Feasts and Festivals, a program series that examines food and drink’s central role in celebrations, ceremonies, and rituals across the globe. For more information, click here.

*Ticket Refund Policy: Full refund with 48 hours notice, 50% refund with 24 hours notice, and no refund with less than 24 hours notice.

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