Thursday, May 27, 2010

Mc Coys Public House

After so many years in the art world, where pretty much everyone is an arrogant, up-tight competitive asshole, I am continually amazed at the open, genuine, giving and caring nature of pretty much everyone in the food industry. From the very beginning of The Foodie Project I have been welcomed behind the scenes of great restaurants, merchants, artisans, chefs and farmers. Perhaps in the world of food there is a deep understanding between its practitioners that food binds us together, brings us great joy and nourishes our bodies, minds, our souls and our communities. Perhaps this understanding of our interconnectedness breeds a more welcoming mentality and a more authentic joy in the act of sharing (food, time, information, enthusiasm, etc.).

And so it was this past week when I was invited behind the scenes of McCoys Public House in Westport, Kansas City, Missouri with the great brew master Keith. Not only did Keith spend the entire morning guiding me around the brewery and restaurant, he filled the time with great conversation, continual bits of knowledge and information on the process of brewing beer and the physical activity he was engaged in at each step along the way. From the beginning I could sense that this brewery was different than others I had photographed. Small and intimate rather than sprawling and cold, automated by physical effort and a large rowing oar rather than a touch-screen computer panel and rather than a disconnect with the product, Keith physically interacted with the process at every phase from the unloading of the 50lbs bags of various barley to making sure the drains were working out at the bar in the restaurant.

It is this type of connection, this sense of pride in ones offerings to the community and this kind of delicious beer that keeps me motivated to continue with the Foodie Project and continue meeting passionate artisans like Keith – and of course sampling their wares along the way.  Thanks to everyone at McCoys for the great time, great food and amazing beer.

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