What Candles Bring to A Table

22. Dec 2016

Here at Alusi we are partial to candles. As the company behind an innovative candle line such as this one, we are keen to follow the trajectory of this age-old tradition. In our blog we may probe other subjects, such as the growing-in-popularity beer and yoga pairing, but we are just as eager as ever to know what’s happening in the world of candles.

Ava-and-Soma---Dinner-Table

The year’s end is near and, as per the season’s tradition, many people are travelling to reunite with their family members and loved ones. For many others, though, holidays are simply a good time to go away and see what else is out there. Eating out is one of those indulgences that people look forward to when they travel. And many, ma-a-any restaurants and pubs, and bars, and lounges, and what have you, make candles a part of their interior design.

Berners
Image via Independent

In many places you’ll see humble yet charming tealights or plain candlesticks in discreet candle holders that aren’t trying to make a statement. And really, when a dining room is so beautiful that it’s near-overwhelming (here’s looking at you, Berners Tavern of London), or when the décor itself is all the character that’s needed (Giger Museum Bar in Gruyères fits the profile), modest candles with their little pools of light are plenty.

But then, there are dining establishments where candles are accorded a more prominent role in tuning the ambiance to a desired pitch, which is after all one of the main ingredients for creating a lasting impression with patrons.

Sjatte Tunnan
Image courtesy of Mystery Walks

One such place is in Stockholm. If the capital of Sweden happens to be your next travel destination, presumably you mean to visit Gamla Stan, the Old Town. That is where you’ll find Sjatte Tunnan, a restaurant where a medieval theme reigns supreme. Hidden underground, the only light that visitors get to enjoy in this place comes from candles (the blue light of a POS unit does not count!). Just as you descend the stairs leading into the cavernous space, you will behold the sight of a great wax mound formed by many years of candles burning and dripping with abandon. Perfectly simple as an idea, and none too medieval in and of itself, this grandiose mess made of candle drippings helps the rest of the interior to set you off on a journey to a different time.

And speaking of cavernous, there is a restaurant for which the word is not just a poetic epithet but a fair and literal descriptive term. Located in Playa del Carmen, a small town in the Riviera Maya, Alux Restaurant and Bar is tucked inside a stunning natural cave. But to have a cave’s magnificent rock formations as the defining element of its interior design, to the exclusion of candles, wouldn’t fully enhance the dining experience. The restaurant’s proprietors must have thought the same, which is why guests can enjoy their drink amidst the stalactites and stalagmites of a vault illuminated by candle light.

Alux
Image courtesy of WebUrbanist

Yet another restaurant where candles are a glorious presence is Marseille’s La Tasca. Multiple taper candles burn all around the place, in singles at each table and in large groupings throughout the restaurant. Dripping wax is allowed to collect and shape into impressive and grotesque elements of the décor. You could expect a rather gothic scene as a result, but in reality the restaurant is known as a boisterous and festive place.

La Tasca
Image courtesy of RestoClub

Candles may no longer be simply a practical item, but there is no sign of them going out – not just yet. Perhaps it’s because of our primordial affinity for open fire that we still make sure candles are a part of many of our rituals and activities.

Luna - Holiday Hosting


In the Spirit of Relaxation – the Yoga and Beer Combination

26. Oct 2016

“…and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done.” Whether you put stock in the biblical scriptures or your belief system has different roots, the idea of taking a break now and then is pretty universal. When we get low on resources, it’s time to rebuild and recover.

Work-Relax-balance-01

When it comes to relaxation, some of us resort to the old reliable combo of a heady drink and gay company. Others welcome the opportunity to try something different and can end up having to twist and turn their bodies into peculiar configurations (and if you guessed that we’re talking about yoga, you’re right). But this is 2016, when thinking outside the box is expected, which is why you may want to lower those eyebrows that most likely went up at the sight of the heading above. You can probably register for one of these yoga and beer sessions at a brewery somewhere near you.

Raised-Eyebrows-01

The reality is that we need our share of the comfortable and habitual, and we are not quite ready to part ways with many stereotypes and gender associations. For reasons such as these, yoga classrooms are largely filled with women, and breweries are still considered mainly the realm of men. By now yoga instructors probably deserve a special mention in dictionary entries for the term “friendly,” but no amount of friendliness in and of itself can convince certain men that yoga is just as suitable and beneficial for them as for women. And even though plenty of women drink beer, and enjoy it, the prevailing idea is still that breweries are where men head while women are sort of welcome to tag along. Enter a yoga class hosted at a brewery, and these preconceptions get muddled up enough for people to put aside their reservations.

The breweries organizing these peculiar sessions tend to adopt a sensible enough approach. Because it is expected that this kind of event is likely to attract people with little prior yoga experience, it’s usually a beginner-level class followed by a beer or even a taster flight included in the price. And when we say “sensible,” we mean that we don’t see anything particularly wrong with this sequence of events. First, you practice some balancing poses and then you grab a beer, to help yourself with maintaining a healthy balance in life, as it were.

Baby-Yoga-01

Some might have a hard time blessing this union. After all, yoga is presumably what you do when you actively care about your health and beer is what you drink in a dismissive gesture towards this concern. But think of a time when you just tried something new and genuinely enjoyed venturing into the unknown. At moments like this it’s natural to feel exhilarated and eager to share your impressions with others. So, there you are, armed with a refreshing beverage and the knowledge that you are among people who have at least one thing in common with you – either a liking for beer or a fondness for yoga. What’s left to do but strike up a conversation with a fellow budding yogi or a craft beer enthusiast?

When all is said and done, we agree that it is important to practice some form of physical exercise. Yet while some people have an enviable sense of self-discipline to help them stick to their healthy habits, others find it easier to sign up for a class that promises some fun. Even those who may be struggling to see the appeal of yoga can look forward to a rewarding pint and a bit of socializing at the end of a class that takes place at a brewery.

Beer-Flight-01

1 2 3 19