Sunday, March 6, 2011

Alpine Village: An Art Review

Alpine Village
An Art Review

Take the 110 South towards TAM, exit at Torrance Boulevard.

What’s the can’t miss banner at the bottom of the off-ramp?

“Alpine Village.”

There’s also some accompanying text about a $19.95 champagne brunch, or something like that.

Here’s the web buzz on the Village.

And the joint’s own website, decorated pre-St.Patrick’s day with shamrocks, lays claim to being home to both Oktoberfest and weekly salsa classes. Eurozone, baby.

That Alpine sign got WIR thinking about food and the world’s great museums….

Go to the Met in New York and you’ll sit on those concrete front steps eating a hot dog or a pretzel from a cart. (Alas, health department, no more potato knishes?)

Go to the National Gallery in D.C. and sit in the European sophisticate espresso bar / fruit tart café, near where the water pours down.

As noted here, go to the Ufizzi and consume a flavor of gelato for each block along the way.

The Getty has a decent, affordable cafeteria with those killer sunset ocean views, too. Get the soup and one of those airplane bottles of wine, right?

We’ll stop here for the moment, but a question hangs…

Why is it that areas around art galleries tend to be lousy with restaurants, but museums tend to have push carts, food trucks, or their own joints?

Is it zoning? Size? Fear that if my man TiGeorges’ Chicken restaurant catches fire it’ll burn down The Temple of Dendur?

Or is it is simple as that museums are their own destination – often for tourists and school kids? Whereas high end galleries cater to the wealthy who can afford to pay for a fine meal to go along with the Rauschenberg they just acquired?

Or that to visit a gallery is free, while a museum trip for a couple or family of four can bust the billfold, leaving little left over except to go to the McDonald’s that is shamefully incorporated into the Air & Space Museum in D.C., or the California Science Center in L.A.’s Exposition Park?

(On second thought, fast food at science and technology museums does make sense.)

Anyway, the Torrance Civic Center has vending machines; TAM has a staff break room.

Here’s to Alpine Village opening an annex on the sculpture patio.