Do you fancy a refreshing sip of South Korean poo wine? How about Icelandic sheep dung smoked whale testicle beer? No? Maybe a dash of spit-fermented wine is more to your taste? We'll let you decide because these drinks, and more, are part of a new exhibition at the Disgusting Food Museum in Sweden. Bottoms up!
A new three-month alcohol exhibition has launched at the Disgusting Food Museum in Malmö for adventurous visitors. Along with the concoctions listed above, bizarre tipples on display include a Soviet-era surrogate alcohol and a beer that's sold in a taxidermied squirrel. Yikes! Many of the drinks on display are no longer associated with the countries they were created in, such as an ancient Korean beverage made from fermented faeces and rice which was once used for medicinal purposes. There's also a Ugandan gin made from fermented bananas and a spit-fermented corn meal beer from Peru.
The museum launched in 2018 showcasing unusual food delicacies from around the world, most of which can be an acquired taste for those not familiar with the ingredients. At the food exhibition, visitors can view, smell and even taste dishes like Hákarl, an Icelandic treat that consists of a plate of fermented shark, which Anthony Bourdain once referred to as "the single worst, most disgusting and terrible-tasting thing" he had ever eaten; durain, a fruit from Southeast Asia known for its repugnant smell, and Australia's favorite toast spread, Vegemite, among others.
The idea behind the exhibition is to challenge our perception of taste. Something that appears "disgusting" in one culture can be a delicacy in another. Usually it comes down to cultural subjectivity and the flavors we've been brought up with. But what we like isn't set in stone. Tastebuds evolve. With the drinks exhibition the aim is similar but museum director Andreas Ahrens also wants guests to try and get to the bottom of that burning question: why do humans like to get drunk?
"People are very desperate to get drunk around the world," Ahrens told AP. "So whenever we find ourselves in a situation where there is no alcohol, we get quite inventive and we’ve been doing this for millennia."
The exhibition launched on September 5 and will run for three months. Tickets are priced from 185kr (€17/£16) for adults and 50kr (€5/£4) for children. Due to COVID restrictions, the museum is only open on Saturdays and Sundays for now. For more information, see here.
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