“Well, What Do You Like…?”

A couple friends of mine took me to a new restaurant called Calypso Cay’s in the Brewerton area of Syracuse. Apparently in the daytime it has a view of the lake (which lake, I’m not exactly sure), and it has a pretty nice little set up with a large dining area and nice wooden bar. It still looks a bit on the new end of the spectrum.

We sat down to eat, and the bartender (who I’m guessing is also the owner, heckuva nice guy) asks if we’d like anything to drink. I asked him if he had a beer list. He replied, “Well, what do you like?” He said it in a manner that suggested, “Hey whatever you like, I have it.”

This “What Do You Like?” scenario has always been a minor pet peeve of mine, because it puts me in a weird position. On one hand, I don’t want to play that beer-asshole who scoffs when they really only have Blue/Blue Light/Coors Light/Bud/Bud Light/Miller/Miller High Life.

On the other hand, I feel slightly offended (because I’m an insecure prick, I suppose) when the bartender has a decent selection and begins explaining the beer to me. So he might say, “We have Magic Hat #9, which is a pale ale with an apricot flavor.” My mom and dad raised me to nod my head and say “Mm, that sounds interesting,” even though I’ve actually had it a thousand times.

I must have looked a bit slack-jawed, because the owner/bartender sort of took the cue and said, “Well, we have Guinness on draft, Amstel, [a couple beers I can’t remember]…. uh… and Spaten Oktoberfest.”

At this point he kind of trailed off, and I figured this was where he had reached the end of the list.

So I figured, hey, I haven’t had a Spaten Oktoberfest in a while, so I ordered one. When it came, it was awfully funky and with what appeared to be a stale malt. I am not one to complain so I tried to choke it down. However, when the barkeep came over and asked me how it was, I couldn’t bring myself to lie.

“It tastes a little…. old,” I said in my most apologetic voice. He said, “Well it’s about 2 months old but I won’t charge you for it.” Of course I said no no no, I don’t mind paying for it, no problem, etc. (He did end up taking it off the bill; wonderful guy, I’m going back to this place.)

He finally brought the menus over, and I checked to see if it had a beer menu. Sure enough, it did. I looked it over to see if it had anything better than Spaten Oktoberfest; sure enough, it did. It had Sierra Nevada (a safe, but satisfying choice) and Anchor Liberty Ale. By this time, I felt guilty but asked for a Sierra anyway. I just wished he had given me the beer list from the get-go.


~ by William H on February 27, 2009.

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