Wednesday 4/6 – Yard House
The flight from Chicago to Phoenix is long and I’m missing home. Phoenix is clearly not a taxi city and I do not have a car. The view from my room looks out to a cluster of restaurants and open air shopping. Well feet, it’s just you and me again. Wandering through the shopping area I find a collection of tourist restaurants and nothing is jumping out at me. The most promising place is simply boasting good food and the world’s largest selection of draft beers.
My usual spot at the bar – next to the register or staging area. I always like to chat with my bartender and this one knows his beer. After reviewing the beer list (impressive 130 taps) I notice there are pages and pages of ales but none seem to have any mention of abbeys, the stout list is only 4 long and the porter only 1. Don’t get me wrong, the select few they have are wonderful (Breckenridge Vanilla, Lefthand Milk Stout etc), but I wanted to try something new.
The bartender seems grateful for the challenge and offers a sample of 2 not appearing on the menu, an oatmeal stout and an imperial stout. I’m thrilled – haven’t tried either and both are wonderfully dark and aromatic. I chose the imperial stout named KGB by Widmer. Toasty with lots of coffee and cocoa I’m thrilled to the point of pulling out my phone to read more about the beer.
In the midst of my beervana I am joined at the bar by two businessmen. When asked what they would like to drink Businessman #1 gets a deer in headlights look and says “Wow so much to choose from, uh, I dunno, give me a Bud”. The bartender and I share a look if disappointment. His associate shakes his head and orders an Arrogant Bastard from Stone (well done good sir!)
I spend the next half hour working my way through some fantastic chicken nachos loaded with fresh pico, tomatoes, beans, cheese, guac etc. all the while texting my husband and friend about the travesty unfolding next to me. Ok time to flip the judgmental mirror. I’m upset because this man wasted the opportunity to try 129 other taps because he panicked and went with what he knew would be safe. So did I, in a way. Yes I tried a beer I hadn’t had before but it was from a family of beers that I know I like – my safety zone. I had completely dismissed an entire page of IPAs that are from some up and coming breweries. IPAs are very popular right now, there must be a reason and I am going to find out why.
Tonight I will return to the Yard House www.yardhouse.com, take my place at the bar and ask my faithful bartender to recommend an IPA. What’s the worst that happens? If I don’t like it at least I’m not stuck with a six-pack.
Until we eat again,