Friday, 20 June 2014

Reading Minds at the Bar


I'm at the bar in one of our local pubs with E who is sitting at a table.  The pub is early Friday night busy, which is just steady. There is no wait at the bar, desultory though the service is.  The order is a simple one.  A pint of MPA for me and a half of Original for E. My pint is poured and the barman reaches behind him to the shelf where the half pint glasses are stored.  I watch with interest.  Watching barstaff is one of my little hobbies.  Did I tell you I was trained by an expert?  Yes I think I did. Once or twice.  You never forget good habits if they are instilled in you from an early age. I've probably mentioned that too I suppose.

The barman clutches a glass.  He hesitates and I watch his mind wrestling with itself.  I know what's afoot instantly.  The glass is warm from the glasswasher.  I know what he is thinking.  He internalises the problem instantly and I see him putting the arguments to himself.  "This glass is hot.  Should I find another or just serve in it anyway ?" will be the gist.  The decision is made more or less at once. Inside his head he silently says "Fuck it".  The half is served in a warm glass, which I detect immediately by the simple expedient of putting my paw round it.  "You made the wrong decision there" I say.  The barman looks at me slightly uncomfortably.  "We both know that glass was too warm for the beer don't we?" I add. He says nothing, but pours the beer away, checks for a cold glass and serves me the beer.  I pay and say no more.

It cost JW Lees a half pint of beer though.  Will the lesson be learned?  I am not so sure.

Lees Golden Original Lager is an excellent beer.  I had a few pints of it (elsewhere) last night.  Tremendous stuff really.  Try it if you have the chance.

6 comments:

Cooking Lager said...

a regular piss artist Derren Brown, you mate. Do any other tricks?

Tandleman said...

Who?

RedNev said...

Wow! Mystic Tandle!

Curmudgeon said...

You also got a half that was more pulled through, so a double win ;-)

Professor Pie-Tin said...


That's why I like drinking beer in the US.
In 40-odd years of going there I've never had either a warm beer or a warm glass.
We still have a lot to learn from the Yankeedoodles about good service - we could start by introducing tipping people for it.

Ben Viveur said...

I'm not old enough to have been drinking in the US for 40 years, but I've drunk beer in at least 40 different states, and found that cask beer is served far too warm for my liking more often than not.

Nowt to do with hot glasses, mind - they just seem to think that it should be room temperature, regardless of the style of beer and the ambient temperature outside.

Things have improved over the last decade though.