Due to a lack of time and creativity, I'm presenting this week's update in Q&A format.
1. What's that new bravado I'm sensing behind your bar (does Mick Jagger work here now)?:
That's not Mick Jagger's signature cock strut you're seeing. That's Adam's award-winning cocktologist strut. Adam's had quite the week. Last Sunday evening, he won first place in the "Secret Tiki Jet Pilot Competition," which earned him not only the respect of the top tiki-philes in this city, but an amazing trophy that exceeds two feet in length and features a solar-powered hula dancer on its base.* Then, this morning, he was named by Pittsburgh Magazine as one of the six "brainiest bar-tenders" in the city, earning recognition for his boundary-pushing cocktails. Additionally Lucky the Painproof Man, who has now been featured on three of our Saturday cocktail nights (with many more to come), was also on the list, giving the IBC 2 of the 6 brainiest bartenders in Pittsburgh. For a "beer bar," that's pretty damn impressive, and we couldn't be more proud of Adam and what he's done with our cocktail program. Come visit Adam this Saturday for a celebratory drink.
2. How Can I Help Good People Help a Great South African Neighborhood (and have a great time doing it)?
That's easy: come to the Independent on Friday, meet Jody DiPerna and Linda Dukess, learn about Kliptown, South Africa, learn what they're going to do to help Kliptown, donate $10 or more, get a free beer from us as recognition of your awesomeness. The Kliptown Photography Project (http://www.kliptownphotography.com/) is bringing digital photography to the people of Kliptown with the intention of empowering its youth. Kliptown is poor -- unimaginably poor, in fact. Jody and Linda are great people who visited Kliptown several years ago and were unable to leave without promising to do something. When they returned tot he States, they started the Kliptown Photo Project. We're going to do our small part to help by giving away some free beer to help entice your donations. Additionally, we're going to celebrate South Africa that evening, with a special South African food menu and South African music. It's going to be a great evening, and a party with a purpose. Please join us.
3. Where are those church pews and tables that were uncomfortable and made me feel fat after 5 beers and a plate of fries?
They're gone. We knew you didn't like them. We didn't either. Changes had to come. We don't just arbitrarily stay the course in the face of overwhelming evidence that the course sucks. This isn't the Bush Administration.
4. Whoa, those tables and chairs out front -- can we sit in them?
Yes. Well, probably. We should have our outdoor seating permit from the City this afternoon. Once we do, we open our "beer garden."**
5. Can we expect that you will throw a Big Lebowski theme night in the relatively near future?
Does the pope s%*t in the woods?
6. Is there a better time to drink beer in Pittsburgh?
No. With the opening of the Brew Gentlemen in Braddock and Grist House in Millvale, the list of beers brewed locally just keeps getting better and better. That makes our job easier (and our beer list better). We have the Brew Gents on tap now, and we should have Grist House by week's end. But, just because you can get them here, don't forget to make it down to those two wonderful brew houses. Both of those breweries are owned and operated by young folks who have put a lot of time and effort into perfecting their spaces and their systems. And both of them have brought new energy to neighborhoods that needed a pick-me-up. Go visit them when you can slip away. Meet the brewers. Buy some growlers. Help keep pushing the local craft beer scene forward by buying local whenever you possibly can; whether at our bar or at the breweries themselves.
* She's mechanical -- not a very small, solar powered human. I know, right? It confused me at first too.
** It's a sidewalk, dude. But, it's a very pleasant sidewalk indeed.