Thursday, November 12, 2015

Bitter Waitress

I've never met a bitter waitress.

Sure, I have been served by an impatient waiter, a waitress who has had a bad day and isn't all smiles, but bitter? Never.

If you're going to have a bad attitude, serving the public is not your calling.

For the most part, I've had decent servers. I've been lucky enough to have outstanding servers. I even had a regular server, who knew my name, knew what I wanted, would bring me my first drink, already in hand, when she came to my table to greet me. She would always return with a fresh drink, just as I was finishing the last one. Her deliveries would continue until, on her latest visit, I would point to that newly arrived glass and say, "this is my last one."

I loved her.

Not that puppy love, the kind where you look desperate, longing for love and attention, to have those feelings requited. I loved her, but rarely thought of her outside of the context of the restaurant that I frequented.

I would ask her to marry me every time I showed up and took my usual table. She would say no, knowing that I wasn't serious, though she would occasionally respond with a, "careful: one of these days, I might say 'yes.'"

I loved her like a good friend. She was somebody with whom I cared, would watch out for. When I think of favourite servers, she has always been right at the top.

I also tipped her very well. She was worth it.

So no, I have never met a bitter waitress. Until now.
Bitter Waitress Black IPA (6.5% ABV)
Shillow Beer Company
Oakville, ON
Appearance: deep walnut-brown with a creamy, dark-taupe head that creates a solid cap. Only through bright light can you see this ale's colour.

Nose: coffee, dark chocolate, prunes, and black licorice.

Palate: the licorice carries through in the mouth and is dominant, with the prunes and strong coffee following along. There is a long finish that is balanced by malt and hops, though the hops win out in the end.

Overall impression: this black IPA is enjoyable, though it's not an ale that I could see myself drinking in abundance—rather, it is one that I can see myself having only one can of, in one sitting, perhaps to finish off the evening, and even then, not after having more than one or two lighter ales. Bitter Waitress is slightly heady, at 6.5% ABV, and is slightly filling.

At my old restaurant, as my favourite waitress brought me my second-last drink, I would have to say something like, "I'm wrapping up," which would be her cue to bring me a glass of this ale to finish the evening.

Not a bad way to end the night, for sure.

Beer O'Clock rating: 3

Shillow is one of the beer companies that I discovered on a recent visit to Toronto, where I checked out the local craft breweries in a downtown LCBO. Over the next couple of weeks, I'll examine the other beers that I haven't seen in Ottawa.


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