I do not like to travel. And ever since 9/11, I have avoided air travel whenever possible.
And, it's not because I fear that some fool is going to crash the plane I'm riding in into a Wal-Mart™. No, I hate travel because I get profiled walking through the airport.
Let's face facts: I'm not a terrorist threat to anyone with the possible exception of my in-laws. Indeed, I could show up at terminal two at RDU in a Dale Earnhardt tee shirt and a Red Man Chewing Tobacco hat – with a police record as clean and pure as the wind driven snow – and I'd still be treated as a suspect. I dearly wish that the TSA would start profiling young men who have just visited Pakistan, or Afghanistan, or Waziristan or Jennifer-anistan or you-don't-understand-astan and leave me alone. I'd like to be free to move about the planet. With my shoes on.
Once upon a time – before all the unpleasantness – I did move around the planet. I once pulled a gig in London, peddling somebody else's software to a major retailer. It landed me in Kensington and around the corner from a wonderful little local pub. There was football on every evening and the crowd were raucous. The fish and chips were served with mushy peas seasoned with mint. Bloody awful, they were. And very hard to choke down with a warm pint of Bass.
Which presented me with a dilemma; what do I drink in the pub while in London? The usual suspects were all warm-ish ales, stouts, lagers and the like. The solution was Strongbow, a fairly dry British cider served chilled. Ever since that week in London, I drink almost nothing else when I go to The Pub.
Her Imperial Majesty and I will only frequent local pubs that serve it. Our favorite is The Hibernian on Glenwood, downtown. There, they pull a perfect pint.
That's not to say that we ignore the food. We don't. Indeed, I had dinner there last night with a business associate. The curried wings were marvelous. And most of the things that come out of Chef Ali's kitchen are terrific. His fish and chips are better than what I had in London (no mushy peas here) and the Shepherd's Pie is wonderful. Everything I've ever had there is spot on. Managers Gerry and Darren are always there give hugs to Her Imperial Majesty. Her Imperial Majesty Junior gets a Fizzy Izzy without having to ask.
But the pints, oh the pints. Strongbow is tart, yet balanced, and not too sweet. Overall its much drier that any American cider I've ever tried.
It's not sold in stores in the Triangle. The only place in the state you can buy it cans or bottles is Greensboro and I guess that's okay. That just means I'll be back at my perch. At the Hibernian.
|Gerry and Darren -- guess who's on the clock and who's not.|
Hibernian Restaurant & Pub
311 Glenwood Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27603
1144 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Cary, NC 27511
Cuisine: Pub grub done right, served with a pint of Strongbow
Atmosphere: Quintessential pub
Noise level: low to moderate
Open: Mon – Sun 11 am to 2 am
Reservations: I guess, but I never bothered.
Other: Takes all plastic, nightly drink specials
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