Prague, the last place I thought I would drink Budweiser!
So there we were, just a walkin’ down the street singin….ok so we were walking down the street, but in search of shelter from the blistering heat. At 37C it was a hot day in July in Prague, and we were in serious need of something very cold and refreshing.
Several hours of walking the streets of the Czech capital, necks craned skywards gawking at the incredible architecture all around, had led us Rybná Street. We walked down the street, trying to fit into the slither of shade, our eyes were peeled for somewhere to enjoy some of the famous Czech beer.
Ahead of us was a new restaurant, In Loco, it looked cool and inviting, then we saw the dreaded word “Budweiser”! There is no way we were coming to Prague and drinking….well, that. On we pushed. End of the street, nothing. So we turned around and walked back, intent of heading past In Loco and back to another restaurant we had seen.
As we drew level with the restaurant a waiter appeared at the front door and invited us is. How were we to handle this politely? We decided truth was the best policy, “thank you, but we are in search of some quality Czech beer, and really are not fans of Budweiser”, we bravely spoke, in very un-British forthrightness!
“Ah, we get that a lot, but this is not Budweiser as you know it!” said the young man, who turned out to be an Albanian studying in Prague. He invited us in, and said, that this was a special beer, brewed on the premises, and then took us to the back of the restaurant were the whole brewing process was on display behind shiny glass, assuring us that this tasted nothing like the American brew we all know. Impressive indeed, but it was Budweiser and we were frankly not that interested. He sensed we were still not convinced, and said “I will bring you both a beer, try it, and if you don’t like it, it is on the house”. Well, honestly, how could you escape from that, it was almost “czech” mate!
Down we sat, tongues by this stage literally hanging out in thirst. Shortly two large beers arrived at our table. Here goes nothing we said as the we raised the glasses, pouring golden liquid into our parched mouths. It was like the first rains hitting the African savannah after the long dry season. It was cold, it was crisp, refreshing and we hated to admit it, but it tasted really good. The beer did not last long, as we alternated a glug of beer with mouthfuls of homemade potato crisps served with BBQ sauce. Now we faced a peculiar dilemma, should we actually voluntarily order another Budweiser? Did the first one taste so good, just because we were so thirsty?
We did, and it was just as good the second time round. What’s worse, is that we even found ourselves “accidentally” back on Rybná Street the next day! Moral of the story, if you find yourself in Prague and in need of a thirst quencher, put aside your prejudices and try something you think is familiar, it just might not be!
In Loco – Budweiser Budvar Restaurant, Rybná 9, 110 00, Prague 1