24 April 2013
My Fantasy Tavern
Like the best taverns are.
A real tavern is hard to find. Make no mistake about it. In a world of hyped up ersatz with insipid beer and food owned by mysterious LLCs, it only seems right to celebrate finding something real. I stumbled on The Whip in Coatesville, PA and remember it being praised by Andy of The Main Line Sportsman. Sitting in a corner by a fire I wondered what it is about a good tavern that sets it apart from a bar.
A roaring fire helps but there's more. There's serenity in the horsey art. Familiarity in simple wooden stools. Softness in the light -- I almost feel like I'm being tucked in. I can sit here and look off into space forever sipping a pint rather than guzzling. Not that I like drinkinig alone but friends in a good tavern are a distraction. I might miss some navel gazing insight of self awareness as I relax with myself.
A tavern has a lot in common with an English pub. It's really not the place for martinis or cosmopolitans or the attitude those cocktails come with. Whenever I'm in a good country tavern...I like to think of myself as a farmer. Not a big farm. Something small and about a mile away. I have two pints and walk home... careful to keep a distance from passing carriages. Gravel crunches under my boots as I take out a pocket watch and figure the walk'll take a half hour or so. I put the watch back in my overalls, shove my hands in pockets and breathe in the honeysuckle of Chester County.