A new beer bar, I think the trendy phrase to use these days is "gastropub", on the Square here in Madison. The Coopers' Tavern has been open about two weeks. I'll keep this review relatively short because there really isn't much to say except: yes, yes, and yes. Or, in the phrasing of the continentals it seeks to mimic, "get thee to there in a most expedient manner." Or something like that. I doubt that they actually say such thing.
Big beer list. And, yes I tend to cynicism at times, I'm always a bit skeptical when I hear that a pick-a-European-country bar has a "good" taplist. Especially when said pick-a-European-country bar is be-decked in kitsch and faux-thenticity as all FoodFight restaurants are. Even worse, "Good European Beer" typically means Guinness, Bass and, maybe, Harp and sometimes, if you're lucky, Smithwicks. And that's it.
Oh no. Not here. Good European Beer. And by European I don't just mean Belgian. Look, I like an abbey as much as the next guy, but please, can we please just get some decent German lagers and English ales? What? They make beer in Spain? A real, live, German Kolsch? Old Speckled Hen on tap requiring a two-stage pour? I about creamed my pants. That was before I even saw the 100-bottle bottle list.
And, yeah, while I admit I'm a convert to the "Publick House" ideal of geezers sittin' around shootin' the shit about Margie and that cad down the alley, a tv or two with some football (and not that pansy-ass Brett-Favre-interception-throwin' kind - the real football) on will make my day.
So, while I actually went into it quite skeptical and a tad cynical I'll be the ornery geezer on the pub stool in the corner wearing my Gunners gear.