Jeff Smith 4 p.m., Dec. 20
IB-COW? Beery Interesting!
Stopped here at Grape and India – the busiest crossing in Diego? – mostly because of this sign.
The guys here at the L’Angolino North End Lounge (1971 India, at the corner of Grape and India) got a great grab from the news eighty years ago with this newspaper headline.
Newspaper headline from 1933, in the window at North End Lounge
Prohibition was in force from 1920 for 13 years. But what I discovered working on my beer cover story (shameless plug: it’s out next week) is that even after the drinking ban was repealed in 1933, it had a kind of afterlife that wouldn’t go away for 50, 60 years.
Like the half-life of spent nuclear rods, the chill in the atmosphere affected how sensible Americans drank till practically the 1990s.
Why? The only breweries to survive Prohibition were the, like, Big Three, or Four. They had the monopoly after the ban was lifted. They could afford to churn out the cheapest, most boring pabulum, because all the 1500 smaller, more interesting breweries were gone.
(One of the victims? Mission Brewery, that beautiful old brick tower building at the Washington Street trolley stop.)
It was another half-century before Jimmy Carter, bless him, made it legal again to home brew, and another couple of decades before people actually woke up and realized, hey, it’s okay to brew again! It’s okay to brew interesting stuff again.
Specially here, spectacularly, in ’Diego, now pretty-much the IB-COW (Interesting Beer Capital Of the World), right?
Inside's fine, but the outside at sunset is the place to be
Oh, and the food in this place? It’s another Busalacchi outfit (think Café Zucchero, Trattoria Fantastico, Po Pazzo, Zia’s Bistro...it's an empire) so you know kinda what to expect.
Ten bucks is the operative word. Like $11 for fish and chips, $8 for a ten-inch pizza plus $1 per topping, $9 for a calamari steak burger…
Hey. That last one sounds interesting. Plus, outside at sunset looks pretty nice too.
I'll let you know, next spare Jackson.
L'Angolino ("Little Corner") North End Lounge warms up what was a cold, busy intersection
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