Although we arrived at about 9:30 at night there was plenty of space, Columbia is a college town and so pubs in the centre tend to be somewhat quiet when there are no students around. So we tucked ourselves into a corner of the bar - I am a people watcher and corners are the best place from which to do so and soon enough a barmaid, or "beer goddess" as they are called came over to take our orders. I had much about Harpoon IPA from my friend Kacenka, and sure enough it was a decent enough IPA, lots of blah blah blah - come on people, it's an American IPA so you know what I am going to say! Several other pints of various beer came and went, including an Oatmeal Porter from the Highland Brewing Company in Asheville, North Carolina which was very nice indeed. None of the beer I had in Flying Saucer though came near to the magnificent Stone's Smoked Porter I had to round off my dinner - what a simply fabulous beer that is, not too smoky, with delicate sweetness which rounds it all out nicely, wonderful!
The Flying Saucer however got me thinking about the issue of how many taps a pub has, in this case it is over 100 taps, and countless bottles on top of that. From the perspective of wanting to find a pub to call my local, the Flying Saucer probably wouldn't be in the running, simply because it has so many choices of draught beer. I am beginning to realise that I am simply not ticker material. assuming of course that "ticker" is the relevant American term, although I do love trying different beers, it is a question of trying new things rather than putting zythophilic notches on the bed post.
As some people probably already know, one of my aims in my new life in the New World is to set up my own pub, hence my interest in the number of taps, I think the ideal number is 6, set up as follows:
- 2 permanent taps - a lager and a bitter for example
- 2 semi-permanent taps - rotating between EPA/stout and IPA/altbier for example
- 2 seasonal/specials