Hopped Up: Tips to Make Your Pub Experience a Better Pub Experience
By Shelby Nesheim
After participating in Quarter Club for three weeks now, I’ve realized that drinking every day is both more challenging but also more interesting than I expected. Not only have I made friends with many of the staff and regulars, but I have also gotten a chance to try pretty much every beer and cider on the menu.
Through all of this alcoholic indulgence I have picked up a few tips that I found helpful. Some of these I learned from other more experienced Quarter Clubbers, and some I learned through personal experience, but all have been useful during my daily visits to the pub.
The first, and most important thing I have learned about going to the pub is to ALWAYS TIP your bartender! At the pub, tipping isn’t mandatory, but it is definitely courteous and respectful. Plus, it will make your bartender very happy (especially if that bartender is Scott). So anytime you get a drink — especially a pitcher — make sure to leave a tip.
While you are leaving the bartenders a nice tip, get to know them too. The people who work at the pub are pretty awesome, and the more you get to know them the nicer they’ll be to you. So learn their names and ask them for suggestions if you don’t know what to order. These people know the beers better than anybody, so whether you are looking for a dark beer or a strong IPA they can help you find exactly what you want.
Also, since doing Quarter Club requires being at the pub every day, it is a great time to TRY ALL THE BEERS; this means even the beers you might not have previously liked. Push your boundaries and order that IPA or 10 oz. strong ale. By doing this, I discovered that I really like a lot of the strong ales served at the pub. Even IPAs like Racer 5 are starting to grow on me.
The pub does give you samples. Now don’t go crazy tasting all the beers, but it’s a great way to make sure you like the beer before you buy a whole pitcher of it.
Also, be warned that if you are going to order cider, be prepared to be judged. I know that cider is delicious. It tastes like juice, but even better because it’s alcoholic. However, the staff at the UCI pub is very proud of their vast selection of beers, therefore if possible you should try them out. My favorite drink happens to be the “Snake Bite,” which is a mix of dark beer and cider, and there is also the option of ordering the “Cotton Candy” which is a mix of Hefeweizen and cider. However, you will have more respect from the pub staff if you order beer, especially an IPA.
Furthermore, don’t be afraid to sit at the bar. It is a great way to get to know the bartenders, plus it makes ordering far easier because you don’t have to wait in line.
One of the final things I have learned so far from Quarter Club is to order some food to enjoy while you drink. The pub has delicious food, possibly some of the best on campus, and has everything from french fries and burgers, to pesto chicken sandwiches and street tacos. Get the stoner tots. They’re not listed on the menu but they are amazing: tater tots with salsa, guacamole, cheese and carne asada on top. Delicious.
Whether you’re participating in Quarter Club now, planning to do it in the future or just happen to spend a lot of time drinking, make sure to remember these things next time you go hit up the pub with your friends.