A friend of mine, Matt Mauch, was having a reading of his new poetry book If You're Lucky Is a Theory of Mine at The Loft Literary Center, so a dinner stop at Grumpy's for a few worry-free pints to relax into before a night of poetry. I've only been to Grumpy's a few times because I find it hard getting past Town Hall down the street, which was too far to walk tonight and I didn't want to re-park. As it turns out, Grumpy's was convenient enough that it turned into a good sized party of poets and friends.
Started the night with Indeed's Midnight Ryder, which was well served, very clean and fresh. Switched to Surly Furious for a hop bite, but it wasn't 100% in the glass. Not bad and not sure why, but not what Furious can be. Afterwards, Al found Dark Horse Double Crooked Tree on tap, so that finished the night on a high note.
For dinner, I ordered the fish sandwich with house made tartar sauce and onion rings substituted for chips and a pickle. The rings were over-hyped on the menu with the fish sandwich being better than average but rather plain. The house tater tots that I bummed off of Matt's huge half order were much better and will be my choice next time. The chili crock ordered by one of our party looked delicious, so the vegan version may be my entree on a return visit.
Overall, Grumpy's a great stop when nearby, especially for The Loft or the Guthrie, and time is of the essence. A small but better than average line up of taps that will definitely have something worth drink, though it might not be new or overly edgy. I even have a fair amount of confidence is their beer handling. Plus, our server tonight was amazing. Tab said her name was Tif Dynamite and she was fast, efficient and extremely professional, including getting separate checks for each of us at our three tables pushed together. Since many of my reasons for going to Grumpy's involve limited time, the service makes it a low anxiety dinner and a pint to start an evening in downtown.