Friday, April 25, 2008

Mad Bar

"We have a great bunch of outside shooters. Unfortunately, all our games are played indoors."
-Weldon Drew
Like you, I have some strange habits.

For example, I play basketball every week at 7pm at a gym. This is not the strange part.

It is that my pre-game rituals include some, shall we say, idiosyncrasies.

First, I'm usually very hungry before the game. Unlike my associates, I hate playing on an empty stomach. I need energy. So, I eat just before I play.

Some have remarked upon this to me, finding it odd. But there's more.

I also believe I play better after a couple of beers. Certainly, this is counterintuitive, at the very least. It runs up against what is known about the effects of alcohol on hand-eye coordination.

And yet it works for me.

It has something to do with my hand-mind cooperation. I have no doubt that our game statistics (if we kept them) would bear this out.

Beer doesn't just build confidence in bars. I firmly believe that, either way, it helps one to score.

Which brings me to my recent pre-game show at Mad Bar.It is a relatively new place in Malá Strana with a clean, modern interior.In the past, I'd often met other players for drinks nearby at Kolkovna's Olympia (other players drink with me, they just don't eat). But we got tired of Olympia's service issues and somewhat higher prices.

At Mad Bar, I was very pleased to discover they served Pilsner Urquell.

Not only that, but there is a Happy Hour from 4pm to 7pm and everything, from food to drink, is 25% off.

The normal price for a half-liter of Pilsner is 36 CZK (it is 39 CZK at Olympia). But during Happy Hour, it was only 26 CZK.

The menu (only in Czech on the net) seemed somewhat limited. They do serve a few breakfast items. There were also some sandwiches, salads, pastas, baked potatoes, and a burrito and a quesadilla.The descriptions didn't inspire me so much, but I can't really say anything about them, either way, because I didn't try the above mentioned items.

What I did try was the spicy sausage (klobasa) on black beer sauce with Czech bread (65 CZK or 49 CZK at Happy Hour).It took a fair amount of time to get to my table -- around 20 minutes. But when it came, I liked it very much. As odd as this might sound, it appeared that some love, skill, and attention went into its preparation.

The snappy skin was artfully cross-cut with a knife to allow some, but certainly not all of the fat to run out. It was perfectly fried. There were small chunks of fat inside, but it was also tender and flavorful. And fatty -- but in a good way.

However, it did not really live up to its "spicy" billing.

It sat atop a great, salty beer sauce with red onions and green peppers. And there was great, freshly cut Czech bread. There was also some lettuce, which I ignored, and some carrot strips, which I did eat.

On another visit, I had the chicken quesadilla, which was pretty bad. It was buried under iceberg lettuce for some reason.

I quite enjoyed the music they played, with funky cool blasts of brass. My friend, Big A, joined me and also commented favorably on the tunes.

Looking around a bit, I saw that Mad Bar has Wi-Fi. The bad news? According to the sign on the window, the place closes at 10pm. So, no post-game shows will be held there.

I left feeling quite satisfied with the beers, the small meal, and the price. It's certainly a good alternative for people looking for something less hectic than Olympia.

As for the basketball game afterward, I can report that it was good night for me. I scored early and often. I was in The Zone.

Right up until the beers wore off.

Mad Bar
Plaská 5
Prague 5 - Malá Strana
Tel. (+420) 775 122 256 or 257 219 855

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You have to go back and give this place a more thorough look.

The lunch special is fabulous-- fantastic, thick, hearty soup; a variety of several sizable, well prepared, tasty entrees; and a long list of sides as well (fantastic mashed potatoes with sauteed onions).

Amazingly, you get all of this for only 100kc. The portion was so big that despite my best efforts I could only eat about 75% of it.

Great food and nice service. Ask for the owner/manager Dusan. He is a cool dude that really knows his food.

Definitely one of my faves in Prague.