8 Aug 2008

A corner hospoda

Literally and spiritually speaking.

Šumavan, better known as Klášterní Pivnice, is located a few metres from an old favourite of mine, Svijanský Rytíř. It is small and divided in two rooms, at the entrance there are the taps and a couple of fruit machines, then there is the main room, with tired looking tables and chairs, yet still comfortable, it is also very nicely painted, olive green on the wood panelling of the walls, and terracotta for the rest. This gives it a very pleasant atmosphere when the sun goes through the windows in the morning.
And I say in the morning because this hospda opens at 9.30, quite a rarity. And that is the time when I prefer going, it is almost empty and quiet and, better still, it is possible to breath, once the patrons start filling it, the place becomes a smoke cloud and your clothes and person acquire a bouquet reminiscent of a well aged ashtray.

But before that happens this is a very pleasant hospoda for a late breakfast. They have a good choice of good beer snacks at ridiculously cheap prices and very good beer, Klášter 11° Světlý, unpasteurised for 18.50CZK a pint. Golden as a youth dream, without any visible carbonation and an elegant crown of immaculate white. And it's so well drafted! Its nose mixes ripe fruit with fresh herbs and in the palate mild caramel notes can be felt behind fruit and malts, all seasoned by fresh mind, which predominates in the short finish. It's a perfect example of what a good session beer should be. On a hot day, no matter the hour, the first půl litr will go down as if the bottom of the glass was pierced, only to be quickly replaced by a second one that is enjoyed with more care. It's a beer without pretensions that does very well what it's supposed to do.
Soon the tables start being taken by neighbourhood characters whose average age is closer to the anniversary of the First Republic than the Velvet Revolution's, and they all seem to know each other, and they are all seem to be well known by whoever happens to be tapping the pints. It is then that this place reminds me those neighbourhood cafés in my native Buenos Aires, those that still haven't become victims of modernity.
I finish my sekana and my second půl litr, pay and go to my next appointment of the day. Mi mood has considerably improved and I'm already thinking when I'll be able to go back to Klašterní Pivnice to have a similar treat.

Klašterní Pivnice Šumavan
Ovenecká 1022/15
170 00 Praha-Holešovice
9.30 - 22.00

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2 comments:

  1. Nice post. I really like Klášter beer (I've lived not so far from the brewery). The pub looks good.

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  2. Thanks!
    It is a nice pub, but when it's not full, then it gets way too smoky. Still, of the three places I know that stock Klášter in Prague, this one has it the best.

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