Monday, January 19, 2009

Jacob Wirth

Mel was banging away at his piano and the crowd was loving it. He was in the middle of leading a rousing rendition of “Battle Hymn of the Republic” and as the lyrics rippled through the large room, diners echoed by banging their beer steins on the old worn tables while swaying their free arms to the beat.   After the last ‘Glory Glory Hallelujah’, the impatient diners were quick to begin shouting numbers from blue faded songbooks.  In the end, Mel makes the decision to go with page 201 “Cecilia” by Simon and Garfunkel. There is a whimper of dismay, but after he hits the first chord, voices rise high and join in unison.

On this cold, below 0, Friday night, Bostonians were seeking refuge from the winter.  They huddled closely around Mel’s piano, finding warmth from the music, company and alcohol. Nearby diners enjoyed platters of sauerkraut (white and red), large grilled bratwurst and soft flavorful pretzels with spicy mustard.  Others found comfort in the overstuffed sandwiches.  Reubens, packed with warm heaps of corn beef and sauerkraut, nestled in a bed of crispy fries. The real Germans amongst the shivering, defrosting bodies ate spaetzle with dill butter sauce and wiener schnitzel.

Still shaking off the chill, eyes were frozen on the beer menu (which equaled in size the food menu).  Tongues watered at the mention of the cold brews that warm the soul.  Punchy IPAs with hops that wallop the taste buds into submission, golden lagers that tempt and seduce you into a second round and a plethora of German styles ranging from smoked ales to dark thick porters.

True Bostonians know that braving the cold of the long winter can bring as much joy as any summer night. Outsiders denigrate the New England frost, but they don’t know that the key to enjoying the winter is simple: Good beer, fine food and sing alongs with Mel on Friday nights at Jacob Wirth. Raise your beer up high and feel the strength of the New England spirit.

Jacob Wirth Restaurant‎
31 Stuart St
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 338-8586

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