On Saturday night I met some friends at 1600 World Bier Haus, in the Glenmore Landing Shopping Centre at 90th Ave and 14thStreet SW, to celebrate a birthday. Now, it was a short notice kinda thing, so when it was put together, I got a call asking if there was anyway I might be able to help out with getting us a table. (I know a couple of people in the restaurant and pub biz I guess was the rationale for the call, LOL)
Well... I sheepishly called my good friend George Haralabakos to see if I could impose on him for a favor. Now, when you make this kinda call, it is never for a reservation for 2 on a Tuesday night at 8:45pm....NO... it is always for a party of 19 (18 guys and 1 girl) at 11:oopm on a Saturday and you ask for no line, no cover, the best table in the house and a promo tab! Ok.. I'm exaggerating a little, but non the less, it was a "Hail Mary" request, and my friend George came through for me, making me look like the rock-star I wish I was! (by the way, this was the first time my wife had met George, and ladies...the word she used to describe him was...hmm what was that word... oh ya...Gorgeous!!, settle down Dana!!)
When we arrived, the pub was packed and we were escorted to our "VIP" table by 1600's General Manager, Jaime Mansour, a veteran of Calgary's Restaurant and Bar scene. I love a room that's electric and that is the only way to describe 1600! The crowd was well dressed and very attractive, trendy without the attitude you find at some of the Downtown hot-spots. As we sat down, the DJ was just starting to pump out some amazing music, current dance hits combined with retro classic's from just about every era. Now.. being an old DJ from back in the day, I'm not easily impressed, but the mixes were smooth and VERY creative, really adding to the feel of the night.
As we sat there enjoying the conversation and the drinks (WOW, that Three Olives Grape Vodka goes down WAY too easy!) I noticed a familiar face moving through the crowd. It was the other half of the "Dynamic Duo", Ernie Tsu, a man well known in the Industry as one of Calgary's most respected and experienced operators. Ernie made his way through the crowd, stopping to say hello and checking on his customers, all the while not missing a detail about the way the room was running. After stopping to say hi and see how we were doing, he was off again, I love to watch a pro in action!
Ernie and George, along with George's brother Ari, are also the driving force behind two of 17th Avenue's hottest spot's, Classic Jacks and 1410 World Bier Haus, so it's no great surprise as to the success of their latest project.
So here is a big thank-you to George, Ernie and Jaime for their hospitality and friendship, and to Candice for the GREAT service! It was a great evening and I can't wait to return for another night out!
If you are planning an evening out, either with friends or just the two of you, take the time to visit 1600 World Bier Haus. Get there early and enjoy something from the fabulous menu (Ernie told me how proud he is of the response the food is getting, and I can say first hand, that it is excellent!!) and then stay and party the night away. I personally guarantee...It's worth the trip!