Schlitz, objectively speaking, is a disgusting beer. But the idea of Schlitz—especially when it appears on a menu alongside local craft beers like Lakewood Brewing Company’s Hop Trapp and carne adovada crispy tacos—is something else entirely. In that setting, Schlitz becomes cool, ironic. And when it costs only $3, it’s hard not to order it. Unless you prefer Pabst Blue Ribbon, which I do, and you notice that it comes in a 16-ounce tall-boy can, which I did the other night at The Tried and True. So this is a bar, but it’s not a bar bar, meaning you might see someone who is drunk, but you probably won’t find any actual drunks. It’s too nice for that. Credit Nick Badovinus (Off -Site Kitchen, Neighborhood Services). His nostalgic streak shoots through the joint, from an entire wall given over to vintage beer signs, to the bathroom walls covered with pages cut from old magazines, to the two ’70s-era Honda cafe racers (one parked by the kitchen, the other hanging from the rafters). Badovinus has a serious whiskey fetish. The Tried and True pours 76 varieties. While I worked on my PBR, my buddy sipped a Michter’s Small Batch ($13). We filled our bellies with brisket nachos, a Baltimore crab cake sandwich, and a Derby sandwich— a warm, delicious mess made with shaved pit ham, smoked cheddar pimento cheese, and a hot pepper and bacon relish that I could eat with a spoon. Then we ordered more drinks, and, while listening to the Pixies’ Surfer Rosa spinning on a turntable behind the bar and exchanging tales of youthful stunts that should have killed us, we shot pool and stayed out later than our wives would have liked. In other words, it was perfect.
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