Mr. ValleyWriter and I went out to The People's Pint in Greenfield with some friends last night. I think we'd been there a couple of years ago for a quick drink, but I really didn't remember the place and wasn't exactly sure what to expect. But, we've had good luck with other local brew pubs in the area (Northampton Brewery, Opa Opa, etc.), so I was hoping for the best.
I thought it might be a little quiet going on a Wednesday night, but I was mistaken. When we got there just before 7, at least 1/2 the bar and 3/4 of the tables were full. One of the most interesting things, to me, was the diversity in the people - from single folks getting a drink after work, to couples enjoying a date, to full families with kids having dinner. The restaurant is really just one big room with he bar and dining area together, which isn't a situation in which you see kids in every day. It was pretty cool though, and reminded me of my trips to Wales and Ireland, where you find people of all ages at the pubs - from 8 months to 80 years! And just like in those pubs, everyone at The People's Pint was having fun, happily chatting and enjoy their meals. I don't know about you - but I'm a sucker for that kind of jovial atmosphere.
Upon sitting down, our first task was to pick out which beer to try. While I'm not a regular beer drinker, I can't resist trying new locally brewed beers. It's just so much better than the national brand stuff, I might well become a regular beer drinker if I had access to it all the time. One of the nice things at The People's Pint (and many other small breweries) is that they give a full description of their beers on the menu - so you can get an idea of what something is like before you order it. The People's Pint even includes the alcohol % on the menu - so you know what you're getting into.
Since it was "a school night" (OK - I'm not in school anymore, but I still think that way), I wanted something light and easy - certainly NOT the Slippery Slope, which weighed in at 9% alcohol. (Yikes!) I went with the shWheat (aka summer honey wheat), which was very accurately described as a light summer beer with hints of citrus and free of any bitterness. At only 3.1% alcohol, it was just a nice light, refreshing drink that easily let me keep my status as the designated driver.
As for food, the menu posted a good variety of "pub fare," with some unexpected twists. While they certainly had their fare share of red meat on the menu, it was all grass-fed beef from nearby farms. In fact, many of the options on the menu included organic, locally grown/produced foods, which is always a bonus in my book. I was really tempted to have a burger to enjoy the grass-fed beef, but my conscience was nagging that I'd already had beef this week and I should really go for something else. So instead I went with the black bean burrito with jalapenos and Mr. ValleyWriter had a pulled pork sandwich. (I was secretly hoping he'd order a burger so I could have a bite, but no such luck...)
Both meals came with mixed green salads topped with fresh sprouts and homemade light vinaigrettes, which were excellent. My black bean burrito had just the right amount of cheese to be tasty, but not a heart-attack on a plate. And the jalapenos added just the right amount of heat. Mr. ValleyWriter's pulled pork was nice and tender, and they went easy on the BBQ sauce, so you could actually enjoy the flavor of the pork. In the end, I was very happy with what I ordered - it was a fresh, filling, healthy choice - but I still really want to try that grass-fed beef burger. It just sounded so succulent and yummy!
Three beers (don't worry, I kept my DD status by only having 1), 2 entrees and the tip came to just about $40, making it a pretty good value for Valley dining. While we didn't get to experience it, they do have live entertainment several nights a week, which would be fun to check out some time. Just be warned - they don't take credit or debit cards here, so stop by the ATM (right across the street) on your way in. I normally avoid places that don't take card because I find it inconvenient to get cash, but trust me, The People's Pint is worth it!