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Europe: Eastern From Russia to Croatia, the Danube, Iron Curtain era vestiges, Pilzner beer, Czech it out!

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Old 04-12-2006, 07:11 PM   #1
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I'm goin' to the Czech Republic this summer for study abroad in one month and thirteen days!

So I've been doing some reading in a guidebook my mom got me for the trip (she's one of the profs) and in the book it says that when you go to a bar in the Czech Republic that they assume you want refills and don't stop bringing you drinks until you ask for the check.

Now this sounds pretty sweet to me, but I haven't been drinking much this year (being under 21 is a bitch!) so I'm really worried about being a total light weight, and I don't want to use up all my food money on alcohol (ok, I DO, but it probably wouldn't be a good idea.

Is this rumor true?

Also, if any of you are beer experts let me know what to order when I make that great first journey into a pub.

l
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Old 04-12-2006, 07:16 PM   #2
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Thinking about this trip just made me remember a funny story about a guy I hated in high school. He's one of those pretty boys who all the teachers loved because his parents were rich, he also thought he was going to be a famous actor because he had a bit part in the school musical his freshman year and he was in the pilot for a pepsi commercial.

Anyway.

We had some exchange students visit our school and he was showing them around with my friend Will, and they entire time this kid was asking them questions about Czechoslovakia, "is this different than Czechoslovakia?", "What is it like in Czechoslovakia?" and finally one of the exchange students got really really pissed off and yelled, "We are NOT from Czechoslovakia! We ARE from the Czech REPUBLIC!!"

That shut him up. Stupid prick.
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Old 04-12-2006, 08:44 PM   #3
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Ive never seen that happen in the Czech Republic, or anywhere else. I think you need to worry less about the beer than the Absinthe
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Old 04-13-2006, 03:39 AM   #4
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That's an old Czech tradition and is probably true for locals in a local pub but not so much for tourists in a city centre pub in Prague. A group of us went to a traditional pub/resturant in Prague and all you had to do was look in the barmans general direction and he'd be down with a round of beer but beers so cheep there it doesn't really matter. I went out that night with €10 worth of local curency and had a 2 course meal and 4 beers. Prague is dirt cheep to go out in for a European capitol city.

Bud is a traditional Czech beer but it's in a different league to the American bud.
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Old 04-13-2006, 06:14 AM   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by NitemareHippieGirl@Apr 12 2006, 10:16 PM
We had some exchange students visit our school and he was showing them around with my friend Will, and they entire time this kid was asking them questions about Czechoslovakia, "is this different than Czechoslovakia?", "What is it like in Czechoslovakia?" and finally one of the exchange students got really really pissed off and yelled, "We are NOT from Czechoslovakia! We ARE from the Czech REPUBLIC!!"

That shut him up. Stupid prick.
[snapback]112056[/snapback]
hahaha...that's a really funny story! Part of my ethnic heritage is Slovakian, so I always correct people if they use Czechoslovakia now. "There is a Czech Republic and then there is Slovakia. Totally different countries, buddy"

Anyways...I haven't been to the Czech Republic yet, but MeTurk has a great point - it's so cheap there, that even if you do get fucked up, it's not going to break your budget!
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Old 04-13-2006, 07:07 AM   #6
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Yeah, from what my sister said, Budweizer was originally the name of a Czech beer which was bought (the name) by the American Bud. We had it (the original) in Europe and it wasn't bad.

Pilsner Urquel is another Czech beer. I think it's pretty good. Slightly skunky, but really not bad.
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Old 04-13-2006, 10:45 AM   #7
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I only went to two places that did that during a week in Czech, and I went to MANY overall. And the beer's so cheap (typical price, 28Kc, or US$1.15) that it didn't really matter!

Budweiser (or Bud?jovický Budvar in local terms) is the original from Ceske Budejovice in southern Bohemia, and now goes by "Budvar" everywhere since the Anheuser Busch brew has been more successful globally with the misappropriated name.

Pilsner Urquell, brewed in Pilsen, is VERY tasty when fresh, and it's all fresh over there.

I think my favorite Czech beer is now Staropramen, which when served fresh and ice cold is soooo good and so smooth.

Another great one is Gambrinus, a "velvet," a style that gets its name from how amazingly smooth it is.

There's also Kozel and Krusovice, both of which are also excellent.

You'll find NO shortage of cheap bear in the Czech Republic, and the best part is it's all good. The only disservice you would do yourself is to not drink any of these, and instead do the silly tourist thing of ordering bottled Heineken - at around $2, it's the most expensive you'll find, but you'd be robbing yourself of the great $1 beers.

There are also a few local spirits to try. Tuzmesky (sp?) is a local rum made from beet root (how's that for old Eastern Bloc?) that's dirt cheap and actually quite tasty, and Becherkova is the herbal liqueur (tastes like cinnamon) that old folks all over the country really dig. And of course, there's Absinthe, but most bars carry the cheap crap that won't do anything for you. If you want the good stuff, you'll have to shell out at least US$14 for a bottle of Absinthe 35 or $50 for La Fée. Avoid "Hill's" at all costs.
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Old 04-13-2006, 10:50 AM   #8
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Staropramen is a favourite beer of mine.

I havent heard about the czech bar tenders doing or witnessing it but usually you ca have a tab and pay for your drinks at the end. Be careful of doing this though if you are a lightweight as you might get ripped off...
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Old 04-16-2006, 08:56 AM   #9
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I have a feeling I'm going to be really upset when I get back home from Europe in July and can't buy alcohol anymore

All this talk about beers is makin' me thirsty.
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Old 04-18-2006, 01:30 AM   #10
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That wouldnt surprise me about them bringing you refills, they can be quite oushy at times and you just have to be strong and refuse it if they bring you something you dont want. there sole aim is to sell more drinks.

here in Cologne, its tradition to put the beer mat on top of the glass when you are finished, otherwise they will bring you a new beer without asking.
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Old 04-18-2006, 04:33 AM   #11
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Quote:
and Becherkova is the herbal liqueur (tastes like cinnamon) that old folks all over the country really dig.
I think I had that stuff, the girls in the reception of my hostel kept buying it. It was awful! It's one of those medicimal drinks isn't it?
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Old 06-06-2006, 05:29 AM   #12
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argghhh, prague. i want to be there now! if you go into the suburbs the drinks even cheaper than the central tourist-y area. dangerously cheap.
didnt see the refills in prague, but i did see it in buffalo, NY!!! but then i suppose that place is a bit east european in a way.
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Old 06-08-2006, 06:50 AM   #13
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speaking of Bud while there I would reccomend trying Budwar-its the origional Budweiser and it is delicious!
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Old 06-08-2006, 07:11 AM   #14
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The best thing about having all these eastern Europeans comming over here to work is that they've started selling all their beers in the shops around here, Praskey is another Chezh beer that's ok.
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Old 06-08-2006, 06:19 PM   #15
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I live in prague... if you go to the local pubs, sometimes they will keep bringing you more beer's untill you say za platim, or something like that, meaning bring the bill... But most of the time they will know your a foreiner and they will ask you before they bring another... The beer from what ive experienced is from 15kc to 30kc for a .5 liter. Thats about 70cents to 1.25$... You can buy bottles of beer in the supermarket for as cheap as 4kc.. maybe cheaper, thats like 15cents..

If anyone has questions about prague or the czech republic, ask me.. Ive been living here for 3 months now, so I know a little bit.

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Old 07-10-2006, 02:49 AM   #16
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Hey, I moved to Prague about two weeks ago and am staying for about another six months while I work here. Im 22 and Im surprised that Im having a difficult time meeting people my own age. My job is all people 40 +. Ive been going out to bars watching football but ive found the czechs to been kinda shut off from people they dont know. Maybe its the language but who knows. does anyone in Prague know of any friendly places to go here? Im living in Vinohrady.

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