A couple in their 50s sits down at the bar. The gentleman begins flipping through the drink menu while the woman flags down the bartender.
WOMAN: What’s the hoppiest IPA you have?
BARTENDER: I’ve got a couple options. Are you looking for more of a citrusy hop flavor or a piney hop flavor?
BARTENDER: I’ve got some hoppy beers, but they’ve got different flavors. What kind of IPA do you normally drink?
WOMAN: I… um… what’s the one with the most hop flavor?
BARTENDER: Here, let me get you a taster of something I like. Sproose Joose from Black Husky. It’s got a strong pine flavor. (Drops off the taster and moves down the bar to take another order.)
WOMAN (sipping): Oh, my. That’s got a lot of… flavor, I guess.
MAN (still perusing the drink list): Look, they’ve got something called Hop Whore. That must be the hoppiest beer. Why didn’t he give you that?
WOMAN: I don’t know. (Addressing the returning bartender.) Why didn’t you give me Hop Whore?
BARTENDER: I can certainly give you one of those. Would you like to try it? I’ve also got Bedlam from Ale Asylum.
WOMAN: Are they gluten free?
BARTENDER: Those IPAs? No, they’re not gluten free. I don’t have any gluten-free IPAs. I’ve got New Grist from Lakefront. That’s the only gluten-free beer I’ve got.
MAN (quietly): Maybe you should get a cocktail.
WOMAN: Is it hoppy?
BARTENDER: No, not really.
WOMAN: Oh. (Long pause.)
MAN (muttering): Just get a cocktail.
BARTENDER: I’ve got a couple of ciders if you’re looking for gluten free. (Smiling) They’re not going to be hoppy, of course.
MAN (slightly louder): Get a cocktail.
WOMAN: (Stares blankly ahead)
BARTENDER: Should I give you a few minutes to think it over?
WOMAN: I don’t know…
MAN: She’ll have a cocktail. Get her an old fashioned.
BARTENDER: Brandy? bourbon? Sweet? Sour?
WOMAN: How sweet is sweet?
BARTENDER: I’m just going to make you one and let’s both hope for the best.