This is possibly the best instance of a Beer for the Occasion yet recorded in the Diary. After my visit to Hashigo, I wandered back to the Malthouse just before closing to have a beer with Stefan — he’d been our doorman for just over a year, but this was his last night as he was leaving to take over running a bar out in the Hutt. With the help of one of our regulars, I picked this beer from my stash, since it was a Mocha Porter for our Mocha Doorman. But then it lately dawned on me the pun works three times over:
- rogue noun 2. a mischievous scamp
- mocha adj. of a brown colour, like mocha coffee
- porter noun 2(1). a person in control of the entrance to a building (wiktionary.org)
So, a Rogue Mocha Porter for our departing rogue mocha porter. How freaking perfect. Then I just went and piled on the puns — I am really quite seriously unable to help myself, on that score — and noted down the beer itself as smooth but with a bit of a bitter sting, again just like Stefan. Heh.
But that really does bring me nicely to the subject of doormen. We must be one of the more difficult doors to work, in this town; we’re a very civilised little bar, really, but we’re right on the big crazy noisy yahoo-laden party strip. So while we’re a fairly calm sort of a place, we do get our share of Collateral Muppets. Our doormen are our filters, and the best of them (by which I mean Stefan, and Rod, who worked our door for years — before it was in its present location, even) have this freakish, Jedi-like ability to wave away People Who Aren’t Really Our People without being a dick about it or resorting to silly pretend rules about the quality of a person’s shoes or whatnot. All the way, they keep everyone smiling — usually even those rare people who actually need to be eventually escorted from the premises. But damn, if things cross a line, the transformation from Amicable and Welcoming all the way to Serious and Scary is instant and awesome. It’s uncommon enough that a person would possess both temperaments, and exceedingly rare that they’d then also have the skill to flip from one to the other seamlessly and exactly when needed.
Big smiley Jedi like Stefan (and Rod) fit our little bar just perfectly, and in combination with our small staff and its higher-than-usual (for the industry, and for this street in particular) level of Giving a Damn, we’ve had some freakin’ excellent nights when all the smart money would be on carnage and chaos and constant annoyance for all concerned. He’ll be missed, but — much like the earlier one with Scott — it wasn’t a bleak, depressing Farewell, since the new gig does seem like such a good fit. Next time I’m out in the wilds of the Hutt Valley — I’m not just reflexively knocking the place, per Wellingtonian tradition; I used to live there — I’ll have to take the family and go visit.
Verbatim: Rogue Mocha Porter 26/2/11 12 floz 5.1% ÷ 2 w/ Stefan, on his last night @ MH. Mocha Porter for our Mocha Doorman. It’s big + smooth + chocolatey, like Stefan. And a little bit bitter at the end, like Stefan. Heh. And I have to give credit to Annika for the joke / beer pick. There were a few candidates, but this is freakin’ perfect.