Tuesday 8th May 2012
For the first time in BeerVisits we have a return visit. It was almost two years previously that I visited this pub in the Nusle district of Prague. The reason for another report is that on this occasion I discovered another part of the pub and we had a very unusual beer indeed, and it should be commented upon.
I was with fellow imbiber Russell and after walking up a steep hill from the tram stop we stopped for a brief moment outside the pub where the beer list was displayed.
Wasabi beer? What! We passed the small brewery on the right hand side where brewing was going on. This gave the whole pub a lovely aroma. We took a seat and I ordered the 12% Wasabi. Russell had the 12% Světlá (Light Pale lager).
What was the Wasabi beer like? Well for a start it was green. If you've had wasabi paste in one of those little sachets you get with Sushi (along with the one that's shaped like a fish) you'll know what the taste is like. You may also know the taste from the flavoured nuts which seem to be coming more popular.
For those who don't know, Wasabi is a relative of both Horseradish and Mustard and that's exactly what it tastes like, a combination of both. It is very strong, and so was this beer. The additive completely took over the flavour. I suppose I got used to it after a while and I did finish it. I wouldn't order it again and can still recollect the relief when my taste buds were dowsed with a half litre of the 12% Světlá.
As it was a nice day most of the patrons were in the small garden at the rear and I took the opportunity to have a look around. Although the brewery only dates from 2007 it has obviously been a pub for a very long time.
I discovered two rooms not previously visited which are to be found to the left on entry.
The one at the front has some really nice stained glass windows and has a notice on the wall that warns against political talk. It certainly looks genuine and it's in Czech and German and the first thought was that it dates from the second world war but, of course, it could have come from an earlier period, possibly during the years of the Austro-Hungarian empire. It has to be remembered that, in the famous anti-war novel "The Good Soldier Svejk" begins with the eponymous hero being arrested in a pub during a misunderstanding in which he was accused of making insulting remarks about the Emperor.
The room at the back is smaller and more intimate. Both rooms are wood-panelled and are painted in a slightly strange colour scheme. Basta is connected to the pub next door, I think they share a kitchen. This pub serves Pilsner Urquell that is the rare unpasteurized version (Tankova) served directly from tanks rather than a keg, so it may be worth a visit in its own right. The pub is completely non-smoking with the exception of the outside patio at the back. A thoroughly recommended pub to visit.
Pivovar a restaurace u Bansethů (Basta), Táborská 49, Praha 4, 14000.
Open: Daily 11.00-24.00
Tram 11 passes Muzeum and I.P. Pavlova metro stations, get off at Náměstí Bratří Synků.
There is a small green on the right side, cross this and walk up Sezimova, a hill.
At the top you will see a pub on the right corner, this is connected to the brewpub but don't go in, turn right and enter the second pub.
Tram 18 runs though the Old Town and runs along Táborská, passing the pub.
I think the stop is called Nuselská radnice and it's the next after Náměstí Bratří Synků coming from the city centre.