Review of The Pinguin

Pinguin,
Schutzenmattstrasse 21,
Basel,
Switzerland

The Pinguin Bar is a real hidden gem here in Basel. Located quite centrally but tucked away in a small shopping arcade, it boasts 100 beers from around the world (and the largest mustard collection of any restaurant according to the Guinness Book of Records!). We’ve frequented this place before but decided it was time to go back for an official review. So, here are the votes:

Date and time: 30/10/07 around 7.30 – 10.30pm

Location and ease of access: Located on Schutzenmattstrasse, just down the street from the Spalentor, it’s marked by a small sign and a row of beer bottles above the entrance to the arcade. As it’s still in the old town, it’s well within walking distance of the city centre. 8/10

Beer selection and prices: You can’t get much better than this! The selection is extensive and presented to you in a comprehensive menu the size of an encylcopedia. You can get everything from African banana beer to open fermented Belgian beverages. It’s like a Willy Wonka’s beer factory. The prices are suprisingly reasonable, the only drawback is that the selection on tap is poor. 10/10

Atmosphere: Generally quiet due to it’s “secret” location, there were two or three other groups in there but it’s got a sort of hidden away feeling about it which is good for a quiet few beers. 7/10

Service: The barman and I presume, owner, is a character (you’d have to be to stock 100 beers and the largest mustard collection!). He generally wanders round and talks with the locals and is responsible for getting you the beers. I’ve never seen anyone pour and present a beer with as much detail. He also tried a bit of English with us! 8/10

Smokiness: None to speak of. Top marks 10/10

Snacks: There were packets of breadsticks at each table but we didn’t try any. Not sure what other snacks were available, but I think they serve food during the day. 4/10

Furnishings: The ceilings and walls are covered with beer glasses and tankards. There are also old photos of Basel and in general an eclectic mix of beer advertisements and such. The seating is comfortable but a little too like a restaurant for my liking. 6/10

Music: No music in the background so more top marks. 10/10

“The John”: This was a real find! Possibly the best “bog” we’ve come across so far. They’re clean and decorated with brilliant cartoons of a lurid nature! Well worth a visit just for the toilets alone. They are however locked so you need to get the key from the bar counter. It’s the one with the tennis ball with “H” attached to the key! 10/10

Rated 5/5 on Nov 08 2007 by The Swiss Job
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One response to “Review of The Pinguin

  1. Thanks for the review. I am DEFINITELY going to check this place out. You are providing a valuable service to the Basel community, my friend!

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