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'Biero' provides night of fun at Café Hollander in the Village of Wauwatosa

Jan. 29, 2013

As the weekend winds down, Cafe Hollander offers one more chance to have a bit of fun with food, drink and bingo.

Biero - beer-themed bingo - is offered nearly every Sunday at 8 p.m. (with a one-night hiatus for Super Bowl Sunday). A beer special is offered and prizes, from a drink on the house to t-shirts, beer glasses and fleece blankets with the restaurant's name emblazoned on them, are handed out to winners.

A couple of weeks ago, I took my cousin Samantha to dinner at Cafe Hollander in the Village for a belated 21st birthday celebration along with her boyfriend Trevor and her brother Jack. As we finished our meal, the hostess made the rounds to the tables and asked if we wanted to stay and play Biero.

I was surprised by the number of people who were dining, as well as those filling the seats in the bar area on a cold Sunday night in January. It wasn't a loud crowd. People just seemed to want to hold onto the weekend a bit longer.

An entire Biero session lasts about two hours. The hostess hands out traditional bingo cards, as well as cards with the names of specialty brews served at the restaurant. Bottle tops serve as markers. Rounds tend to alternate between Biero and bingo cards.

For those who prefer Bud and Miller, the Biero card can prove a bit tricky. Listen closely for the European beer names as the hostess calls them out twice. If you're too busy talking to friends or lining up all the bottle caps in order of which beers you like best (yes, one couple was doing this) you could easily miss a call.

Each game requires a different kind of bingo, from a combination traditional horizontal, vertical or diagonal bingo to a soccer goal with one spot serving as the ball.

As people came and went through the evening, servers set them up with cards. While staying for the entire seven rounds increases the odds of winning, there's no requirement. Samantha and Trevor stayed for the first three rounds but left during the 15-minute intermission that preceded the second half.

I moved to the bar and finished the rest of the game with some of the more regular players. There was a family, several couples, groups of friends and a table of about a dozen 20-somethings who won nearly every round.

Biero lacks some of the excitement and socializing that come with trivia tournaments offered at many establishments throughout the week (Cafe Hollander has one on Mondays.) But it's a chill way to wrap up the weekend and enjoy additional entertainment with dinner or drinks.

Stefanie Scott is a former Wauwatosa NOW reporter who enjoys keeping in touch with the community. Ask her to attend your event, take part in your nonprofit or get involved in some other aspect of Wauwatosa by sending her an email at reporterstef@gmail.com.

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