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Britannia Arms--Almaden
5027 Almaden Expwy, San Jose 408.266.0550

Rod's Roadstop

Almaden soccer pub wears it well

By Justin Berton

There's a good story about Rod Stewart and Britannia Arms. In 1994, when the United States hosted the world's most popular sporting event, the World Cup, Brazil played Cameroon in a match at Stanford University. At the time, Rod "If You Want My Body And You Think I'm Sexy" Stewart played soccer for a semipro team in Los Angeles. It was during the World Cup frenzy, coincidentally, that Rod and his teammates flew to San Jose to play against a team sponsored by Britannia Arms. When Rod arrived, there was a mix-up in the schedule and the teams never played. So Rod and his buddies, along with his newfound friends at the Brit, fed on breakfast inside the pub and, later in the day, chartered a bus to Stanford to watch the World Cup match. When they all returned, they drank some more beer and watched more soccer on the big- screen TV. "He said he needed a day off," recalls owner John McKay. "He just wanted a day with the lads to watch some soccer and have some fun."

Since then, Britannia Arms has been patronized by just about every individual who lives south of Capitol Expressway--Grammy winners or no. This neighborhood pub where everybody knows your name--don't mind the cliché, because it means something here--is the unofficial meeting place for anyone who graduated from Gunderson High School. Ever. On the Friday night after Thanksgiving, "The place is packed to capacity 15 minutes after we open," McKay says. "Everyone's back in town and they all know where to go."

Including Rod.

Hours: Daily 11am-2am
Crowd Age: 21-65
Music: Live music
Décor: Soccer pub casual
Signature Drink: A cool pint
Dancing: Yes
Games/Amenities: Darts, trivia

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From the June 21-27, 2001 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2001 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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