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Davis, California

Monday, September 20, 2021

Test your knowledge at Davis trivia

If you secretly enjoy shouting out the answers to Jeopardy and if you are a human Wikipedia, give your roommates a break and go to a trivia night downtown. Bistro 33, Sophia’s Thai Kitchen, Woodstock’s and Agave are the four main venues for the avid trivia player.

Bistro 33, 226 F St.

Bistro 33 holds a weekly Pub Quiz on Monday nights at 9 p.m. The reigning Quiz Master for two years, Dr. Andy Jones, a lecturer at UC Davis, acts as host. Jones begins the evening with the ringing of a cowbell and proceeds to ask 30 tricky trivia questions.

Jones said that Bistro 33’s Pub Quiz can boast about its broader mix of questions, all of which are original and written by the Quiz Master himself.

“Our questions appeal not only to graduate students but also to fans of 50 Cent, world history, African countries and pop culture. This Pub Quiz appeals to all sorts of thinkers, readers and people who follow the news closely,” Jones said.

Topics can range from “Comic Books Turned Into Movies” to “Shakespeare.” In addition to tickling the trivia knowledge center of the brain, there are gift-certificates, wine and swag benefits for participating in the Pub Quiz.

People under 21 can attend the Bistro 33 Pub Quiz. It is possible to make reservations a week in advance in order to procure a seat for the Pub Quiz. Bistro 33 bartender Nate Turner recommends making a reservation as they are always packed.

Sophia’s Thai Kitchen, 129 E St.

If you feel like grabbing a drink with friends on a Tuesday night, then Sophia’s Thai Kitchen’s Trivia Night may be a good venue for a good time. Trivia Night begins at 10 p.m. and is exclusively set for those 21 and over. Teams are thrown through a torrent of trivia for two one-hour rounds.

Kevin Wan, the owner of Sophia’s has been acting as host of Trivia Night since November 2005. Wan, like Jones, writes his own questions.

Brystal Forsythe, a senior microbiology major, enjoys the atmosphere that Sophia’s provides.

“Sophia’s Quiz Night is more challenging and has a different crowd in comparison to Woodstock’s younger crowd. I enjoy hanging out with friends, and it’s something to do on a Tuesday night,” Forsythe said.

Categories of questions include pop culture, science, “smoosh” – a difficult riddle in which you have to answer three questions and smoosh the answers together – and anagrams.

Teams are comprised of no more than six people although there is a one-drink minimum in order to play. Jim Russell, a bartender and manager of the bouncers at Sophia’s, has a hint for trivia players.

“While most trivia players drink beer, I would say ‘Brain Hemorrhage’ will definitely make you smarter. Or maybe ‘Mind Eraser’ would be better,” Russell said.

Woodstock’s Pizza, 219 G St.

If 21 is a few birthdays away or if you prefer pizza and beer with your trivia, Woodstock’s Pizza is the place to be on Thursday nights at 9 p.m.

Geoff Taylor, a senior environmental biology and management major and frequenter of Woodstock’s Trivia Night feels that Woodstock’s offers the most “legit” trivia in town.

“The questions are a mixture of general school questions – like history questions – pop culture, and sports trivia is always included,” Taylor said.

Bobby Fields, a manager at Woodstock’s and one of the hosts of Trivia Night, admits that the questions are rather randomly selected.

“Our rounds of questions change all the time. My partner in crime, Alex Hall, and I make up the questions. If we feel like doing a round on Back to the Future, then that’s what we do,” Fields said.

Taylor feels that the best way to prepare for Woodstock’s Trivia Night is to not prepare at all.

“Go in cold turkey. Bring a couple of geeks, pop culture nerds and someone who has a thing for sports. Also, having a couple of girls on the team really helps,” Taylor said.

Sign-up for Trivia Night begins at 8:30 p.m. While there is no cover charge, Fields requests that someone in the team of six players purchase some pizza or a drink.

Agave, 217 E St.

The newest addition to Davis trivia is at Agave, which started just last week. Beginning at 9 p.m. on Wednesday nights, Agave is for all ages, although only 21 and over can drink.

“Quiz Master” Russell Anderson, who comes up with the questions himself, said that Agave is a “hidden gem” of a quiz night.

“It’s a small intimate setting, we have a lot of fun with it. We have great margarita,” Anderson said.

Agave does not have a drink minimum although house margaritas pitchers are $20. They also have wine Wednesdays, where bottles of wine are half off.

There are a few similarities among the trivia nights of Davis. There can only be six players to each team. Also, there are no life-lines allowed at any of the trivia nights. Using a phone is prohibited, including iPhones or Blackberries to Google an answer. Shouting out answers is also a big no-no.

ANGELA RUGGIERO contributed to this article. MEGAN ELLIS can be reached at features@thaggie.org.

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