GRIESHEIM, Germany — You might feel a little out of place the first time you walk into the Blue Marlin, a local bar in this Darmstadt suburb.

But, whatever you do, don’t buy the house a round of drinks. It’s not that kind of place.

American and German Griesheimers, who consider this a favorite haunt, recommend a more subtle approach to fitting in here. Cool, calm and collected is the MO, they say.

“It’s definitely a local bar, but it doesn’t mean that foreigners are not welcome,” said Svenja Spiller, one of the friendly-faced German bartenders who know most of their customers and what they drink.

Still, the staff enjoys seeing new faces, she said, although Americans who venture in should know that a 10 percent tip is standard.

Like most of the regulars, the Blue Marlin is low-key. It’s a spot where you and a few friends can catch up, or get to know one another. There’s a chance you might see someone who’s had one too many, though most patrons just pop in for a drink and a chat.

Whether you’re in the mood for a foamy latte macchiato or a beer or even a mixed drink, this bar has something to suit everyone’s taste.

Local favorites include Caipirinhas, a Brazilian cocktail made with a rumlike sugarcane liquor, and hefeweizen, German wheat beer, mixed with banana or cherry juice. (Svenja recommends the banana combination.)

The Italian owner also attracts a group of older, espresso-drinking gents in the mornings, when you can get the caffeinated concoction of your choice and European breakfast items such as toast with Nutella, muesli with milk and meats and cheeses. Light bites in the evenings include basic sandwiches, nachos and hot dogs.

Better known as the Markt Café, the bar has a hipster vibe, complete with a glowing orange bar and chill house music — no rock or heavy metal here, though hip-hop makes its way into the rotation depending on which bartender is controlling the tunes.

Another draw, weather permitting, is the bar’s outdoor seating on the Hans Karl Platz in the center of Griesheim, a good spot for reading or just watching the world go by.

The patio out front will likely be scaled back as winter’s rain and cold set in. But the umbrella-covered tables and chairs could stay in-demand despite the elements since the indoor smoking ban took effect in the state of Hessen this month.

Just remember, if you go to the Blue Marlin do your best to blend in, you’ll probably get better service and meet more people that way.

See previous After Hours reviews here.

The Blue Marlin

Griesheim, Germany

Hours: Mon-Sat. 9 a.m. to 1 a.m., Sundays 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.

Prices: Beer and wine range from 1.50 to 3 euros, most coffee drinks and tea under 3 euros, mixed drinks between 5 and 8 euros

Specialties: Caipirinha, latte macchiato, beer

English menu: Yes

Dress: Casual

Clientele: Young and old Griesheimers (German, American, Italian and British)

Location: Hans Karl Platz, downtown Griesheim, right next to the tram stop

Phone: 06155-822800

Web site: none

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