She drinks Old Style for goodness sake.
CROWN POINT -- Hillary Clinton showed her Midwestern roots by enjoying a couple mugs of Old Style on Saturday night at Bronko's restaurant.
The presidential candidate also drank a shot of Crown Royal whisky with mayors David Uran of Crown Point and Tom McDermott Jr. of Hammond before settling in for pepperoni pizza in the bar.
She chatted with McDermott and Uran and his family for a half hour as patrons of the packed restaurant looked on.
Clinton's appearance at Bronko's on Main Street was an "unannounced" post-script to her speech in Valparaiso earlier in the day. But the cat was way out of the bag by the time she got there.
Seemingly half the politicos in Crown Point happened to be enjoying dinner in Bronko's when Clinton arrived to eat with Uran.
After shaking hands with diners throughout the restaurant, Clinton, Uran and McDermott pulled up to the rail in the bar.
"I pulled them draft Old Styles, and then I asked the senator if she wanted a shot of Crown Royal," bartender Russ Panning said. "She said 'Sure.' and she drank both drinks."
The denizens of Bronko's clearly appreciated Clinton's easy manner and willingness to banter.
"Love her or hate her, you've got to respect the way she's acting tonight," one woman said while watching the candidate dine.
South Lake County Democratic Chairman Joe Mika tried to get the senator from New York to autograph a $10 bill for him, but she demurred.
"That's against the law. I could go to jail for that," she said.
Toward the end of the meal, Uran stood and hoisted his mug to the assembled crowd.
"Let's raise our glasses to the next president of the United States," he said.
Clinton took a drink, then turned to the mayor.
"Can I come back next week?" she asked.
As Clinton's caravan pulled away, Uran said he thought she enjoyed an opportunity to take it easy for a couple minutes, albeit with a crowd of gawkers taking her picture the whole time.
"I think she wanted to relax a little, and that's what you can do when you come to Crown Point," he said.