We talk a lot about wine here at The Little Nell (when you have a 20,000 bottle cellar and a fabulous wine staff, it’s understandable), but we also love a nice cold beer. So in honor of International Beer Day, we surveyed our staff to find out their favorite ales. What’s yours?
John Speers, General Manager: I prefer Belgian style beers – one of my favorites is Chimay “Red.” Belgium is a relatively small country that offers more distinct styles of beer than anywhere else in the world. Chimay Red offers an apricot nose, creamy texture with a slight bitter finish. It brings back great memories of the summer I spent in Belgium eating Moules Marinieres and Belgian fries accompanied by a Trappist ale.
Sabato Sagaria, Food and Beverage Director: For me, nothing changes your latitude and attitude like a Corona. Growing up in the midwest and going to school in upstate New York, winters were LONG and COLD! So for me just seeing a beautiful bottle of Corona was like putting my toes in the sand. It is light, fresh and ice cold, and a squeeze of lime helps me fight off scurvy… so it’s kind of healthy as well. In addition to the high refreshment factor, it also has a high mental refreshment factor. Squeezing that lime, and turning the bottle upside down like a snow globe to carefully incorporate the vitamin C equally into every sip, conjures up images of white sand beaches, breaking surf, salt on your skin, sun tans, fiestas, bull fighting, waking up in the morning wondering where these braids came from, flamenco dance-offs at 2 a.m., singing La Bamba at karaoke bars and riding mechanical bulls. And now that I think about it, it’s only when I drink too many Coronas when the last few actually do happen.
Joey Kern, Montagna Manager: McEwans Scotch Ale is my favorite. Draft Magazine says it best: “Like a cool indie band playing in a small venue in Seattle, lesser-known breweries often show bigger brewing talent than some of the more familiar headliners. McEwans Scotch Ale is an exception. While it might be the most recognizable example of this style, we are happy to report that it also turns out to be one of the best. With currant and raisin in the nose and a complex malt profile to back it up in the flavor, the experience is truly harmonious. Even though it is high in alcohol content, this beer is surprisingly easy to drink and has a pleasantly rounded profile that goes well with the clear, deep amber color.”
Mawa McQueen, Montagna AM Manager: I’m French. I don’t drink beer. OK, maybe a Coronita every once in a while!
Jonathan Pullis, Master Sommelier/Wine Director: Long Trail Pale Ale, Bridgewaters Corners Vermont. A delicious English ale. Quite hoppy, bitter and eminently refreshing. It evokes memories of mountain biking through maple forests when the trails burned with vibrant colors.
Melina Glavas, Catering Director: It really depends on what kind of mood I’m in, but I’m usually pretty happy with something light like a Stella or Corona.
Carlton McCoy, Sommelier: Miller High Life. It’s uncomplicated and extremely refreshing. I recommend popping it in the freezer for 20 minutes and allowing a thin layer of ice crystals to form on the top.
Stuart Couch, Room Service Manager: Fat Tire.
Tim Ogden, Cook: St. Lupulin from Odell Brewing Company. It’s only available May through September. It’s the perfect summer ale.
Anneke Scholten, Hotel Manager: I like a good German Hefeweizen.
Happy International Beer Day!