Tuesday, September 14, 2010
New Orleans Beer Spotlight: Martin Wine Cellar Metairie
As you know I used to work at Martin Wine Cellar in Metairie as an Assistant Manager and the unofficial "beer guy". It was an experience that I enjoyed and learned a lot from. My success at Chan's Wine World and Cork & Bottle are due in large part to my time spent at Martins.
Ever since I left Martin Wine Cellar about a year and half ago I haven't really had to many opportunities to venture back and check out their beer selection. The last time I went it was looking extremely disorganized and the shelves a bit bare. It was kind of disappointing as I feel I had helped turn that selection into one of the best in the city and had also brought a lot of attention to that selection. I went back yesterday to check out the beer selection in order to do this piece and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.
Not only were the shelves stocked full but the selection was decent as well. I saw some Cantillion, Slaapmutske, Rogue, NOLA draft packs and Stone Brewing just to name a few. The focus seems to be mostly on imports rather than American craft but they have a limited space. They don't have much of a refrigerated beer selection. There is a small cooler in the front of the store though.
They are also throwing some beer events as well. They just did a fall beer tasting and the turnout was incredible with 86 people. Yes, I said 86. PJ Rosenberg stressed 86 so I'll stress 86. They had an incredible selection from Shelton Brothers and other distributors in the area. Hopefully the success of this tasting will encourage them to host more tastings and possibly another beer dinner. Having another player in town other than Steins and Cork & Bottle will really help craft beer grow in New Orleans.
Charles Buchtel and PJ are the two guys taking care of the beer section over there and they are doing a good job. If it were up to me though I think that whole side room would be a beer room. Perhaps take out that wall and install a walk-in cooler. Come on Cedric it'll make you some serious money!! Perhaps something to think about when you reopen the Baronne Street location.
So if you are in the Metairie area and looking for a decent beer selection get on over to Martins! Don't forget to get some of that chicken salad too! Probably the best in the city!
The Beer Buddha