Andrea Pierce is a fiery creature.
She is also a beer aficionado and the new face behind the bar at the Town and Mountain Lounge in Whitehorse. Pierce is responsible for the resurgence in popularity of the sleepy watering hole.
The T&M lounge now has the best beer menu in town — hands down.
Pierce has been in the industry for 15 years, most recently managing a private liquor store in Richmond. But she moved to Whitehorse in October 2012 to manage the T&M.
In only a few months she put together a stellar beer list of 47 craft and specialty beers. The policies of the Yukon Liquor Corp. didn’t make this easy, but Pierce fought to ensure her clients had real choice.
She likes the challenge of convincing regulars to hold off on automatically ordering Budweiser in favour of something that will surprise their taste buds. It’s not about drinking more, but about drinking better.
While I was talking to her, somebody mentioned that Allegro restaurant now has Delirium Tremens; the beer, not the medical condition. Pierce became visibly excited.
“The more people that are doing this, the better it is,” she said. Spoken like a true beer lover.
When her first order of new beer arrived a few months ago, staff lined the 29 beers up on the bar before she got to work. They joked amongst each other: “Hey, you want to see a grown women cry.”
Cruel maybe, but kind of adorable, too.
“I get very emotional about my beer,” she says.
You would be hard pressed to stump Andrea with a craft beer she hasn’t heard of. She can also give you good advice on what to order if you’re having difficulty.
After I ruined my palate with the hop-doped West Coast Green Flash IPA, I was going to try the Lighthouse IPA, but she steered me away from it. Once you go big you can’t go back.
Instead, she suggested the Red Rocket, a hopped-up strong amber ale from Bear Republic Brewery in California.
The brewery calls it a bastardized Scottish-style red ale. It is malty and caramelly with prominent hop bitterness to balance. Excellent suggestion.
Pierce has lots of ideas for the future — including cask ales and special series, like the 12 Beers of the Apocalypse by Seattle brewery, Elysian.
This excellent microbrewery brewed a different beer for each month of the year in 2012, including such offerings as Fallout Green Cardamom Pale Ale, Ruin Rosemary and Sour Persimmon Ale.
New beers are always on order, so check in at the T&M frequently at 4th and Main. It will cure what ales you.