Owner, the Freakin’ Frog
This “wee heavy” Scotch ale is not only flavored with coriander, which is delicious, but it also has chocolate and a little bit of molasses in it. I like it because I feel like I’m eating and drinking at the same time, and it’s incredibly satisfying because I love dark, rich flavors. And unlike a lot of beers that people are used to, it’s not overly carbonated. Freakin’ Frog, 4700 S. Maryland Parkway, $8-$12.
Firestone Walker’s 14th Anniversary Ale
Head brewer, Joseph James Brewing Company
It is a beautiful blend of six beers aged in bourbon and brandy barrels, then blended by five winemakers. It is a complex beer with flavors of dark chocolate, toffee, fig, coffee and a hint of vanilla. It is best after dinner while sitting on the patio, but I’m happy to drink it anytime. Look for the 15th edition at Khoury’s Fine Wines and Spirits this fall, $20 (650ml.).
Vice president and general manager, the Rampart Casino
As a native Dubliner, I am partial to a pint of “the black stuff” because it reminds me of my roots. It is also deceivingly healthy despite its reputation as a “meal in a glass,” with just 198 calories per pint. You can often find me enjoying a pint at either JC Wooloughan’s (in JW Marriott, 221 N. Rampart Blvd., $5.75) or McMullan’s (4650 W. Tropicana Ave., $6.25) Irish pubs.
Deschutes’ Inversion IPA
General manager, Todd English P.U.B.
As its name suggests, this India pale ale tastes like sweet malt and looks like a layer of clouds on top. It has a creamy flavor at first, almost like milk, before the sweetness of citrus greets your tongue layered with big, bold hops. I love that it gives a sense of comfort at first, then it doesn’t let you get too “comfortable” as it finishes with a lingering bite of bitter. Total Wine & More, $7 (six-pack).
Executive chef, D.vino Italian Food and Wine Bar at the Monte Carlo
I drink this Belgian strong pale ale because I find it to be very well-balanced. Even though the alcohol content in it is high (8.5 percent), that isn’t what comes out right away. It has very floral notes and is crisp, refreshing and pairs well with food. I drink it either as an aperitif or after-dinner beverage. Total Wine & More, $15 (four-pack), $9 (750ml).
Bosteels’ Tripel Karmeliet
Master sommelier, Michael Mina, at Bellagio
My first experience of its mildly sweet citrus and spice flavors was a beer epiphany (choirs singing, secrets of the universe revealed), and it goes great with a lot of the Vietnamese dishes my wife makes at home. Khoury’s Fine Wines and Spirits, $10 (750ml).
Deschutes’ Mirror Pond Ale
Vegas Seven’s dining and drinking editor
The brewer calls this ale “base camp, where any craft brew exploration begins.” This hop-forward pale ale was the first brew to get me to open up to craft beer, and it has been a touchstone ever since. It’s homey and comforting après ski surprise in Park City, Utah, and an après hike reward in rural Nevada. Total Wine & More, $7 (six-pack).