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Sunday Brunch Returns to Historic Hotel Del Monte
U.S. Navy photo by Melinda Larson

Sunday Brunch Returns to Historic Hotel Del Monte

By Melinda Larson, NSAM Public Affairs
 
Nearly 200 diners attended the inaugural Sunday Brunch at the former Hotel Del Monte ballroom, June 25.
 
“We couldn’t be happier with the response to our first brunch.  We served 180 guests,” said Naval Support Activity (NSA) Monterey’s Catering Manager, Melanie Arellano.
 
In an effort to share the historic hotel with the community, installation Commanding Officer Capt. Rich Wiley worked with the catering staff to open the doors to the general public.
 
“The Sunday champagne brunch at the historic Hotel Del Monte has been a long and popular tradition at NSA Monterey. We are glad to be reestablishing it,” Wiley said.
 
The ballroom served as the main dining room during the heyday of the Hotel Del Monte, beginning in the late 1880s.  When the Navy leased the hotel in the 1940s, it became the dining room for Navy Del Monte Pre-Flight School aviation cadets.
 
In anticipation of the introductory event, head chef Hugh Butler arrived in the kitchen Sunday morning at 6 a.m. to complete final preparations.  He was not disappointed in the reactions he received from brunch goers.
 
“All of the feedback has been positive,” said Butler as he visited diners at their tables. “They all liked the variety of food, from the waffle station to the roast beef carving station.”
 
Diners also filled their plates with made-to-order omelets, a wide assortment of pastries and desserts, smoked salmon, potatoes, and bacon. Many of the diners had booked their reservations weeks in advance.  For one couple staying at the Hotel Del Monte, their serendipitous timing found them at brunch.
 
“We feel so lucky to be here for the first brunch. What a great setting, very good food and a nice staff,” said retired Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Edward Zacharias. “We couldn’t ask for anything more.”
 
According to Mrs. Zacharias, the couple looks forward to Sunday brunch at the Hotel Del Monte again next year. “We will be back next year.  And I’m going to tell all my friends about it,” said Kathy Zacharias.
 
The brunch will be conducted the last Sunday of every month from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Reservations can be made via email to mwrcatering@nps.edu or by phone at 831-656-1049.

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