A Drinking Guide for Delaware
Delaware is a state worth exploring. After visiting Delaware last fall, my favorite offering was the Beer, Wine, and Spirits Trail. The trail consists of wineries, breweries, and distilleries. Here is my drinking guide for Delaware, featuring my favorite places along the Beer, Wine, and Spirits Trail.
Painted Stave Distilling- 106 W Commerce Street, Smyrna
Creating spirits is a science. When one of the owners of a distillery has a Ph.D., you know you may be in for a treat when it comes to the science of making unique spirits. They “get” the way to do it and do it right.
Painted Stave is created and tasted at their beautiful facility in the heart of Dover. They have a real flair for making high-quality vodka, whiskey, and gin. Painted Stave’s #1 selling product is Off the Hoof, a scrapple flavored vodka. Scrapple is a Delaware food favorite.
Both the labels of the products and decor of the tasting room scream nostalgic Hollywood. The Painted Stave website even features recipes that feature their products. Watch for their annual seasonal products.
Fordham & Dominion Brewing Company-1284 McD Drive, Dover
Fordham & Dominion is a classic favorite of craft beer drinkers. You may recognize the pin-up girl labels from their products. The Fordham & Dominion Brewing Company has been around for years, originally in Virginia and Maryland. They produce four flavored sodas (try the Black Cherry!) in addition to their trademark beer. Have a seat in the Fordham & Dominion tasting room or arrive Wednesday through Saturday for $5 tours of the brewery. The brewery is uber clean and very impressive. Be sure to try Double D, their most popular craft beer.
Trivia: Fordham & Dominion brewed around 24,000 barrels of beer last year.
Delaware Distilling Company- 18693 Highway One, Rehoboth Beach
This restaurant features the Delaware Distilling Company right in the back storeroom. They offer a full line of craft distilled spirits (licensed almost 4 years ago, the first in the state of Delaware!) and produce 9 varieties available for purchase in their bottle shop. The Delaware Distilling Company produces premium gin, spiced rum, and vodka. They are distributed throughout Delaware and to surrounding states. Dine-in and enjoy their interesting menu: Port Spring Rolls, Authentic Pad Thai, and Steamed Snow Crab Legs. Delaware Distilling Company also has a 20 flavor infusion bar that you will not want to miss. The crazy concoctions (Sour Patch Kids, Pickle, and Jolly Rancher Watermelon) are Instagram worthy. The Delaware Distilling Company has happy hour and children’s menus.
Dogfish Head Brewery-6 Cannery Village Center, Milton
Though Dogfish Head Brewery is definitely the big guy on the block, it does not keep them from creating incredible new products. The highly successful brewery began in 1995, years before others were making craft beer. Dogfish Head Brewery is like a big, extended family of off-centered individuals who love craft beer. It is one of America’s favorite craft beer makers, due, in part, to their continual hopping process. Tour the Dogfish Head Brewery to learn more about the company, available every day of the week. Be sure to admire the steampunk treehouse in the front of the brewery, a leftover from the Burning Man event.
Beach Time Distilling-32191 Nassau Road, Unit 5, Lewes
Beach Time Distilling transports you to the laid-back charms of the Delaware beaches and tantalizes your tongue with their creative flavor combinations. This distillery prides itself on small-batch spirits such as gin, vodka, specialties, and rum. Grab a seat at the bar and start your tasting. One can appreciate the simple, yet stately, Beach Time Distilling spirits’ labels, displaying the perfectly clear colors of the spirits inside. Beach Time Distilling is still making all of their products, slowly and patiently, using 66-gallon stills. Check out their ever popular Beach Fire Spiced Rum and try Beach Time’s version of a White Russian featuring their Beach Java flavor…delicious!
Crooked Hammock Brewery- 36707 Crooked Hammock Way, Lewes
The Crooked Hammock Brewery is a super casual, tastefully decorated restaurant and bar where you can enjoy the outdoors, impressive craft beer, and stellar eats. This place has it all: big screen TV’s, a playground, ping-pong tables, hammocks scattered throughout the property, corn-hole, plenty of beach-inspired brews. and an inviting fire pit for nighttime enjoyment. Crooked Hammock brews several favorite craft beers including Belgian blonds, pale ales, IPAs, stouts, and seasonal items. Ask for a tour of the brewery and grab some grub while you are there. The Wings, Nachos, Deviled Eggs, and Beer Braised Bratwurst are raved about.
Delaware: A Force to be Reckoned With
I hope that you will have a great time exploring the Delaware Food, Wine, and Spirits Trail. It is very cool that the state has put together this easy to follow trail guide to Delaware, complete with map and all pertinent information. As always, drink responsibly.
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