Sit and sip the cozy way at these brewpub firepits
Warm and cozy moments are beckoning at a friendly winery or brewpub near you – just round up the crew, grab your scarves and gather around these toasty firepits that are bringing light and life to Delaware’s best brewpubs, meaderies and wineries.
While you’re there, check out the accompaniments that make Delaware’s brewpubs and wineries such a popular getaways on even seasonally chilly days: Most feature an on-site food truck featuring the latest in cutting-edge mobile cuisine, and many supplement the experience with live music and some back-yard fun-and-games.
You could even say that these are the best seats in the house, any time of year.
Bellefonte Brewing Company (Marshallton)
Food trucks and music add to the festive atmosphere as you cozy up to the firepit at the Marshallton location and consider the handcrafted brews: Try the Orange Street Ale (an “easy drinker” made with orange blossom honey and sweet orange peel); or perhaps the Delaware-appropriate “Small Wonder” (it’s light in alcohol, but packs a big hop punch).
Brick Works Brewing and Eats (Smyrna)
Head for the patio at the Smyrna location, where a firepit will fuel that warm-and-cozy feeling as you plan your excursion through their lively menu (those Brisket & Bleu Cheese Spring Rolls sound divine). Live music adds a spark of excitement Friday-through-Sunday, and the artisanal brews bring refreshing appeal: Try the Chocolate-Covered Pretzel Stout, a dark and full-bodied brew with just a hint of salty-and-chocolatey goodness. “Not just a beer, but a meal in a glass.”
Brimming Horn Meadery (Milton)
The Scandinavian fantasy theme runs strong here: In the back, there’s a blazing firepit fashioned in the form of an old Viking ship, more than a dozen meads and ciders on tap, and a “Hammer and Horns” food truck, where you can grab a “Facemelter” sandwich (raclette cheese on a fresh baguette with prosciutto, cornichons and dijon). Wash it down with the “Raud Pyment” semi-sweet mead, made with avocado blossom honey and Malbec grape juice; or the “Un-Pear-Able" hard cider.
Crooked Hammock Brewery (Lewes)
At the center of this whimsically designed brewpub’s “Backyard” sits a formidable tree-stump firepit, surrounded by diversions such as lawn games and a kids playground. There’s live music in store, plus a full menu of goodies (try the “Longboard Nachos,” or possibly the “That Burger is my Jam,” a 7-oz steak blend patty with apple butter, bacon, and white cheddar cheese. Libations also beckon: Try the Beach Escape (a session IPA brewed with tangerine peel and Cascade, Citra and Pacifica hops); or the South to Somewhere, a golden ale finished with fresh coconut for a subtle, tropical flavor.
Midnight Oil Brewing Co. (Newark)
Just order a round of grub from the food truck idling nearby, then settle in to one of Midnight Oil’s eight propane-powered fire tables (the coziness factor is amplified here by upright heaters and even some wood firepits). Then, consider which beverage to order: The Slingshot Pilsner is a traditional German-style pilsner lager; and the Witching Hour Märzen is a medium-bodied brew with a malty-sweet finish.
Salted Vines Vineyard & Winery (Frankford)
Out front, there’s a table with flames rising and crackling, and in the back, a heated and covered patio with room for 60. Keep an eye out for food trucks and live music on weekend nights, and be sure to check out their new Blueberry Frost dessert wine, made just for the season.
Thompson Island Brewing Company (Rehoboth Beach)
Pull up an Adirondack chair and get toasty by the big patio-style firepit, located in the outdoor Beer Garden and accompanied by cornhole games and even a classic Chevy truck. Order the Pork Cracklings with Jalapeno Popper Spice, or a Sloppy Joe Egg Roll, and be sure to add a handcrafted beverage to wash it all down: Thompson Island says the No Bad Days golden lager is “perfect for bonfires,” and the Cosmic Cow milk stout boasts bold flavors of coffee, chocolate and toffee.
Volunteer Brewing Company (Middletown)
Delaware’s smallest craft brewery has a lot to offer: Stroll through to the beer garden in the back and gather round the firepit, where you can plan your trip to the food truck and enjoy the music. Try one of Volunteer’s favorites to start: Bolaris Winter Ale, Belgian Tripel, or Dead Poets IPA.