Craft Beer Guide to Greater Wilmington & the Brandywine Valley

Delaware has long been known as a hotbed for craft beer innovation thanks to Dogfish Head Brewing, but the local beer scene goes far beyond that, from regional brewpub chains that got their start in Newark, DE to newly opened microbreweries that operate out of warehouses and a restored tobacco mill. Wherever you are in your travels, you’re near the start of an afternoon tasting tour of Wilmington and the Brandywine Valley.

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Beer Glass IconIndicates brewery is part of the Delaware Beer, Wine & Spirits Trail.

Bellefonte BrewingBellefonte Brewing Co. Beer Glass Icon
3605 Old Capitol Trail C8, Wilmington, DE
Operated out of a warehouse/storage space, this nano-brewery packs crowds into its tasting room on weekends, luring them with a diverse, rotating line-up of full-flavored beers. There’s no kitchen on premises, but beer-friendly food trucks roll in on the regular on weekends. (Note: Folllow your GPS carefully. You can’t see Bellefonte from the road. Turn into the warehouse/storage area and go back just about as far as you can go, and you’re there.)

Twin Lakes Brewing Co. 
1400 E Ayre St, Wilmington, DE 
A local favorite in Delaware restaurants for years, Twin Lakes has recently moved into a larger brewing operation in Newport, DE. The new tasting room and tour operations haven’t reopened yet (check back in early 2017), but they’ve been busy brewing and Twin Lakes Pale Ale is back on many local taps. 

Dew Point Brewing ExteriorDew Point Brewing Co. Beer Glass Icon
2878 Creek Rd, Yorklyn, DE 19736 
Inside the century-old Garrett Snuff Mill complex in Yorklyn, Dew Point Brewing produces Belgian inspired ales for service in its beautifully restored tasting room, only a few minutes drive from attractions like Longwood Gardens, Mt. Cuba Center and Winterthur Museum. Beers feature a variety of high-end ingredients and specialty hops in intriguing combinations. There’s no kitchen, but regulars from the neighborhood often bring their own snacks, ranging anywhere from chips and guac to full-on picnics, and weekends have become a regular jaunt for area food trucks. 

2SP Brewing Co.
120 Concord Rd #101-103, Aston, PA 19014
Perhaps it was inevitable that in their next stage of growth, Two Stones Pub would start brewing their own beer. With longtime (and highly respected) Iron Hill Head Brewer Bob Barrar, 2SP Brewing Company produces food-friendly beers that truly stand on their own, and the local press has noticed: Philly Beer Scene named 2SP as 2016’s Best New Brewery. Food trucks visit on Thursdays through Saturdays, but the brewer’s cheeseboard that they offer makes for great snacking on the other days of the week. 2SP brews can also be found in any of their five area restaurants - Hockessin, Wilmington and Newark, Del.; Kennett Square and Jennersville, Pa.

Group at Blue EarlBlue Earl Brewing Co. Beer Glass Icon
210 Artisans Drive Smyrna, DE 19977
The brews ‘n’ blues theme plays deep into the DNA of Blue Earl beers, from the Walking Blues IPA, the Blues Power American Pale Ale, the Honeysuckle Rose Belgian-style Blonde Ale and the somewhat funkier When Doves Cry Vienna-style Amber Lager. You’ll find live music playing most Friday and Saturday nights (and the occasional all-day soul festival) to enjoy with your beers, and tours run Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

Beer Map BannerArgilla Brewing Co.  Beer Glass Icon
2667 Kirkwood Hwy., Newark, DE 19711
A much-loved local pizza shop expanded a few years ago to take advantage of the owner’s love of home brewing, and Argilla Brewing Co. was born. Small batch beers change often (since they’re only brewing with a 1.5 barrel system) and stay seasonal, with about eight home brewed beers on tap at any given time – and they pair very well with Pietro’s classic pizza pies like the pork & peppers (with sausage, bacon and roasted red peppers). 

Frozen Toes Brewing  Beer Glass Icon
3801 Kennett Pike, Greenville, Delaware 19807 
Pizza by Elizabeth’s in-house brewing operation proudly calls itself the “smallest nano brewery in the great state of Delaware,” brewing food friendly batches of beer with a half-barrel system on premises and exclusively for consumption at the upscale pizza restaurant in Greenville. 

Iron Hill Brewery ExteriorIron Hill Brewery  Beer Glass Icon
147 E Main St, Newark, DE 19711 or
620 Justison St, Wilmington, DE 19801
The Iron Hill empire now stretches to 12 locations across Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, but it all started at the original location on Newark’s Main Street 20 years ago. (The #Fe20, a bright farmhouse ale, was brewed to celebrate the 20th anniversary in the fall of 2016.) With beers that regularly medal in the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup and a strong commitment to food – including their annual new-burger-every-day celebration of Burger Month in May, extensive salad menu and many options for kids – Iron Hill is as good for family gatherings as it is beer sampling.

Stewart's Brewing Co.  Beer Glass Icon
219 Governor’s Place, Bear, DE 19702
New Castle County’s first brewpub, Stewart’s, is renown for both its locally beloved Stumblin' Monk Abbey Tripel (only tapped in winter), as well as 39 other seasonal beer that rotate throughout the year. Stay for the game and some excellent gastropub food like the wild game burger, bison meatloaf, German sausage plate and short rib fries.

Victory Brewing KennettVictory Brewing Co.
650 West Cypress Street
Kennett Square, PA 19348
The pride of Downingtown is now brewing in Kennett Square, where Victory has opened a 7-barrel satellite brewhouse that makes beers that are available only in the on-site brewpub. The tap has room for 24 Victory beers, including classics like HopDevil, Prima Pils and Golden Monkey, beers from the more experimental “Blackboard” series and local collaborations like the Longwood Gardens Fruit House Ale made from Longwood Gardens peaches and nectarines – while the menu is full-on pub fare.

Kennett Brewing Co.
109 S Broad St #2, Kennett Square, PA 19348
The brewers at Kennett Brewing are devoted to innovation and experimentation, “replicating traditional styles and creating innovative interpretations,” and creating beers like The Kidd (“crisp and creamy, simple and elegant, candied pears, spice drops, hay and a bit of honeyed biscuits”) and the Head Skull Mind Beer (“think of Vermont as a style of beer”). Open every day but Monday and with a diverse, upscale pub menu.

McKenzie BClick Here to Request a 2016-17 Wilmington & the Brandywine Valley Visitors Guiderew House 
451 Wilmington West Chester Pike, Glen Mills, PA 19342
Another local mainstay that’s been around for more than a decade, McKenzie is located just north of the Pennsylvania/Delaware border on Route 202. The brewpub menu is sizeable and clean beers celebrate the region, including the Brandywine Wit, the Route 202 Pale Ale and the Saison Vautour Farmhouse Ale. 
451 Wilmington West Chester Pike, Glen Mills, PA 19342