Beer Week is Coming

Beer, Beer, Beer

It really couldn’t be a better time of year. Wilmington Beer Week, July 14-21, is almost here. That means special dinners featuring primo brews at great restaurants all across town. Evolution Craft Brewing, Harpoon, Victory Brewing, Samuel Adams—the list of craft breweries represented goes on and on. Your venues have some of the best draft and botttlled beer selections around. (And the organizers have been good enough to count the taps for you.) They are:

Chelsea Tavern, 821 N. Market St., 482-3333, Taps: 31

Columbus Inn, 2216 Pennsylvania Ave., 571-1492, Taps: 8
Dead President's Pub & Restaurant, 618 N. Union St., 652-7737, Taps: 10 (59 bottled beers)
Deep Blue Bar & Grill, 111 W. 11th St., 777-2040, Taps: 6

Domaine Hudson Wine Bar & Eatery, 1314 N. Washington St., 655-WINE, Taps: 0 (60 in bottles)

Ernest & Scott Taproom, 902 N. Market St., 384-8113, Taps: 21
Green Room at the Hotel du Pont, 11th and Market streets, 594-3100, Taps: 4
Harry’s Seafood Grill, 101 S. Market St., 777-1500, Taps: 12

Iron Hill Brewery, 710 Justison St., 472-2739, Taps: 6-14
Kid Shelleen’s, 1 S. Scott St., 658-4600, Taps: 8
Piccolina Toscana, 1412 N. Dupont St, 654-8001, Taps: 6
Union City Grille. Eighth and Union streets, 654-9780,  Taps: None

Walter’s Steak House, 802 N. Union St., 652-6780, Taps: 7
Washington Street Ale House, 1206 N. Washington St., 658-2537,  Taps: 24
World Cafe Live, 500 N. Market St., 994-1400, Taps: 25

Here’s a random sampling of what you’re in for:

Victory Tap Take Over & Meet and Greet at Chelsea Tavern on July 14

Chelsea Tavern's "Victorious" Tap Take-Over
On the Patio:
Beer: Summer LOVE Ale
Mexi pork tenderloin sliders, queso fresco, pickled onions, chili-lime aïoli

Upstairs Bar:
Beer: Headwaters Pale Ale
Duck breast satay, house-made Summer Love Ale barbecue sauce

Beer: Sunrise Weiss unfiltered Bavarian-style ale
Prosciutto-wrapped local peach with pecorino dolce

Beer: cask-conditioned Hop Devil I.P.A.
Citrus-and-beer brined chicken wings with coriander-peppercorn dipping sauce

Downstairs Bar:
Beer: Braumeister Pils
Scallop ceviche shooter topped with caviar

Beer: Ranch Double India Pale Ale
Bacon-wrapped asparagus topped with Hollandaise sauce

Beer: Helios Ale Belgian-Style Saison
Lemon tartlet with fresh raspberries and blueberry whipped cream

In the Beer Cellar:
Victory Brewing Company founder and head brewer and founder Bill Covaleski pouring V-12 during meet-and-greet with bottle signing

All that for $45. Check the website for other cool events.

Cabo Wabo?

If you prefer your Don Julio infused with jalapeños or pineapple, the new Cabo Modern Mexican Tequila Bar in Rehoboth Beach may be the place for you. Chef Jay Caputo, owner of the acclaimed Espuma a few blocks away, has transformed his former Porcini House at 210 Second St. into a place loaded with 40 tequilas, various styles of margarita, and Mexican-inspired fare. “Inspired” means lots of fresh fish, smoked suckling pig and tequila-smoked chicken for tacos, and braised short rib, all inspired by a recent trip to Cabo San Lucas. “It’s a great concept,” Caputo says. “It’s food I like to eat when I’m not working, and it’s food I’ve always had fun cooking, but never had the place to do it.” Help comes from chef Tommie Deptula, who is intimately familiar with Mexican cuisine, having spent some time working in the country. “We’ve got the real deal going,” Caputo says. Despite the modern twists, however, basic is sometimes best. “My goal is to have the best nachos around,” Caputo says. “I hate it when you first get a plate of nachos and they’re good, but then they get cold and you can’t get them apart because the cheese has solidified. We’re doing some things to prevent that.” 226-8226

Oh Cherry, Oh Baby

To celebrate National Rainier Cherry Day on July 11, a top-notch chef from an iconic restaurant in each of the 50 states will receive 40 pounds of ultra-sweet Rainier cherries. In Delaware, that’s Harry's Savoy Grill in North Wilmington, where chef David Leo Banks’ talented kitchen crew will use them in a mind-blowing dish. Why mind-blowing? Because it’s the peak of the season, so the cherries will be at their best. The cherries come from Washington state, which produces 12 varieties that make up 60 percent of the cherries in the country. Not only are they delicious, but their phyto nutrients and other properties are believed to help prevent or control hypertension, diabetes, heart disease and other common health problems. Of course, you’re headed to Harry’s because they taste great. See what Banks has cooking. 475-3000,

How Can That Be?

What’s that you say? You haven’t seen The Best of Delaware—DT’s fantastic, stupendous, colossal survey of readers and critics? The one that comes out each and every July? With the big party? You don’t know what you’re missing, so, herein, the ABCs of BOD, just to tickle your tastebuds. For the full rundown, you’ll need to click here:

Best American Restaurant

Readers, upstate: Moro 1307 N. Scott St., Wilmington, 777-1800

Readers, downstate: Summer House 228 Rehoboth Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-3895

Best Appetizers

Readers, upstate: Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant 147 E. Main St., Newark, 266-9000; 710 S. Justison St., Wilmington, 472-2739,

Readers, downstate: Espuma 28 Wilmington Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-4199,

Editors, upstate: We love the selection of cheeses and cured sausages at Harry's Savoy Grill. Having a sister restaurant that specializes in seafood means you also get a nice selection of raw bar items. The warm crabmeat-artichoke is rich and comforting. 2020 Naamans Road, Wilmington, 475-3000,

Best Bar

Readers, upstate: Two Stones Pub 2 Chesmar Plaza, Newark, 294-1890,

Readers, downstate: The Starboard 2009 Highway One, Rehoboth Beach, 227-4600,

Editors, upstate: The Nomad 905 Orange St., Wilmington, 655-8800

Best Bar Menu

Editors, downstate: David Twining's Nantuckets 601 Coastal Hwy., Fenwick Island, 539-2607, nantucketsrestaurant.comBest Beef

Editors, upstate: At the Rail 777 Delaware Park Blvd., Wilmington, 994-6700,

Best Best Happy Hour at the Beach

Editors, downstate: ¿Que Pasa? 124 Dickinson St., Dewey Beach, 226-1820,

Best Bistro

Editors, upstate: Eclipse Bistro 1020B N. Union St., Wilmington, 658-1588,

Editors, over the line: Blue Pear Bistro 275 Brintons Bridge Road, West Chester, (610) 399-9812,

Best Breakfast Place

Readers, upstate: Lucky's Coffee Shop and Restaurant 4003 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 477-0240,

Readers, downstate: The Crystal Restaurant 620 Rehoboth Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-1088

Editors, upstate: At the Hollywood Grill, your Belgian waffle with strawberries is so smoothered in fresh fruit, you can’t see the big, beautiful, delicious waffle. And the servers keep your coffee filled. Clutch. 1811 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 655-1348,

Editors, downstate: Big rolls of cinnamon-spiced dough dripping with gooey brown sugar and your choice of walnuts or raisins are made fresh ever day at Dirty Harry’s Restaurant. If the wait for breakfast is too long, you can pick up a couple, then head to the beach with a hot cup of coffee—but we recommend waiting for breakfast anyway. 100 Coastal Hwy., Fenwick Island, 539-3020

Best Burgers

Readers, upstate: Jake's Wayback Burgers various locations,

Readers, downstate: Restaurant 55 2461 S. State St., Dover, 535-8102,

Editors, upstate: They’re flame broiled at The Charcoal Pit, and that akes all the difference. Choose a quarter-pound burger or a bigger one, either “deluxe” or “special.” 714 Greenbank Road, Newark, 998-8853; 2600 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 478-2165 ; 5200 Pike Creek Blvd., Wilmington, 999-7483,

Best Burritos

Editors, upstate: At El Diablo, you’ll find them filled with everything from real steak to marinated chicken to braised short rib. You’ll find guacamole and beans, but you’ll also find such touches as goat cheese. ¡Muy sabroso! 13A Trolley Square, Wilmington, 691-5532,

Editors, downstate: We just can’t get enough of the shrimp and crab burritos at Dos Locos Stone Grill. They’re fat with fresh fillings. Who knew guacamole could taste so good with seafood? 208 Rehoboth Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-3353,

Best Candy-Chocolate

Readers, downstate: Candy Kitchen various locations,

Readers, upstate: Govatos Chocolates 4105 Concord Pike, Wilmington, 478-5324; 800 N. Market St., Wilmington, 652-4082;

Editors, downstate: You’re probably headed their for creamy homemade fudge. (The vanilla rocks.) But Seaside Country Store also stocks bags of old-fashioned favorites. 1208 Coastal Hwy., Fenwick Island, 539-6110,

Best Casual Seafood

Editors, downstate: Matt's Fish Camp 28635 Coastal Hwy., Bethany Beach, 539-2267,

Best Ceviche

Editors, upstate: With 1,500 miles of coastline, Peru is famous for its ceviche. It only follows that Peruvian Chicken House Charcoal Grill  would have the best around. We enjoy fancier versions at fine restaurants, but this is the real deal: lots of fresh fish and scallops, onion and tomato kissed with cilantro and lime. 1224 Capitol Trail, Newark, 737-2426,

Editors, downstate: If you’re going to eat fresh fish, you might as well do it by the seaside. Head to Mariachi Restaurant to enjoy an appetizer of brightly flavored white fish with everything that makes ceviche such a joy. 14 Wilmington Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-0115,

Best Cheesesteaks

Readers, upstate: Claymont Steak Shop 3526 Philadelphia Pike, Claymont, 798-0013; 57 Elkton Road, Newark, 453-9500;

Readers, downstate (tie): Capriotti's Sandwich Shop various locations, Oceanside Subs & Pizza 205 Coastal Hwy., Fenwick Island, 539-5388,

Best Chef

Readers, upstate: Dan Butler of Piccolina Toscana, 1412 N. DuPont St., Wilmington, 654-8001, and Deep Blue Bar and Grill, 111 W. 11th St., Wilmington, 777-2040;

Readers, downstate: Jay Caputo of Espuma 28 Wilmington Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-4199, and Cabo Mexican Restaurant and Tequila Bar, 210 Second St., Rehoboth Beach, 227-6494

Best Chinese Restaurant

Readers, upstate: The Crownery 228 Lantana Drive, Hockessin, 239-3825,

Readers, downstate: Confucius Chinese Cuisine 57 Wilmington Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-3848,

Best Coastal Italian

Editors, upstate: One word: pescatore. At La Casa Pasta, that means heaps of shellfish in fresh red sauce over tender noodles. Or opt for the grilled fish of the day—always fresh. 120 Four Seasons Pkwy., Newark, 738-9935,

Best Cocktail Selection

Readers, upstate: Columbus Inn 2216 Pennsylavania Ave., Wilmington, 571-1492,

Readers, downstate: Espuma 28 Wilmington Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 227-4199,

Editors, upstate: Deep Blue Bar and Grill 111 W. 11th St., Wilmington, 777-2040,

Best Coffee Shop

Readers, upstate: Brew HaHa! various locations,

Readers, downstate: Espresso-N-Ice 1030 Forrest Ave., No. 116, Dover, 744-9844,

Editors, upstate: The garden at Traders Cove Coffee Shop in Penn’s Place is absolutely charming, a perfect spot for enjoying a rich latte while a breeze blows off the river. There is simply no place like New Castle, and in New Castle, there is no place like the patio at Penn’s Place. 206 Delaware St., New Castle, 322-6334,

Best Crab Cakes

Readers, upstate: Seasons Pizza various locations,

Readers, downstate: Fenwick Crab House 100 Coastal Hwy., No. 7, Fenwick Island, 539-2500,

Best Crab House

Readers, upstate: Kathy's Crab House 107 Fifth St., Delaware City, 834-2279, Readers, downstate: Fenwick Crab House 100 Coastal Hwy., No. 7, Fenwick Island, 539-2500,

Editors, downstate: Ike and Elva Burrows buy crabs right off the dock out front, making Sambo's Tavern a truly authentic local dining experience, not unlike eating a lobster roll at a roadside stand in Maine. 283 Front St., Leipsic, 674-9724

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About This Blog

Suzanne Loudermilk
Wilmington, DE

From chocolate festivals to wine tastings to new restaurant openings, Dining Insider has the Delaware dining scene covered. Delaware Today's Suzanne Loudermilk shares the scoop each week on the food and wine events you simply can’t miss. Contact Suzanne at

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