Inside Makers Alley, Wilmington's Newest Year-Round Beer Garden

The restaurant and bar features a historic-meets-contemporary interior and an outdoor beer garden.

Photo by Meg Ryan

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A block away from North Market Street is your newest hangout.

Makers Alley, located at 804 N. Orange St., is the next restaurant and bar opening in downtown Wilmington. It’s offering something different to the neighborhood with a 1964 Airstream converted into a working kitchen, an outdoor beer garden and a historic-meets-contemporary interior.

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The building was an old carpenter mill that now is breathing new life as a bar restaurant while celebrating its roots. “They’re looking to keep that feel here and invite the makers of Wilmington back into the space,” said Megan Babcock, general manager.

Photo by Meg Ryan

She says the restaurant will hold a soft opening on Monday, Sept. 30, and plans for a grand opening celebration are in the works. Beginning hours will be 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily, but could change depending on business.

Makers Alley is the first solely owned and operated restaurant by The Buccini/Pollin Group, a local real estate developer. Babcock said while BPG has its hands in a variety of hotels, restaurants and apartment buildings in Wilmington, the company wanted something completely its own.

Babcock said the company also wanted to bring something unique to the city that had never been done before. While the Constitution Yards beer garden operates on the Riverfront during the warmer months, the manager said this is a space unlike any other.

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With an “American cool” vibe, as Babcock calls it, guests will walk into a reclaimed wood bar with Edison bulb light fixtures hanging from the 30-foot ceiling. Copper piping, wood beams and exposed ductwork can be seen throughout the space.

Outside sits the Airstream on gravel with greenery, televisions and other decorations which create an extended season for the outside.

“We will be open all year round,” Babcock said.

For the drinks menu, Makers Alley will offer cocktails, beer and wine. Babcock said 24 beers will be on tap, ranging from domestics to craft names and there will also be a variety of canned beer availible. Customers can expect a menu of six to eight craft cocktails in addition to well drinks and a wine list.

Photo by Meg Ryan

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And for the food menu, head chef James Sparks is working to offer guests foods that they can share and carry around Makers Alley with ease as they chat with friends and refill on drinks. 

“We’re trying to do walk around foods,” Sparks said.

Guests can expect contemporary takes on burgers, hot pockets and bao buns all with names paying homage to Wilmington. There will also be vegetarian and pescatarian options.

“We wanted everyone to have something on the menu,” he said.

And, if that isn’t enough, expect yard games, board games and a vinyl player section in the corner of the restaurant.

Babcock said they’ve received multiple inquiries from downtown employees and residents about when they’ll open. The time is now and she’s hoping the space becomes a place for everyone.

More information:
Makers Alley

804 N. Orange St., Wilmington • 482-1299

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