A Watering Hole for Locals and Shoobies Alike
I actually lived in Lewes, Delaware for a minute several years ago. I loved it. It was a wintertime stint; a quiet spell in a community that bursts at the seams with sun- and fun-seeking folk. Many shops and restaurants close during the winter months when tourists only trickle in, a funny time for locals. It is a time when beaches and trails return to being secret spots and locals get first crack at some of the best the area has to offer almost completely undisturbed. I took advantage of just that with a recent visit on a cold and blustery January day. My first time at the Crooked Hammock Brewery provided the beachiest vibe that any summer afternoon could offer .
Slow Down, you’re on Beach Time Now
About 10 years ago, owner Rich Garrahan relocated from East Brunswick, New Jersey in order to slow down and live more in tune with beach time. But as many of us know, simply living at the beach isn’t quite the same as ‘being’ at the beach. He’d enjoy his beach life, after business hours, swaying in his own crooked hammock enjoying a beer. Eventually, he turned in his suit and tie for flip flops and teamed up with gifted brewer Chris Wright and great talent from the Nage (La Vida Hospitality group) family to create Crooked Hammock; where it is always beach time. In addition to the outstanding culinary and management sides that have helped shape Crooked Hammock, Chris brings a degree in physics, years of personal brewing, and careers at Heavy Seas and Terrapin breweries to the table. Trust me, this is the A-Team. The staff are dedicated and excited about joining the Shore’s craft brew scene. Besides their own beer, they have guest brews on tap giving homage and really living the collaborative essence that is craft brewing.
Dibs on the Hammock
So, as I was munching on deviled eggs, sipping on the delicious Backyard Brown (an English Brown Ale) I asked Matt what Crooked Hammock had in store for us this spring. Turns out, they’ve been gearing up from day one. Since opening four months ago, they’ve added a few 15 barrel fermentation tanks in their brewery to keep up with demand and have room to grow still. They have also created the perfect setting to enjoy their brews: an outdoor Beer Garden sporting an expansive green, several hammocks, a huge firepit, kid’s play area, a stage for live music, and a patio bar. And their beers…on tap is their most popular ‘Shoobie’ a blonde ale lovingly named after tourists along with the Hammock Saison. The Cask offering is ever changing and new beers are being unveiled often. Other regulars to look for are Mootzy’s Treasure (the flagship IPA) and Backyard Brown (Chris’s favorite beer to brew). Check out their website for upcoming events and new releases. Oh, and if you happen to show up for the mega Beer Fest pegged for late April (hint, hint), come say hello…I’ll be the one swaying on a hammock, frosty pint my hand.