Delaware. It’s 40 minutes away from my house, and there are lots of places between here and there where I can grab a beer. I guess it’s not worth the trip, right? Well, not so fast – after our recent trip to Restoration Brew Worx, I can tell you that just because a place is far away does not mean it isn’t worth seeking out.

Restoration Brew Worx Delaware Ohio

This was my first trip into downtown Delaware. It’s a charming little town. The main streets are lined with well-preserved (or perhaps well-restored) 100-plus-year-old buildings. Right in the middle of the main drag sits Restoration. We walked in around lunch time on a Saturday. It’s a great space that’s well lit from the large windows in the front. There are two-story ceilings because they removed the second floor, so now there is a single story with soaring ceilings and large timber beams. There are beautiful exposed brick walls on what used to be the second floor, while the lower sections of the walls are covered in works from local artists. An open kitchen sits at the back of the dining room next to the hallway that leads to the brewery in the back room. A long bar dominates the right side of the room. Above the bar is a huge TV, but instead of sports, it features an up-to-date listing of all nine of Restoration’s house-made beers.

Restoration Brew Worx Delaware Ohio

Head brewer Frank Barickman has come up with a diverse group of offerings, certainly an ambitious collection of beers for a new brewery, and he’s pulled it off. My two favorites were the dueling spiced wheat beers on the menu, the Delicious wit and the Effe hefeweizen. The Effe had a strong banana and clove flavor, but finished clean and smooth. The Delicious was light, but flavorful, with a subtle coriander spice. The Rush porter had a roasty, chocolaty flavor with just a hint of dark fruit. The Double Judgement DIPA was citrus heavy without being either too bitter or two sweet as many DIPAs are. The English mild and the blonde were pleasant additions to the list as well. All in all, we sampled beers across the IBU and ABV spectra and were pretty happy with all of them. If you think ABVs have gotten out of hand in craft beer, by the way, this may be the place for you, as there were several delicious low-ABV options. This is a good thing if you’re driving back to Columbus afterward.

Restoration Brew Worx Delaware Ohio

The food was some of the best bar food I’ve had in the Columbus area. We started with a pretzel and cheese dip. To tell you how good the cheese dip was, I’ll say that we heard that someone ordered an entire growler of it to go, and we weren’t surprised. The menu is burger-dominated, and the burgers are delicious. And huge—I have a large appetite, and this is one of the few times I couldn’t finish my burger. Too bad, because it was juicy and perfectly cooked to medium rare. The fries were some of the best around, hand-cut and fried to a golden brown, topped with a splash of truffle oil and a dash of sea salt.

Restoration Brew Worx Delaware Ohio Pretzel Bread

Restoration Brew Worx Delaware Ohio Burger

Make plans to go to Delaware for an afternoon or an evening. There’s plenty to do if you like to eat and drink. Staas Brewing is right around the corner. Veritas Tavern, Son of Thurman, 1808 American Bistro, and Barley Hopsters give you plenty of options for eating, drinking, and buying some craft beer to take home with you. Make sure you grab a beer and a bite to eat at Restoration while you’re there. It’s well worth the trip.

{In our efforts to spotlight each Columbus-area brewery, we’re sending Doug Oldham to visit every brewery’s tap room. In the coming months, he will attempt to regale you with his experiences. Doug’s opinions are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of the CCBA.}