Welcome back to our rearranged world. I hope you all are working through these tough times without too many problems. So many of you had more free time than ever before in your life, and I trust you got to accomplish some of the things that you’ve been meaning to do. If you were like me, you took the time to support our local breweries and enjoy having your favorite beverages delivered to your door. I believe that most of the locals made it through the worst part and found new ways to cope with the pandemic. The ABC made unusually quick decisions in order to maintain the stability of the breweries income which kept most spots afloat. I have not heard of any brewery in the state that has closed due to the pandemic and several have even opened. Rumor has it that The Seed: A Living Beer Project is making plans to open in A.C. Watch for it.
As we return to a semblance of normalcy, more restrictions will be withdrawn and larger gatherings will be allowed in smaller spaces. The recent permission to dine and imbibe outside is a step in the right direction. Most restaurants and breweries who have the space have added outdoor service in addition to their curbside pickup and delivery.
On the first day this was allowed, Tennessee Avenue Beer Hall hosted an outdoor service beginning at 6 a.m. Not to miss this, we arrived at opening, sat by the gas firepit and enjoyed a wonderful breakfast sandwich and some phenomenal breakfast beers. Founders French Toast Bastard was the perfect complement to the bacon, egg and cheese sandwich. They will be continuing the $5 Beers and Breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to noon. Their outdoor dining hours will be Mondays to Thursdays from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to midnight and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Before you decide to visit any establishment, check their website or Facebook page for the latest info about hours and restrictions. Most are serving their beers in plastic cups, which is normally a mortal sin, but safety is the watchword at this time.
Tuckahoe Brewing is releasing several new IPAs and a summer seasonal: Rollin’ For The Boiz, Actual IPA, Rain In The Summertime and Blueberry Fields Forever. They have also opened an outdoor beer garden to enjoy their beers in. Opening Mondays through Fridays from 4 to 9 p.m., Saturdays from 1 to 9 p.m. and Sundays from 1-6 p.m., you need to pass through the brewery to get there, so wear your mask until seated outside.
Garden State Beer Co. also has a fenced-in beer garden where you may consume their products. Again, wear a mask until seated and no children are allowed. The Don’t Go Chasing Watermelon Wheat , Blue Jersey, Cream of the Crop Cream Ale are several of their offerings. Hours are Mondays through Fridays from 3 to 8 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 8 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 6 p.m.
Besides curbside pickup, Ludlam Island’s outdoor venue is only open on weekends. Hours are Fridays from 4 to 8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 8 p.m. Stop by for a beer and then take some cans home.
Down the road, Slack Tide fenced off an area to accommodate about 30 beer fans. Masks must be worn when entering the building but can be removed when seated. Check out some of their fine brews such as Prissy Wicks Belgian Golden Strong Ale which is available in cans for the first time, the new Haywire Twist — made with passion fruit, pomegranate and guava — and Jacob Jones NE Double IPA named after the WWII destroyer torpedoed off the coast of Cape May in 1942.
Cape May Brewing just celebrated their 9th Anniversary and the Anniversary Ale is available now. Also, check out the reprise of Sea Chest, a NE IPA, and fan favorite as well as a bourbon barrel-aged Sawyer’s Swap Barleywine. The large beer garden area would be a great place to spend some of the coming holiday weekend. With lots of beers on tap, cans and growlers available and lots of swag to take home, bring your friends and family to enjoy the space. Remember, they are also offering home delivery in the local area. Check the Facebook page for details.
Congrats to Somers Point Brewing for reaching their 1st Anniversary milestone. A limited outdoor seating is available to enjoy their Open Water Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout aged in Pine Tavern Distillery barrels for five months and then dosed with Madagascar vanilla beans and is served in the anniversary glass for you to take home. Hours are Thursdays and Fridays from 4 to 8 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 8 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.
7 Mile Brewing has a nice outdoor area to enjoy their beers, including 7 Mile Pale Ale, 7 Suns Double IPA, Walter IPA, Dark Star Cascadian Ale, Tsarbomba Russian Imperial Stout, Barrel-aged Trippel and more. Hours are Mondays through Fridays from 2 to 7 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 7 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.
At COHO Brewing, order online for curbside pickup or visit the brewery and place your order while you sit outside enjoying a beer while you wait. Habeus Corpus, bourbon barrel-aged Speakeasy, Mechanic and Main Agave Lime are a few of the tastier options. Hours are Mondays through Thursdays from 2 to 8 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 8 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 6 p.m.
Not far away is Gusto Brewing with curbside pickup, online ordering and a small beer garden to drink their esoteric beers. Check out the Inside Joke: Key Lime, The Peculiar Peach Pieman, Big Spoon Oatmeal Stout and Whirling Dervish ESB as well as others. Take home your favorites in 25.4 oz cans — perfect for individual consumption.
In Wildwood, Mudhen has it all — great food, great beer and lots of outdoor seating, with occasional entertainment. With a large parking lot, parking is rarely a problem. They are also accepting takeout orders as well as delivery options. Open Mondays through Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. and Fridays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Come in and taste their newest beer, Darlin’ NEIPA brewed with Amarillo, Citra, Ekuanot and Mosaic hops. For those non-hopheads, there are lots of lighter and flavorful choices.
Three 3’s in Hammonton has beer garden hours also — Fridays from 5 to 9 p.m., Saturdays from 3 to 9 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 7 p.m. Check the website for any changes.
Down the street, Vinyl is accepting reservations for their limited-seating beer garden. It is open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 9 p.m.(all ages), Fridays from 3 to 10 p.m. (21+ only) and Saturdays and Sundays from 1 to 10 p.m. (21+ only).
Manafirkin in Manahawkin has opened their backyard for outdoor service. With a wide selection of brews, there is a beer for everyone. From the light Nice Cream to the 9% Trippin Monkey Belgian Tripel to Done in a Jiffy Peanut Porter and a 10% Leland’s Law Imperial IPA. Hours are Thursdays from 3 to 9 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 9 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 8 p.m. They also plan on making a barrel-aged beer every month with their collection of Laird’s Applejack barrels, Dad’s Hat rye barrels, Wild Turkey barrels and Italian wine barrels. Can you say road trip?