|Photography by Fitz|
Tami and I have been to a ton of brew pubs, so we have certain expectations when we try a new one. Obviously, the beer has to be top-notch. That's a given at Dogfish Head. I had a 90 Minute I.P.A., which with good reason is considered to be one of the best I.P.A.s in America. I also had an Indian Brown Ale - a sublime blend of I.P.A., Scotch ale, and American brown. They had a lot of specialty beers on tap in addition to their year-round offerings, but I decided to stay conservative in my choices today. I have no regrets. We're two hours away from the nearest Dogfish Head location, so it's not like I get to drink a 90 Minute I.P.A. on draught every day.
Another must in our book is high quality appetizers. We ordered two of our go-to restaurant apps today: chicken wings and spinach & artichoke dip. The wings were pretty darn great. They had a really nice flavor and were cooked perfectly. They weren't as "meaty" as some wings we've had elsewhere, but that's a minor complaint. I enjoyed the spin dip, but Tami did think there was a little too much spinach in it and not enough, as she likes to put it, "gooey goodness". Tami had a burger and felt it had a very good texture and flavor. She thought it was a little too greasy - as were the fries. I had the alehouse bratwurst, and boy was that a thing of beauty! It was two wood-grilled brats served on pretzel rolls with beer seasoned banana pepper sauerkraut. It came with a side of chili and tortilla chips. I go crazy for a good chili, and this chili was everything I hoped it would be. I believe it makes my personal top ten. As for the brats, they were insane. What could be better than a grilled sausage on a soft pretzel? I really cannot imagine myself ordering anything different the next time we go down to DFA, although I am intrigued by the alehouse mac and cheese and steak bomb sandwich.
All in all, I'd rate this as one of the best brew pub experiences I've had in a while. Let's see how it does according to our FABS scale:
Food- Really good on the whole, but some of the prices seemed a little excessive. $9.50 for spin dip? $11 for a burger? But I could eat a tub of that chili. 22/25
Beer- Come on - it's Dogfish Head! 25/25
Atmosphere- A fun, casual place. Nice-looking tables, outdoor seating for those who enjoy that (not us!), big screen TVs to watch sports. Bar is separate from main dining area. 23/25
Service- All our servers were friendly and attentive, but we did have to wait a little while for our check because our main server got busy. 21/25
Total score - 91 (out of 100)