Food and drink: Last call for Fordham and Dominion?; Ocean View brewer wins a bronze; Iron Hill revamps menu

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A craft brewing pioneer is apparently exiting Dover.

Delaware Online and social media posts reported that Fordham and Dominion Brewing in Dover will close for good, with its tasting room staying open as long as the previously brewed beer is available.

According to the post, the closing notice came on July 25th, although no formal announcement was made and the owner in Florida not commenting.

The brewery resulted from a merger of two craft brewers in the early 2000s. Both consolidated operations in Dover. Their history dates back 34 years to a pioneering northern Virginia brewery.

Fordham and Dominion kept a low profile in recent years as craft brew sales and numbers soared. It maintained a loyal following in the Dover area.

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Delaware rarely sees craft brewery closings, with only a couple of operations folding in recent years. Delaware now has more than two dozen craft breweries and meaderies.

With the closing of Fordham and Dominion, Dover will be the largest city in the state without a craft brewery.

By contrast, Middletown, population 25,000, has four craft brewers.

A couple of Delaware companies have grown outside the state. Dogfish Head, now owned by Boston Beer, sells nationwide. Iron Hill, which got its start in Newark, has 21 restaurant-breweries in the Mid-Atlantic, South Carolina and Georgia.

Click here for past stories with mentions of Fordham and Dominion.

Ocean View brewer wins a bronze

When Ocean View Brewing opened in the spring of 2022, brewer Taylor Smith had a Mexican chocolate cake-influenced beer on his mind. His creation, Spicy Jams, took a bronze medal at the recent U.S. Open Beer Championship.

The competition is one of the top three in the United States and judges more beer styles than any other competition in the world.  Spicy Jams took bronze in the Chili Beer Category.

Inspired by Mexican Chocolate cake, the sout was brewed with a balance of chocolate, cinnamon, and arbol, Ancho, & guajillo peppers. It debuted on draft at Ocean View Brewing in February of 2023.

Ocean View is one of two breweries owned by Rehoboth Beach-based SoDel Concepts that also operate under the Southern Delaware Brewing umbrella.

Iron Hill revamps menu

I don’t usually announce new menus, but made an exception when Iron Hill, made a major overhaul that more closely matches its brews to dishes.

The dishes sometimes use iron hill brews as ingredients and are also designed to pair with beer offerings.

The change bucks the trend toward limited menu items we saw during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Also added were healthy selections with higher protein and lower fat options.

A few new offerings are a beer-brined pork chop with a porter-maple brine, shrimp, and grits.

In addition to the re-imagined all-day menu, Iron Hill recently added brunch menu served every Saturday and Sunday.

See MENU PDF for details.

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