Two Stones Pub in Newark
Hail Stones: Two Stones Pub is clearly a place to worship beer, but its menu is far from your typical pub-grub.
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Stiglitz’s timing couldn’t be better. One could make a strong case that beer, delicious beer, is currently Delaware’s most valuable cultural commodity. According to breweries-per-capita lists—which do evidently exist—our little state ranks among the highest in the country. Between the world-beating brewers at Iron Hill and cable TV icon Sam Calagione, not to mention the fine craftsmanship of Twin Lakes, 16 Mile, Evolution and others, the local brewing scene is for real.
And beer connoisseurs aren’t just a fringe subculture anymore. There are still those esoteric purists who pore over beers like rare vinyl, but Stiglitz and Two Stones are adept at keeping things accessible and friendly. If you don’t know a weizenbock from a Birkenstock, fear not. Stiglitz’ band of bartenders and waiters are quick with a sippable sample, occasionally without even asking. Late fall brought about Oktoberfest and pumpkin ales, and in short time I could chart and correlate Smuttynose’s Pumpkin Ale (malty, sweet and caramely like pumpkin pie) to Elysian’s Night Owl (cloudy and aromatic with vanilla notes) to Evolution’s Jacques Au Lantern (brimming with spices, particularly nutmeg and allspice).
Clearly it’s easy to get sucked in. And with beer this good, it’s equally easy to treat the menu as an afterthought. But Stiglitz, a chef who’s never been afraid to color outside the lines, took a forthright dive into corner-chip-shops Brit cuisine, a manly mix of deep-fried stuff, pork, and quite often, deep-fried pork.
But for every crunchy hog shank, Stiglitz and chef Donovan Brown unleashed their formal side, slipping a little foie gras onto a hamburger, or splashing french fries with a tangy curry vinaigrette. On the same night Randall the flavor-enhancer exploded while flavoring beer with Butterfingers candy, I enjoyed a beautifully baked filet of Scottish salmon, sided by a earthy foie gras-mushroom risotto. That of course followed my plate of mini corndogs.
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