What We’re Eating on the Beerwerks Trail
Posted on July 2, 2018
The Shenandoah Valley celebrates not only craft beer but also craft food. From nationally acclaimed eateries to local food trucks, the restaurant scene along the Beerwerks Trail offers a wide variety and emphasizes farm-to-table freshness. If you’re visiting a brewery, make sure to take time to explore nearby restaurants, too.
A Salvadoran pupuseria, a Mexican-American taquería, European pastry shops, and widely known restaurants like The Shack (James Beard-award double nominee) and Zynodoa give Staunton the restaurant chops of a much larger city. Gloria’s Pupuseria has grown from a farmers’ market favorite to a cozy storefront restaurant where pupusas and enchiladas served fresh off the grill will make your mouth water. Chicano Boy Taco is a gem that serves handmade tacos and mission-style burritos inspired by its chef’s heritage. Get some Southern comfort food with a twist at the recently opened Table 44, where you can augment your meal with a loaded Bloody Mary. Sharing the same space, Paris Cake Company, provides an opportunity to grab a beautiful treat on your way out. And if you prefer your desserts frozen, taste gelato from The Split Banana, where you’ll find all the traditional flavors, plus cocoa ancho, pineapple basil, Guinness Extra Stout, and other house specialties.
Lexington and Rockbridge County
Lexington and Rockbridge County boast a wealth of culinary experiences. If you’re in Rockbridge County visiting Great Valley Farm Brewery or the James River, check out Natty B’s, a country store, for daily lunch specials and made-from-scratch pies and desserts. Along Lexington’s picturesque streets you’ll find Southern-style barbecue, farm-to-table fine dining, upscale bistros, vegan lunch joints, ice cream shops and everything in between. Those looking to score a craft beer and a succulent burger prepared with local beef will find Pure Eats a solid choice. Top off your meal with a donut in the day’s special flavor. The “casual and contemporary” atmosphere at Bistro on Main provides the perfect background for savory and unique fare like the shrimp and grits or apricot-glazed duck breast you’ll savor for brunch, lunch, or dinner. Make reservations at The Southern Inn and spend your next special occasion appreciating classic and contemporary American cuisine. Later, for some lively entertainment, fine food, and cocktails visit Haywood’s Piano Bar. Finish up your dinner or your day with a trip to Sweet Things Ice Cream Shop, a Lexington staple, which delights locals and tourists alike.
Craving sauerbraten, jägerschnitzel or a good German beer? For a flavorsome meal in the county, check out Edelweiss German Restaurant in Greenville, where you can devour classic German dishes in the lodge-style dining area while enjoying live music. Make sure you’re hungry in Churchville for Highland County trout or a sandwich on original-recipe WhiteWay bread at White’s Wayside. Rather feast on barbecue and you’re in Stuart’s Draft? Try Sooner BBQ, ranked #2 for Valley barbecue by the Valley Choice Awards. Alternatively, stop in at Valley Pike BBQ Co., a food truck specializing in Texas-style, slow-smoked barbecue located at Valley Pike Market (also home to Old School Burgers and Baja Burrito). If you want a view with your meal, Stable Craft Brewing offers a menu that focuses on locally-sourced ingredients paired with beer (of course). After enjoying sandwiches, burgers with names like “Southern Pleasure,” and skillet plates, spend time petting the horses or playing a yard game. Seven Arrows Brewing and Nobos Kitchen also offer an opportunity to pair craft beer with inspired American fare. Order the fried pickles and the fish and chips!
If you’re craving an all-American breakfast, Asian fusion, Cajun food, or southern barbecue, Waynesboro has it on the menu! Start your day with breakfast at Weasie’s Kitchen, a favorite of locals and A.T. hikers, offering comfort food for every taste. If you want Chinese, Japanese, or Thai, travel to Silk Road and sample dishes that are as artful as they are flavorful. Hop’s Kitchen is where “craft food meets craft beer.” Located within Basic City Beer Co., Chef Mike uses local providers and infuses Basic City’s beer into his dishes inspired by his travels around the world. Order a five-star burger made with locally grown beef from Jake’s Bar & Grill, or try one of their steaks using beef from the owner’s farm. And don’t forget that the barbecue is always smoking and the fish is always frying at The Fishin’ Pig, a restaurant with a Friday dinner special called “Eat like a pig, drink like a fish!” Now that’s a call to action!
Whether you’re looking for the upscale meals offered at The Joshua Wilton House and Local Chop and Grill House or a quick burger and a beer as you stroll downtown, Harrisonburg has a wealth of options. Better yet, many of the independent downtown restaurants source local ingredients. Treat yourself to an inventive cocktail at Food.Bar.Food while sampling some “global comfort food” like lo mein, burgers, falafel, and potato croquettes. Stop in at Jack Brown’s Beer and Burger Joint for an award-winning burger menu featuring Snake River Farms’ Wagyu beef and a massive tap list boasting over 100 local and international beers. If modern Southern cuisine and whiskey are your passions, don’t miss Jimmy Madison’s, where connoisseurs can sip premium whiskey and eat entrées like honey-glazed scallops and drunken shrimp and grits. And with just a short drive into the countryside, you can indulge in Smiley’s Ice Cream at Mount Crawford Creamery. The ice cream, made with the creamery’s freshest ingredients, embodies its motto, “Bringing happiness to you, one scoop at a time.”
Breweries with food and food trucks
To eliminate some of those tough food decisions, some of our breweries have onsite kitchens or regularly visiting food trucks. Many others welcome outside snacks or carry out.
Stable Craft Brewing: See above.
Bedlam Brewing: Elevated, locally-sourced pub fare and artisanal pizza menu.
Basic City Beer Company: See Hops Kitchen above.
Seven Arrows Brewing: See Nobos Kitchen above.
Redbeard Brewing Company: Regular food trucks. See schedule.
Queen City Brewing: Friday night food truck.
Great Valley Farm Brewery: Food trucks weekly. See schedule.
Brothers Craft Brewing: Weekly food trucks. Check schedule.