Tired Hands Brewing Company is a small, but quickly growing, brewery in Ardmore, PA. Tired Hands opened in 2011 and since has developed quite a cult following, and for good reason. Well known for their saisons and IPAs, Tired Hands has won a number of awards for its beers and its limited can releases draw huge crowds and trade for the best of beers.
Since I love beer, Tired Hands gets rave reviews, and it opened just minutes from where I attended law school, I made the trip to try it out this past weekend! I enjoyed my visit and would recommend a visit to anyone in the PA/NJ area who enjoys craft beer, or food. Their food was as good as the beer in my opinion. In any case, Tired Hands is definitely worth the trip from Philadelphia if you are there.
Prior to visiting, there are a couple points to know. Tired Hands is split into two locations about a 5 minute walk from each other – the Brew Cafe and the Fermenteria. You should try to visit both, because they have different tap lists. Public parking is available in the general area, but, except on Sundays, you will likely need to feed a coin meter every two hours.
The Fermenteria is Tired Hand’s main brewery and probably what most people envision when they “visit” Tired Hands. The Fermenteria has a bar and restaurant area right in the middle of the brewery and despite its size, it can get really crowded. Reservations recommended if you are making a special trip. The below pictures are right when the Fermenteria opened on a random Sunday. The day before it was packed.
The Fermenteria had about 10 beers on tap, in your choice of 4 oz, 8 oz, 16 oz or half or full growlers. Among other beers, I had a fresh WeedEater Double IPA – Tired Hands’ newest can release. Absolutely delicious. And, if you visit, Tired Hands bottles an in-house saison called Ourison for $15 a bottle. I bought 5 bottles, but haven’t tried it yet. Hope it lives up to the hype…
Here was the tap list when I visited. Note, the Ourison bottles were not on the list.
As you may know, Hop Hands and Saison Hands are Tired Hands’ standard beers and are almost always available at both the Fermenteria and the Brew Cafe. As such, I recommend ordering others that are harder to find. Also, unlike the Beer Cafe, the Fermenteria offers 2 types of wine for those who don’t drink beer.
In terms of food, I LOVED the Fermenteria. I liked it so much that I went back for lunch again the following day! Since I went twice and there were three of us for lunch, I tried a lot of the food. Here is the menu. Unlike the Brew Cafe, the Fermenteria has a pretty robust menu for a brewery, including options for those with food allergies and particular diets.
In terms of starters, I tried the Chips and Stuff, which was delicious chips, spicy guacamole and spicy salsa. This is a good option for sharing! We also tried the Potato and Egg. Also very delicious and well plated for sharing.
Finally, we also tried by MY FAVORITE, THE CRISPY BUNS!!! This dish included pork belly with homemade pickles and a spicy sauce on a crispy bun. Seriously THE BEST. Please order this if you go here. And order it just for yourself. It comes in the format of two “sliders,” so its really only shareable with one other person. YUM.
In terms of main entrees, I tried the fish tacos and the carnitas tacos. Both were really good and served in a pair. Ask for some of the chef’s spicy green sauce with your order. Its his home made sauce and its really good, and really spicy! I also recommend the chipotle mayo on everything.
Dan tried the cheeseburger and the lamb belly. Tired Hands’ cheeseburger recently won an award for “Best Burger on the Main Line,” but it is only cooked to one temperature. Dan thought it was too over cooked. He described the lamb belly as “just ok.” Moral of the story, order the tacos. And the Crispy Buns.
And finally, I tried the pear glazed chocolate donut dessert. It was quite good, but not nearly as good as the savory foods.
The Brew Cafe
The Brew Cafe is Tired Hands’ original location. The Brew Cafe is much smaller than the Fermenteria and also more intimate. Think date night.
While small, it is 2 floors and has table and bar seating. The reason I suggest trying both locations is because the Brew Cafe has a different tap list than the Fermenteria. Here is the tap list from when I visited. As you can see, its different from the tap list at the Fermenteria. Also, beer is the only alcohol served here.
Like the Fermenteria, the Brew Cafe serves food, but the menu is much more limited than the Fermenteria and much less friendly to those with dietary restrictions. The food menu basically consists of panini sandwiches, cheese and charcuterie platters and bacon. Not a bad menu, but certainly limited. I did not have an opportunity to eat at the Brew Cafe, but the food looked really good.
I enjoyed both locations, but would prioritize the Fermenteria, especially if you are with a large group of people. However, if you time it properly, you should be able to hit both locations without issue.
STEAL OUR TRIP
Tired Hands Fermenteria – 35 Cricket Terrace, Ardmore, PA 19003. T:(484) 413-2983. Open Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 12:00 – 12:00, Friday and Saturday 12:00 – 1:00. Closed Tuesday. Kitchen open until 10 except Friday and Saturday, when its open until 11:00. Reservations can be made online and are recommend on weekends and special occasions.
Tired Hands Brew Cafe – 16 Ardmore Ave., Ardmore, PA 19003. T:(610) 896-7621. Open Tuesday – Thursday 4:00 – 12:00, Friday 4:00 – 1:00, Saturday 12:00 – 1:00, Sunday 12:00 – 11:00. Closed Monday. Kitchen closes at 10:00 except Friday and Saturday, when it closes at 11:00. Limited food menu. Very limited seating.