Where to Eat and Drink in Worcester
Forget everything you thought you knew about Worcester. A slew of new spots to eat and drink are sparking a culinary renaissance in this former mill town, making it the perfect stopover on the way to Tanglewood—and a destination in its own right.
Wormtown Brewery Tap Room
Calling all Be Hoppy lovers: Last January, Wormtown Brewery moved from a tiny space on Park Avenue to its sparkling new 10,000-square-foot facility on Shrewsbury Street, nearly quadrupling its production capacity and adding a sleek taproom in the process. Complete with glass windows overlooking the “brewing pit” and a patio for al fresco imbibing, it offers 10 rotating beers for sampling, plus growler fills, bottles, and cans.
72 Shrewsbury St., 774-239-1555, wormtownbrewery.com.
Known statewide for its extensive draft list and IPA-infused mac ’n’ cheese, Armsby Abbey (and its sister spot, the Dive Bar) are now the only places in the Bay State serving coveted beers from Vermont’s Hill Farmstead and Maine’s Oxbow Brewing. Until 3 p.m., chase your pints and charcuterie with coffee and a hand-rolled croissant at Armsby’s nearby Crust Artisan Bakeshop.
144 Main St., 508-795-1012, armsbyabbey.com.
Urban Kitchen + Bar
Formerly known as Coral Seafood, this cavernous dining room relaunched as the more-upscale Urban Kitchen + Bar last January, and recently introduced a pedigreed new executive chef, Matthew Pottle (formerly of 29 Sudbury and the now-closed Sel de la Terre). The creative, comfort-food-focused menu showcases fresh seafood, house-made pastas, and a superior seared duck breast.
225 Shrewsbury St., 508-755-8331, theurbanworcester.com.
BirchTree Bread Company
The team here cranks out all manner of sweets (chocolate-hazelnut croissants, Almond Joy bread pudding), but the true can’t-miss items are the sandwiches, made with locally sourced meats and freshly baked breads. Linger over live music, then head downstairs to browse the antiques and handmade treasures in the Crompton Collective marketplace.
138 Green St., 774-243-6944, birchtreebreadcompany.com.
ON THE WAY
Former Strip-T’s chef Jared Forman (right) and erstwhile Ribelle bar manager Sean Woods (left) will take on the west when their hotly anticipated Worcester restaurant and café opens later this year. Like Strip-T’s, Deadhorse Hill will offer a casual neighborhood menu—including a “really badass wings dish,” Forman says. The adjacent quick-serve café will pour java from Beverly’s Atomic Coffee Roasters.
36-38 Franklin St., deadhorsehill.com.