We Love Food: Franklin’s Restaurant, Brewery and General Store


Franklin’s is Cracker Barrel. Minus the flagrant discrimination, and with house-brewed beers, and a general store that sells toys instead of wooden peg games, and craft booze instead of lollipops.

Located on Baltimore Avenue in Hyattsville, the restaurant, brewery and general store are steps away from the up-and-coming little-engine-that-could Hyattsville Arts District. The store and restaurant are in a landmark building built in the 1880’s as a blacksmith and carriage shop. As such, Franklin’s remains a lovable, family-friendly community staple.

The restaurant part of Franklin’s is two stories. The walls are slathered with bright colored paint, and the buzz from the upstairs bar carries down into the main dining room. Families, couples, high school students – this is a hometown kind of place. The casual feel makes it perfect for Sunday afternoon lunch but the bar and brewery transform it into an ideal Friday night bar spot.

Beer Sample

Franklin’s brews 10 beers in-house, ranging from the light Bombshell Blonde to the dark spicy Pepper Stout. You can try them in a small flight of four beers, or the full tray of ten samples. I particularly liked the Sierra Madre Pale Ale and the Rubber Chicken Red.

The beers pair perfectly with the American food menu. Franklin’s has a well-run rotation of specials each day, and a big menu with staples. The food isn’t outrageously fantastic, and wouldn’t end up on an Eat Like Me, but sometimes that’s okay. I can get down with some simple, fresh American food, too.

Fries in Buffalo Sauce

My accomplice recommended the fries in buffalo sauce with blue cheese dip. When describing them to me before we got there she says, “they’re steak fries, and… omnomnomnom scarffle snarfle!”, which pretty much said it all. The food is simple but fresh, the yummy Not My Mothers Waldorf Salad had crispy green apples and bacon. The entrees are heavily focused on seafood, but I wound up getting the steak tacos because they spoke to me.

Steak Tacos

The general store is the next reason to visit Franklin’s. Perfect for holiday shopping, there is literally something for everyone in there. Unique toys, like ugly doll, and wooden kitchen sets and silly stuffed animals make it fun to shop for children. Farther back the store has jewelry, fun kitchen utensils, notebooks, greeting cards, and then a wide selection of wine and beers by the bottle. An excellent selection of soaps and lotions, but also gag gifts and silly Urban Outfitters-style sassy trinkets. Almost anything you can think of, you can buy at Franklin’s.

Between the beer, the food, and the general store, Hyattsville could be the perfect holiday shopping, drinking and eating destination for those of us who avoid Tyson’s Corner like the plauge.

Franklin’s is located at 5121 Baltimore Ave. in Hyattsville, MD. For more information, call (301) 927-274.

Katie moved to DC in 2007, and has since embarked upon a love affair with the city. She’s an education reform advocate and communications professional during the day; at night and on the weekends, she’s an owner here at We Love DC. Katie has high goals to eat herself through the entire city, with only her running shoes to save her from herself. For up-to-the-minute news and reviews (among other musings), follow her on Twitter!

8 thoughts on “We Love Food: Franklin’s Restaurant, Brewery and General Store

  1. I love Franklin’s! When we were considering moving to Hyattsville, it is one of the first places we went – and it completely convinced us that the community would be a great place to live.

  2. This place sounds awesome – I’m always on the looking for places that brew their own beers (especially if they’re good!). I’m sad that it’s nowhere near Metro accessible, though.

  3. Don’t forget, you can get growlers to go! Franklin’s is great, and really not far at all. I can be there from the Hill in under 20 minutes (assuming no traffic on Bladensburg Rd.)

  4. i’m also a fan of franklins beer! not the food, (except for those heavenly onion rings)

    but the beer! fantastic.

    you can take a bus from rhode island ave, but its a pretty long ride.

    might be one from the hyattsville or pg plaza stations also.

  5. Franklin’s Brewery and General Store are wonderful, especially when you need neat stocking stuffers. Franklin’s Restaurant not so hot. They are an asset to the community and worth a visit.

  6. Thanks for this – my family has eaten at Franklin’s weekly since they opened. We love it. Anarchy Ale is the finest beer on the menu and I spent the summer taste testing beers all over the country. As comfort food goes, it is perfect! Not sure what all the food snobs above are complaining about – if you want to eat at a fine French restaurant, go somewhere else.

  7. Franklin’s is transit accessible although it is not a quick walk from a Metro station. Whether it’s a “long” bus ride or not is relative, I think.

    From the West Hyattsville Station on the Green Line,
    it’s about a 10 minute bus ride on either the F8 (Cheverly) Metrobus or The Bus 13.

    From the Rhode Island Avenue/Brentwood Station on the Red Line, it’s about a 20 minute bus ride on the 83 Metrobus