Trip One – Pubs 1 & 2

[Disclaimer: If you haven’t read the Introduction posting, this may not make sense. You may want to start there before reading on.]

Iron Hill Brewery – PhoenixvilleIron Hill Brewery

130 E. Bridge Street
Phoenixville, PA 19460
610-983-9333

If you haven’t been to an Iron Hill location (there are 7; soon to be more!) and don’t plan on stopping at the one in Lancaster on the way home, this place opens at 11 AM and is open every day of the week. They brew a wide variety of beers – all very high quality – that span the entire range (light lager, wheat beers, German lagers, porters, stouts, Belgians, India Pale and Pale ales, brown ales, fruited beers…)

Tim Stumpf is the brewer at this Iron Hill location, and you can see what is on tap on the website. The food menu is also available online, and while it is vegetarian-friendly in that items are marked with a green dot, it is not veggie-heavy (mostly pasta and salad; a wrap sandwich and a portobella sandwich.) There are no prices online, but I recall that the prices seem kind of high, but the presentation is beautiful and the portions are generous.

My food recommendation? Treat yourself to a bowl of Roasted Carrot Soup – it’s delicious!

I’m pretty certain you won’t get a brewery tour here, but the brewing process is thoroughly explained on the placemat. The website doesn’t give serving-size detail, but I’m sure you can order half- and full-pints at Iron Hill, and we did a full tray of 4-oz samples on our last visit, so I assume that is available all the time. If you want to take home a growler, you’ll need to buy theirs – they won’t fill outside growlers (and I think that’s stooopid so I refuse to get them!)

Sly Fox Brewhouse & Eatery

519 Kimberton Road (RT.113)
Pikeland Village Square
Phoenixville, PA 19460
610-935-4540

Sly Fox opens at 11:30 AM on most days (noon on Sunday), and is open every day of the week. Sly Fox keeps the beer list up-to-date online and the full menu is also onlineas a PDF. It is not a vegetarian-extra-friendly menu, but there are sandwiches and entrees available without meat. The food is okay…

Head brewer Brian O’Reilly keeps at least 12 beers on tap, and the selection is a wide-range. You can take home their beers in bottles and, since they added the first canning line in the Mid-Atlantic region back in 2006, Phoenix Pale Ale is a staple in our house. I’m sure they fill growlers, but I don’t know if they will allow you to bring your own empty.

I highly recommend the Rt. 113 IPA and the Black Raspberry Reserve, if they are available. I can’t recall the serving sizes, but I’ll be able to report back in mid-December when I make my next visit.

If you go on a Friday, it’s likely going to be special. On the first Friday of every month, Incubus Tripel goes on tap. On the second Friday of the month, a new Hop Project beer is released, and on the third Friday of the month, a firkin of cask ale goes on.

Like Iron Hill, I don’t think you’ll get a tour here, so plan to just visit for drinks and eats.

[Onward – to Pub #3; Victory!]

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