Phoenixville used to be one of those small Pa. towns where industry and manufacturing reigned. Then, most of the industry and manufacturing left for cheaper labor and lower taxes, leaving a shell of a locale. One tenant for these old buildings and spaces are microbreweries. While Iron Hill Brewery in Phoenixville may have not filled an existing building (I am not sure), they did build on the ashes so to speak and they anchor a cool block in Phoenixville. See the picture below:
Although each of the Iron Hill Brewery locations has unique characteristics and features, like children in a family, there is a strong resemblance among the siblings. The places are smart, sharp, contemporary, and hip. The staff at Iron Hill Brewery are well-trained professionals. Our server was knowledgeable about the beers and when I asked deeper questions about the brews, she had the good sense to punt to the assistant brewmaster. The assistant brewmaster was knowledgeable and personable. A good skill set for the service industry. When you have an interested customer who is engaged in knowing more about what you do, it pays to not get distracted by less pertinent matters like what your favorite sports team is doing on the TV (I mention that for a reason, but I will keep it at that). For the sake of disclosure, I did get a free beer after my meal from the ABM, after I told him about 40/40…that is smart and savvy consumer relations.
One of the ironies of being a microbrewery is that if you are good, really good, you might just become a macrobrewery down the road. I still root for the bootstrap entrepreneur yet it is hard to not admire the success of Iron Hill Brewery.They are well on their way to becoming a big, big player, in brewing.
More to follow on Iron Hill Brewery down the road in future posts. I still have a lot of other places that I have visited to write about. Here is my assessment on Iron Hill Brewey: It is a slick and savvy organization, they train their people well, the beers are excellent but pricey (unless you get one for free of course), the food is good but not great (some microbreweries try to be culinarily fancy and it usually falls short; Iron Hill keeps food simple with some style), and I.H.B. will probably be in a neighborhood close to you if not already.