Roy Pitz Brewing Company Set to Open Poplar Location
Mike Treon doesn’t expect many Philadelphians know about Chambersburg, a small town of a little more than 20,000 people that is about a 160-mile drive away from the city.
That, however, is one of the major selling points for Roy Pitz Barrel House, a new brewpub by Roy Pitz Brewing Company set to open in the large warehouse-style building at 990 Spring Garden St. in mid-May.
“Being two-and-a-half hours away, you’re not thought of as a Philadelphia brand,” said Treon, head of business operations for Roy Pitz. “So after we developed this retail model and we prided ourselves that this is one of the best ways to share our brand, share our experiences, when we had the opportunity to get in on this space … it seemed like a really good fit for us.”
One of Roy Pitz’s main selling points is its beer being “liquid art.” The brewery is known for their uniquely designed bottle labels. Treon said this philosophy of respecting art extends outside of the brewing process to major design aspects of the bar. The communal long tables featured in the main dining area are hand-made by a friend of Roy Pitz back in Chambersburg. The metalwork is also done by a special artisan there.
The menu, consisting of gastropub fare, was made from scratch by Head Chef Michael Richards and the new bar will also be home to a microbrewery that will be producing sours and barrel aged Roy Pitz’s beers, Treon said.
Treon added the main reason for picking Spring Garden Street was because of the up-and-coming development in the immediate area. Yards Brewing Company is relocating five blocks east at the site of the former Destination Maternity building. The old Reading Viaduct railway, which is part of the city’s plan for the proposed Rail Park, runs past the bar to the east, and Love City Brewing sits a couple blocks south.
“It’s kind of an undeveloped, untouched area in between Fishtown and Fairmount and Center City, Treon said. “And when we saw the kind of work that was gonna go into curating this space it really matched with brands we want to be alongside of.”
The biggest challenges facing Roy Pitz are establishing their brand and making sure to collaborate with artists, musicians and developers in the area, Treon said. He believes, however, that this will be easier in Poplar, versus Fishtown, Old City or other developed neighborhoods.
A quick tour of the bar shows attention to detail and craftsmanship. From the intricate metalwork sporting Roy Pitz’s logo to custom-made beer bottles featuring intricate designs like a dragon head in place of a bottle cap. Treon said marketing this creativity to customers will be vital in the months ahead.
“The biggest thing is kind of giving our branded experience to more people and opening up to this market,” Treon explained. “For us, it’s education, we get an hour, two hours to educate people about our brand.”