WRITTEN BY MATT BRASCH
For Digital First Media
Phoenixville has officially welcomed its newest craft brewery, Stable 12 Brewing Company. Although it had been producing its local brews since May, the “grand opening,” which included a ribbon cutting and attendance by several local VIPs, took place on Saturday June 18. From home brewing 5 years ago to a professional brewery today, Stable 12 has embraced the “local craft” concept, which was evidenced by a large show of support during the ceremony. “The most exciting thing about this country is when people put their sweat equity into an idea and make a dream come true. And that’s what they have done here,” said U.S. Congressman Ryan Costello. Also in attendance to celebrate the addition to Phoenixville were state Reps. Tim Hennessey and Warren Kampf, and Phoenixville Mayor Michael Speck.
The three co-founders of Stable 12, Rick Wolf, Tyler Fontaine and Chris Carbutt, are focusing on the production and distribution of their beer, but they opened the tasting room to give the public a chance to try the beer at the source. Their tasting room and brewery, located at 368 Bridge St., Phoenixville, is in a more than 100-year-old building that was used for the past 20 years as a auto shop. According to CEO and co-founder Rick Wolf, “we had to powerwash the heck out of this place before we could start brewing.” But it was worth it. The brewery has a tasting room open to the public, a dry storage room, a brewery with four fermenters, and an open lot which be home to Stable 12’s future beer garden.
The ribbon-cutting took place in the tasting room; the ribbon stretched between two stacks of shiny Stable 12 kegs. The comfortable tasting room is designed for the enjoyment of beer; a bar that seats about 20 patrons stretches along the back wall and several round tables and high top tables are sprinkled throughout the room. The two large windows in the front wall along Bridge Street provide plenty of natural light to allow you to appreciate the color and carbonation of your beer. Corrugated metal and rough-hewn wooden furniture however give the illusion of being in the barn where the three co-founders began brewing.
After the ribbon was cut, the taps were opened. Eleven different varieties of beer were available, including a kettle sour made for Phoenixville’s Blob Fest on July 14, an experimental Munich Helles, and a dangerously delicious Imperial Stout, which came in at 11.9 percent ABV. Also pouring was Stable 12’s IPA, Double IPA, and the IPA through their Randall, a double chamber filter in which flavor enhancing ingredients are inserted to provide additional tastes to a beer. Stable 12’s “Randall” is well-traveled — at the Lansdale Beer Festival on June 27 it was filled with raspberries and a wheat beer was tapped through it. At the tasting room grand opening, the Randall was filled with whole cone Citra hops on Stable 12’s IPA. If you ever needed a reason to visit Stable 12’s tasting room, the Randall and its daily surprise ingredient should be reason enough.
Stable 12 offers pints, flights/samples of four beers, and growler fills for those who want to enjoy Stable 12 at home. The kitchen at Stable 12 is modest — offering nachos, pretzels and other bar fare — but their BBQ is out of this world. They serve BBQ from Uncle B’s Smoke Shack — a Phoenixville celebrity because of his way with smoked meats and sauces. A trip to Stable 12 would just not be complete without some of Uncle B’s BBQ.
Co-founders Rick, Tyler and Chris were all raised in the area and proudly embrace the “drink local” concept. They are looking forward to becoming more involved in the redevelopment of Phoenixville, and plans are in the works for Stable 12 to be involved in an organized beer tour of Phoenixville. Check their website for the tasting room hours and beers on tap — stable12.com. When you visit, make sure to ask what is happening with the randall.
Columnist Matt Brasch is a Souderton Area High School graduate and a beer enthusiast. For more, check his blog at http://thebrewholder.com.