John and Peter Giannopoulos of Sly Fox Brewery announced that they were opening a large-production brewery in Pottstown later this year and would sell the restaurant side of their Royersford location to a longtime employee, Stacey Hebert, and her husband, Bryan.
They'll call it Lucky Lab Tavern.
Under the agreement, Sly Fox will still operate the restaurant until the liquor license has been transferred and Sly Fox will continue to make beer in its brewery in the rear of the building until the new plant is operational before the end of the year.
Sly Fox opened its first brewpub in Phoenixville in December 1995. The Royersford location opened in 2004.
In a statement, the Giannopoulos brothers said their new 30,000-square-foot brewery, on six acres at 331 Circle of Progress in the Pottstown Airport Business Center, has housed the brewery’s executive offices and been serving as a warehouse since the beginning of this year, when Sly Fox took possession. In addition to the new brewery, a tasting room/pub will eventually be added if a zoning variance is granted by the township.
The brewery will feature a fully automated 50-hectoliter BrauKon brewhouse from Germany, which is expected to arrive by November and be running by the end of the year. Production capabilities will be tripled with the new brewhouse. Sly Fox now can brew 25 hectoliters twice a day but will be able to brew 50 hectoliters three times a day at the Pottstown location. The company will purchase three new 150-hectoliter fermenters from JV Northwest and will move 11 50-hectoliter fermenters from the Royersford location to the new plant.
A new rotary Cime canning line from Italy will complete the Pottstown production facilities. That equipment, which will fill 60 cans per minute versus the 28 cans per minute done by the existing line, will actually go on line in Royersford next month and then be moved to the new plant. The current brewhouse, several 25-hectoliter fermenters and the existing canning line will be sold when the new plant goes on line.