Berks

Sly Fox reveals look of new 'brewery outpost' in Wyomissing

'We're really excited to create something special'

POTTSTOWN, Pa. - A Pottstown-based brewery is looking to build on its more than two decades of success by growing its presence in Berks County.

Sly Fox Brewing Company unveiled Wednesday the look of its third pub, which is set to open at The Knitting Mills in Wyomissing later this year.

"Wyomissing is a booming neighborhood," said John Giannopoulos, the president of the family-owned brewing company. "There are large employers, great residential sections, a museum, and improvement happening all over. There are tons of great street festivals, events, and the restaurant selection is top notch! We are very excited we are to be part of the future growth here."

Sly Fox's newest pub will take the place of Dooney and Bourke's former retail store at the VF Outlet Center complex, which is presently undergoing a $70-million redevelopment for use as a mix of office, retail, and restaurant space.

The site's transformation comes more than a century after its buildings were constructed to serve as home to the Berkshire Knitting Mill, which would grow to become the largest full-fashioned knitting mill in the world.

"There's a real sense of history here and throughout the Wyomissing area," Giannopoulos said. "With the unique architecture and use of materials, these older buildings evoke a true sense of nostalgia. It's great to see the community rallying behind it and repurposing the space."

Sly Fox said it plans to make the site's history a prominent feature of its new pub's decor and build-out. The 7,000-square-foot building features two floors and a soon-to-be-built wrap-around-deck.

"We're envisioning a casual dining and bar atmosphere upstairs and a game room below like nothing else," Giannopoulos said. "The lower space is wide open with room for a stage and bar games. There's even room for an indoor Kan Jam Tournament."

Sly Fox, which also has pubs in Pottstown and East Pikeland Township, Chester County, said it plans to develop a fresh and locally sourced food menu to go along with its lineup of craft beers.

"We're really excited to create something special in Wyomissing," said Giannopoulos. "A local pub that offers our award-winning beer lineup, but more — a community asset that people will love."

The new pub's opening is set for late-summer or early-fall.

Sly Fox is the first restaurant to be announced for "The Knitting Mills." The complex's other tenants are set to include UGI Energy Services' headquarters, Tower Health's corporate offices, and a new Wawa convenience store.

"We are thrilled to get Sly Fox as a lead tenant and believe they will attract other restaurants and stores as well as providing an important amenity for the employees located on campus and residents of Wyomissing and West Reading," said Kevin Flannery, acquisition associate and asset manager at Equus Capital Partners, which purchased the property in late-2016.

Work to rehabilitate the former Designers Place building on the West Reading side of the property is nearing completion. Once the work is done, the VF Outlet will relocate its retail and office operations to the first and second floors. Tower Health will occupy the third and fourth floors.

UGI Energy Services will occupy the Blue Building after it undergoes an extensive remodel. The Red Building is in the process of being torn down.


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