What do pizza and beer have in common? Well, the answer(s) probably center around taste, but did you ever think that pizza and beer just pair well together?
The Sherpas heard so much about Pizza Boy Brewing Co., in Enola, Pennsylvania, that we ventured out one snowy March day to explore. The folks on the Facebook page Berks Beer Traders rave about the place and we finally succumbed to making the 100 mile+ drive for pizza and beer?!
The final approach was made tentatively, feeling that the GPS must have recorded the address incorrectly. Industrial in nature, 2240 Millennium Way feels more like a car dealership than a brewery/pizzeria.
Entering the double doors, we found the excitement level increasing as the electronic tap list enticed us to approach the counter, with Pizza Boy Brewing Company beers coupled with a wide selection of beers from other quality breweries available on tap, in bottles, growlers and crowlers (check this out if you are not familiar with the crowler). Reasonably priced glasses of beer (they do not offer tastings) are a foundation of their tap list.
When in Rome….do as the Romans do. We did so and ordered exclusively Pizza Boy beers. The Free Fall Summer Grisette, at 3.7% abv, was crisp and paired perfectly with our white pizza, supported by a light pilsner-style finish. The Blue Collar Lager, at 5% abv was a little less impressive, reminiscent of a Yuengling Lager, but a solid entry into the lager category. Arck Angel, a 4x IPA, at 13.5% abv was unbalanced and cloying, with a grapefruit hop presence that did not complement the malt sweetness. SNIPA Claussenii, an American Wild IPA at 12.0% abv, was a decent IPA with some mild funk. Both big beers hid the alcohol very effectively.
The biggest issue we encountered was understanding what was going on here. Good pizza and a reasonable menu of other offerings, with tons of beer selections, but a bit of an issue with identity. Is this a brewpub or a brewery? A pizza joint, restaurant, bottle shop, bar? What came first, the pizza or the brewery/bar? In the end, it doesn’t really matter. The beer selection is vast, and from what we observed, the brewery is the future here. The Pizza Boy Brewing Company is housed within the Al’s of Hampden Pizzeria, two businesses offering their epicurean selections to beer lovers, pizza lovers, families and friends. From all appearances, reviews of press and general buzz, Pizza Boy Brewery has already hit its stride in terms of expansion, with distribution expanding throughout Pennsylvania and the region.
From all appearances, it seems that the Kominski family has made impressive strides into a crowded suds market with creative and respectable brews, experimenting with sours, barrel-aged combination, hops and yeasts, with a bright future ahead. Well worth a visit if you are anywhere in the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania area.