YORK, PA – Downtown York’s creative beer scene will grow even bigger during February’s First Friday, when Crystal Ball Brewing Company opens a full-service bar on South Beaver Street.
Downtown Inc will welcome the newest local brewery to Downtown York with a ribbon-cutting event at 6 p.m. Friday, February 2, at the former Weinbrom Jewelers building, 21 S. Beaver St. Crystal Ball is expected to serve the first beverage to York Mayor Michael Helfrich, before opening its eight taps to the public. Media coverage is invited.
Crystal Ball’s arrival will mark the completion of a new South Beaver Street merchant hub that also includes Isaac’s On The Fly, Memory Lane Sweets, Make Me Over Beauty Supply, Lele B’s Boutique and Meta.
High school buddies and beer aficionados Jesse De Salvo, Ryan Johnstonbaugh and Ashley Garvick founded Crystal Ball in 2014 and already have a brewery and tasting room in West York. They have long eyed Downtown York for expansion, especially given the city’s renaissance.
Crystal Ball will join Mudhook Brewing Company, Liquid Hero Brewery and Collusion Tap Works as craft breweries with a presence in Downtown York. Gift Horse Brewing Company also plans to open a tasting room in the near future.
“Downtown York is where we have to be,” De Salvo said. “The city is thriving thanks to a wave of restaurants, shops and other businesses that have brought new energy and momentum. We’re joining an excellent local beer scene that’s drawing people downtown already. The cake is baked, and the icing is spread. We’ll be another cherry on an already baked cake.”
With room for 35 to 40 patrons, Crystal Ball’s downtown location will offer an intimate spot to enjoy great beer with friends.
The brewery’s Coconut Porter, made with real toasted coconut, put it on the craft beer map. A Jamaican-Style Wheat made with mango and hibiscus and an All-Seeing IPA featuring Columbus, Citra and Amarillo hops round out the brewery’s flagship beers.
Other creative beers are always on tap. Brews often pay homage to something local – like the Project 70 Pale Ale whose name references the manmade Lake Marburg at Codorus State Park. Growing up in the Spring Grove area, Crystal Ball’s owners would often go there to hike, swim in the pool or play disc golf.
Likewise, Crystal Ball will emphasize Pennsylvania-made products. In addition to seven taps for its own beer, Crystal Ball will reserve the eighth spigot for Wyndridge Farm’s Crafty Cider. The bar will serve wine from Spring Gate Vineyard and spirits from Philadelphia Distilling and Tattered Flag.
“Crystal Ball understands the meaning of local and will be a great fit in Downtown York,” said Silas Chamberlin, CEO of Downtown Inc, the City of York’s downtown improvement organization. “The ongoing revitalization of the city wouldn’t be possible without businesses willing to invest in the downtown, and we encourage everyone who loves great beer – or just a good story about another local business doing well – to join us on First Friday to welcome Crystal Ball.”
While the brewery has focused on packaging its products for distribution around Pennsylvania, having the bar will allow Johnstonbaugh, the head brewer, and Garvick, the assistant brewer, to create new flavors just for the bar. A Milk Chocolate Stout is in the works for Valentine’s Day, while a habanero beer could roll out for Cinco de Mayo, De Salvo said.
“The downtown location will allow Ryan and Ashley opportunities to be more creative because they don’t have to worry about designing a can label or putting the beer out to wholesalers,” De Salvo said. “They can simply make some beer they really like and share it with customers at the bar.”
Hours will be 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Wednesday, 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday, 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday. Food from Isaac’s On The Fly, including all-day breakfast, will be available.
Downtown Inc is THE organization working to drive, enhance and encourage investment in York’s central business district through economic development, promotions, placemaking and public safety. Downtown Inc is the trade name for a joint venture between the York Business Improvement District Authority and Main Street York, a 501(c)(3) not for profit. Visit www.DowntownYorkPa.com for more information.
Andrew Staub, Marketing & Communications Manager, Downtown Inc, firstname.lastname@example.org, 717.849.2331
Silas Chamberlin, Chief Executive Officer, Downtown Inc, email@example.com, 717.849.2331