It’s not every day you find a friendly restaurant with a tremendous beer selection (100 rotating beers on tap, to be exact). Throw in some wood-fired pizza and blues/alternative and you’ve got The Federal Taphouse: a gastropub that opened its second location, here in Lancaster, in June of 2013. I had the privilege of sitting down with Corey Fogarty, one of the masterminds behind this highly popular eatery.
Corey has spent 22 years as an entrepreneur, working at places like TGI Fridays and Carlos & Charlie’s. He lived in Raleigh, North Carolina in the early 2000’s, where he regularly visited two places: the Flying Saucer (which had 100 drafts) and Lilly’s Pizza (which served a mean pizza). His appetite for these types of restaurants inspired him to build a small chain restaurant called Hopjacks Pizza Kitchen and Taproom. Now a larger chain, Corey helped open the locations in Pensacola, Florida and Mobile, Alabama (which has since closed its doors – after he sold it). This alternative/punk-themed pizza kitchen is known for its stone-bottom pizza and 50 drafts on tap.
Corey eventually wanted something bigger and better. He found his business partner who owned a club in Harrisburg, PA and along with their chef, Robert Daco, they created the Federal Taphouse. The first location for this gastropub was in Harrisburg, PA. The Harrisburg location focuses on live music, whereas the Lancaster location focuses on private events, a scratch kitchen, and 100 drafts.
In Lancaster, the Taphouse’s theater kitchen showcases a stone oven where they fire all of their pizzas (including their Nutella pizza which features the delicious chocolate hazelnut spread, fresh berries, and a honey drizzle). Their goal was to create a place where people from all walks of life could feel comfortable at any point during the day.
“My motto is: Tattoos and ties in the same place!” Corey told me during our interview.
I don’t know about you, but I’m hungry and thirsty just writing this! And, we couldn’t end this article without telling you the exciting news regarding the future of the Federal Taphouse. A brand new location has been announced in Fells Point! This location, open in August or September, will seat 140 people.
The Federal Taphouse team is extremely excited about this new location, as their intention is to create a high quality chain. Corey himself is absolutely elated to push forward with this brand new plan.
“Family is everything. Everything I do in my life is centered around making people around me happy, primarily my family.”
Corey, not only are you making your family happy, you’re making all of Lancaster happy, too!