FITLIFE with Rich Stark, Owner Of The Phoenix Ale Central Kitchen


Today I spent some time with good friend and FITLIFE member Rich Stark in our gym and at his Gastropub in central Phoenix.  Rich came to FITLIFE back in December of 2007, courtesy of our next door neighbors, Foothills Physical Therapy.  Like many active people who complete physical therapy, Rich wanted to continue his prescription exercise training in a comfortable environment with highly trained professionals.  He landed in our Functional Training program and has stayed with us ever since, working out 2-3 times a week at FITLIFE and a couple times a week on his own.  Rich is committed to his fitness and rarely misses a workout!

When I met Rich he was CEO of NYPD Pizza and a craft beer enthusiast.  A perfect combo in my book, pizza mogul and beer lover!  Seriously, Rich spent 14 years with NYPD first as the Chief Operating Officer and then CEO.  While at NYPD Pizza, Rich met Phoenix Ale Brewery owner George Hancock and they decided to create a beer paired specifically for pizza. Thankfully, Rich asked me to sit in on this food tasting and beer pairing endeavor, which of course I graciously accepted.  The results of their efforts is NYPD’s Uptown Amber brewed by Phoenix Ale. It was a great experience and interesting to learn more about both the restaurant and brewing industries.

Rich ultimately left NYPD, and together with George’s blessing decided to open Central Kitchen to feature Phoenix Ale Beers paired with great food.  On each of the menu items a recommendation is given for what type of beer goes well with the dish.  As Rich said shortly before they opened, we want people to come for the beer and stay for the food.  If you haven’t been there yet I highly recommend it!  They are located on 7th Street and Palo Verde in the exciting mid town foodie corridor.

I hope you enjoyed meeting another one of our clients today.  If you ever workout while Rich is at FITLIFE you can join in on one of our many conversations covering sports, food, beer and politics.

Have a safe and healthy weekend.

John Neel AT Signature

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