Meet Joe Kopke. Our Director of Operations knows a thing or two about the fun and hard work in the industry, because he has worked almost every position in a restaurant! Staring as a dishwasher, he worked his way through the kitchen, then went on to waiting tables and bartending before entering into restaurant and hospitality management. Joe enjoys working with people, from the employees to the guests, it's the people that motivate him. For 22 years he has dedicated himself to the craft and even traveled across the country to join our Iron Hill family. He just couldn't resist the award-winning Russian Imperial Stout...!
We had a chance to catch up with Joe and ask a few questions about his first impressions and what new and exciting things we can expect in the coming months...
You’ve been on the job 6 months now, what was your impression of Iron Hill when you first started?
My impression was overwhelmingly the pride in people that serve and work behind the scenes day in and day out. Iron Hill has an incredible brand story and I believe what struck my heart was the love and passion of our incredible people. From the kitchen to brewery to the smiling faces that serve our guests each day; our people are, and will continue to be, the true inspiration of what our brand is.
What changes can we expect to see over the next several months in-restaurant?
You will see us get even more locally focused. I am very excited at the journey ahead for Iron Hill. We have some very creative scratch menu items that will make it to our menu. Our Culinary team has been innovative and really inspired some great, seasonal power bowl options and really unique and creative taco offerings.
Our online ordering platform and mobile app will really be a win for our guests as they will make it more convenient to order their favorite items with ease and execution.
What is your favorite Iron Hill beer and food pairing?
My favorite beer pairing is ANYTHING with Russian Imperial Stout. My favorite beer ever. I also love Philly Special with a flatbread, I just love the flavor combinations.
Anything else new and exciting on the horizon for Iron Hill that you can share with us? –
We have several growth opportunities into new markets across the southern states while continuing to grow our brand here in the mid-Atlantic region. New locations help provide growth for our people within the organization and also allow us to provide jobs in communities in other states. We have a strong brand that really can help drive the local economies we join.
Father’s Day is coming up... Happy Father's Day, Joe!
Father's Day is always a special day. I am humbled and truly appreciate our Iron Hill team members who are dads and the sacrifices they make to provide for their families. Any day with my 3 kids and fiance is a memory to cherish. Moments of time are something we should always treasure and hold onto.