Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (2024)


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (1)

Meet Your Winners in 35 Categories

It's unveiling time! Meet your winners in 35 categories as voted on by YOU, our readers, on the pages that follow. And don't forget to check in to see who's new to our Lifetime Award list, too!


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (3)

Best Place for co*cktail Creations

TheBar Cart

With a fun, cozy atmosphere, friendly staff and a rotating co*cktail menu, The Bar Cart is the perfect place to explore new drinks! Every week it unveils an exciting new menu of co*cktails, showcasing local producers. “Customers love coming back week after week and trying new co*cktails,” says Kacie Griffith, who owns the business with her husband, Chris. The Bar Cart is always mixing things up, but there’s sure to be an Old Fashioned, gin drink and agave spirit co*cktail on the list of offerings. Bottles are also for sale, and everything is produced in Pennsylvania. Kacie and Chris love “being a part of people developing their own palette.” The Bar Cart has something for everyone and is a great place to relax or socialize. Its owners prioritize making the location a comfortable space. Says Chris, “We want it to feel like you are having a night cap at our house.” — Jordan Brown

713 Penn Avenue | West Reading 610.927.5141 |

Best Fitness Facility

LJ’s Fitness

LJ’s Fitness is a three-time winner in the Best Fitness Facility category for a reason: it’s a place for anyone and everyone. Explains co-owner Lynn Kreider, “LJ's Fitness was created to meet people and their fitness needs no matter their experience. We believe fitness is psychological as well as physical. Our clients are invited to schedule goal setting and nutrition counseling sessions as well as workouts.” And the workouts come in many forms, including circuit training, group fitness classes like yoga and HIIT, free weights, a powerlifting area and more. The Wellness Lounge offers a massage chair and other tools including foam rollers and a massage gun for needed muscle relief. Fun is part of the plan, too. Special events like an indoor triathlon raises money forSt. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, and Kitten Yoga aids the Animal Rescue League of Berks County. Stop in for a day pass to try it out. — Nikki M. Murry

102 N. Third St., Womelsdorf | 610.589.5213 |


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Best Independent Clothing Retailer

Be Mine Boutique

Be Mine Boutique, owned by Ali Pakradooni, is a shop consisting of mainly women’s clothing but encouraging gender fluidity, welcoming anyone to wear its clothes. Upon entering, you’ll find items from brands like Steve Madden and Free People while their accessories, jewelry and such are sourced from local brands in the area. Ali started Be Mine after taking a gap year from college and instead working retail. She fell inlove with making people feel good through clothing. Ali says she had a moment of inspiration and “hit the ground running.” Be Mine sets itself apart from other businesses by striving to make every person that enters feel welcomed and loved whether they purchased an item or were just looking around. This holiday season, you can look forward to gift guides and wish lists at Be Mine Boutique to help friends and family in purchasing a gift you’ll love. — Isabella Razzano

637 Penn Avenue, West Reading | 610.816.5635 |

Best Car Dealership

Steve Moyer Subaru

Looking to purchase a quality used or new vehicle? As evidenced by this year’s Best of Berks votes, Steve Moyer Subaru in Leesport is a must-visit. The dealership’s award-winning services ensure that customers are taken care of right as they step in the door. One of Steve Moyer Subaru’s friendly salespeople will happily help you find the car of your dreams, and fora good price, according to owner Steve Moyer, Sr. Along the way, they stand true to their sales motto: “Treat the customers how you would want to be treated.” Steve believes the reason his business has won this year’s Best Car Dealership nod is because of three things: word of mouth, knowing the customers well, and how very family-oriented Subaru is. — Daisha Viera

201 S. Centre Avenue, Leesport | 610.916.7000 |


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Best Home-Related Business (non-chain)

Bachman’s RoofingSolar & Remodeling, Inc.

For more than 50 years, family-owned Bachman’s Roofing, Solar & Remodeling has provided top-quality construction to customers in Berks County and beyond. “We strive to be a customer’s one-stop-shop for all their home-related needs,” says President & CEO Eric Bachman. Since the very beginning, the company has been dedicated to customer service, providing exceptional products paired with expert installation. Whether it's roofing, siding, solar installation or even full basem*nt remodels, Bachman’s ever-expanding services set the business apart. “For 50 years we’ve been standing behind our work, and we hope to continue serving the community for 50 more,” says Vice President Peter Niven. When customers choose this well-established, highly regarded company for upgrades and repairs, they’re choosing a company with a reputation for caring. — Dylan Sokolovich

36 S. Elm St., Wernersville | 1.800.922.5818 |


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Best Landscaping Company

Connelly Lawn & Garden

Achieving seven wins in the Best Landscaping Company category, Connelly Lawn & Garden reigns supreme for the services it provides to clients. Serving the greater Sinking Spring and Wyomissing areas since 1990, Connelly performs both residential and commercial lawn and landscape work, including lawn care, landscape maintenance, landscape design and installation and hardscaping. Extra special is the Personal Gardening Service from Connelly. Explains co-owner and manager Linda Connelly, “It was developed to meet the requests from our customers for more intensive and regular assistance with landscapes. More and more people are aging in place, and families are busier than ever. Our Personal Gardeners handle all the routine tasks such as weeding, pruning, dead heading, planting annuals and containers and so on that most don’t have time for anymore.” Those Personal Gardeners, and the rest of Connelly’s excellent staff, are what customers say keep them coming back. — Nikki M. Murry

703 Henry Circle, Sinking Spring | 610.678.8949 |

Best Jewelry Store (non-chain)

Murphy Jewelers

Looking for a unique piece of jewelry or a high-end watch for your significant other, a dear friend or a treasured family member? Visit multi-time Best of Berks winner Murphy Jewelers,a fourth-generation family-owned business that’s been in operation for 110 years and that prides itself on being a luxury jeweler with humble roots. Murphy Jewelers guarantees you will leave the premises happy. The business offers designer brands like Rolex, John Hardy, Hearts on Fire, Mikimoto, Gabriel & Co. and more. Its most popular products are engagement rings as they can produce any ring your heart desires. To enhance the experience, Murphy Jewelers focuses closely on building relationships with its clients. Marketing Manager Stacey Strausser says it best: “Every family has a story. This jewelry store is ours.” — Ameerah Sackoor

16 Jetson Dr., Hamburg | 610.562.2528 |


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Best Hair Salon

Salon Aspire, LLC

Let yourself be pampered and taken care of by a first-time winner in this category: Salon Aspire, LLC! Clients enjoy a clean, relaxing environment that offers award-winning services like highlighting, waxing, cutting, styling, soothing treatments and more. Visitors to the salon especially love the balayage and color services offered. Salon Aspire, LLC puts special emphasis on the care of the client and their hair. Professionally trained stylists welcome and get to know every individual on a personal level, tailoring their service and experience. Special attention is given to maintaining hair’s health as healthy hair is beautiful hair. The salon steers away from harmful products that contain silicone and sulfates. Owner Angie Michael says of her team, “They perfect their craft, making sure the best experience is given to each and every client.” The entire team is committed to making you look and feel your best! — Katie Ayala Hernandez

341 W. Main St., Birdsboro | 610.575.2804 |


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Best Family Portrait Photographer


“AB Photography focuses on easygoing photography sessions full of personality and love,” says owner and first-time category-winner Annabelle Bowers. Bowers specializesin and offers photography forfamilies, kids, newborns, seniorsand pets. She is passionate about working with kids and really enjoys connecting with them. This makes the experience of a family photo shoot both laid-back and fun and helps her clients’ personalities radiate through her photos. Bowers says that she adores getting to know her clients and lovesto “just hang out and bringher camera along.” She enjoystaking photos in her studio butalso likes going to differentlocations all around Berks County. AB Photographyprovides a memorable experience that continues to last through the images captured. — Alexa Cipolla

3002 Daniel Dr. Sinking Spring | 610.763.4244| annabellebowersphotography


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Best Food Truck


Originating in 2014 and opening a physical location in 2015, Gourmand has been serving and catering to the Berks community for a decade now. Gourmand caters any occasion from graduation parties to corporate-held events. Owner Mitch Kriebel says of the food service business, “I love meeting new people every day.” One of the most popular items that keeps the community coming back is their variety of fries, including cheesesteak, truffled goat cheese and street corn versions. Kriebel says his personal favorite is the Chicago-style Italian beef sandwich. He says of Gourmand’s fare, “I want to give everyone a taste of the rest of the United States.” You can look out for Gourmand’s food truck at your local fair or stop by the restaurant in your free time. — Autumn Outerbridge

945 Berkshire Blvd., Wyomissing | 610.743.3233 |

Best Coffee Spot

Firehouse Coffee

“It's easy to be number one but hard to stay number one,” says Mike Adams, owner of Firehouse Coffee. This is Firehouse Coffee’s second year being awarded the Best of Berks Best Coffee Spot designation. The business offers many varieties of coffee, including medium, dark and breakfast roast, as well as more than 40 flavors. Their top sellers include the Bacon Maple Coffee and the Bourbon Pecan Coffee. Adams’ passion for coffee inspired him to create his own roasting style, making for the perfect cup every time. Firehouse Coffee is supportive of first responders, offering these workers a 10 percent discount and free coffee if they’re on duty. Adams is very excited about some upcoming projects that Firehouse Coffee has planned for the future, saying, “We are working to expand by getting a mobile coffee truck.” — Carly Fincham

15877 Kutztown Rd., Rt. 222, Maxatawny | 610.944.1313 |


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Best Lunch Spot

Ganly’s Irish Pub & Restaurant

For the second consecutive year, Ganly’s Irish Pub & Restaurant haswon the hearts of the lunch crowd! Serving favorites such as the famousGanly’s Reuben, the Roasted Pear Salad and the Guinness Beef Dip, owner Miranda Reedy takes pride in her restaurant and her staff. She depends on her staff to provide an outstanding dining adventure with excellent lunch and dinner service in a serene atmosphere. Nann, the hostess, is genuinely kind to everyone who walks through the front door and is also the face of the restaurant. “It’s a fun place to work.We are genuinely a family here,” Nann says. “We laugh together, we crytogether, and we have a lot of fun together. It is a friendly, friendlyplace.” Specialty co*cktails and martinis change with the seasons; takeout service is always available. — Telise Wilson

500 Brownsville Rd., Sinking Spring | 610.678.2000 |

Best Public Golf Course

Manor Golf Club

The Manor Golf Club hits its eighth hole-in-one in a row! These wins are not coming out of the blue, says Cheryl Heckman, but are because of “the feeling of family. Every single golfer is welcome here.” That includes excited beginners as well as passionate, advanced players. “You have to stick to culture and tradition to grow as a business, golf course and as a person,” adds Heckman. This is one of the oldest public courses in Pennsylvania, beautifully designed in 1928 by Alexander Findlay, the father of American golf. It is a “friendly, simple but well-kept public golf course,” says Heckman, and boasts a dedicated, expert staff. Part of The First Tee organization, which “teaches youth important life skills through the game of golf,” Manor has the largest instructional program in thecounty. Feel like your swing needs some fixing? Manor offers lessons for all! — Ilaria Catania

153 Bran Rd., Sinking Spring | 610.678.9597 |


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Best Local Winery

Folino Estate

Cheers to Folino Estate, the place to taste, enjoy and purchase full-flavored, award-winning wine accompanied by invitingdishes. With more than 20varieties of wine, there issure to be a glass tailored to every individual’s taste. Put simply, Folino Estate — owned by six-time category-winners Marco and Andrea Folino — has you covered. Andrea explains that for $15, the Estate offers a six-pour wine tasting hosted by a wine educator. At the end, she says, “everyone gets a souvenir wine glass.” The winery is well known for its flavorful sangria, which can be served by the bottle or can. Folino Estate also holds several remarkable events, ranging from wine education classes to weddings. Marco and Andrea Folino say they’re excited to be opening their newestlocation in The Block at Wyomissing Square soon. — Alexa Cipolla

340 Old Route 22, Kutztown | 484.452.3633 |


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Best Financial Institution

Fleetwood Bank

“As the only independent community bank headquartered in the county, we’re thrilled to receive our first Best of Berks win,” says Marketing Officer Angela Cremer. Along with classic banking for day-to-day life, Fleetwood Bank offers services for homeowners and business owners alike. Easylock Credit lets customers tap into their home equity at a set rate, and an experienced commercial lending team helps businesses with loans and cash management tools. If you’re looking for bankers that know your name, you’ll find that here, too. While they have their own convenient mobile app, Cremer says customers still prefer stopping by a branch for the personable service. CEO Tim Snyder shares, “Our team is comprised of decision makers who live in our community, so we can get back to our customers quickly. The intangible factor of character still matters — and always will — at Fleetwood Bank. We’re not just bankers; we’re your neighbor and friend.” — Gabrielle Kopala

7 branch locations in Berks | 610.944.7666 |


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Best Pet-Friendly Business

Diggity Dawg Daycare Resort & Spa

Quality care and service equals a happily wagging dog tail! That is what you can count on at Diggity Dawg Daycare Resort & Spa. Owner Nicole Ray promises to greet all visitors, new and old, with plenty of mental enrichment and playtime that is sure to have your dog howling with delight. From swimming to playing with their furry friends, even working on that trusty sit-stay with the fabulous staff, your pup is sure to be tired after they spend their day at Diggity Dawg. (As we all know, a tired dog makes for a happy parent!) This top-notch, triple-award-winning daycare serves up generous attention and devotion. As Nicole says, “We'll treat your pets like family, and we’ll play all day!” — Bailey Erskine

5100 E. Penn Avenue, Wernersville | 610.678.2200

220 N. Park Rd., Bldg. #4, Wyomissing | 484.513.3172 |

Best Summer Camp

South Mountain YMCA

Campers come from near and far for adventure at South Mountain YMCA, which has captured its ninth win over nine years in this Best of Berks category! CEO Bill Hinton describes the atmosphere as a place where kids feel welcomed and encouraged to “be the person they were intended to be.” South Mountain offers a variety of exciting opportunities for campers from 2nd through 12th grade, including archery, crafts, climbing walls and pool activities. Throughout their time at camp, kids not only have fun and make new friends, but they’re also exposed to South Mountain’s core values of honesty, respect, responsibility and inclusion. Hinton explains that “focusing on returning children back to their parents or caregivers better than we found them is the secret sauce of what we do.” — Variah Ward

201 Cushion Peak Rd., Wernersville | 610.670.2267 |


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Best Place for Craft Beer

Schaylor Brewing Company

For delicious brews and a friendly atmosphere, stop in at Schaylor Brewing Company. With 10-14 rotating beers on tap and a history including more than 150 recipes, there’s always something new totry. Although best known for their sour beers and IPAs, owner Lucan Schmidt says, “We do make a little bit of everything.” Schaylor Brewing Company has something for every taste and is perfect for any occasion. Want something to pair with your drink? Check out the day’s eats online. Schaylor’s huge outdoor patio and live music are also sure to impress. “It doesn’t matter if you’re coming with kids or friends — we do a really good job at making everyone feel comfortable.” Schmidt attributes this to the excellent staff, who are “passionate about our brand” and who build connections with customers. — Jordan Brown

2390 Lancaster Pike, Shillington | 610.750.5442 |

Best Residential Senior Living Community

The Heritage of Green Hills

Choosing a retirement community is all about what works for you. This year marks the seventh win in a row for The Heritage of Green Hills! With 78 acres of land, the beautiful residence provides various senior living options, including independent living, personal care and memory care. Overall well-being is a top priority; the Well by Design Program offers numerous activities taking place every day in order to keep residents’ spiritual, physical, mental and educational well-being in tip-top shape. The Heritage also provides 24/7 care to ensure resident safety. “Our community is resident run,” says Ali Schratt, Director of Sales and Marketing. “We have committees that pick our décor, help us with marketing, propose events and help with our activities.” Keep an eye out for exciting plans in 2024. Staff members emphasize “fun,” and there is always something to do from morning until night so residents stay engaged in their community. — Rilee Chichester

200 Tranquility Lane, Shillington | 484.269.5100 |


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Best Local NonprofitOrganization

Adalyn Rose Foundation

One in four pregnancies is estimated to end in loss, a harsh reality Chloe and Adam Ciferri faced when they lost their first child, Adalyn Rose, who was with them for only a short time.The life of the Ciferris was wholly changed by their daughter,encouraging the bereaved parents to start a nonprofit in her name. “The Adalyn Rose Foundation provides comprehensive and continuous support to families who have lost a baby at any point during pregnancy, infancy and early childhood,” says Executive Director Chloe Ciferri. This support includes training for healthcare workers, remembrance carts, funeral and cremation financial support and various support groups. “We want to allow families to create memories in what is likely the only amount of time they’ll be able to spend with their baby or child,” says Co-Founder and Board President Adam Ciferri. To date, the foundation has helped more than 300 families, primarily in Berks. In 2024, they will begin expanding nationwide. — Dylan Sokolovich

Reading | 484.509.1032 |


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Best Specialty Store or Market

Trish’s Specialty Cheese Cakes

Baking with fresh and locally sourced ingredients, Trish’s Specialty Cheese Cakes is a shop that holds itself to high standards. Baking is not just a job for Patricia “Trish” Morey but a passion. It’s one that was awakened early in life, says Trish, who has fond memories of baking with her mother and learning family recipes with her father. With inspirations present throughout her life, Trish’s stepmother, Mary Morey, was her biggest supporter in beginning her business with her husband, Donald. Trish’s love for baking is expressed through her sought-after cheesecakes available in 31 flavors, including Boston Crème, Key Lime, Red Velvet and S’mores, to name a few. Trish’s Specialty Cheese Cakes believes customers are the true heart of their business. Donald says, “Since they came in the front door, they’re family!” Visit them for a pet-friendly, loving environment that feels like a second home. — Alexandra Sanchez

20 N. 6th Avenue, West Reading | 484.258.1992 |

Best Place for a Mani-Pedi

Lords & LadiesSalon & Medical Spa

Looking for a luxurious mani-pedi experience but nervous about going somewhere unfamiliar? Fret no more with a visit to a Lords & Ladies Salon! This is the second time Lords & Ladies celebrates the mani-pedi win; they’ve previously won numerous other Best of Berks beauty categories. With seven family-run locations, they offer an at-home feel while maintaining an elevated experience. Upon entering, you’re warmly welcomed as their expert team takes pride in making connectionsand forming relationships with clients for a happy, relaxed time. Whether seeking a gel or dip manicure or spa treatments, you’ll find a wide array of services. Here, they believe there’s no need to break the bank for luxury, offering specials on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Marketing Manager Brittney Bennett says what you “can’t save at the gas pump, you can save at Lords & Ladies!” — Alexandra Sánchez

Multiple locations in Berks & Montgomery counties | 844.725.6655 |


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Best Yoga Studio

Bldg. 7 Yoga

It’s a seventh win in this category for Bldg. 7 Yoga! Promoting the quiet and restorative energy of yoga, the studio provides multiple classes and different environments to fit every individual’s needs in its three unique classrooms. The Fire Room is heated to 90 degrees for hot yoga and also serves as the main practice room. The Water Room is not heated and has a garage door for better air circulation and hosts group fitness classes. The Earth Room is fully carpeted with blankets, blocks and sandbags. Bldg. 7 encourages its visitors to try various classes to improve their overall health and well-being. Diverse class levels meet the needs of beginners and advanced groups. Owner Natashia Linderman expresses her personal connection to the practice: “For me, it really helped anxiety, depression and stress. Just clearing the mind of the business of the day makes me a happier and better person overall.” — Telise Wilson

220 N. Park Rd., Bldg. 7, Wyomissing | 484.755.5705 |


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Best Outdoor Dining Spot

Doc & Bubba’s

For a refreshing getaway from city life, Doc & Bubba’s has you covered! This is the restaurant’s first win as Best Outdoor Dining Spot after opening just two years ago. Their setting welcomes all ages, offering a woodsy feel with live plants, open fire pits and a perfect view of theevening sunset. Their outdoor season is year round with a custom-made tent that regulates temperatures. When it comes to fabulous food and drinks, prepare to be blown away by specialty outdoor-smoked meats and a daily brunch that customers love. Their entertainment has something for everyone: R&B, classic rock, country and jazz. Yet what really brings customers back is the restaurant’s overall social energy. Co-owner Jim “Bubba” Radwanski says, “We’re all energetic and sociable. If we see you sitting by yourself, we’ll come over and start a conversation with you. Our atmosphere and our staff are here to make you happy!” — Gabrielle Kopala

4312 New Holland Rd., Mohnton | 484.509.0110 | docbubbas


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Best Tattoo Studio

Fodor Ink

Adam Fodor, owner and tattoo artist at Fodor Ink, says he was always into art and started off as a commissionportrait artist and an iron worker before becoming a tattoo artist. He insists that if it wasn’t for the tremendous support of his wife and kids, he wouldn’t have taken the leap to start a tattoo shop and quit his day job. Adam recalls it was scary going through that big change because “you go from knowing what you’re going to make one day to not knowing.” What sets Fodor Ink apart from others is its dedication to quality and cleanliness. “Do it the right way, no matter how long it takes” — no shortcuts are allowed. Adam himself specializes in black-and-grey realism portraits, but you can also book with Jess for fine line art, Reese for color art and Kiersten for realism as well. — Isabella Razzano

32 W Main St., Fleetwood | 484.277.2545 | fodorink

Best Consignment Shop

From The Heart Consignment

From The Heart Consignment (FTH) thanks you from the bottom of their hearts for their second win in this category! Carrying everything from designer brands and new retail with tags to home decor, it’s a one-stop-shop to feed your aesthetic appetite. Owner Katherine Scheese takes immense pride in delivering exceptional customer service and supporting those in need. “We call ourselvesa retail ministry. Our main purpose is to love on others because that’s exactly what we’re missingin this world,” Scheese says. Since opening in 2014, FTH has donated clothing and funds to 11 charities, including 1,155 purses filled with personal care items for women. Just know that when you buy from the shop, you’re not only supporting a small business but also helping the community. — Emily Johnson

4600 Penn Avenue, Ste. C, Sinking Spring | 484.509.4441 |


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Best Place for a Massage

The Salt Lounge

Sit back and relax because the “Best Place for a Massage” category is back! And The Salt Lounge is the winner!This wellness center is fit for anyone looking to breathe, de-stress and loosen up. When you visit The Salt Lounge, you will be greeted by “an inviting lobby,” says owner Rachel Eskin, and you will be led to “a massage room or a salt room.” From massages to add-ons like Reiki or halotherapy, the friendly, “very well-trained” staff is devoted to improving your health. If you don’t want to come alone, couple massages are offered. Don’t worry — it’s notonly for lovers: you can bring your friend, grandmother or child, as massage therapists here “cater to all ages,” says Rachel. It’s a great way to spend quality time with a loved one, and salt therapy aids in improved breathing and relaxation, naturally. — Ilaria Catania

4 Wellington Blvd., Ste. 110, Wyomissing | 610.646.1733 |


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Best Realtor (individual)

Kelly Spayd, Keller Williams Platinum Realty

When buying a home, you want someone who is going to put their all into giving you what you want while also making the process as seamless as possible. Berks County native Kelly Spayd does exactly that, which is why she earned her second consecutive win in this category. Spayd offers all residential services in Berks, Lancaster and Lehigh counties and is celebrating 18 years as a buyer and seller specialist. All of her business is by referral, which shows just how spectacularshe is at what she does. Spayd also gives credit to her twoassistants, who, she says, “make a wonderful team.” When asked, “What do you enjoy about your job?” she says, “Other people's happiness makes me happy.”— Autumn Outerbridge

60 Commerce Dr., Wyomissing | 610.898.1441 |

Best Caterer

Special Occasions by Panevino

From small dinner parties to luxurious wedding settings, Special Occasions by Panevino has all the comprehensive service and food you’ll need for your special event. David and Trish Brennan, owners of Special Occasions by Panevino, have been mainstay names in Berks County’s restaurant industry for years. Now, they’re bringing their expertly crafted Northern Italian cuisine to your next big event. “We’ve had so many loyal customers that have become our friends over the past 25 years, and we hope to continue forming these relationships with our catering services,” says David. Their amazing food and service promises to be the same as it was in the past, and if you’re new to Panevino, get ready for a mouthwatering experience.— Dylan Sokolovich

600 E. Penn Avenue, Unit 1, Wernersville | 610.376.1101 |

Best Fine Dining (non-chain)

Dans at Green Hills

Dans at Green Hills, once a distant dream by MD Moniruzzaman and Bill Woolworth, wins this award for the sixth time. Step out for a visit and savour outstanding American Cuisine with a French influence alongside passionate, certified servers and chefs ready to provide you with a personalized experience, accommodating all dietary requests. The establishment combines the best of two worlds: professional service that rivals “what you would find in New York City, along with a family feel,” says Monir. Excellent hospitality does not fill bellies, but a multiple-award homemade sweet potato soup is a great start. The unique filet mignon with made-in-house bordelaise, bearnaise, garlic herb butter or demiglace is a highly recommended entrée. To top it all off, Dans offers the largest wine catalogue in Berks County with selections from all aroundthe world. — Alvarino Lin

2444 Morgantown Rd., Reading | 670.777.9611 |


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Best Local Taco Spot

Taqueria Comalli

A first-time winner for Best Local Taco Spot, Taqueria Comalli has the best tacos in town! The business maintains its authenticity while “taking traditional flavors and introducing them in a different way,” says owner Erik Arizmendi. All recipes are made in house, each with its particular fresh, high-quality ingredient inspired by its own background story. Taqueria Comalli offers a customizable menu that includes customer favorites like tacos, burritos, quesadillas and more. Try Erik’s personal favorite, the El Brûlée taco, inspired by his aunt’s rice paired with fresh bananas. It’s made of pulled chicken, mole poblano, double crema queso fresco and brûlée banana, all placed on a Nixtamal tortilla. Pair your meal with a refreshing agua fresca or side dish. Whatever you choose, be prepared to experience a burst of flavor in every bite! — Katie Ayala Hernandez

701 Court St., West Reading | 484.869.2824 |

Best Place to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

Sweet RideIce Cream, LLC.

Looking for a treat? Sweet Ride Ice Cream can’t be beat! This is the spot’s fifth overall Best of Berks win and their second win in this category. With more than 50 ice cream flavors, you’ll never run out of new things to try.Plus, there are sundaes, floats, cookie sandwiches, brownie sundaes and more to consider. “I like to keep things fresh and fun,” says co-owner Angie Farrell. Sweet Ride hosts numerous community activities, so watch for “ice cream for breakfast” and “waffle weekends.” Sweet Ride’s main location is open all year round, and to spice things up, they’re constantly adding new flavors and creations for every holiday and season. “My husband, Chris, and I started this business, and we just wanted to create a special place for people to come and have really good ice cream,” says Angie. With endless options and warm, welcoming customer service, what’s not to love? — Rilee Chichester

542 Penn Avenue, West Reading | 484.987.7338 |


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Best Spot for Breakfast

FRESH Breakfast | Lunch

FRESH Breakfast | Lunch celebrates a first win in this category! The restaurant prides itself on being a nontraditional alternative for various breakfastfoods and beverages for anyone looking for options apart from ordinaryofferings like simpler eggs, potatoes and meat. “Our choices are more brunch-y, new, modern and original,” says owner Nicholas Kaltsas. The most popular item is the short rib benedict, but there are various specialsthat change often, from special drinks to main food items, that areenticing as well. Specialty drinks include seasonal flavored options andmimosa with autumn’s apple cider, pomegranate for the holidayseason and refreshing watermelon and peach for the summer. Kaltsaspersonally recommends the short rib tostada and chicken grain bowlfor lunch. Menu standouts include the sunrise skillet and homesteadhash benedict. — Elizabeth Churchill

614 Penn Avenue, West Reading | 610.396.5143 |


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Best Venue to Hold an Event

Reading Public Museum

Finding your perfect wedding venue or even the best location for a corporate event can sometimes be a daunting task, but the Reading Public Museum has you covered with venues that accommodate every size, style and budget. The distinct nature of each venue is what sets The Museum apart from other locations, says Kara J. Seawell, Manager of External Events & Weddings. If you’re looking for an elegant backdrop, the Fine Art Galleries are ideal. For hosting an event under a canopy of stars and celestial wonders, the Neag Planetarium offers an experience like no other. For those in search of a more picturesque space, the Stone Terrace Tent and Arboretum are lovely. Kara comments, “We strive to make sure each experience is unique, unforgettable and that every client we host is delighted beyond expectations.” Their commitment to excellence is what keeps the Reading Public Museum earning “Best Venue” awards year after year. — Dylan Sokolovich

The Best Place to Enjoy the Arts

Reading Public Museum

Celebrating again! The Reading Public Museum has won numerous Best of Berks awards over the years. For the past 110 years, The Museum has assembled an impressive collection of art. Across its European, American and Modernand Contemporary galleries, visitors can expect to enjoy viewing some of the more than 800 paintings, 10,000 works on paper and 300 sculptures. Always eager to recruit museum-goers and keep past guests coming back, TheMuseum casts its net wide by putting on temporary exhibits and showcasing living artists’ work. As curator Scott Schweigert says, “We’re a museum for everybody.” Outside, one can wander the 25-acre arboretum and its sculpture garden. The Museum is also a center of history and science with its various galleries and planetarium. — Riley Norton

500 Museum Rd., Reading | 610.371.5850 |

Meet Your 2023 Lifetime Winners

How is a Lifetime Winner designation achieved?The below businesses have earned 10 or more wins in their respective categories. If you’re not already familiar with them, read on and get to know them a bit better.


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (26)

Best Diner

Exeter Family Restaurant

Exeter Family Restaurant Vice President of Operations Michael Nanouh attributes much of their voter and customer loyalty to the restaurant’s caring employees that treat every guest like a member of their family. Nanouh also explains that the establishment takes pride in trying new and delicious food trends, evident on their expansive menu offering up breakfast, lunch and dinner dishes day and night. They’re open 24 hours; reservations are available, and you can even order online for pick-up. Need to maintain a heart-healthy diet?They can help with that, too. Popular is the 40-plus-item all-you-can-eat salad bar. Don’t forget to leave room for dessert!

4800 Perkiomen AvenueReading | 610.370.5131 |


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (27)

Best Independent Jeweler

Van ScoyJewelers

Van Scoy Jewelers is Berks County’s premier diamond store with a stunning showroom on Penn Avenue in Wyomissing.When you’re looking for that special something for that special someone, it’s a must-visit. Owner Caroline Hill, a Penn State alum and Diamond Graduate of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), is proud to employ a friendly and knowledgeable staff with close to 100 years of experience in theindustry and offer visitors outstanding, personalized service. Want something completelyunique? Visit with Sal, the jeweler at Van Scoy. With more than 25 years of experience, he can fabricate anything. Bring your ideas, and he’ll make them a reality. All work will be done in-house, too, so you don’t have to worry about it being shipped away to be worked on for an extended period of time.

1121 Penn Avenue, Wyomissing | 610.374.9330 |


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (28)

Best Fine Dining

Judy’son Cherry

Plan your visit to experience the ultimate in fine dining at Judy’s on Cherry. Bask in the warm glow of vaulted wooden ceilings and gorgeous interior while enjoying out-of-this-world Mediterranean fine dining cuisine and seasonal dishes at downtown’s posh, comfortable, cool place. Offerings start with freshly baked focaccia bread and can rotate based on the season. Mainstay favorites include the butternut squash soup with crab, the Cowboy Ciao Salad, Enraged Penne Pasta and filet mignon with gorgonzola butter. Vegan entrees are offered, too, and don’t miss Pizza & Wine nights on Wednesdays. Homemade seasonal desserts and year-round treats like Mrs. Wesner’s Coconut Layer Cake round out the delicious menu. Reservations are strongly recommended.

332 Cherry St., Reading | 610.374.8511 |

Best Country Hotel / Restaurant

Yellow House Hotel

Deemed a “delightful departure,” the Yellow House Hotel is an inn originating in 1801 offering overnight accommodations as well as delicious eats, history and top-notch service, be it for lunch, Sunday brunch, dinneror a special event. Their dinner banquet menu includes filet mignon, duck, chicken parmesan and even selections for children, including spaghetti and meatballs, chicken tenders and macaroni & cheese. Brunch sees options including an egg quesadilla, golden malted Belgian waffles, chickenbruschetta and a hot roast beef sandwich. Pair any of them with the Cross-Eyed Mary, a 14-ounce glass rimmed with Old Bay, tomato juice, Tito’s vodka, a special spice blend and garnished with jalapeno, a garlic-stuffed olive and a pepperoncini. Reservations are highly recommended. Please visit online for current hours of operation and more info.

6743 Boyertown Pike, Douglassville | 610.689.9410 |

Best Car Dealership

Tom Masano Auto Group, Inc.

Founded in Reading in 1954 by brothersTom and Bruce, Masano dealerships pride themselves in offering an extensive stock and employing a knowledgeable staff. Between Masano’s new vehicle locations offering BMW, Ford, Lincoln, Mercedes and Sprinter brands and the astonishing used car auto park with a 120-car indoor showroom, you can bank on finding the car of your dreams. You can even purchase your new vehicle online and have it delivered to your home, making the buying process even more convenient. Says the team, “We know that you have high expectations, and we enjoy the challenge of meeting and exceeding those standards each and every time. Allow us to demonstrate our commitmentto excellence with the best customer serviceand unbeatable luxury cars, trucks and SUVs for sale.”

815 Lancaster Avenue, Reading | 610.777.6587 |


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (29)

Best Place to Celebrate the Arts

GoggleWorks Center for the Arts

The GoggleWorks mission is to transform lives through unique interactions with art, and with its new 2023 Lifetime Best of Berks designation, it’s surely achieving that goal! Visit its Reading location to view gallery exhibits, meet with artists in their studios, or see an independent film in theAlbert & Eunice Boscov Theatre. Stand-out events held throughoutthe year include the Handcrafted Holiday Market, Pumpkin Paloozaand the Iron Pour. Want to flex your creative muscles? You can dothat here, too. Classes are offered every season and run the gamutfrom glassblowing to metal work, digital media, ceramics and muchmore. There are also workshops for those interested in a one-timeexperience. Prefer to shop for a unique art piece instead of craftingone yourself? You can do that as well.

201 Washington St., Reading | 610.374.4600 |


Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (30)

Best Fitness Center

Body Zone Sports and Wellness Complex

Body Zone Sports and Wellness Complex is a hub for one-stop fitness, wellness and sports. There’s something for every family member at the 160,000-square-foot facility that includes Body Zone Physical Therapy, a fitness center, an indoor track and pool, a REP ROOM Group Workout Studio, two NHL-sized ice rinks, two Spinturf synthetic grass sports fields and a basketball court. Take a group fitness class or hit the indoor track or recover in physical therapy. Swim a lap, perfect your wall ball on the training turf or mix up your cardio and strength workouts with 200+ pieces of the industry's latest and best equipment. Body Zone hasit all plus so much more under one roof to help you get stronger, feel betterand take control of your health and fitness.

3103 Paper Mill Rd., Wyomissing | 610.376.2100 |

Best Cosmetic Enhancement Facility

Advanced Skin Care, Laser & BodyContouring Center

If you’re considering an aesthetic procedure but nerves are keeping you from taking the leap, get to Advanced Skin Care, Laser & Body Contouring Center. There, the art of advanced medical technology is combined with thorough, compassionate, personal care under the direction of Dr. Harriet Comite, the region’s most experienced injector of Botox® and fillers. A Yale University School of Medicine grad and a Cosmetic Board-certified dermatologist, with Dr. Comite, you’re in the best of hands. Visit for procedures including EMSCULPT®, VanquishMe™, Cellutone™, Exilis™, EMSELLA® and the new Morpheus8™. This is the only place in Berks you’ll find all of them! Advanced Skin Care is always accepting new patients and offers prompt appointments.

1260 Broadcasting Rd., Wyomissing | 610.374.1400 |

Best Local Clothing Boutique

Bella Jules Fashion Boutique

Looking for unique-yet-comfortable fashions, that perfect date night outfit or even a formal or prom dress? You’ll find all options and price points at Bella Jules Fashion Boutique in West Reading. Since 2005, owner Juli Cleaver has thoughtfully selected pieces, including accessories, for Bella Jules Boutique’s loyal clientele: stylish moms, professionals, trendy teens and more. She stays up-to-date on the latest looks, and you can keep up with what’s new by following the store on Instagram @bellajulesboutique. Merchandise is ever evolving and arrives weekly, so customers get a fresh look and experience with each visit, not to mention great service and fashion advice, too. Want to get store news first? Sign up online to become a Bella Jules Insider.

700 Penn Avenue, West Reading | 610.208.0600 |

Meet your 2023 Best of Berks Winners (2024)
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