New in Town
You can always count on great food and new restaurants to try in Happy Valley. Our dining options just keep growing. Whether you’re looking for classic American fare or an authentic cultural food experience, you can find it in Happy Valley. Here are some of the newest places to check out on your next night out!
Spats at the Grill
100 W College Ave., second floor
Nobody can deny Happy Valley lost two local favorites (and a piece of history) when the Rathskeller and Spats Café closed down in January. When they closed up shop, they took a little piece of our hearts with them.
Fortunately, though, for Spats lovers, owners Duke and Monica Gastiger managed to salvage the restaurant in a small way. In collaboration with the Allen Street Grill/State College Hotel, they opened Spats at the Grill in April, which offers a combination of the New Orleans-inspired cuisine found at Spats Cafe and Speakeasy with Allen Street Grill favorites.
Located on the second floor of the State College Hotel, the new restaurant still offers many of Spats’ signature dishes, like jambalaya; Po’ Boys; the almond-crusted chicken breast; red beans, rice or grits, collards and cornbread and chicken and andouille sausage gumbo. Other equally delicious menu items include crab bisque, gourmet burgers, seafood nachos, sashimi tuna tacos and Jamison lamb chops.
If you haven’t been to Spats at the Grill, put it on your list for your next family dinner, date night or evening out with your friends. It’s where two Happy Valley culinary experiences collide for a memorable meal.
Troy’s Philadelphia-Style Hoagies
2932 Benner Pike, Bellefonte
Okay, you caught us! Troy’s isn’t exactly new to the area. In fact, it first opened in Bellefonte in 1994. Later, Troy re-opened up the shop — this time on West Aaron Drive in State College (taking over the former location of Callao Café). This April, Bellefonte residents discovered they were in for a real treat. Troy’s Philadelphia-style hoagies went back to its roots, opening a second shop in the very building where it all began.
If you’re craving a cheesesteak, Troy’s is your go-to spot. Try the True Philly, which is topped with whiz and fried onions, or one of their delightful variations on the classic, like the Happy Valley cheesesteak (with sharp provolone, fried onions, mushrooms, hot and sweet peppers) or the breakfast steak (topped with egg, cheddar cheese, bacon, sweet and hot peppers, onions and mushrooms).
Not in the mood for a cheesesteak? Don’t worry! Troy’s serves up plenty of other options that make a great lunch or dinner any day of the week. Choose from chicken cheesesteaks, other Philadelphia-style hoagies (such as the Deluxe Club or the Pastrami Sub), wraps, hot hoagies, a variety of chicken cutlets, pork sandwiches, cheeseburgers, wings, salads and even pizza! You can also get one of their shrimp, chicken or haddock dinners, home-cut French fries, several fried sides and macaroni salad.
There are also three kids’ meals to choose from, so what’s stopping you? Pack up the family and head over to enjoy some cheesesteaks!
Cajun Express II
104 E Wilson St., Centre Hall
This April, the owners of a popular local food stand, Cajun Express II, opened their highly anticipated restaurant at 104 E. Wilson St. in Centre Hall, replacing the Royal Garden Italian Restaurant. You may better know the location as the former home of the Whistle Shop.
The restaurant offers all the signature dishes from their food stand that locals have come to know and love, like catfish (some of the best in town), shrimp and chicken on a stick and frog legs. However, if you’re not in the mood for Cajun cuisine, you’re in luck! The menu also includes classics like delicious pulled pork, smoked brisket, burgers, cheesesteaks, ribs and more.
1617 N Atherton St.
Later this summer, a new restaurant will open at 1617 N. Atherton St. (formerly home to Eat’n Park, which closed in 2015). In contrast to the American classics offered by the former tenant, Crazy Boil is bringing a unique flavor to Happy Valley: Cajun seafood.
Stay tuned to HappyValley.com for more details about the opening!
279 Northland Center
Bagel Crust quickly became a favorite for Penn State students when it opened at 332 E. Calder Way and for other State College residents when it opened its second location at 460 Westerly Parkway. The popular breakfast spot, serving up delicious New York-style bagels, just opened its third location — at 279 Northland Center. Located right off North Atherton Street, the shop is a quick and easy stop for many on the way to work.
With three shops in town, it’s clear Bagel Crust has won over our hearts (and our taste buds) here in Happy Valley. If you’ve never been to one of their locations, now’s the time to go. The breakfast sandwiches are too delicious to pass up, but you can’t go wrong with one of their tasty omelets, which comes with home fries and a bagel or toast. For all the iced coffee lovers, you won’t want to miss an opportunity to try one here!