Treat Your Taste Buds at One of Happy Valley’s Newest Local Eateries
By Chad Lear
There is no shortage of dining options in and around State College. But, if you’re like me, you often find yourself going back to your favorite spots over and over. It’s a new year and a great time to remember that variety is the spice of life! So put down that two-day-old takeout and check out the newest arrivals to the Happy Valley food scene.
Sadie’s Gourmet Waffles
118 S. Pugh St., State College; 814-954-4156
The newest contestant in the breakfast arena is Sadie’s Gourmet Waffles. Serving up baked goods, coffee and you guessed it – waffles, Sadie’s is a great spot for those with an early morning sweet tooth. And they aren’t just any waffles. Made from dough instead of traditional batter, these Belgian delicacies have a rich, full flavor and won’t break the bank. In fact, no item on the menu will run you more than $6.
Good Seed Baking Co.
129 S. Fraser St., State College; 814-238-1133
With the philosophy that gluten-free should taste good, Good Seed Baking Co. is dedicated to turning local ingredients into delicious treats. “We know some people are hesitant to try gluten free foods, but there’s no reason gluten free can’t also be good. We use the best ingredients we can find, including local eggs, produce and dairy, to make baked goods that taste great, not just good for gluten free. We want to be State College’s premiere bakery,” Louisa Smith says.With a menu featuring breads, macaroons, cookies, cakes and fresh pasta, they are a one-stop-shop catering to the needs and concerns of the gluten-free community without sacrificing taste. Vegan options are also available, and the bakery is committed to green practices and preserving the environment.
322 W. College Ave., State College; 814-862-9199
Adding to the list of fast casual downtown eateries, California Tortilla’s focus on fresh quesadillas, burritos and salads makes them a major player in the Cal-Mex movement. Some of the unique staples featured on the menu, like the Bacon Chicken Ranch Club Burrito and Caribbean Mango Salad, go hand-in-hand with the light, fun vibe of the dining area. Also be sure to ask about their catering options to add some spice and flavor to your special event.
Good Intent Cider
167 S. Potter St., Bellefonte; 717-778-8171
Family-owned and operated, the folks at Good Intent Cider work hard to deliver the best possible product that Pennsylvania’s apple country has to offer. With very little sweetness and zero water added to the mix, Good Intent Cider puts the focus squarely on the apples themselves. Open Friday from 3 to 9 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 9 p.m., Good Intent produces four varieties of refreshing cider for sale by the glass and bottle. If you can’t make it out to The Cidery, the goods can be found on-tap at Zeno’s Pub, The Nittany Lion Inn and Bonfatto’s.
206 W. High St., Bellefonte; 814-548-6281
Looking to do your grocery shopping at a place where everybody knows your name? Belle Market might be your favorite new place. With the spotlight on local products including meats, produce, eggs and milk, this family discount grocer hopes to fill a need in the community. No matter what you’re looking for, the fully stocked shelves promise to be a cheaper and fresher alternative to the big name chain stores.
130 Hiester St., State College
Located in the former Gingerbread Man location, Primanti Brothers opened in January to more than 4,000 fans its opening weekend. A Pittsburgh staple, this eagerly-anticipated restaurant is celebrated for its signature sandwich which is topped with fries, tomatoes and house-made coleslaw.
“It’s a great place to come,” manager Greg DuBois says. “It’s an iconic culture. What you get here – the fresh cut fries, the fresh everything – is the same food that you would get in the Strip District or South Side at our other locations. It’s exactly the same.” In addition to the sandwich that makes it great, they also feature hand-tossed pizza with homemade sauce (ask for the “Whole Hog” with capicola, hot sausage, pepperoni and bacon). During Happy Hour (10 p.m. to 12 a.m. every night), everything is half off. Check their bar too: their signature drink, the Drunk Duck (which comes with its own rubber duckie!) is $6 a pitcher on Saturdays. Every day has its own drink specials, like $6 for domestic pitchers every Tuesday night.
So a word to those who still think it’s pronounced Pri-mahn-ti... you’ve got to try the sandwich (and they’ll tell you how to say their name as an added bonus). To those who were counting down the days until Primanti’s landed here in the downtown – it’s exactly as great as the last time you had it in Pittsburgh. We promise.
Barrel 21 (2235 N. Atherton St., State College) Otto’s Pub and Brewery is in the process of opening an upscale distillery and dining experience called Barrel 21 across the road from their present location on North Atherton, and we don’t have much longer to wait! Slated to have a locally-sourced menu (just like Otto’s does), the distillery will offer locally-sourced fruit brandies, whiskey, rum and gin.