Hopped Up in Happy Valley

I know that there isn’t a Penn State home game this weekend but that doesn’t mean there isn’t drinking to do in State College, Pennsylvania!

Happy Valley Brewing

Located in a beautifully restored barn just off College Ave, Happy Valley lives up to the name. Everything they do is great – the decor (that’s a shot of the ceiling murals above), the food, and of course, the beer! There’s a dining room upstairs and a large bar area downstairs. The Henhouse wings are awesome and don’t forget to get a side of fresh pickled vegetables too! Other folks at the table got the pizza and gave it high reviews.

Brews to Choose

Flights come in a “pick six” variety. I’m a sucker for cool flight delivery systems and this is one of my favorites. It fits the farmhouse theme perfectly.

  • There was A LOT to love here.  On the hoppy side, the Barnstormer was the best, but the Hopgoblin (a Belgian style IPA) and the Knuckleball (their session) were also great.
  • The Tailgater (their Pale Ale) was super drinkable.
  • Looking for a tasty and strong witbier? Go for the Village Idiot!
  • Need something a little different? Try their Rasberry Summer Ale – ZZerbert. Probably only around in the spring/summer but very fruity if you are into that.

Otto’s Pub and Brewery

Now located a few miles outside of the downtown on Atherton Street, Otto’s has been brewing craft beer  for fifteen years. Like Happy Valley, they’ve got a full menu that’s great for lunch or dinner and they’ve got a solid lineup of mainstays and rotating drafts.

Brews to Choose

Otto’s has two flight options: you can either get a flight of their 6 most popular beers, or build your own flight of 3 of whatever you’d like. Dad and I went with the pick 3 and my cousin and uncle went with the six flagships:

  • On the hop side, both the Slab Cabin IPA and Double D IPA are great.
  • The Apricot Wheat is one of their most popular beers.
  • The Jolly Roger Imperial Stout is rich and boozy just like yo’d want an Imperial.

Bonus Beers: Elk Creek Cafe

Want to complete your north-central Pennsylvania beer-stravanganza? Head northeast on route 45 from State College until you get o the quaint little town of Milheim. It is there you’ll find locally sourced meals, live music, and more beer! We’ve got a family cabin up in the mountains near there and stopped after a game and then ran into people we knew! It’s a small world for good beer lovers.

Brews to Choose

The flight style was “everything on tap” when we went, so be ready for a fair amount of beer!

  • The Copper Amber Ale was a solid drinking beer. The Crickwalker and Double Rainbow IPA were my faves.

Does your college town have a great beer scene? Let me know! Until then,

Best Brews!


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