Thomas and I got up at 4:45 this morning and left for Bucknell University for a tour. When the tour was over, I took the opportunity to interview Copper Kettle Brewery partner Harold Kerlin (who works at Bucknell; CK is a determinedly part-time operation) for Pennsylvania Breweries 4th Ed. Then we drove down to Millheim and I interviewed Tim Bowser and Tim Yarrington of Elk Creek Cafe. After that, we were guided on a tour of Penn State by STAG reader (and good friend) Sam Komlenic; then met him back at Otto's for lunch. Er, dinner. A meal.
There's a lot more to it than that, some definitely interesting stuff, but... I put on 472 miles today, and I am seriously whupped. Tomorrow.
Elk Creek is a cool place except for....the beer. Food is good, the atmosphere is great, they really did the place the right way and I love the local food aspect. But the beer just doesn't measure up. The porter is good everything else just lacks in taste, in flavor. Not too often I search a pale ale or an IPA for hops (and I can't be pegged as a hop head at all). I wish that weren't the case as I love the town and the whole area (this coming from a Pitt grad no less)...I was hoping for a bit more when they went from a really good coffee shop to the brewery.
Just remember tomorrow...
Lewisburg, Millheim and State College = Central PA. Don't call it Upstate!
Tim brews for balance, not a smack in the chops. I find his beers quite enjoyable; the Brookie Brown is sweet and malty, the Porter is a fave, the Oatmeal Stout was great. I'll agree, I was disappointed in the Double Rainbow IPA...until yesterday. He's really got it dialed in now. Tim tends to brew with low-impact hops -- Fuggles, for example -- but use a lot of them. The result was an IPA with a good earthy/spicy nose up front, a smooth cool middle, and a rising wave of bitter at the end. The pilsner was pretty impressive, too. He's a man who loves balance, which can be a bad word in geek circles (no insult intended; I is a geek, too), but the patrons love it. When it comes to the porter and the Brookie, I do too.
You find me a term as useful as "upstate" is for New York, and I'll use it. Lewisburg, Millheim, Mifflinburg, and State College are definitely Central PA, but from where I am, Montrose, Sayre, Bellefonte, Wellsboro, Dubois, Venango...are all "upstate!"
I kind of agree with the "upstate comment." Lew, for you everything outside of Central Philly is just about upsate. I live in Luzerne County, so for me upstate has a whole differnt geographical meaning. Point of view (or origin?) I suppose.
Not really. I'm hardly a "Philly guy;" I grew up in Lancaster County and I've lived in Pittsburgh. It's more like everything west and north of the front range of the Appalachians is upstate to me.
I've seen this same conversation take place among folks in NY State. People in Poughkeepsie who say they're upstaters, Albany, Syracuse... Best comment I saw was a guy from Malone, New York (farther north than Plattsburgh), who said from where he was sitting, everyone else in the discussion was a downstater!
I always just say I was born in North Central PA, little place called Jersey Shore. Should I change that to be "I'm from upstate PA"?
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