Craft Beer Spotlight: Village News
The PA Turnpike is known for being two things: old, and unbelievably dull. Exits and their corresponding numbers come and go like trees as you try to bide your time during the 5-hour drive from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh. Often times you look for any excuse to jump off of I-76 to grab a bite, stretch your legs, or find a bar to unwind. Bedford is the town you seek, and The Village News is the pub that welcomes you.
Bedford is widely known for its history. Notable places such as Fort Bedford, Bedford Springs, The Espy House that housed George Washington and men during the Whiskey Rebellion, and the numerous inns, and pubs that have stood the test of time. The Village News, or the ‘News’ as affectionately called by locals, is one such place.
The Village News wasn’t always a pub, however. Jump back 165 years to the 1850’s, and the building housed a tobacco store known as Frank’s. The original pulleys and lifts used to take tobacco to the 3rd floor for drying still reside inside the building today. In the early 1900’s it morphed into a town newsstand, with a speakeasy in the back. What you find today is one of the most unique bars in the Western half of Pennsylvania.
The News is still very much reminiscent of any town news stand storefront that may have been common over a 100 years ago. To walk in today it will immediately strike you as part convenience counter and newsstand, and part pub and town speakeasy. In the early mornings, you may find a 3rd shift worker enjoying breakfast and an after-work beer. The Pub is celebrated locally for their affordable breakfast and lunch menu, and you can often see employees from nearby businesses enjoying a quick afternoon bite. Evenings at The News things change into more of a laid-back, but warm drinking crowd. The Village News is probably one of the few places left in the state where you can enjoy a pint, or a glass of bourbon, and a cigar.
Current owners Lori and Joel Bussard took ownership of the business in 2007, and have maintained the different and comforting pub vibe since. Dan Keller came on board a few years later as bar manager/beer buyer and has his fingerprints all over the massive beer selection. Ahh, about the beer…
Wonderful historical notes aside, the real reason you should take a stool at the bar is the beer. There is no style too weird, no beer too big, and more importantly, no pretentiousness whatsoever. Want a major domestic? No issues. Want the latest NCBC IPA release to make the area or a can of Leon Russian Imperial Stout? Done. The tap list is frequently rotated and diverse, and the bottle and can list always impressive. Can we emphasize how affordable everything is?! From food to beer, to the reading material, nothing will break the bank, only the doldrums of your day and travels.
The next time you see exit 146 appear on the horizon, take the 7-minute detour off of the turnpike, and sit down at The Village News, order one of the countless Neshaminy Creek beers available, and enjoy the spirit of one of the most welcoming towns in Western Pennsylvania.
For more information on The Village News:
THIS SATURDAY (October 27th) the Olde Bedford Beer Fest was postponed, but we will be participating in a PUB CRAWL including the Village News! Details below: