Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Pennsylvania >
Jul 8, 2014 09:33 PM

Some I-80 faves for travellers

Yes I know that large stretches of this road dont have much going on. But I thought I would just put up a list of a few of the more worthwhile places we have been to in the last couple years driving from NYC to Ohio on 80

East to West:
the Powerhouse (White Haven, in the Poconos
from sandwiches through a full dinner menu, all well made in a really interesting former industrial setting (old powerhouse


Berwick Brewery - Berwick PA a full range of housemade beers and interesting pizzas, including inside space plus beer garden overlooking the beautiful Susquehanna River - maybe a bit too far off the highway if you are in a rush
Danville - in the nice old downtown, the bustling new Old Forge Brewing Co. - visited on our last trip - I had a great burger and husband enjoyed his beef sandwich - wide range of beers - made me a very good russ/n with a belgian white beer and freshly made lemonade - they brew their own soft drinks as well as beers here. There are a couple traditional barebones places selling Philly cheesesteaks and such we have been to over the the years but the burgeoning Old Forge tops them in appeal
Bellefonte - Cafe on the Park has pastries and light meals including gluten free Sam Nastase's Beer Distributor on Zion road, entering town from the East has a fairly good selection including local favorite Straubs, from St. Marys.

Woodland, one exit E of Clearfield, on Rt 322 - Gio's BBQ

We really enjoyed our spare ribs, pulled pork and chile beans at Gio's - good value big serving size, bare bones fast food style place. If you're in the clearfield area for lunch or dinner its worth a stop.

Ethan's Cafe in the old commercial center of Clearfield is a simple cafe with fresh made salads and sandwiches, good for a light lunch

Brooksville - the Courthouse Grill and Pub is an old courthouse restaurant in the center of town (historic area, very nice to stroll around) which is currently being run by some greek folks. Pretty good greek food in a pleasant historic setting.

We tend to stop at beer distributors when crossing PA to pick up a case or two - Plylers in Brookville is one where we have stopped more than once. Notable for the fact that it is built into the side of a hill (like a cave) and friendly helpful guy.

Western PA - near Mercer and Sharon - Rachel's roadhouse is one of the growing springfield group of restaurants on US 19 S of Mercer. Its a big informal place - when we were there it was full of people kicking back for Friday lunch. I liked my reuben, husband and kids liked their meals too and the well-priced beer.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. This is great, thanks! I'm sure many will find this helpful. I may have cause to revisit this next year, as I have friends who will in all likelihood be relocating from SW Illinois to the Dayton, OH area. Their new home, wherever they wind up, will be a driveable distance from I-80 in NJ.

    Just a mention...your Springfiled's link is broken.

    2 Replies
    1. re: mcsheridan

      thanks - here is the corrected link which should work. Ironbridge, mentioned below, is part of this same group

      1. re: jen kalb

        Yup, that one works, and they have a dedicated mobile site link on the page. This good as the regular menu link will only display Appetizers on my iPad. :p

        PS: can you weigh in on this question:

    2. Thanks for the info. I travel I-80 frequently and it has always been a struggle to find decent food stops.

      Another in Bellefonte is the Gamble Mill, and very close to Rachel's Roadhouse is one of my favorites, the Iron Bridge Inn.

      7 Replies
      1. re: Burghfeeder

        GM's not open for lunch, and the food quality has unfortunately gone down quite a bit. Bummer.

        1. re: linguafood

          >and the food quality has unfortunately gone down quite a bit<

          I noticed that as well. What caused it?

          My husband's work takes us to that area and Gamble Mill was one of our favorite Saturday stops. The last time we were there we decided we needed to give it a break for a while.

          I haven't been but friends who are seriously into craft brewing rave about Old Forge.

          1. re: cleobeach

            The Zola group took over the Mill a couple of years ago. I mean, the Mill was never all *that* great (they never changed their menu, IIRC), but the prices for food have gone up -- $24 for pasta? please! -- and I've heard a lot of complaints about the service.

            The beer's ok, tho, and we love playing the room since they remodeled the second floor :-)

            1. re: linguafood

              I like the bar area.

              do you ever play at Elk Creek?

              1. re: cleobeach

                I've sat in with other musicians there before, but not with my entire band. They're *very* Americana/Folk/Bluegrass focused, which isn't exactly our style, so.....

                Maybe this fall :-)

                1. re: linguafood

                  We have tried to eat dinner at Elk Creek many times on the way home from State College or skiing and they always have bands on the weekends and the dining room closes at something like 5pm.

            2. re: cleobeach

              craft brewing is big in that area - when we went to Old Forge just before Memorial day weekend there was a sign posted about a set of organized summer paddles down the Susquehanna starting in Berwick and stopping at I think 6-7 different string of breweries/brewpubs along the way.

              Have to say that my burger at Old Forge was really excellent - they even offered a choice of burgers with beef from a local farm. Husband liked his brew (I cant remember what he chose), well enough. Like many of these places they brew an awful lot of different items and it can take a while to figure out the standouts/which you like, id guess.But we were lucky to find a seat, on a weeknight.