Monday, January 9, 2012

Selin's Grove Brewing Company

One of the stops that has made the trip from central Virginia up to my parent's house in Rochester, New York more pleasant is the Selin's Grove Brewing Company.  I first heard about Selin's Grove Brewing Company on a Craft Beer Radio podcast, where one of the hosts did a brewery trip up Route 15 that runs through the middle of Pennsylvania.  He covered a number of small breweries, but Selin's Grove was interesting because of its location in a historic building and the owners' interesting story.  I remembered the interview more then a year later and suggested to my agreeable wife that we stop and eat lunch there.

Selin's Grove Brewing Company opened in 1996 in the former home of Pennsylvania's third and only three term governor, Simon Snyder, who led the state through the War of 1812.  The building, a Federal-style stone mansion, remains remarkably intact and is on the National Historic Register.  The pub portion of the brewery is located in the ground floor, around the back of the building.  This is where the governor's kitchen would have been located and the pub preserves much of that rustic charm.  It has two walk-in fireplaces and lots dark wood and open rafters.  The pub has a two rooms, one with the bar and several tables, and another room full of tables.  While space is slightly cramped, it has a homey and welcoming feel to it that feels historically genuine.

The Selin's Grove brewing system started out in 1996 with a tiny "frankenstein" 3 barrel system that was located in one of the basement rooms (9' x 13').  Based on the success of their early years, the system was upgraded to a 7 barrel brew house that came from Avery Brewing in Colorado.  This system could not possibly fit the basement, so the owners renovated a 4 bay cement-block garage that was built in the 1930s.  Now, well still cramped, the space holds several more fermenters that allow the brewery to offer more beer styles.  The brewery offers the following year round beers: Captain Selin's Cream ale, a Scottish ale, an IPA, Stealth Belgian Tripel, White Horse Porter, and Shade Mountain Oatmeal Stout.  My favorite beer there has been the Shade Mountain Oatmeal Stout and my wife's their New Zealand Galaxy-hopped IPA.  They also offer a number of seasonal beers.

My wife and I highly recommend stopping by and trying Selin's Grove Brewing Company out.  Do note that the two times we have been there, both in the winter, it has been absolutely packed.  But, the wait for the beer and food, along with the place's general charm, made the reward worth the wait.  If you do stop, make sure to order the soft pretzels, which are made on site.  I would also encourage you to order one per person, which results in less fighting at the table, particularly if kids are involved.




  1. I have been fortunate enough to go to college in selinsgrove and live close enough to be able to stop in frequently. It is such a great little place, and I really have never been disappointed with any of their beers.

  2. What is your favorite beer from Selin's Grove, JayZeis?


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