Who says there’s nothing romantic about a college town? Three local restaurants would beg to differ. Each offers a distinctive romantic dining experience for two.
Stop One: Hot ‘N Spicy
As its name implies, Spat’s Café and Speakeasy, located at 142 E College Ave, State College, PA 16801 (telephone 814-238-7010), evokes the Roaring Twenties. An Art Deco-inspired dining room features cozy, high-backed booths for a more private dining experience. The menu neither skimps on the hot nor the spicy associated with Cajun cuisine. The Tapas menu includes Cajun Chicken Firesticks. The Lunch menu offers a strong selection of blackened favorites, including a Blackened Catfish Rice and Collards Platter. The Dinner menu features such Cajun classics as Jambalaya and Shrimp & Crawfish Etouffee, and offers extensive steak and pork entrees, plus a choice of vegetarian entrée options. Spat’s extensive wine list ensures the perfect accompaniment to any romantic meal. The restaurant’s website, www.spatscafe.com, even includes recipes for many of its dishes.
Stop Two: Go Exotic
India Pavilion Exotic Indian Cuisine, located at 222 E. Calder Way, State College, PA 16801 (telephone 814-237-3400), offers a taste of India to Central Pennsylvania. It is famous locally for its lunch buffet, but the restaurant offers a full dinner menu for a couple looking for an adventurous dining experience. Its website, www.indiapavilion.net, treats you to Indian music while you explore menu options. The menu is extensive, covering several Indian culinary traditions, and offers plenty of vegetarian and vegan meal choices. The India Pavilion Special offers a sampling of four Tandoori dishes, Chicken Tikka, Boti Kabob, Shrimp Tandoori, and Seekh Kabob. The restaurant is BYOB. However, several Indian specialty drinks, hot and cold Indian spiced tea, sweetened or salted Lassi, and Mango Lassi-both yogurt drinks-add to the exotic experience.
Stop Three: American with Flair
The American Ale House and Grill, located at 821 Cricklewood Drive, State College, PA 16803 (telephone 814-237-9701), is located in the village of Toftrees, two miles from Beaver Stadium. As the name implies, the restaurant boasts a collection of beers and ales as well as a full bar. It also includes menu selections not otherwise available locally, including Peppered Ostrich, Pan Roasted Elk, and Beer Braised Bison Short Rib. The restaurant also boasts separate seafood Steam Bar. It is also a true, one-stop destination, featuring live music weekly. A quick check of the website, www.americanalehouse.net, provides the updated schedule.
A couple looking for a meal away from kids and cares can look no further than State College. Hot, Exotic or American with Flair-it’s here!
Spat’s Café & Speakeasy http://spatscafe.com
India Pavilion Exotic Indian Cuisine http://indiapavillion.net
American Ale House and Grill http://americanalehouse.net