Black Forge is staying in Allentown

Black Forge Coffee House was expected to close, but instead, the Allentown institution is staying open under new ownership.

Starting July 1, the shop at 1206 Arlington Ave. will be run by Kelly Braden, founder of the Allentown Night Market and owner of The Weeping Glass (another Hilltop business). On Thursday, June 30, from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., there will be a passing of the torch of sorts, with original owner Ashley Corts slinging hot and iced beverages before saying farewell to the neighborhood. She opened the spot in 2015.

The café will close for two weeks for renovations and will commence operations on July 15. In the meantime, patrons can visit Black Forge’s second location — which is still owned by Corts — at 701 Chartiers Ave. in McKees Rocks.

North Country Brewing opens taproom at Freedom Farms

North Country Brewing Co. is growing.

The Slippery Rock-based business is opening a taproom at Freedom Farms Farmers Market and Kitchen in Valencia. A grand opening celebration is planned for July 8-10. Regular hours will be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.

At North Country Corn Crib Taproom patrons can enjoy live music, food from the on-site sandwich shop, Pennsylvania-made wine and spirits and North Country beer, including exclusive brews and new releases. The bar was built with reclaimed wood from fallen trees and the beer-maker plans to grow hops on the property at 795 Pittsburgh Road, which is about nine miles south of Butler.

Pair a North Country beer with grub from the Freedom Farms sandwich shop. Photo courtesy of YaJagoff! Media.

“We decided it would be fun to collaborate with a community-driven mover and shaker like Freedom Farms,” says Patrick Morris, assistant director of operations for North Country. “No pun intended, but it’s a ‘natural’ fit in our wheelhouse since we both produce quality products for consumption from natural environments. Visitors can walk around and be surrounded by the produce and ingredients that make up what they are eating and drinking.”

PrimoHoagies now open at The Terminal

PrimoHoagies, a New Jersey-based restaurant chain, recently opened its first Pittsburgh location at The Terminal at 1901 Smallman St. in the Strip District. Daily hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Owned by local resident Brian Hurowitz, the 1,800-square-foot eatery features sandwiches with layers of Thumann’s gourmet meats and cheeses, a secret blend of spices and locally sourced vegetables on award-winning seeded rolls that are baked fresh throughout the day. The menu boasts cold and hot hoagies, cheesesteaks, wraps, vegetarian options, antipasto, chips, cookies and more.

“It’s a really special opportunity to get to work with a brand you know and love,” says Hurowitz. “I grew up with PrimoHoagies. The location in Dresher (Montgomery County) is walking distance from my parents’ house. So, when thinking about how I could incorporate a little bit of Philadelphia into Pittsburgh while still bringing the best in class, PrimoHoagies just made sense.”

PrimoHoagies offers takeout, delivery, indoor seating and catering.