Pennsylvania Libations is expanding to Shadyside. In addition to offering a wide selection of spirits, wine and beer made in the state, the Strip District-based company will also sell fresh produce and goods from local farms.
It’s the first business of its kind in Pennsylvania to offer all of these items under one roof.
Founder and President Christian Simmons says the former GNC store at 5530 Walnut St. will open in January or February.
In the meantime, Pennsylvania Libations will host a holiday pop-up shop from Dec. 17-24 (10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily). Shoppers can get hot cocktails to go and sample some of the products, including booze from Eight Oaks Farm Distillery in New Tripoli, PA. The owners grow all the grains, including corn, wheat, rye and barley, to craft a wide range of spirits.
The 1,200-square-foot spot is roughly twice the size of the original PA Libations location at 2103 Penn Ave. Simmons also operates 1700 Penn, a 6,000-square-foot building that houses a Helltown Brewing taproom, full-service bar, large beer garden and the PA Libations Wine Shop. To complement the beverages, customers can order a variety of paninis, snacks and charcuterie.
PA Libations recently opened a space in Philadelphia’s Reading Terminal Market. Simmons wants to bring the farmer’s market business model to locations throughout the state and launch Loophole Logistics, a company that helps streamline Pennsylvania-made alcohol distribution throughout the state.
The busy booze merchant is also working to put the final touches on Bonafide Beer Company in the Strip District, the neighborhood Simmons calls home.
The 1,600-square-foot taproom will feature a lounge atmosphere, with bisected, cast iron, clawfoot bathtubs serving as couches. Simmons’ business partner, Travis Tuttle, head brewer at Butler Brew Works, will operate a two-barrel system when the space opens. Tuttle will eventually do contract brewing at larger facilities, making big batches of quaffable lagers and IPAs that can be canned and sold in mixed 12-packs.