The Brass Railan Allentown institution for decades, will close June 4. Ownership of the Lehigh Street bar and restaurant had hoped to move to another nearby location, but according to a sign posted at the Rail, “It is with much sadness that are announcing our closure “and noting the last day.
“This was a very difficult decision,” the sign from the Sorrentino family said, and they thanked customers for 91 years of patronage.
Founder Phillip Sorrentino was an immigrant from Italy who in 1931, opened a hamburger and hotdog stand. In 1933, Sorrentino opened at 1137 Hamilto St. in Allentown, and in 1937, he introduced the cheesesteak to Allentown, according to the Brass Rail’s website. The Hamilton Street site closed in 2001 while the Lehigh Street restaurant, opened in 1961, will operate for a little more than two more months.
A Royal Farms convenience store will be built at the site of the Lehigh Street restaurant.
Wright’s Pizza has opened at 835 N. New St. in Bethlehem and is open from 11 am to 9 pm Monday through Saturday, closed on Sunday. Wright’s serves regular cheese pizza and a lineup of specialty pies, including meat lovers, chicken bacon ranch, flyin ‘Hawaiian, chili cheese dog, German, buffet (chicken fingers, mozzarella sticks, french fries and onion rings) and many more.
There are also dessert pizzas including nutella, Oreo, chocolate chip and cannoli varieties. Other options include stromboli, appetizers, salads and hot and cold sandwiches.
Benny Dean’s Bakers in Hellertown has opened to make and sell nut-free baked goods including cookies and cupcakes, but owner Jessica Dean said she bakes for everybody. “You don’t have to be allergic to enjoy my baked goods,” said Dean, who was motivated to start the bakery because of her own allergies. She said she had trouble finding baked goods in the region that were not contaminated with nuts. That can make attending parties and gatherings difficult for people with allergies.
“I use regular ingredients, I just use ingredients that do not contain nuts or are not manufactured on equipment,” said Dean, who markets her goods on social media. “All ingredients, including flour and butter are nut-safe.”
Nut allergies affect about 1.1% of the population, or 3 million people in the United States.
Farmhouse Pocono has added a second location, this one at 15 S. Crystal St., East Stroudsburg. The restaurant is open 8 am to 8 pm Monday through Saturday, and 8 am to 6 pm on Sunday. The original Cafe & Bakery at 3180 Route 611 in Bartonsville is open 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Saturday, and 8 am to 4 pm on Sunday. Menu items include Belgian waffles, avocado toast, quiche, a lobster croissant salad and daily specials.
Locally roasted organic coffee and fresh baked goods are available at the Bartonsville and East Stroudsburg locations. Check social media for menus and potential hours changes.
Cloverleaf Saddle Club, a not-for-profit horse-riding organization in the Upper Mount Bethel Township, plans to expand as it moves to a new 26-acre plot of land near its current Potomac Street site. Cloverleaf will build a new clubhouse with indoor restrooms and a kitchen. The move follows a deal with River Pointe Logistics, the industrial project led by Bethlehem-based developer Lou Pector.
Coverleaf was founded in 1964, according to a press release, and board President Justin Hoffman said the expansion would allow the organization to increase membership. The current location will continue to operate until the new facility is complete.
Branching Out Page One Resource Center at 529 Memorial Parkway, Phillipsburg, will hold a grand opening Wednesday. Branching Out’s focus is providing programs for children and young adults with autism and other developmental disorders. Activities include a support group, life-skill classes, tutoring, nights out for kids and reading groups.
The center is a registered not-for-profit organization. The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce will host the ribbon-cutting and celebration Wednesday from 5 pm to 6:30 pm
The first Crumbl cookie store has opened in the region, with more to come. The first is in Broadcasting Square Shopping Center in Spring Township (Berks County), with lines forming on opening day last week. Another will open in the Easton area within a few months, and Allentown will get a Crumbl after that.
The chain, founded in Utah in 2017, has a staple cookie, its Milk Chocolate Chip confection. Crumbl also rotates in new flavors weekly. Some cookies are served warm, such as peanut butter with Snickers, and some cold, such as Key Lime pie. The chain is known for its variety and its pink cookie boxes.
Wawa has no imminent opening dates for new stores in the Lehigh Valley, with some still in the permit process with local government. Not too far away in Bucks County, a spring opening is planned for the convenience-store chain at 225 A Levittown Parkway in Levittown and this summer for East Lincoln Highway in Langhorne.
Locally, a south Allentown Wawa opened in March, and stores are proposed for Bethlehem, near the Route 78 interchange; Hanover Township (Northampton County) off Route 512; again in Bethlehem, at the former Leiser’s rental store on Nazareth Pike, and further up what becomes Route 191 in Lower Nazareth Township.
The Macungie Institute Community Center is holding a grand reopening Saturday from noon to 4 pm at 510 E. Main St., Macungie. The community center will have a “free family fun day” with a photo booth, kids’ crafts, games and food. The institute is in a former elementary school that closed in 1989, and was purchased by Macungie in 2000.
The Back Door Bake Shop at 92 E. Broad St., Bethlehem, has gone back to being a wholesale business. It will sell baked goods at Scholl Orchards, according to the bakery’s website, and at local events. That means no more sales at the location, as it goes all-wholesale April 3. Fans of the shop should follow it on social media to find out what’s next for Back Door.