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Waffle shop opens in Newtown


Operators of Nina’s Waffles recently announced that the ice cream shop would finally open its newest location on April 3 at the site of the Wrightstown and Newtown Turnpike Tollhouse, which sits near the southeast corner of South Eagle and Durham roads.

The tollhouse – which was moved from the corner of Sycamore Street and Durham Road to its present location at 2905 South Eagle Road in 1955 by the Goodnoe family – was undergoing renovations by Brixmore Property Group, the developer directing a $35 million expansion of the Village at Newtown shopping center.

Nina’s Newtown is a takeout-only venue. Brixmore added a porch to the tollhouse, which will contain some outdoor seating.

The property group also installed water and sewer access to the dwelling, a histori building used by the turnpike from 1870 to 1920.

With previously established locations in New Hope, Doylestown and Lahaska, Nina’s had its conditional use permit for its sixth location unanimously approved by the Newtown Board of Supervisors in February 2018 and had planned on opening last year before experiencing construction delays.

Nina’s was established in 2011 by Louis Zanias, operating from a temporary location in the Stockton Market. The company’s first permanent location opened in 2012 on West Mechanic Street in New Hope.

Nina’s signature dish is waffles and homemade, hand-dipped ice cream. The waffles are made from dough, not batter like traditional American waffles. Combined with pearl sugar, the mixture becomes caramelized when heated, producing a crispy exterior while remaining soft and chewy on the inside.

Nina’s joins a confectionary landscape in Newtown that includes Goodnoe Farm Dairy Bar, the Zebra Striped Whale, Baskin Robbins, Sworl Handcrafted Rolled Ice Cream and Rita’s. OWowCow also operates a location on Durham Road in Wrightstown. Nina’s is not the only eatery expanding into Newtown.

Iron Hill Brewery is seeking permission to open a 7,500-square-foot restaurant and brewery at 2920 South Eagle Road. The chain recently received support from the Newtown Planning Commission which unanimously approved the conditional use of the restaurant with the stipulation that the G1 manufacturing use needed to brew beer will only be used as an accessory to the eatery.

Iron Hill would need a variance to operate a brewing operation at its new location in the Village at Newtown and the commission recommended that the supervisors support such a change in the zoning.

Based in Wilmington, Del., Iron Hill Brewery operates three restaurants in the Diamond State and 10 eateries in Pennsylvania, eight of which are located within the five-county region. The closest locations to Newtown are in North Wales and Huntington Valley.

Iron Hill joins Newtown Brewing Company on the local craft beer scene.

With a planned opening this summer, Newtown Brewing is coming to an existing building now being remodeled on Penn’s Trail in the Newtown Business Commons. NBC won’t be serving food, though as the entrepreneur plans to operate the venue as a BYOF (Bring Your Own Food).

Patrons of the 4,600-square-foot brewery and taproom can also order food from area takeout eateries or make purchases from a rotating list of food trucks.

Last month, the supervisors approved an application for Chipotle Mexican Grill to open at a nearby location on South Eagle Road.

On March 27, the Board unanimously approved conditional use permits for Chipotle’s Newtown venue, though the landlord now says the Mexican eatery will operate in unit 37 of building eight, not unit 40 as was previously announced. That puts Chipotle in the middle of the row and not the end, near the outdoor amphitheater.

Other additions coming soon to Newtown include a drive-through Starbucks, Factory Donuts, Naked Chocolate and Melt Shop. And Steak Bar by Shula’s has approval to transfer a liquor license from a shuttered Bertucci’s restaurant in Warrington to Newtown.

From the desk of Secretary/Treasurer John Mack:

According to Mack, Newtown’s newly established Human Relations Commission met for the first time on March 20. The first item on the agenda was elections as the group nominated a chairperson, vice chair and secretary.

Amber Ray was named chairperson, Mercy Ingraham vice-chair and Angelic Acevedo was named secretary. According to Mack, Ray is a former member of the HRC in Bristol Borough, where she served for two years.

Ingraham is a volunteer team leader at an interfaith coalition to assist local refugee resettlement.

Acevedo is a member of the Newtown Elementary School Diversity Committee.

The Newtown HRC will handle complaints about discrimination in housing and employment that takes place within the township.