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Bars where Pete has had a drink

Thursday, July 28, 2022

#4713 - Breezy Heights Tavern, Independence Township, PA - 7/27/2022

Avella, Pennsylvania is a community of a bit under 1,000 people about two miles east of the West Virginia border and two miles south of Meadowcroft Rockshelter, the oldest known location of human habitation in north America. The unincorporated community is part of Independence Township, in Washington County. With the construction of railroad lines through the area in the first few years of the 20th century, the area grew in population and importance with the establishment of several mines, growing into one of the world's most important bituminous coal mining regions.

Although the mines, and the population of primarily southern and eastern European immigrants, began to decline by the 1940s, it was the mines that brought Dominic Esposto to the area in 1948, founding the Esposto Coal Company. Dominic and his wife Alice purchased an old tavern in 1954, one that had been a grocery store since the 1920s and became a tavern at the end of prohibition in 1933. Alice ran the tavern while her husband worked in the coal business, and the tavern has remained in the Esposto family ever since.

Breezy Heights Tavern & Restaurant, Avella, PA

In 1992, Dominic retired from the coal industry, and helped his wife and son Rick expand the tavern into a full service restaurant -- one that now includes a driving range and miniature golf course.  A striking feature of that expansion is the large collection of big game taxidermy -- the result of Dominic's avid hunting in Africa, Alaska, Canada and Wyoming.

Today, the restaurant is known for the broasted chicken it has served for six decades, a small to medium sized bar serving dive bar basics, and an expansive restaurant serving a variety of steaks, pastas, and American comfort foods amidst the wild animals.


714 Washington Pike, Avella (Independence Township), PA 15312 - (724) 587-3461
Est. 1927 (restaurant), 1933 (tavern) - Building constructed: 1911
Web site: - facebook 
Articles: - yelp - tripadvisor - Dominic Esposto obituary