Wed. Jan 26th, 2022

Twenty television screens set to sports channels, a bar packed with whiskey bottles and rustic crown molding completes the look for Saloon 151—and that’s exactly how owner Frank Herron envisioned it. As a former owner of Barnaby’s, Herron has been in the restaurant industry his entire working life, save for a yearlong stint as a State Farm agent. Along with his business partner, Butch Eby, Herron has transformed his space on Gay Street into a laid-back Western gem in the midst of a bustling Philadelphia suburb.

According to Herron, the goal of Saloon 151 was to bring something different to downtown West Chester. Themed eateries are not uncommon in this area, but unlike other popular spots, Saloon 151 manages to transport diners to a whole other region with its markedly country décor and atmosphere. Earthy wooden chairs, dimly lit lanterns and homey exposed brick walls provide a welcoming and backwoodsy feel. Live acoustic music sets the mood and a patio area with seating is available for outdoor dining.

The focal point of the space, however, is the bar. Spanning almost the entire length of the dining area, the bar has almost as much space as it does alcohol. Dozens of whisky bottles line the back shelf illuminated by the glow of the massive television screens behind them. In addition to whiskies, craft beers, bottled beers and mimosas also flow from behind the counter.

Saloon 151 also boasts an impressive menu for those who enjoy a little food with their drink. Burgers, quesadillas, wings and fries tucked underneath an array of toppings are just a few of Saloon 151’s offerings. Specials like all-you-can-eat snow crab legs and bottomless mimosas establish Saloon 151 as one of the premiere places for serious West Chester foodies.

In a remarkable display of ambition, Herron is planning to uproot his operation at 151 West Gay Street and send it floating down the Brandywine River for the summer of 2018. Saloon 151 has secured the grounds of the Brandywine Outfitters Park and will bring a food truck, alcohol and live entertainment every Sunday from 1 to 6 p.m. Beginning May 20 and going to Aug. 26, guests will be admitted free of charge and will have the opportunity to eat, drink, socialize and spend time on the water. The brick-and-mortar Saloon 151 will remain open on these days and Herron says he is currently working on running a shuttle from the restaurant to the park.

If you can’t make it into town or the park on Sundays, Saloon 151 offers an extensive catering service. According to its website, Saloon 151 caters anything and everything, such as house parties, bar mitzvahs and sporting events. Herron also has a heart for charity work and the students of West Chester University. He says he is open to partnering with organizations on campus that are looking to raise funds and awareness for their cause.

Saloon 151 is located at 151 W. Gay St., West Chester, PA 19380.

Olivia Bortner is a third-year student majoring in marketing. ✉

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