MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) – A new spot in Morgantown has just rolled on over.
Almost Heaven Kettle Corn opened its doors on Oct. 13, offering ice cream, a unique variety of kettle corn and a pepperoni roll bar.
Owner Anthony Semler has been in the kettle corn business for a while. He first started selling kettle corn at fairs and festivals in 2015, expanding to local businesses, area hospitals and even sports arenas. When the pandemic hit some of these contracts ended and never came back up, but this didn’t stop Semler, who kept selling his kettle corn and delivering.
“Then I finally was like getting busy enough that I needed to kind of expand from where I was and how it’s producing the corn so it was kind of—a storefront was the next step,” Semler said.
Semler—who credits his mom and family for helping him get kettle corn flavor ideas—was inspired to create the pepperoni bar by the way his family has always eaten them.
“Cause it’s not something I’ve seen in the in the state and actually the health department inspector was like, ‘Yeah, you’re the first that I’m aware of that is cutting up pepperoni rolls in half and adding ingredients and heating it up for people,’” Semler said.
Not only is he introducing a new pepperoni roll tradition to a wider audience, but he said his great-great-grandmother played a role in the making of the West Virginia staple. The tradition rolled deep into the coal mines, as miners—mostly Italian immigrants—would see their food spoil so the pepperoni roll was created by having pepperoni baked inside bread and it would not spoil.
The restaurant plans to expand its menu in the future, but currently it offers “a plain pepperoni roll, pepperoni provolone cheese—that’s already in it—as well as pepper Jack cheese and we bake those in-house. And they’re filled with close to 20 pieces of pepperoni and we use sliced pepperoni, we do not use stick pepperoni,” Semler said.
The toppings you can choose to add to your pepperoni roll for $0.75 cents each include:
- Oliverio’s peppers (mild, medium, hot)
- Mild and hot homemade chili
- Nacho cheese sauce
- Marinara sauce
- Banana peppers
All your kettle corn dreams can come true here as well. The restaurant offers a variety of flavors including rotating seasonal flavors. Currently, they have White Chocolate Pumpkin Spice and Spooktacular flavors as part of the multiple types of kettle corn being served now for the fall and spooky season.
Semler said they’re also offering gift baskets, gift boxes and will soon gift tins just in time for the holiday season—which will have your choice of three different flavors to put in. They also have wine glasses filled with kettle corn ready to gift.
Year-round, Semler will also be serving 12 Hershey’s hand-scooped ice cream with multiple cone or cup options and plans to offer milkshakes in the future.
Despite labor issues since the pandemic, Semler said that he liked the idea too much that he had to pursue it.
“It’s something that I saw that people liked so I kind of thought that having an area for them to come and be able to sit down and enjoy it would be something that they would be interested in,” Semler said.
The restaurant will have a grand opening event on Nov. 10 from 4-6 p.m. at its location at 55 Don Knotts Boulevard, Suite 2A, Morgantown, WV.
You can go here to visit their Facebook page. Semler said that there are plans to get a website up and running for local pickup as well as the possibility of nationwide kettle corn and pepperoni roll delivery.