Move over butter.
Mountaineer Popcorn is putting a new spin on the classic movie theater treat, and fans can’t get enough of pumped-up flavors like dill pickle, red velvet, jalapeno white cheddar, and caramel cashew.
Some are always on the menu, like birthday cake and peanut butter, but new choices also appear each Wednesday. Other flavors pop up sporadically, including pizza.
Sweet lovers can choose from chocolate drizzled, s’mores, kettle corn, caramel, and sweet and spicy churro, while savory offerings include buffalo wing, cheddar, and sriracha.
Holiday goodies – Christmas cake (complete with sprinkles), gingerbread and peppermint bark – have been a hit for the Christmas season, according to Erin Valasek, who co-owns the Shepherdstown business with husband Mike.
“People have been buying these up like crazy. They just love them, and we are already sold out of gingerbread for the year,” she said.
Located downtown on iconic East German Street, the shop is less than a year old but is already a favorite with Shepherd University students and local residents who can’t get enough of the snack staple.
More local and regional businesses are offering these goodies, which are also finding an online home as more folks order off the website.
Since perfect popcorn doesn’t just happen, it’s been important to locate quality ingredients and the shop’s Eastern Panhandle location has helped make that possible.
A local couple, Bob and Nancy Tabb at Town & Country Nursery in Kearneysville, provide the non-GMO popcorn kernels. The gingerbread was courtesy of Charles Town’s Blakeley Street Bakery, which uses butter from local dairy farms and organic cage-free eggs.
Future plans call for Carolina barbeque and a winter wonderland frozen theme that’s set to launch in January.
It’s a labor of love, and Valasek said she feels good about providing a quality, tasty snack for families because she only wants the best for her own.
A mother of three daughters, Valasek found out she was pregnant with her son a month after the couple had ordered the needed commercial equipment.
“One thing about it, we never have to worry about having enough taste testers and they are right at our house.”