Clay and Melanie Phillips are busy. Very busy.  If they’re not creating their all-natural marinades and salad dressings, chances are they’re at one of the more than 50 festivals, outdoor shows, or arts and crafts fairs in which they participate every year.  And that, of course, includes the People’s Choice Festival.  In fact, they helped set up the Festival’s very first specialty food tent.

It all started in 1985, when Clay’s business outgrew his catering kitchen and food truck, and opened the Village Eatinghouse restaurant on the Diamond in Boalsburg.  Even then, he sourced locally, and made almost everything from scratch.  It was then he created house Italian and house poppy seed dressings. And that was just the beginning.  Now, Village Eatinghouse dressings and marinades are available at more than 100 locations in Pennsylvania – at wineries, butcher shops, specialty stores, mom & pop boutiques and restaurants.

When talking with Clay and Melanie, their enthusiasm for what they do is ever-present, and they take great pride in their products. “We are family-owned and a husband and wife team – have been for more than 20 years now,” Melanie says. “We create seasonal products and love to be creative – using our salad dressings for much more than lettuce and veggies.”  And their website is much more than just a list of products. There are also many creative recipes in which their dressings are an integral part. 

And why do they keep coming back to the People’s Choice Festival? Melanie says, “This festival values handcrafted art, and we feel that our products are perfectly suited for the market.  The folks that visit this festival are looking for unique items to take home and enjoy the ‘flavor’ of central Pennsylvania, and I think we give them just what they’re looking for.”

Make sure you stop by their tent at this year’s People’s Choice Festival. But you don’t have to wait.  In addition to the many retail stores where their products are available, you can also find them on-line at

Clay Phillips, Owner