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Found 6 results

  1. Shepherdstown - map Has anyone eaten there lately? Are there any good alternatives to The Yellow Brick Bank?
  2. The Eatery at Hollywood Casino: ‘Top Chef’ Fabio Viviani cooks up new food hall, Sue Gleiter, pennlive.com Hollywood Casino
  3. This is exciting local culinary news: The Patowmack Farm team is opening Tanglefoot, a restaurant in Charles Town, WV that will be focusing on West Virginian and Appalachian heritage. For anyone interested (in employment, more detail, etc.), email info@patowmackfarm.com.
  4. Lot 12 Public House is a diamond in the culinary rough of Berkeley Springs, which we visited this weekend. While touring the farmer's market off the main drag we met Chef Damian Heath and saw the enticing soups and sandwiches he was offering. We decided on the spot to have dinner at his restaurant the same evening. Chef Heath is the son of two prominent artists and long-time residents of the town. His restaurant is in a beautifully restored house built in 1913 nestled just up the hills opposite the spa areas. We sat on the wraparound porch overlooking the valley and had a wonderful meal--one of those that make you say, "Thank God we discovered this place; now we know where to come next time we drive out here again." Everything was delicious and carefully prepared, from the drinks beforehand (which included an enticing cantaloupe martini) to the food itself. My wife and daughter shared two appetizers: toasted gnocchi with sautéed mushrooms and fried green tomatoes with mozzarella and almond pesto. The latter reminded me of something you might find at Buck's Fishing and Camping, and both stood out for the quality and freshness of the ingredients. I started off with a cucumber soup (which had caught my eye earlier at the market) judiciously flavored with creme fraiche, dill, and smoked salmon--nothing groundbreaking, to be sure, but perfectly prepared. Next I had a sautéed tilefish special garnished with baby corn and served with a potato puree. The puree was a bit anemic, but the fish was perfectly cooked and of excellent quality. My wife's main dish was pan-seared scallops with a Tuscan bread salad and a lemon-thyme vinaigrette. The scallops were done just right and the dish pleased in all other aspects as well. Dessert was also very good. As often is the case in areas relatively new to fine dining , the portion sizes are large--we would have been happy to pay the same amount for half the size. (Nonetheless, we did manage to finish everything!) The wine list was surprisingly large and eclectic for a restaurant of this type and in this area, with a nice little selection of half-bottles. Service was gracious, welcoming, and efficient. All in all, Lot 12 is really a delightful place to eat--"worth a detour" as Michelin might say.
  5. I'm very surprised I didn't post about my experience at Smoke Hole Caverns in the Spring of 2009 - or maybe I did, and decided to delete the post. The summary: If Jerry Hedrick still has anything to do with the ownership of these caverns, or the surrounding accommodation properties, do not give him your business. It seemed like a nice weekend getaway at the time. We ended up pulled over on the side of the road near Petersburg, trying to get our bearings with a map, and a "maintenance man" from the nearby cabins, riding an ATV, pulled up to us and very politely asked if we needed any help. We told him we were going to visit the caverns and spend the night, and he told me he knew of a nice place nearby. He asked us to follow him, and we did - he blazed off on his ATV, going about 75+ mph ('I hope he's friends with the police in this town,' I thought to myself.) We pulled up behind him to a lobby that had a large, touristy gift shop. He walked inside, and we followed him, noticing that there were about five people lined up near the front door. As he walked in, we walked by them, and each of them said, "Hey! Jer! Long time no see!" and exchanging hand shakes and back pats with their long-lost friend" - he had alerted them we were arriving on a hand-held radio - he then walked us back to an office and introduced us to a lady running the operation, who, if my memory serves me correctly, was his wife (I vaguely recall seeing a sign with her name in the office, but this is the one thing I'm not entirely sure about). Well, it turns out that "Jer" was Jerry Hedrick, co-owner of the entire operation including the caverns. He had tricked us into coming. But so what? We needed a place to stay, and these were as decent as anyplace around - why did he have to do this, we were wondering? Okay, so he's a flim-flam man, but he's trying to drum up some business with this little schtick. Shady, yes, but not unforgivable. However we were quoted one price, my credit card was run, and then the next morning we were charged another. Trying to convince the morning worker that this happened took about twenty minutes, and we essentially parted ways in a shouting match: the entire operation - caverns, lodging, gift store - was one big charade, with everyone in on the little game except for the customers. That was our unanimous impression when we departed, fuming, and genuinely worried about being pulled over by a small-town policeman who was undoubtedly this scumbag's buddy - I literally breathed a sigh of relief when we crossed the county line. Okay, but even this doesn't sound *that* bad, does it? Yes, we were duped, but I've been short-changed by vaporetto drivers in Venice, accosted (unsuccessfully) by a pickpocket in Vienna - so what? So what if this entire operation was one big family-run scam as long as the caverns are there, the tour is given, and the rooms aren't crawling with roaches? Well, the fact that I was so angry when I left (I can't remember one other time this has ever happened to me), and the fact that I'm still this passionate about it five years later, says something. But hopefully this will say even more: "Most Unprofessional Resort I've Ever Dealt With" on TripAdvisor.com - and I believe every single word of this review, and also some of the reviews that follow. And if that's still not enough, this happened several months later: "Hedrick Sentenced On Sexual Abuse" Quoting the judge from the article, "Mr. Hedrick, you may be a millionaire, but you're morally bankrupt." Mr. Hedrick also appealed the sentence and lost the appeal. And is now a registered sex offender living in Seneca Rocks, WV, after spending just a little over two years in a penitentiary. Pick your movie: "Psycho," "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," "Hostel," "Motel Hell" ... now think of non-existent hidden cameras ... makes for a pretty good campfire horror story, doesn't it? It wouldn't surprise me at all if he was now "retired" from his family-run operation, but they couldn't possibly have taken his ownership away. Enjoy your stay.
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