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Lancaster Restaurant Week is to taking place from February 26th thru March 2nd. A few citizens  of York, also known as the White Rose city, has expressed a bit of shade in that it runs  parallel to theirs. I mean, seriously, there are enough opportunities to dine in either Lancaster City, the Red Rose city, over the week. Just map out where you will eat, like the rest of us do. The distance between the regions is comparable to Falls Church , and Georgetown. Completely doable. 

War of the Roses, 

kat

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Philly food critic  has given his blessing to  Lancaster. Perhaps now, more people will venture to this agriculture rich city that provides an abundance of resources to not only restaurants directly here , but in larger metropolis like Philly, & NYC. 

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32 minutes ago, Ericandblueboy said:

What's a good place for interesting Saturday lunch/brunch in Lancaster?

I would reccommend Barbaret Bistro on King St. The Chef served a few years at the renouned Le Bec Fin. It’s truly extraordinary to have a classically trained French chef in Lancaster, and we are fortunate to have him.

For something unusual, I also recommend this Trinidadian spot. It usually is only open for dinner, but have revised their hours for the summer. 

I hope you have some time to factor in a visit to the Lancaster Central Market as well. A stroll through this building houses the finest of goods Lancaster has to offer. 

If there is something in particular you are interested in, let me know. Happy to help!

More than Amish,

kat

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14 hours ago, Ericandblueboy said:

What's a good place for interesting Saturday lunch/brunch in Lancaster?

I may also add, a trip to Lancaster is not complete without stopping in at this coffee nook. I love coffee, and the folks at Passenger make it their job to love it too without sounding rehearsed. They are well versed in all their offerings in both coffee and tea. I don't think I have been to a store front quite like the Passenger. It is conveniently located right across from the Lancaster Central Market. 

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Our first stop in Lancaster was the Central Market.  It's been years since I went but it was just as crowded.  The narrow aisles and loads of people made going thru the market a fun but hectic experience.  Back outside, we went to Bistro Barbaret for lunch.

We started with the quenelle de brochet - something I fully expect the kids to spit out.  I wasn't even sure I would like it.  I haven't had it since I ordered it at La Chaumiere (in G'town DC) over 15 years ago.  The version at Barbaret is made with fish and scallop, topped with Gruyere cheese.  We dutifully ate the whole dish but no one was jumping for joy.  The texture is very soft and the flavor is just slightly fishy.  

That was followed by a nice but very small veal schnitzel.   It might've been the smallest piece of veal schnitzel I've seen, at 2" x 4", and maybe 1/4" tall.  We ordered a side of fries - which were good - thin and crispy (but not double fried).

For dinner and breakfast the next day, we ate at Hershey Farm (and spent the night there too!).  The prime rib (special for Sat. night) was actually quite tender and flavorful.  The fried chicken were super crispy, as were the fried shrimp.  Surprisingly, there were almost no veggies (other than the salad bar) - I saw some boiled green beans and corn on the cob.  All I can say is there's no going back to Hershey Farm.

 

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On 7/29/2018 at 8:37 PM, Ericandblueboy said:

Our first stop in Lancaster was the Central Market.  It's been years since I went but it was just as crowded.  The narrow aisles and loads of people made going thru the market a fun but hectic experience.  Back outside, we went to Bistro Barbaret for lunch.

We started with the quenelle de brochet - something I fully expect the kids to spit out.  I wasn't even sure I would like it.  I haven't had it since I ordered it at La Chaumiere (in G'town DC) over 15 years ago.  The version at Barbaret is made with fish and scallop, topped with Gruyere cheese.  We dutifully ate the whole dish but no one was jumping for joy.  The texture is very soft and the flavor is just slightly fishy.  

That was followed by a nice but very small veal schnitzel.   It might've been the smallest piece of veal schnitzel I've seen, at 2" x 4", and maybe 1/4" tall.  We ordered a side of fries - which were good - thin and crispy (but not double fried).

For dinner and breakfast the next day, we ate at Hershey Farm (and spent the night there too!).  The prime rib (special for Sat. night) was actually quite tender and flavorful.  The fried chicken were super crispy, as were the fried shrimp.  Surprisingly, there were almost no veggies (other than the salad bar) - I saw some boiled green beans and corn on the cob.  All I can say is there's no going back to Hershey Farm.

 

I have read your review of the spots you visited during your visit to Lancaster. I admit I am disappointed to learn that it was less than stellar. I have expressed in previous threads about dining in York as well as Lancaster, some hits, others not so much. My intent in writing about spots in this area is so that members in this forum take a chance to visit the area. Looks like I need to seek out more spots, with more frequency and more range. I tend to go to the same spot, or I should say spot. I need to broaden my dining spectrum and venture out to more places.

With this all being said, I do admit no dining establishment as of yet, has met or have been comparable to restaurants in the DMV. I often scratch my head on this cause the bounty of ingredients to build a menu are plentiful, and delicious. The search for good cuisine continues...

 

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I love going to Lancaster with the family. It's a great, easy, fairly cheap weekend away. We do not, however, go for the food. On my way home last time, I did remember thinking that I wish they had a farm to table place that just made a mixed salad, roasted some corn, and grilled a burger. (all that stuff was in my line of sight when I thought the thought.)

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On 8/9/2018 at 1:01 PM, NolaCaine said:

I love going to Lancaster with the family. It's a great, easy, fairly cheap weekend away. We do not, however, go for the food. On my way home last time, I did remember thinking that I wish they had a farm to table place that just made a mixed salad, roasted some corn, and grilled a burger. (all that stuff was in my line of sight when I thought the thought.)

Thank you for your feedback about Lancaster, Pa.

Since I have moved back to the area, it has changed tremendously. I reside in York, west of the Lancaster over the bridge, but spend a better part of my time in Lancaster.  There are so many nooks and crannies to explore that include  art, science, music, performance art, vintage shops, indie movies, farmers stands, breweries and so much more. In just the last 5 years , the dining scene has flourished to include cuisines ranging from Trinidadian, to Ethiopian to Vietnamese. This perhaps as a direct result from Lancaster being America's refugee capital. I realize most travel to Lancaster to immerse themselves in the Amish experience, and I am not suggesting otherwise. I guess what I am saying for those reading this post consider Lancaster, Pa  possibly on any day besides Sunday or Monday so you make it to the Horse.

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We went up to Lancaster a couple weeks ago for the obligatory trip to Dutch Wonderland. The park is great fun for little kids (after age 6 or so, it may not be as exciting as other parks, however). A decent sized park with a variety of rides to entertain and thrill the kids. Food was nothing special there.

Since we got into Lancaster the evening before, we did dine on the patio at Luca. We very much enjoyed our meal there. One kid had pizza, which was good and large enough to fill up a three year old's stomach. The other had pasta and enjoyed that.

My wife and I split an order of their squash blossoms, which were very good with a part goat cheese filling. We also split orders of their little gem salad (a Caesar style salad) and a delicious local peach and prosciutto dish with chilis. For our entrees, I had a pasta dish with ricotta stuffed ravioli. My wife had a very tasty gnocchi with local corn, prosciutto, peppers, and black truffle.

Service was great, despite being on the patio. Although we ate early, the restaurant and patio got busier as the night went on.

I would recommend this place if you're in the area and looking for a good, comfortable dinner with very good food.

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Lancaster Restaurant Week 2018 is scheduled to take place Sept 10- 16. 

 I actually look forward to this every year, and will be adding #donrockwelldotcom to my RW adventures! There are some great offerings this year, and to make it a bit more interesting if one captures their meals on social media and uses the #LCWRW2018, a diner has the opportunity to win prizes to various restaurants throughout downtown Lancaster. Win-Win in my opinion.  

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In the time I have been exploring Lancaster's dining scene there happens to be a diverse map of types of cuisine, with the exception of one, Korean.  There is Trinidadian, Nepalese, Tibetan, Burmese, Vietnamese, Thai, Japanese, Peruvian, Dominican, Mexican, Ethiopian, Lebanese, and several more. There is one spot on Queen St, Onions, that is cash only,  that serves Korean BBQ and other specialties. The one Korean cafe in all of Lancaster. There certainly is a demand for it, but how does one campaign for more places like this to open up. It would be a dream come true if a full service Korean BBQ were to open up in Lancaster. Any one, any one? 

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I grew up in Lancaster, born and raised. Graduated from Lancaster McCaskey High School and Franklin and Marshall College. I left to "avoid the military by joining the Air Force" and have been in the DC area for 4 decades. My memories of Lancaster are as it was, not as it is. And it was a quaint and simple place, before gentrification. The only neck beards when I lived there were on Amish or Mennonites.

I still love Lancaster, but for me, it's primarily because of the legacies that are still in place. Stouffer's of Kissel Hill was one of many local family-owned markets. It wasn't a grocery store or a supermarket, it was a market. The meat counter had a butcher who would cut anything you wanted, or slice your cold cuts fresh. The bakery had shoo-fly pie and sticky buns made that day or that hour. The produce in the summer was grown within a mile or two. Stouffer's is still there, with the best celery on the planet every autumn, and John Herr's in Millersville and Shady Maple in East Earl are still bringing it. I can't understand why Wegman's would want to expand into this market.

For me, true Lancaster these days are the weekend runs for produce in late summer and early autumn, and if you time it right, the fire halls in September will be serving tubs of chicken corn soup that will change your life. Drive the eastern side of the county and get off the main roads -- be careful, buggies are everywhere and they move slowly -- but stop at the furniture barns where the furniture is made by hand, and without power tools. If you're lucky, you'll come upon an Amish barbecue raising money for someone's medical bills because they don't carry medical insurance but, boy oh boy, is that chicken goooood! And that home made ice cream from their own cows is a dream.

To me, Lancaster is the land that time forgot. I hope it stays that way.

 

 

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9 minutes ago, Kibbee Nayee said:

I grew up in Lancaster, born and raised. Graduated from Lancaster McCaskey High School and Franklin and Marshall College. 

 My memories of Lancaster are as it was, not as it is. And it was a quaint and simple place, before gentrification. 

I still love Lancaster, but for me, it's primarily because of the legacies 

To me, Lancaster is the land that time forgot. I hope it stays that way.

 

 

Wow KN you are local to that area through and through—growing up and college.

I’ve written that I used to visit Lancaster a fair amount while in college and afterwards.  My best friend in college was from there, his family lived on State Street in town fairly near the college campus.  I was there enough to visit many favored locations including markets you have mentioned though the names escape me.  I also had townmates who attended F&M possibly while you were there.  I relished visiting.  

I only had one small single “issue”—that danged scrapple.  Always way too polite to turn it away.   Always finished every bit of scrapple on my plate.  Never left a scrap.  Always hated it.  LOL

Yours is a wonderful ode.

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5 hours ago, DaveO said:

Wow KN you are local to that area through and through—growing up and college.

I’ve written that I used to visit Lancaster a fair amount while in college and afterwards.  My best friend in college was from there, his family lived on State Street in town fairly near the college campus.  I was there enough to visit many favored locations including markets you have mentioned though the names escape me.  I also had townmates who attended F&M possibly while you were there.  I relished visiting.  

I only had one small single “issue”—that danged scrapple.  Always way too polite to turn it away.   Always finished every bit of scrapple on my plate.  Never left a scrap.  Always hated it.  LOL

Yours is a wonderful ode.

Haha! One of my high school flames, and my high school baseball coach, lived on State Street.

I spent the first 23 years of my life in Lancaster. Local delicacies like pickled red beet eggs, scrapple, and head cheese were second nature to me. I had no idea the rest of the world treated these dishes as novelties. When I first went into the Air Force, in San Antonio, I went with a southern fellow for a fried chicken lunch off base. My friend ordered his meal and then added a pickled jalapeño pepper for a nickel. OK, so I bought one too. I watched as he bit into his chicken and then took a bite of pepper. So I did the same. Having grown up in Lancaster, I thought my head exploded and a lightning bolt went down my throat. I turned red and my head was pouring sweat. He couldn't stop laughing. Nowadays I eat jalapeños like candy, but back then, I was a kid from Lancaster.

I couldn't believe that the rest of the country really didn't have liverwurst, or Lebanon Balogna, or sweet balogna, or hard pretzels, or Gibbles potato chips. But I had also never eaten a taco before I left Lancaster, or real ethnic food for that matter, other than my mother's Middle Eastern food.

Lancaster did a lot of things before they were cool, like head cheese. Or bacon on everything. Or pork and sauerkraut on New Years Day. Or putting a pot of water on the stove to boil, then heading to the roadside stand for sweet corn picked within the last 20 minutes, and heading home to cook the 15 ears you just bought for a dollar. The Lancaster I miss is still there, but you have to swat away the yuppie gentrification to get at it.

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On 2/2/2019 at 12:11 PM, Kibbee Nayee said:

The Lancaster I miss is still there, but you have to swat away the yuppie gentrification to get at it.

It appears even Lancaster is not immune to gentrification. The upcoming developments of 101NQ is coming  and I am not sure how I feel about it. Sad actually.  Why would the city developers want to bring Starbucks to the area when we already have 2 distinct small coffee producers with in blocks of one another. SMH

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That building appears to be the old Hess’s building, where I sold women’s shoes in the 1972-ish timeframe. Ah, the stories I can tell....

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I would be interested in learning what inspires projects such as this one. From what I gather, most visitors that come through Lancaster County are in search of the of what makes this area distinctly unique.  That uniqueness being the Amish community and its aspects, not a megaplex .  I have on good word there is a journalist exploring Lancaster over the next few days, and you know what she is in search of, Amish and the culture of the Pa Dutch. 

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3 hours ago, curiouskitkatt said:

I would be interested in learning what inspires projects such as this one. From what I gather, most visitors that come through Lancaster County are in search of the of what makes this area distinctly unique.  That uniqueness being the Amish community and its aspects, not a megaplex .  I have on good word there is a journalist exploring Lancaster over the next few days, and you know what she is in search of, Amish and the culture of the Pa Dutch. 

I'm hopeful that the Amish and Mennonite communities will continue to get along as they always have, despite what goes on in Lancaster city....

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