Category Archives: Food

Say Cheese … and Wine!

Not many things go better together than cheese and wine. Creamy, hard, tangy or mellow cheese can be paired perfectly with wines – from white to red or in between with a rosé.

Find the cheeses on our list at Lancaster Central Market or local shops that are making the cheese themselves from dairy sourced from neighboring farms. For a bottle of vino, head to one of the local vineyards where winemakers are growing the grapes and creating delicious wines.

We challenged our taste buds and rounded up five fantastic wine and cheese pairings – matching a cheese found or made locally with a wine, crafted at a Lancaster County vineyard. Try them yourself, or get inspired and create your own.

Bon appetite!

Linden Dale Farm’s Chevre from Lancaster Central Market paired with Waltz Vineyard’s Sauvignon Blanc

Our first pairing features creamy, spreadable goat cheese, Chevre, found at Linden Dale Farm’s stand at Lancaster Central Market, paired with the award-winning Sauvignon Blanc from Waltz Vineyard. The chevre is fresh and locally made, and can be spread on crackers or raw veggies. Waltz’s Sauvignon Blanc is a dry white wine with notes of green apple, citrus and honeysuckle. The crispness of this wine pairs well with the rich, creaminess of the chevre.

Delgiorno’s Italian Specialties’ Mozzarella from Lancaster Central Market paired with Weathered Vineyard’s Pinot Gris

Next up, we’ve paired a creamy, mild fresh mozzarella with a crisp Pinot Gris. The mozzarella, a classic Italian cheese, was found at Delgiorno’s Italian Specialties at Lancaster Central Market. The freshness pairs well with Weathered Vineyard’s Pinot Gris, a fruity white wine with citrus, pear, white nectarine and apple notes. The fresh cheese paired with the fruity wine is a match made in heaven.

September Farm Cheese’s Honey Brook Jack paired with Nissley Vineyard’s Merlot

Our third pairing features a locally made Monterey Jack cheese from September Farm Cheese and a merlot with moxie from Nissley Vineyards. This fresh, mild cheese is made in Honey Brook with dairy from the neighboring farm. If you’re a fan of dry, medium-bodied Merlots, Nissley’s is for you. With hints of black pepper, the wine goes well with the tasty, mild cheese.

S. Clyde Weaver’s Smoked Gouda paired with Vineyard at Hershey’s Firefly (Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot Blend)

For this pairing, we picked up a classic smoked Gouda from S Clyde Weaver, which offers a nutty, smoky flavor. This semi-hard cheese is perfect for snacking while sipping on the Vineyard at Hershey’s red-blend, Firefly. An artful blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, this wine is full-bodied with notes of plum, currant, and spice. The warm finish of the wine pairs well with the smokiness of the cheese.

Lancaster Farmhouse’s Balsamic Fig White Cheddar from Lancaster Central Market paired with The Vineyard at Grandview’s Cabernet Sauvignon

To wrap up our pairings, we paired a flavorful cheese with a wine to match. Hand-rubbed with balsamic from Seasons Olive Oil & Vinegar Taproom and figs, this cheese is a party for your taste buds. A cheese like this deserves a rich wine. The Vineyard at Grandview’s Cabernet Sauvignon is a full-bodied wine aged in oak barrels, with notes of red fruit and spice. Together, this combo is yum-o!

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What’s New for 2018 in Lancaster?

With a new year comes new things to explore, experience, and eat in Lancaster – whether you’re visiting for the first time or fiftieth time, or even if you’re a local. We’ve got new exhibits, activities, and shops along with vibrant shows and new ways to experience the tastes of Lancaster.

Dive deeper into the new and upcoming offerings for an exciting year in Lancaster.

Explore

It’s tea time at Turkey Hill Experience! With their new Tea Discovery, you can see, smell and taste delicious Turkey Hill iced tea, all while learning where the flavors come from. A Tea Expert will walk you through the experience as you sip black tea, green tea, hibiscus tea – and more!


Slated for spring 2018, Refreshing Mountain Retreat is offering new challenges with a 2-tier Aerial Obstacle Course. With 20+ new elements that range from 10-25 feet off the ground, those up for the challenge can experience the excitement of maneuvering through the course while floating above the ground. Package this activity with even more outdoor adventure, including ziplining, horseback riding, and more.

Explore great deals on popular brands at Tanger Outlets, who recently expanded and added 23 new stores. Browse old favorites like Gap, Yankee Candle and J. Crew, and check out the new offerings including Francesca’s, The North Face, Under Armour, Columbia Factory Store, H&M, and Express.

Experience

New thrills, twists and turns are awaiting at Dutch Wonderland this summer as they unveil their new family-friendly suspended roller coaster, Merlin’s Mayhem. Guests will soar to up 60 feet above the ground, twist through two helix turns, and twist and dip as they zoom along. Dutch Wonderland is also home to more mild rides for younger children, making it fun for the whole family.

Sight & Sound Theatres is bringing the powerful story, Jesus, to life this spring. Known for their epic productions filled with beautiful costumes & sets, talented performers (and even live animals), and fantastic effects, Sight & Sound presents this story that focuses on a love that rescues.

2018 brings exciting changes for Zoetropolis Art House. This year, they will be moving to Water Street (just blocks away from Lancaster Central Market), expanding to include a restaurant and distillery, and changing their name to Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse. Their lineup includes independent, documentary and foreign films, art shows, and community events. They’ve even secured a famous investor – Lancaster native, Taylor Kinney of “Chicago Fire” fame.

Movie buffs will love American Music Theatre’s new original show – Songs of the Silver Screen. Experience the talented AMT cast and live band as they perform cinematic songs, made famous by icons like Elvis Presley, Julie Andrews, Bette Midler, Rosemary Clooney, Barbra Streisand, John Williams and more.

Eat

Get a taste of Lancaster on a Tuktuk this spring. What is a Tuktuk, you ask? Based on the pedal rickshaws in Japan, they are motorized three-wheeled carts. Hop on in and tour the city, as you taste offerings from various restaurants. Tasty tours include the Brunch Tour, Lunch Tour and the Spoil Your Dinner Tour.

Believe it or not, Lancaster has distilling traditions that date back to 1753. Stoll & Wolfe is reigniting these traditions at their distillery and tasting room in Lititz. Stop by for a taste of their Pennsylvania Rye Whiskey or the Blend of Straight American Whiskeys (or both), and try a hand-crafted cocktail that is sure to put some pep in your step.

After eight months of renovations, the Downtown Lancaster corner bar, Yorgos is open for the new year. This multi-level bar/restaurant features a sports bar (first floor), upscale steak and seafood restaurant named Kefi at Yorgos (second floor), and a cocktail lounge and roof deck (third floor). They’ve expanded their menu and beer offerings to match their renovated interior and exterior, adding to Lancaster’s night-life offerings.

After all this…

Once you’ve experienced all the new thing to do and see, why not rest up for another day of fun at the new Hotel at Rock Lititz (slated to open in fall 2018). While the hotel’s primary purpose is to serve the rock and pop bands and production crews that practice at neighboring Rock Lititz, the everyday traveler can kick their feet up there too. To add an extra splash of uniqueness and a “backstage” vibe, many of the decorations and furniture will be crafted out of repurposed gear cases, tech items and the like.

 

Top Soup Spots in Lancaster according to Yelp.com

Best Soup Spots in Lancaster according to Yelp

It’s chilly outside! While you may not be thinking of traveling in the Northeast this time of year, there are plenty of things to do in the winter in Lancaster. One of the best pairings to go with your activities, whether indoor or outdoor, is some warm, hearty soup, so we’re recommending the top restaurants to visit and order soup.

The first four on our list below are part of the top 10 on Yelp.com, a website that allows real users to write reviews on the best businesses in town – from burgers and hotdogs to soup and sandwiches.

1. Zoup!
At Zoup!, you’ll find twelve, always rotating daily varieties of soup, each served with a hunk of freshly baked bread. Customer top picks include Chicken Potpie, Lobster Bisque and Vegetarians Split Pea – but find your own favorite by sampling soups before you order. You will also find sandwiches and salad on their menu.

2. Tom + Chee
Soooooup! What better to pair with your grilled cheese on a cold day (or a hot one) than soup. With seasonal soups like the Blue Cheese Chili or Tomato Gazpacho, you’re sure to find a pairing that you’ll love. Or you can always get the classic favorites like Classic Tomato or Creamy Tomato Basil.

I’m 14 different kinds of happy

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3. Ploy Thai Kitchen
What better way to warm your belly than Thai soup. If you’re looking or a little kick to add to your meal, order the Tom Yum Shrimp Soup. My personal favorite is Tom Kha Chicken Soup, made with coconut milk, mushrooms, lemongrass and lime juice. Whatever you choose, pair it with some Thai Dumplings or Crab Ragoon.

4.  Saladworks
Looking to eat healthy in the New Year? Why not head to Saladworks and pair your favorite salad with a delicious, warm, filling soup. Two fan favorites are the Turkey Sausage and Kale and the Chicken Tortilla.

Here are some more of our personal favorite soup spots you may want to check out:

5. Isaac’s Restaurants
Isaac’s soup is so delicious that they have a soup calendar each month that you can check out to see if they have your favorite today – and during the months of January, February & March, Isaac’s donates one gallon of soup to a local soup kitchen or shelter for every 100 cups of soup they sell. So warm up your belly, and contribute to warming someone else’s too! Local favorite? The pepperjack tomato soup.

6.  Annie Bailey’s Irish Public House
In the heart of Downtown Lancaster, you don’t want to miss out on some deliciousness in their seasonal menu and the warm, authentic Irish Pub atmosphere. Our personal favorites is the Five Onion Bisque, made with Irish ale, cream, and bleu cheese croutons. If you’re thinking of French Onion, it’s nothing like that – the cream makes it a thick, rich consistency, and the blue cheese croutons add the perfect crunch.


7.  The Brasserie
Looking for a homey setting to sit by the fire and dine? Head over to the Brasserie, which literally was a home, built back in 1925. Whether you’re stopping in for lunch or dinner, enjoy their famous tomato bisque. In the warmer weather, ask to be seated on their back deck and enjoy the breeze.

8.  Commonwealth on Queen
A trendy farm-to-table spot in Downtown Lancaster, Commonwealth on Queen features two soups daily – black bean soup (vegetarian & gluten free) and a soup of the day – both made from scratch, with love, and served with homemade bread. If you get their early, you can snag one of the armchairs by the fire place.

9.  Café Chocolate
Head into Lititz for a globally inspired menu featuring homemade soups like Mulligatawny Soup (lentils, chickpeas, tomatoes & broth), Portuguese Chicken & Rice, and West African Peanut Chowder. And true to their name, you’ll find everything chocolate – hot chocolate, chocolate dipped fruit, chocolate crepes, chocolate cake & truffles, and you can even try chili made with chocolate.

10.  Tomato Pie Café
Here’s another favorite in Downtown Lititz – a restaurant with a simple, but artful menu, and lots of charm. The flavors, textures, home cooked comfort and savory spice combine in each dish to give your world a vibrant, fresh perspective on food. They live by the motto “everything tastes better with friends,” so grab a few friends, and head on over for a warm conversation over a warm cup of soup.

What’s on Tap? – Winter Edition

Brewers in Lancaster and the surrounding area are creating beers that channel warm holiday flavors including spices, cherries and even egg nog. These toasty libations are best enjoyed after a long day of shopping, while celebrating the season with friends, or paired with a warm meal shared with a loved one.

So when it’s time to get out of the cold and warm up, do so with a pint of one of the area’s winter brews:

Odin’s Ale from JoBoy’s Brew Pub | ABV: 9%
JoBoy’s winter ale is an ode to Odin, the god of intoxicating drink from medieval folk lore. A true taste of the season, this ale is brewed with ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, orange and honey, then aged to perfection over the year.

Grab one on tap or in 22 oz bottles at JoBoy’s in Lititz.

Mad Elf & Mad Elf Grand Cru from Tröegs | ABV: 11%
A winter beer list wouldn’t be complete without Tröegs cheerful Christmas beer, Mad Elf. With an ABV of 11%, this brew packs a punch with notes of cherries, raw honey, cocoa, cinnamon, clove and allspice. This year, Tröegs is escalating the madness with Mad Elf Grand Cru – a twist on the classic elf made with tart Balaton cherries.

Catch a Mad Elf at Tröegs Tasting Room in Hershey, along with select locations around the county. Mad Elf Grand Cru is only available in cork & cage bottles, and may be a little harder to find.

Naughty & Spiced Winter Warmer from Vineyard & Brewery at Hershey | ABV: 8.4%
For a taste of Christmas, the Vineyard & Brewery at Hershey is serving up a winter-spiced Wee Heavy (like a Scottish ale). This warming brew is full of seasonal spices and notes including cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and orange zest – much like a liquid gingerbread cookie.

Served up at the Vineyard & Brewery at Hershey in various vessels including on tap and in 12 oz cans.

Winter Warmer Ale from Lancaster Brewing Company | ABV: 8.9%
For a winter warmer with gusto, check out Lancaster Brewing Company’s Winter Warmer Ale – a full-bodied ale with deep, malt richness. This winter ale doesn’t feature the typical spices of the season, but is sure to warm you up.

Find it at Lancaster Brewing Company in Downtown Lancaster and Lancaster Brewing Co. Taproom & Grill, along with select locations around the county.

Grinnin’ Grizzley Holiday Spiced Ale from Appalachian Brewing Company | ABV: 5.7%
A holiday brew that will have you grinning from ear to ear, Appalachian Brewing Company’s seasonal brew is an amber ale full of the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and fresh orange zest. You’ll love this well-balanced ale, especially if you enjoy light hop notes and mild spiciness.

Swing by their Lititz BrewPub to find this ale on tap.

The Martians Kidnap Santa! Egg Nog Stout from Springhouse Brewing Company | ABV: 8.4%
Springhouse Brewing Company’s winter milk stout puts a spin on the classic Christmas concoction with a quirky name to match. This festive beer is rich and creamy, topped with cinnamon and nutmeg, and will get you in the holiday spirit.

Head over to their Hazel Street Brew Pub or Taproom on King Street to find this tasty milk stout.

the martians kidnap Santa egg nog stout now available in 16-ounce 4-packs or cases.

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Other than Beer:

Gingerbread Cider from Lancaster County Cider | ABV: 5.5%
Hard apple cider meets gingerbread cookies with Lancaster County Cider’s holiday beverage. Semi-sweet cider is combined with brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg, creating a light and refreshing holiday spirit.

Try it for yourself at Mount Hope Estate & Winery.

Dry Cranberry Cider from Levengoods of Lancaster | ABV: 5.5%
Levengoods of Lancaster is a local cidery, fairly new to the brewing scene in Lancaster. In addition to their fantastic original ciders (original, dry and sweet), they’re serving up a dry cranberry cider this holiday season, rich with cranberry and apple flavors – fresh, clean, and crisp.

Grab a pint at their shop on King Street in Downtown Lancaster.

Lancaster County Turkey Tips 2017

When thinking about the month of November, one of the first things to come to mind is Thanksgiving. From Thanksgiving, your mind will wander to Turkey. And then when thinking about Turkey, you’ll think of the Turkey Lady (at least here in Lancaster).

Lancaster Central Market is home to a number of various stand holders, and with Thanksgiving right around the corner, Market will be packed with people looking to get their hands on the freshest ingredients for their holiday feast.

There are a number of stands that I can think of that would make complete sense to stop at for your meal: Barr’s or Meck’s (depending on your preference) and Ric’s Bread or Thom’s for the bread, celery and onions for your stuffing. The Herb Shop for the various spices you need, and Wendy Jo’s for your pumpkin flavored sweets. But the one stand you just cannot miss for your Thanksgiving meal is The Turkey Lady.

We chatted briefly with The Turkey Lady herself to get some Turkey Tips for you this year – so whether you’re a local, or just passing through, stop at Lancaster Central Market and pick up some turkey sausages, or the whole turkey, and enjoy some local flavor this holiday season.

What are some of your most popular products?

We offer 20 flavors of Turkey Sausage made from boneless skinless turkey thigh meat.  For the upcoming holiday season, we will be featuring our Winter Wonder Turkey Sausage which is a mix of cranberries and apples with a hint of orange.  It works great for breakfast casseroles as well as in your favorite stuffing recipes.  Turkey Snack Sticks, which we offer in 6 different flavors and Turkey Jerky are popular items for those looking for a protein rich snack on the go.

How do people use your products?

We have a mix of ready to eat items which can be enjoyed as is and many essential items to be used as a low fat protein rich substitute for beef or pork in your favorite recipes.  Recipes are posted at our stand featuring flavors reminiscent of the current season and quick weeknight dinner ideas for those with busy schedules.

How do you cook Turkey at your house for Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving is an intimate traditional affair at my house.  We enjoy our turkey slow roasted with turkey sausage stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans (cooked with smoked turkey hock) and cranberry relish.  My dad and I do the cooking as my mom and husband usually work the day of the holiday.

What tips do you have for someone making turkey the first time?

A cooking bag is a great option as this ensures a moist breast and lots of juice for gravy making – perfect for a first timer wanting to make a positive impression!

Pass the Pumpkin, Please…

Did you know that Lancaster County is one of the top ten pumpkin-producing counties in the United States, with over 1,000 acres of pumpkins! This year’s crop has been particularly plentiful. Although the pumpkin growing season is over, you can enjoy pumpkin flavored treats all the way through November. (As most pumpkin lovers know, the season doesn’t end with Halloween).

Below is a list of some of our premier pumpkin goodies to try while you are out and about in Lancaster. Whether you prefer sweet, savory, or just a little sip we’ve got you covered.

A pumpkin whoopie pie (a Lancaster County classic) or a pumpkin crueler from Shady Maple Smorgasbord, are always a place to start.

Pumpkin scones or pumpkin cake with chocolate and nuts from Wendy Jo’s Homemade pair perfectly with your coffee as you stroll through market. If you prefer muffins to scones, the pumpkin muffins from Ric’s Bread are perfection.

The pumpkin mousse from Speckled Hen Café is simply delectable, plus the presentation doesn’t disappoint either.

Classic Pumpkin Pie from the Bird-in-Hand Bakeshop is a good stand-by, try it á la mode with a scoop of their pumpkin-pecan ice cream, yum!

Try the pumpkin and sweet potato bisque or the poached beet, pumpkin and pear salad at John J. Jeffries for a healthier (but still delicious) take on a pumpkin meal.

The pumpkin ravioli from Lancaster Brewing Company is stuffed with fall flavor, order a pint of Baked (their pumpkin ale) to complete the meal.

Winter squash & red lentil fritters with pumpkin seed and basil pesto from Ma(i)son are a culmination of autumnal goodness all in one dish.

Pumpkin Linguine at The Horse Inn with duck sausage, butternut & acorn squash and sage will satisfy any pumpkin (or pasta) lover.

Pumpkin spice tea from The Herb Shop- Central Market is pumpkin spice and everything nice all in one mug.

Pumpkin cold brew at Tomato Pie Café is perfect for when you need a mid-day pumpkin pick-me-up.

If you are craving an adult beverage try ordering the Nutty Irish Pumpkin Cocktail from Annie Baileys. It made with Slane Irish Whiskey, House Pumpkin Liqueur, Frangelico & Cranberry – yum!

Cocktails aren’t your thing? There are plenty of pumpkin beers and ciders on tap at the Federal Taphouse.

Sandwiches Galore in Lancaster

Lunch or dinner, chilled or grilled – we’ve compiled our list of where to grab some of Lancaster’s tastiest sandwiches. You’ll find hoagies, grilled cheeses, clubs, paninis featuring quality meats & cheeses, local produce, and sauces made in-house that will have your taste buds buzzing.

Credit: Isaac’s Restaurant

Isaac’s Restaurant
A local favorite since 1983, Isaac’s serves up delicious grilled sandwiches, all named after birds. Pair your sammie with a cup of their famous pepper jack tomato soup for the perfect lunch or dinner.

Isaac’s Tip for the Perfect Sandwich:  Grill it! Heating the sandwich on the grill can change the flavor and take it to the next level.


While you’re there, try – the Mallard:
top round roast beef, bacon, melted cheddar, mushrooms, and Ikey’s sauce on a pretzel roll

Credit: S. Clyde Weaver


S. Clyde Weaver

From market to Main Street, S. Clyde Weaver has been in the Weaver family for generations. Nowadays, their cafe in East Petersburg is sells subs and sandwiches, along with the fresh and smoked meats their business was founded on.

S. Clyde Weaver’s Tip for the Perfect Sandwich:  Mayo and mustard are classics but for a new spin, try pesto, vinaigrette, or even salsa.

While you’re there, try – the Turkey, Bacon & Pesto: home-style roasted turkey, bacon, pesto, bacon mayo, swiss cheese, roasted red peppers served on house-made 11 grain bread

The Flying Pig Deli
Whether you’re stopping by for a yummy lunch or some gourmet goods, The Flying Pig Deli is a one stop shop for tastiness. Treat yourself to a sandwich packed with quality meats, cheeses and sauces, paired with one of their unique sides (think Cajun cole slaw, creole potato salad and Szechuan noodles, just to name a few).

While you’re there, try – the Muffuletta: genoa salami, capicola ham, mortadella, provolone, and mozzarella & olive salad served on an onion brioche roll 

Credit: Cafe One Eight

Cafe One Eight
A favorite stop for a quick cup of coffee or relaxing lunch in the city, Cafe One Eight is serving up light fare that will both fuel and satisfy. Their menu features fresh produce, bread that’s made locally, and even olive oil from a shop down the street.

Cafe One Eight’s Tip for the Perfect Sandwich:  Fresh, Lancaster ingredients make for an amazing sandwich.

While you’re there, try- Market Fresh: Thom’s rosemary bread, sliced tomato, smashed avocado, fresh basil, mozzarella, and drizzle of Season’s extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar

Smokehouse BBQ and Brews
Our list wouldn’t be complete without a barbecue sandwich, and Smokehouse BBQ and Brews has just the thing. They’re layering their low and slow, pit smoked meat on a roll, topped with house made sauces and piled high with savory extras.

While you’re there, try – the Legend: smoked, pulled pork smothered in their Memphis Heat sauce with pickles, cheddar and Monterrey jack cheese on a crisp country roll

 

Credit: Callaloo Trinidadian Kitchen

Callaloo Trinidadian Kitchen
One of Lancaster’s newest restaurants is whipping up sandwiches inspired by authentic Trinidadian flavors. In addition to their entrees that incorporate spices and tropical ingredients, Callaloo has two great sandwiches on their menu, both served on their house-made coconut bread, called “coconut bake” in Trinidad.

While you’re there, try – Shark & Bake: marinated and lightly fried swai with shredded cabbage slaw, tamarind, garlic, and cilantro sauces on home-made coconut bread

Credit: Gracie’s on West Main

Gracie’s on West Main
At Gracie’s on West Main, bacon is the star. Smoked, glazed, or made into jam, they’ve created a plethora of sandwiches that will have any bacon lover’s mouth watering. If you’re not crazy about bacon, don’t worry – Gracie’s has a menu full of sammies for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Gracie’s Tip for the Perfect Sandwich:  Make sure you have the proper spread to bread ratio, and that your spread goes out to the edges. A dry sandwich is a sad sandwich!

While you’re there, try – Triple Bacon B.L.T.: double smoked bacon, brown sugar caramelized bacon, Irish bacon, chipotle mayo, lettuce and tomato on toasted sourdough

Tom+Chee 
A match truly made in heaven, the pairing of grilled cheese and tomato soup is celebrated at Tom+Chee. Here you can enjoy either the classic version or something a little more daring like a grilled cheese with spicy peppers, bacon or even potato chips on it.

Tom+Chee’s Tip for the Perfect Sandwich:  There are no rules! Anything goes and will be yum+awesome.

While you’re there, try – the Flying Pig: smoked gouda cheese, hand-carved turkey breast, applewood smoked bacon, and house made pickles on sour-white bread

Sprout of Rice & Noodles 
Have you tried a Banh Mi? Sprout of Rice & Noodles is serving up this traditional Vietnamese sandwiches with a variety of protein, like seasoned pork, chicken liver pate (a chef’s special), and tofu. Raw veggies are added for crunch and freshness.

While you’re there, try – Banh Mi Pate Thit: homemade rolled ham and chicken liver pate, homemade mayonnaise, onions, cucumbers, jalapeno peppers, Chinese radish and julienne carrots on a baguette

Credit: Lancaster Farmhouse

Lancaster Farmhouse at Lancaster Central Market
A great sandwich starts with quality ingredients – and that’s just what Lancaster Farmhouse is doing. They’re serving up premium artisanal cheeses, charcuterie, and bacon, creating filling sandwiches on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at their stand in Central Market.

Lancaster Farmhouse’s Tip for the Perfect Sandwich:  Don’t forget to add the cheese!

While you’re there, try – Honey I Smoked the Turkey: honey smoked turkey, bacon, mayo, cheese, butter lettuce and pickled red onions served on a sub roll

 

Top photo credit: Gracie’s on West Main

Iconic Desserts of Lancaster

With National Dessert Day on October 14, and let’s be honest – every day when your sweet tooth strikes – we’ve gathered our favorite desserts that have roots in Lancaster. Whether you’re roaming around Central Market, or venturing to bakeries in our small towns, you’re sure to stumble upon these sweet treats that capture the comforts of the county.

Whoopie Pies

A favorite for locals and visitors alike, the whoopie pie is a classic PA Dutch treat. Legend has it that whoopie pies were first made from leftover cake batter, and those who found this treat in their lunch pails would shout “whoopie!” – Hence the name.

This treat is made from two cake-like cookies with cream in the center. The traditional chocolate cake with vanilla cream version is still quite popular, with new tasty variations debuting over the years.

Where to find them: Hershey Farms Restaurant in Strasburg, Shady Maple in East Earl, and Bird-in-Hand Bakery & Café in Bird-in-Hand

Shoo-Fly Pie

Me oh my – it’s shoo-fly pie! This fluffy molasses dessert is a Lancaster tradition that got its name because the molasses attracts flies. As the pie cools on the window sill, you’d constantly be shooing the flies away.

Two versions of this pie can be found around the county – wet bottom and dry bottom. The wet bottom version is cake-like on top with a gooey custard consistency underneath. If you prefer a cake-like consistency through-out, opt for the dry bottom version.

Where to find it: Dutch Haven in Ronks, Good ‘N Plenty in Smoketown, and Bird-in-Hand Bake Shop in Bird-in-Hand

Ice Cream

Not only is Lancaster home to Turkey Hill Dairy, who has been churning up ice cream since 1980, it’s also home to a plethora of small business whipping up artisan ice cream made with local dairy products.

Whether in a cup, a cone, or blended into a milkshake, ice cream is a tasty treat year round. Find unique flavors like Chai Stroopie at Lancaster Sweet Shoppe or Pumpkin Pie at Bird-in-Hand Bakery & Café.

Where to find it: Fox Meadows Creamery in Ephrata, Lapp Valley Farm in New Holland, Strasburg Country Store & Creamery in Strasburg (in addition to the two mentioned above)

Apple Dumplings

Just in time for fall, this local favorite combines orchard-fresh fruit and rich, buttery pastry dough. Apple Dumplings begin popping up on bakery menus especially when the apple harvest is at its peak.

Simplicity is key with this dessert. Cored apples are wrapped in a simple, butter pastry dough then baked with cinnamon, brown sugar, and of course, more butter, and served either alone or ala mode.

Where to find them: Kauffman’s Fruit Farm in Bird-in-Hand, Byer’s Butterflake Bakery in Leola, and Zig’s Bakery at Central Market and in Lititz

Lancaster Locals’ Favorite Coffee Spots & Cafes

Coffee, café, java, cup-of-joe – Lancaster is no stranger to coffee shops, in fact we have over 70 coffee shops and cafes around the county- including 9 that roast their own beans! We talked with some Lancaster locals to ask them for their tips on the best places. Read the list below for a new suggestion on where to grab your next cup, it may become your new favorite!

Ryan S. – Passenger
7 W. King St., Lancaster, PA 17602 | passengercoffee.com
“I mean, Passenger is definitely the best. I like it for its philosophy about roasting – nothing is too dark or burnt, they excel at bringing out unique flavor profiles in each roast. The options are on point, from cold brew to pour overs. The space itself is modern and beautiful, there’s really nothing like it in the city. It brings a little bit of the west coast vibe to our town.”

Jordan H. – Passenger
“I love Passenger, but those $1 refills from Mean Cup give them a run for their money.”

Ryan M. – Prince Street Café
15 N. Prince St., Lancaster, PA 17602 | princestreetcafe.com
“We have some great coffee and cafes in this little city, but I think for me my favorite is still Prince Street Café. It probably has a lot to do with the nostalgia of the place. It is where I use to have my first client meetings when I was starting up my business. The coffee is consistently great, the food is excellent, and the eclectic din of conversation provides for a great environment to meet with a friend, connect with a client or get some last-minute studying done before your next final. Prince Street Café feels authentic and well lived in… it feels like home.”

Amber S.Mean Cup or Buzz
398 Harrisburg Ave. #200, Lancaster, PA 17603 and at Lancaster Central Market| meancup.com
“I can’t decide between Buzz and Mean Cup. When it comes to coffee at Central Market, I am fiercely loyal to Mean Cup. But on non-Market days, my downtown go-to is Buzz.”

Annie W. Buzz
36 W. King St., Lancaster, PA 17603 | eatabuzz.com
“My vote is cast for Buzz. I’m always greeted with a cheery hello and there’s something fun about walking up to their window. The coffee is only one size but it just so happens it’s the right size for me – large. They’re there for me when I need them.”

Katie W. Café One Eight
18 W. Orange St., Lancaster, PA 17603 | cafe1eight.com
“I love the calming environment and all of the natural light in Café One Eight. I highly recommend trying their pesto breakfast egg-sandwich, or their avocado toast with your coffee  delicious!”

Dana D. Copper Cup
922 Columbia Ave, Lancaster, PA 17603 | coppercup.co
“I love Copper Cup Coffee in Lancaster.  It’s one of the few coffee shops that has the option of hanging out and enjoying their unique vibe inside or zipping through their drive through window if you’re in a hurry.”

Ally H. Courtyard Café on Main
349 Main St., Denver, PA 17517 | courtyardcafeonmain.com
“One of my new favorites is Courtyard Café on Main in Denver. It has a lot of charm – from their outside courtyard to the sense of community felt throughout the café. They put a lot of thought into their food menu, as they feature local, seasonal ingredients and house-made pastries.  Whether I’m in the mood for coffee or tea, they have a great selection of drinks to choose from.”

Sarah L. Speckled Hen
141 E. Main Street, Strasburg, PA 17579 | speckledhencoffee.com
“My vote is for Speckled Hen. I have always loved taking my kids to Strasburg, but mostly just for the train-themed attractions and the creamery. I feel like Strasburg is coming into its own with the new(er) businesses opening up. Speckled Hen is a place where you not only get served excellent food and fresh roasted coffee, you get to mingle with the locals – Amish included. If you’re not into coffee, don’t leave without having the London Fog – it’s one of the best.”

Luke W. Dosie Dough
45 S. Broad St., Lititz, PA 17543 | DosieDough.com
Dosie Dough is my favorite. I love the diversity in people that pass in and out – everybody from a mom running an errand on a Saturday morning, to a bike group stopping by, to the regulars, or just people passing through town. It has its own unique, quirky vibe and is always bustling with activity. I also love walking up the steps off of the beautiful section of Lititz Pike, through the outdoor seating. Everyone just seems so relaxed and content.”

Honorable Mentions:
Tomato Pie Café
Lancaster Coffee Roasters
Café Chocolate
Commonwealth on Queen
Chestnut Hill Café
Café di Vetro
Perkup & Co.
Folklore Coffee & Company
On Orange
Square One

On Tap: Fall Edition

As a fall beer lover – September feels like Christmas morning. The first time I see a pumpkin beer on tap is like waking up to gifts under the tree. It’s a surefire sign that fall is quickly approaching.

Lancaster has some great local brewers, passionately crafting ales, ciders, IPAs, stouts and some tasty seasonal beers to enjoy as the leaves change. [see the full list of local breweries here]

Find these on tap at various locations across the county throughout the season:Baked Pumpkin Ale & Oktoberfest from Lancaster Brewing Company

Lancaster Brewing Company (locals may refer to it as LBC) produces two great fall brews with different flavor profiles. Their Baked Pumpkin Ale (ABV: 7.5%) packs a pumpkiny punch. Its rich flavor features notes of pumpkin pie spice and vanilla, and is best enjoyed while munching on sweet potato fries.

For the lager lover, LBC’s Oktoberfest (ABV: 5.5%) is a full bodied brew that pairs well with pizza and roasted or grilled meats. You’ll find this deep copper beer has a lingering malt sweetness to go along with its full body.

Find both brews at Lancaster Brewing Company in Downtown Lancaster and Lancaster Brewing Co. Taproom & Grill, along with select locations around the county.

Braaaiins! Pumpkin Ale for Zombies from Spring House Brewing Company

Whether you’re a zombie or a human, Braaaiins! Pumpkin Ale (ABV: 7.8%) is for you! Brewed with fresh pumpkin, this is fall in a glass. It features a fresh pumpkin flavor, complimented by autumn spices and bold malt flavors that will warm you up as the air chills.

Head over to Spring House’s Hazel Street Brew Pub or the Taproom on King Street for your taste of Braaaiins!

Madtoberfest from Mad Chef Brewing Company

This season, we’re mad about Mad Chef Brewing Company’s Madtoberfest (ABV: 5.5%) – a clean, crisp seasonal beer featuring notes of caramel and toffee.

You’ll find this brew, along with other hand-crafted ales and tasty all-American fare (including fantastic french fries with a wide array of sauce choices) at Mad Chef’s Brew Pub in East Petersburg.

Pumpkin Cider from Lancaster County Cider

If you prefer cider to beer, we’ve got you covered. Lancaster County Cider has created their seasonal Pumpkin Cider (ABV: 5.5%) by combining spiced apple wine, pumpkin wine, hard cider, and fresh pumpkin puree, and adding a pinch and a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, and brown sugar. Truly a glass of autumn, this cider is a great gluten-free alternative to beer.

Try it for yourself at Mount Hope Estate & Winery.

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