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Need restaurant recommendation for Lancaster, PA vicinity

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Taking my wife and and 5 yr. old child to Lancaster, PA for a couple of days to visit Dutch Wonderland amusement park and the Amish country. I'm looking for a recommendation for restaurants for dinner - doesn't have to be fine dining just good, fresh, well prepared food; preferably chef-owned restaurants. Please no chains or family-style.

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  1. I'm partial to the General Sutter Inn in Lititz. Delicious food, good service, nice atmosphere. As a plus, if you get to the town early enough, there's good shopping and it is the home of Wilbur Chocolates, which has a great (and reasonably priced) store just down the street from the Inn.

    1. John J Jeffries at The Lancaster Arts Hotel. www.johnjjeffries.com
      All farm to table and organic. Great Place. Their current chicken dish is featured in this months issue of Bon Appetit!

      3 Replies
      1. re: BRI328

        I don't consider John J. Jeffries kid friendly. Mine are 7 and 9 and we take them out to eat all the time, but this is one of the few places we would not consider taking them. That being said, it is one of my favorite places to eat in Lancaster City, but even if I felt they would be able to accommodate my kids, cost would prevent me from taking them there - it is very expensive.

        You won't find anything that suits you out in the tourist area, that I can think of. In Lancaster City, you can try Iron Hill Brewery, The Pressroom, Gibralter (although that is iffy with young ones as well) , Checkers Bistro - I haven't been to the latest incarnation, but was good in the olden days, and I hear positive reports now, in Ephrata, you can try Lily's on Main. These are all "better" places. My general rule of dining with my kids at more upscale places and brew pubs is to take them early - service, noise level, and everything just seems more appropriate at 6 than at 8.

        If you are interested in PA Dutch fare, but want it where the locals eat it, I like Oregon Dairy on Oregon Pike, and Country Table Restaurant in Mount Joy.

        We tend to take our kids out for ethnic eats more often than not. Rice and Noodles for Vietnamese, Rice and Beans for Caribbean, Sakura for sushi/asian fusion, La Costena is Peruvian, El Serrano is Peruvian/Latin fusion.

        -----
        El Serrano
        2151 Columbia Ave, Lancaster, PA 17603

        Checkers Bistro
        300 W James St, Lancaster, PA 17603

        1. re: centralpadiner

          Lily on Main is definitely not a kid friendly restaurant. Good food, but would not take children there.

          1. re: BRI328

            Sorry - WAY more so than John J. Jeffries. And I have in fact taken my son there for an early dinner when he was less than 2 - we were celebrating my husband's new master's degree, so I remember it well. They were very good about it and apparently have (or at least had) high chairs, which makes me think they are willing to accommodate children.

      2. Are you planning on visiting Downtown Lancaster while you are there or staying outside the city? The proportion of locally owned restaurants is much lower if you stay in the more "touristy" hotel/motel area around Dutch Wonderland . Downtown also has the farmers market.