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Jul 12, 2012 07:54 AM

Scranton -- lunch and dinner?

I'm going to be in Scranton in a couple of weeks, and would like to find some good places for lunch and dinner. I'll be staying downtown. I'm looking for tasty food that isn't part of a chain.

Any local specialties that I should know about?

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  1. For me Scranton is about comfort food. My lunch recommendation would be the original Coney Island (on Cedar Ave not Lackawanna) for Texas Weiners or Texas Hamburgs and fries with gravy or fries with chili. Or Abe's Deli (I worked in the original Abe's 40 years ago this summer). Both are very diner like with diner service.

    Recently we had a great dinner at Sambucca Grill in the downtown area. There is a seafood restaurant a few blocks from downtown called Cooper's. The food is good and at times can be very good and the service is good but the hallway between the dining rooms and bar area has 100's of pictures of Scranton in its heyday and a few presidential candidates. Great beer list on draft and bottle.

    3 Replies
    1. re: ithimis

      What's a texas weiner? and "Texas hamburg?"

      1. re: ConsApi

        that is what they call a hot dog that is grilled and put on a soft bun that has been warmed in the steam table with deli mustard onions and a beanless chili. Not sure where the term originated from.

        1. re: ithimis

          Old Forge Pa, which borders Scranton on the Southwest is locally famous for its unusual pizza. Of the many Old Forge restaurants our favorite is Arcaro and Genells

    2. Hello from NE New Jersey, my fellow 'hounds!
      I have to go to Scranton next week for a business lunch--would any of these recs be suitable? If not, any other suggestions? I'm not looking for over-the-top, but I want to avoid chains or deli-type places.
      Thanks in advance for the assist!

      3 Replies
      1. re: Curlz

        Coney Island would not be a place for a business lunch. Sambuca is not open for lunch. At Cooper's you can ask for a table/booth out of the way or you can do the same at Farley's Restaurant.

        1. re: Curlz

          How about Zummo's? It's a cafe/restaurant with great lunch specials and often used as a meeting spot by local business people.

          1. re: BrianYarvin

            Thanks! Keep those recs coming (if there are any others)!


            ETA: A friend's daughter goes to U. Scranton and mentioned that Dickson City is another option...a search on the PA board came up with only one suggestion, so if anyone has others, I'd love to hear about them!

        2. OK, here's my report:

          I hit the Coney Island on Lackawanna Ave. (Couldn't find Cedar, it turns out it's the same as Adams St.) I liked the Texas wiener, and the fries were pretty good.) That evening, I went to the Savory Maza on Main Ave, a really good Lebanese restaurant, which had been recommended on this board ( I actually had kibbee that wasn't overcooked and dry. The service was efficient and friendly, even for a solo diner like me.

          As I was staying in the hotel in the old train station, I had breakfast in their dining room, which is located in the station's former waiting room. It wasn't bad, though pricey if you didn't have a free breakfast coupon for staying there, like I did. Service was a bit slow, but the wait staff warned us, I'm not sure what was going on, maybe some of the kitchen help didn't show up that morning. The restoration of the station was pretty impressive, with marble walls and tile mosaics depicting scenes along the route of the Lackawanna railroad.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ConsApi

            Was Lackawanna a main road? We were there a few years ago and went to the Coney Island on a pretty big road. There was a small road perpendicular to the big road were the other Coney Island was, and there werer several ne'er-do-well looking people in front of this Coney Island (and it didn't look open) so we went to the one on the main road, that I think was Lackawanna. Excellent chili dogs.

            We also went to the Glider Diner, which I recommend even more than Coney Island. The porketta sandwich was fantastic.

            We also took a ride to Old Forge and had pizza at Arcaro and Genell's (I think) along with a plate of complementary marinated beans.

          2. Follow-up: our clients recommended State Street Grill in Clark's Summit, which from my understanding is less than 10 mins from Scranton. Definitely a better choice for lunch vs those that I saw online!

            1. Sorry I didn't get to reply in time, but in case there's a "next time," I highly recommend Scanlan's for lunch. (317 Linden Street, right downtown.) They are only open for lunch, and everything is homemade. I love everything there, but especially their soup and meatloaf. Great salads, sandwiches, but it's not a deli - it's a sit-down restaurant with servers. Sometimes I arrange my work schedule to get me in Scranton at lunchtime just so I can go there.