Showing posts with label smorgasbord. Show all posts
Showing posts with label smorgasbord. Show all posts

Time for the Rules... Again!

It is a new year and it is time to drag out the Rules of the Buffet. I so wish that some of the buffets would take this list - you can use it with my compliments as long as you give credit - and put it up in their restaurant where it well be seen when customers are coming in. Not only would it make for a much for enjoyable dining experience for the customers but it would save a lot of effort on the part of the restaurant dealing with what happens when some of these rules are not followed.

Bird-In-Hand Restaurant and Smorgasbord, Bird-In-Hand, PA

The Bird-In-Hand Restaurant and Smorgasbord in Bird-In-Hand, PA is a restaurant and buffet that has been around for many years. It is a buffet that we go to perhaps once a year just to see how it is again - and also when it is the only buffet worth going to that is open when others are closed. This past Memorial Day this was the buffet we had dinner at. It was one of the few that was not closed at dinner time for the holiday. Another buffet that is one of the top on our list of buffets in this area was also open (which we learned by surprise) but we had been there two nights before and decided to give Bird-In-Hand a try again and I was happy that we did.

TOP BUFFET 2014 - SHADY MAPLE SMORGASBORD, East Earl, PA

Our pick for Top Buffet of 2014 goes to Shady Maple Smorgasbord in East Earle, Pennsylvania. Shady Maple has been on our picks for Top and Best Buffets since our annual awards began. Allow us to explain why Shady Maple is the Top Buffet this year. We get many requests from readers and those who just stumble upon this website asking what buffet would we recommend in various locations. When it comes to Lancaster County - where there are more buffets than anywhere else - and I am talking privately owned, local buffets and not casino buffets - the first recommendation that we always make is Shady Maple Smorgasbord. Shady Maple is at the top of our "recommend list". When people ask for such a recommendation, they want to be "wowed" and Shady Maple is going to wow them. And when we do send someone there we always hear back about how wonderful it was and that they could not believe it -and there is always the comment - "We will be going back!".

BEST/TOP BUFFETS OF 2014

It is time once again to name this site's best and top buffets. The results this year will likely surprise many of our regular readers. The criteria for being a Best or Top Buffet are, as they have been, the buffet must give excellent value, it must serve quality food, the food must be prepared properly, consistently, the restaurant must be managed properly, and the service must be good to excellent. And all of this must be consistent - meal to meal, visit to visit.  Then it must be a buffet that comes to mind to go back to whenever possible. When the process gets narrowed down to a few choices, they get ordered in priority of the criteria - and what starts to be examined is how consistent were they. Consistency is an extremely important factor and in the end becomes the deciding factor. A few favorites every so often disappoint. Some never disappoint. Every restaurant considered for best or top buffet has been visited several times over the course of the year.

Bird-In-Hand Family Restaurant and Smorgasbord, Bird-In-Hand, Pennsylvania

Less than a year ago we went back to Bird-In-Hand Family Restaurant and Smorgasbord in Bird-In-Hand, Lancaster County, PA. We went then on a Wednesday night and I was impressed with the featured food for that night being very well prepared Pennsylvania Dutch favorites. I was also impressed that the price for this meal was $15.99 which included the beverage.

Fast forward to this year and we

Shady Maple Smorgasbord, East Earl, Pennsylvania

Eight months has been too long to not have had dinner at Shady Maple. The snow this winter and the rain this Spring has kept us from traveling but we finally managed to get a passable weekend to make the trip. We went on a Saturday night in the beginning of June.

Arriving at the parking lot I said a loud, "Oh Boy!". The lots were jammed. I do not remember seeing the parking lots - yes, lots -

Even in the Best Basket You May Find a Rotten Apple

Here is another article put in the middle of the every other week schedule - as it is a bit out of the ordinary. You will be reading an article in a few weeks about another previous to this dinner at Shady Maple in East Earle, Lancaster, PA, but this is about a more recent dinner there. And something happened that has never happened to me there before and I hope to think rarely if ever to anyone

Father's Day Brunch at IKEA

For several months we have been seeing signs for holiday brunches at Ikea's store restaurant. The first we saw - just a few days before its date - was not a brunch but a Valentine's Day dinner presented much as the brunches are described. Unfortunately, Valentine's Day was a large snow storm so any idea of attending - even if there were tickets available was snowed out. We then saw a sign for an

IKEA Midsummer Smorgasbord

We attended another of Ikea's special one night only smorgasbord all you care to eat dinners. This one, the Midsummer Smorgasbord. Each of the special smorgasbord dinners that Ikea holds in their stores' restaurant is a celebration dinner much as would be served in Sweden for seasonal occasions and this one celebrates the summer solstice. These dinners are becoming more and more like parties with

Easter Smorgasbord at IKEA

We went to another of the seasonal one night only smorgasbord dinners
at the restaurants at the IKEA stores. We have been many times now
since first discovering these wonderful dinners a few years ago. These
are dinners for the seasons - one at Easter, one mid-summer, one that
features primarily crayfish in late summer and one at Christmas. This
past year they held one that was not announced

THE BEST BUFFET OF 2013 - SHADY MAPLE SMORGASBORD, EAST EARLE, PA

We have yet to find any buffet restaurant in the US that tops Shady Maple Smorgasbord. I don't think that anyone can find another buffet that does when it comes to quality of food, quantity of offerings, value, consistency, size of the restaurant, and price. It is just that good and try as we can to find another buffet that even comes close, year after year, we always come back to Shady Maple as

BEST BUFFET AND TOP BUFFET OF 2013

This is the latest that we have ever taken to naming the Best Buffet for the year. This year was difficult. I go to a lot of really good buffets. A number of those stand out and just a few are ones that I think often about going to. All of those are not local and when I can get to them they are must go tos - even at the expense of trying something new. I went to a number of buffets in 2013. Some

Shady Maple Smorgasbord Off-Season Special Theme Dinner Weekends - East Earle, PA

If you are a regular reader of this site you know about Shady Maple - our top buffet pick for a number of years now. You may not know that when the winter comes, Shady Maple features special theme weekend dinners on Friday and Saturday nights. Those dinners started tonight but this weekend's special continues tomorrow. I am going to list those theme weekend specials and their dates here for your

It is Christmas time and that means its time for IKEA's Julbord Smorgasbord!





I have written about these dinners for the past few years. The IKEA stores celebrate the holidays and the summer with a special Swedish buffet dinner in there store restaurants for one night each. There is a Christmas dinner, an Easter dinner, a Midsummer dinner, and a special Crayfish feast dinner in August. I just returned from the  Christmas smorgasbord and it was great as always.

I have

Bird-In-Hand Family Restaurant and Smorgasbord, Bird-In-Hand, PA

It has been about a year and a half since I have been to the Bird-In-Hand Family Restaurant and Smorgasbord in Lancaster County in the town of Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania. This buffet has not been one of the buffets in this area on my short list of where to go because it has been higher priced and at times has been inconsistent. We were in Pennsylvania recently and we discovered a coupon for $2.00

Oregon Dairy Country Restaurant and Buffet, Lititz, Pennsylvania

It has been five years since I have been to the Oregon Dairy Country Restaurant and Buffet in Lititz, PA. I am not sure why it has taken me this long to go back - other than perhaps the other buffets in this area that always come to mind first. This is a nice, small buffet that is just off the main tourist area in Lancaster County and one that like some other buffets in this area is located

Baby Back Ribs Seem to be Everywhere

Several buffets this summer have featured baby back ribs. This is unusual. I have not seen baby back ribs at a buffet in a number of years. What are baby back ribs? These are pork ribs that are taken from the top of the rib cage from market weight but young hogs. These are not taken from adult hogs. There is meat between the bones and on top.

I summer I have tried baby back ribs at Shady Maple

Charbroiled Steak at Shady Maple

Of course, we are back to talking about Shady Maple Smorgasbord in Lancaster, PA - the buffet that has been awarded best and top buffet from this site year after year. Just before the new year, Shady Maple announced that they were adding a char grill to the restaurant. I have mentioned this but a few weeks ago I got to try it and I will tell you all about it.

We were there on a Monday night -

Return to the Easter Smorgasbord at IKEA

We have now gone full circle in the year and attended all of the Ikea store restaurant special one night seasonal smorgasbord dinners with the exception of the All You Can Eat Crayfish dinner in August. In mid-March we dined at the pre-Easter smorgasbord for the second year in a row. One thing that strikes us is the number of Swedish-Americans who are present dining at these meals - and enjoying

Rules of the Buffet

A new year has begun, and it is time to bring the rules out again for a refresher course. So often I wish that I carried these around with me, printed out. I would just love to leave them on a few tables in a buffet dining room after observing what goes on at the buffet by the people at those tables.

There are two of these rules that are recently most often ignored - and this is just common