A mountain of fresh powder, brisk temperatures to put some red in your cheeks and a blast on the slopes can really crank up an appetite. So where does my crew chow down, both upscale and lowbrow, when we rack the skis and boards at nearby slopes? Here’s where. – Jay Lloyd
Just a mile down the road from nearby Spring Mountain is the totally refurbished Woodside Lodge. Step into a large, airy room with a crackling fire and a lively bar. That’s just for starters. Bar burgers draw the locals, they’re that good. The dining room is bright, and on weekends, it’s bustling. The fare is a broad combination of American cookery –think braised brisket mixed with familiar flavors from abroad. If the shrimp, scallops and fettuccine in an Alfredo sauce is on “special,” don’t pass it up.
A Berks County country setting in a village wrapped around a historic inn is the backdrop for the Landis Store Hotel close to the slopes at Bear Creek. The menu is pleasantly familiar, the karma is pure comfort and the kitchen turns out Mom’s Sunday suppers, only with a highly skilled chef standing over the stove. From pork shanks to lamb racks and a balanced seafood section that covers both fin food and the shelled variety, you’ll need extra time to mull it over. But that’s why we have cocktails.
When you’re skiing at Camelback and it’s time to come off the mountain, the choices are wide and deep, from Asian and Italian to pub grub. Over the course of a season, I’ve tried to taste it all, but the go-to spot after exuberance -inducing day has long been the Pirate’s Cove in Tannersville. It’s the bar that draws us in; walking past the live lobster tank helps. The chatter over a happy hour Manhattan is, of course, skiing and local happenings. It keeps the mood alive to tuck into some raw bar clams and oysters, a still mooing prime rib or a classic surf and turf. You don’t leave hungry…or without a trip to the bar for a nightcap.
Louie’s bills itself as a New York steak house. It is, but New York hasn’t enjoyed the comfort of a rustic setting like this since the Dutch bought Manhattan for a pocket-full of trinkets. If you’re skiing at Big Boulder and crave some big beef, this is the place. The Pocono setting on Lake Harmony provides great outdoor ambiance. The prime rib — in two generous cuts — satisfies the craving. But like any good steak house, Louie’s is no slouch at seafood, lamb, big pork chops and tender veal. Did I mention the raw bar apps? If you’re up for a splurge after a plunge on the slopes, here’s the spot.
Shenanigan’s is big and brassy, rustic and up-to-date. Everyone who enjoys après ski fun, pub finger food, music and mingling seems to slide over to Shenanigan’s, also on Lake Harmony, after a day of sliding at Jack Frost Mountain. Families are here for an early dinner then the happy hour crowd is in full swing at the bar, the sports crowd is on hand for some telly-viewing and finally, the late-night bunch, dancing to weekend music. So, what do we eat? All the usual suspects pour out of the kitchen, from wings, cheesesteaks and sliders to comfy food mains like pot roast and short rib gravy. Oh, yeah – there is prime rib on weekends and steak all the time.
Think snow and eat hearty!