When my daughters and I decided to attempt 100 adventures during our 6 month sabbatical from our home in Texas, one of the rules we put into place specified that each experience must be NEW and different. Obviously, since we are newbies to the east coast, every restaurant we visit is technically “original”, but I refuse to fill this exciting adventure list with a million mundane restaurants.
–Except, we found this extraordinary one.
For our 28th adventure, we experienced a fantastic Firelight Night dinner at the Accomac in York, Pennsylvania.
With a long, winding history, dating back to the early 1700’s, the Accomac Inn overlooks the beautiful rushing waters of the Susquehanna River. (It was raining and foggy on the evening we visited, but still gorgeous!)
The massive and commanding stone building sits to one side of the narrow road, nestled into the bottom of a timber-filled hill, facing a large parking lot along the water’s edge.
Offering visitors the opportunity to dine only by candle light, the Accomac hosts “Firelight Nights” on select evenings from November to early March. Charming and über romantic, the tiny flicker of soft candle light and a roaring fireplace fill the dining room with a peaceful glow and calming warmth. No light bulbs. No lamps. No electricity generating light. **I tried to take as many pictures as I could before the sun went down and I lost the light streaming in from the windows.
Meticulously pressed, white table cloths drape the intimate tables and comfortable leather chairs allow guests a chance to relax and unwind in the Queen Ann dining room.
Serving all kinds of delicious and artisan food since 1971, owner Doug Campbell and general manager Zach Seitz hired Jordan Crews in 2010, and promoted him to executive chef in early 2016. Crews, born and raised in Lancaster, visits the Lancaster Central Market weekly, choosing fresh and local ingredients for his award-winning seasonal menu.
(The Lancaster Central Market was our 8th experience and is the country’s oldest farmers market! Read all about it here!)
Our dimly lit journey began with a pleasant palette cleansing shooter of creamy pea soup and an assortment of breads. I typically prefer to pass on peas, but this soup was exquisite and an excellent start to our meal.
We ordered several items from each section of the menu as an opportunity to try interesting combinations and sample from each others’ plates.
The mushroom risotto, created with fresh, local mushrooms and served as a warm side dish, features Caputo ricotta en salata, (created locally by the amazing Caputo Brother’s Creamery–our 32nd experience! Review coming soon!)
Topped with watercress and truffle foam, the risotto melts in the mouth–We ordered two bowls!
The potato gnocchi at Accomac reigns as possibly the most divine food I have ever eaten in my entire life. Full of complex, delicious flavors, the gnocchi appeared surrounded by a very light and savory cream sauce, fresh greens, and earthy mushrooms. I wanted more (and MORE!) and I hope to return just to eat this dish again.
The full-bodied, umami beef stock showcased in the Accomac’s French onion soup made this menu “starter” my husband’s favorite dish of the evening. Topped with caramelized, rich Swiss and provolone cheeses, the chef added a dollop of fresh scallions, a delightfully surprising, yet tasty garnish.
Pierogi, a traditional central European-style dumpling, arrived with a topping of savory sautéed onions on a cushion of creamy sour cream sauce. I almost loved it as much as the amazing gnocchi and my vegetarian daughter claimed this special, off-menu offering as her favorite.
My meat-eating daughter ordered the Accomac beef tenderloin burger with bacon, melted cheese, horseradish mayonnaise, and topped with a house made Brioche roll. A slab of fried potato wedges and fresh, crisp vegetables served as accompaniments. Though my daughter enjoyed the burger, it seems out-of-place on the elegant menu.
As a main entrée, I appreciate the freedom to order a vegetable-based meal–braised cabbage rolls, filled with a hearty rice and mushroom mixture and smothered with tangy, chunky tomatoes. A variety of roasted root vegetables surrounded the dish and offered more flavor than the bland cabbage rolls. I found myself wishing I ordered another serving of the delicious gnocchi!
My husband chose the chicken roulade with garlic polenta, glazed carrots, charred savoy cabbage and a red wine infused pear. Though he devoured the chicken and creamy polenta, he found the overpowering sweetness of the pear off-putting and not enhancing of the dish.
The under seasoned and tasteless side of roasted Brussel sprouts brought the only real disappointment during our exquisite meal at the Accomac. I don’t expect perfection, so the Brussel blunder can be overlooked. (Though, as a sprout lover, I did have high hopes.) They were very fresh and bright!
At the end of the meal, we found ourselves too pleasantly full to properly enjoy any of the sweet offerings from the menu. We chose to share one small, but heavenly treat–the sticky toffee pudding. Topped with a luscious dolce de leche ice cream and drenched with a syrupy toffee sauce, this dessert completed a wonderful and satisfying candle-lit meal at the Accomac.
Overall, our meal was wonderfully prepared and the staff at the Accomac welcomed and served my family in a professional and friendly manner, even though we brought our children to an obviously adult-centered, date-night event. Eating a satisfying meal by firelight proved to be a joyful, unique and relaxing experience.
The Accomac works with local Pennsylvania farmers and provides a list of menu food sources online, which I appreciate and rarely find. See the list here.
Kudos to the Accomac Inn. Thank you for serving fresh and local, farm-to-table food, which moves our society closer to sustainability and an overall healthier way of life. My family will return for another wonderful meal before we move back to Texas. (Please serve the gnocchi!)
The Accomac is located at 6330 South River Drive in York, Pennsylvania.
Lunch is served Monday-Saturday from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.
Dinner is served Monday-Saturday from 4:30 pm to 9:00 pm. and on Sundays from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
Sunday brunch is offered from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.
***Reservations are recommended.
For more information, call 717-252-1521 or visit www.accomacinn.com
Looking for some original and new experiences in the great state of Pennsylvania?
Visit the National Watch and Clock Museum–read all about it here!
Click here and check out the Stroopie Co., a world changing social enterprise found at the Lancaster Sweet Shoppe.
Take a drive to Ten Thousand Villages in Mechanicsburg to buy all kinds of authentic, artisan-made, fair trade crafts and treasures from another global-impacting social enterprise. Read what you need to know here.
Traveling to Illinois? Put the Firefly Grill on your must-eat, farm-to-table restaurant list! Click here.