Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Adams County Culinary Tour--Part II

After our Savor Gettysburg Tour, we visited the site of the future Mason Dixon Distillery located at 331 E. Water Street and set to open in 2016. From the early 1900s to 1950, the sprawling property was home to a furniture-making business where many Gettysburg residents were employed.
Mason Dixon Distillery--Where the magic happens

Owner Yianni Barakos, who has been working on the project for six years now, is finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and anticipates celebrating a grand opening in a short few months. 

The spacious interior maintains many of its original features, like old wooden beams and exposed brick. Guests who enter the large tasting room can indulge in rum, vodka and whisky crafted in small batches and an outside area will be used for live musical entertainment. 

Barakos' vision for the distillery is to promote communication, as if the spirits themselves won't sufficiently grease those wheels. The kitchen will specialize in small plates for sharing, and Barakos is contemplating banning cell phones. "I want people to talk to each other, not stare down at phones," he shouts fervently. "Maybe we'll see how that goes," he adds later, with a laugh.

After our visit, it was time to check in to the Federal Pointe Inn. Located in the Gettysburg Historic District, the Federal Pointe Inn was built in 1896, serving first as the Meade Elementary School, then later as a high school. 
Federal Pointe Inn Meeting Room

Front of Gettysburg's Federal Pointe Inn

Federal Pointe Inn Pub Area

Today the building serves as an 18-room boutique hotel, pub and meeting facility.
Owners Pete and Liz Monahan have taken pains to preserve the architectural integrity of the structure. Artifacts like old classroom doors, chalkboards and pictures of students can be seen throughout the property. Ranked number three by TripAdvisor for Gettysburg hotels, the Inn is known for it's spacious and comfortable accommodations and has received a Certificate of Excellence from the site.

After a bit of down time, we were off again to the next culinary destination--Fidler and Co. Craft Kitchen in Biglerville, where we had the pleasure of meeting Chef Josh Fidler. Fidler, who is passionate about his food, paired local wines with a delightful tasting menu comprised of deviled eggs done three ways--with sriracha mousse, bacon and smoked paprika.

Up next was a selection of cured meets and cheeses,followed by mussels served in a red curry, coconut milk sauce with just a hint of lime and basil. Those of us who usually pass on the mussels, couldn't help but admit that the dish was tasty and many were seen scooping up the liquid that was left behind with the rustic bread provided on the side.

The humble pork and beans up next ended being the highlight of the meal. The hearty, earthy dish was nothing like the pork and beans of your childhood. Rettland farm braised pork was perched atop a delicious bean ragout and topped with pork gravy. Most agreed that the dish was a standout and we were quite content to stop there, but Fidler had one more savory dish up his sleeve. Tender, delicately seasoned octopus arrived next, served with chimichurri, fingerling potatoes and corn salsa.
Fidler & Co. Pork & Beans

Charcuterie & Cheese at Fidler & Co. in Biglerville, Pa

Creme brulee as the denouement

When dessert was served I was sure I wouldn't be able to finish it, but was game to take just a few bites.  With my spoon, I broke through the caramelized sugar to the creamy custard beneath and all restraint went out the window. Oohs and ahhs emanated from the mouths of my table mates as we finished our meals without the least bit of reluctance.

Fidler & Co. is open for brunch, lunch and dinner and is well worth a visit.

Next Up: The last part of the Adams County Culinary Tour, which includes a visit to a B&B, a Fruit Farm & Market, a Winery and lastly, a cozy little eatery located on the corner of Chambersburg Street in Gettysburg.