a teatray in the sky

Cork & Cap at the Cork Factory Hotel

Posted in 5D Mark II, Architecture, Food, Hotels, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Photography by firthefirst on July 9, 2010

Tina and I have lately been making a series of forays into east-central pennsylvania for a project in lancaster.  one of the surprising discoveries is that lancaster is actually a great place for food.  it’s also a great place to see old buildings from the industrial glory days.  the Cork Factory brings these two things together, with a neatly renovated factory-cum-hotel, and a great restaurant to go along with it, the Cork & Cap.

the hotel is, in a word, amusing.  wildly narrow corridors, fantastic stairwells, great location, expansive rooms, enjoyable decor, and all the insulative issues that come with having pure brick walls taken straight from a former factory.  I liked it, and I’m more likely to stay here again rather than at the marriott.  don’t get me wrong, the marriott is a great hotel, but way way way too expensive for lancaster.  it’s priced as if its downtown philly, which, clearly, it is not.

just getting to the restaurant leads me to my first of two gripes about the Cork & Cap, which is that it’s not properly designed to accommodate people entering the restaurant from the hotel.  you get dumped rather unceremoniously at the periphery of the bar area, totally out of sight of the host station and also too far from the bartenders for them to direct you.  Tina and I spent at least a minute wandering around before we found the (very friendly) hostess, and I saw at least two other groups experience the same problem.  not sure who the architect was but let’s just say I wouldn’t hire them to design a restaurant for me.

the other gripe was that our crab dip initially came with the stalest oops-I-left-the-bag-open tortilla chips I’ve had since I ransacked my aunt’s pantry at the age of nine.  the dip was great though, and the kitchen rapidly brought out some new homemade tortilla chips.

in terms of griping, that’s it.  the rest of the meal was very enjoyable and really quite good.  as with any place at all in Pennsylvania, the Cork and Cap has a better beer selection than anything you’ll find in DC (other than at beer purist stakeouts like pizzeria paradiso).  the local Lancaster Brewing Company Strawberry Wheat was an excellent way to wrap up a summer day in the country (just check out Tina’s expression).

One Response

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  1. stephen yang said, on July 12, 2010 at 3:54 pm


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