The Gathering Place both reflects and helps to define traditional local dining. Smaller than more famous buffets, the mood has a familiarity that resembles local family reunions, which is to say, reservedly chatty and mildly festive. Not ideal for Atkins/Paleo, there is a traditional emphasis on breads, potatoes, legumes, pies and pastries. Recipes are unpretentious and hearty, deriving from Pennsylvania German tradition, so don't expect gourmet. However, if you want to experience a local standard-bearer for communal dining while sampling numerous farm-derived recipes, this is the place! Personal favorites include: Gene Wenger's ham loaf (Gene's a great guy, with a butcher shop in neighboring Elizabethtown), buttered lima beans, scalloped potatoes, shoo-fly pie and cranberry spritzer.
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