A Historic Dining and Shopping Experience
The Brickerville House Family restaurant and its shops have become a dining and shopping destination. “People enjoy the restaurant’s historic atmosphere. They dine here and then visit the shops, or they’ll come shopping and then grab a bite to eat at the restaurant. It’s a great day out,” says Tony Agadis, who owns the restaurant complex with his brother, George.
Located north of Lititz in Brickerville, the Brickerville House is on the list of Historic Buildings in Lancaster County. Built by John and Barbara Bricker in 1753, its location along the main road (Route 322) from Philadelphia to Harrisburg, no doubt contributed to its place in history. The original portion of the house served as a stagecoach stop and tavern over the years. George Washington may not have eaten, drank or slept there, but local figures like Peter Grubb and Henry William “Baron” Stiegel did.
Both George and Tony grew up in the restaurant business in Manhattan, learning from the bottom up. Their father, Mike, a Greek immigrant, owned a restaurant, and both brothers worked there.
George earned an economics degree from New York University, and although he went into banking, the restaurant business was in his blood; he continued to wait tables and bartend on the weekends. Tony fell in love with the kitchen. As a child, he could often be found in the kitchen with his mother, Asimina, who created fabulous traditional Greek dishes and desserts. He followed his dreams and graduated from the Culinary Institute of America.
After moving to Lancaster County as a family, they purchased Silver Spring Family Restaurant in 2000. Eight years later, they purchased The Brickerville House Family Restaurant (and the shopping complex that surrounds it). “We offer good food, good service, reasonable prices and a clean environment. We stick to the basics,” Tony says.
Although restaurant seats 225, it feels much cozier thanks to it being divided among a series of dining areas. The dining area off the entry is known as the General Store. This cheery area features exposed stone walls and rafters and a stenciled wooden floor. Seating consists of booths and a counter. The light-filled, L-shaped Porch is a great place to watch the pedestrian activity at the adjacent Brickerville House Specialty Shops. The Library, with its faux bookshelves, is situated between the Porch and the General Store. Behind the General Store is the Fireplace Room, whose decor includes exposed stone walls, wainscoting and a Colonial-style stone fireplace. The Banquet Room, with windows on three sides, is at the rear of the building and serves as yet another dining area on weekends.
The menu features a wide array of items, and everything is made from scratch, including mashed potatoes, chicken pot pie and meatloaf. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served daily. The restaurant has become known for its buttermilk pancakes, burgers and summer salads, particularly the strawberry salad. An Express Lunch menu offers a variety of items for those pressed for time. Be sure to save some room for dessert since there are a number of taste-tempting items in the dessert case, including chocolate cake with peanutbutter icing.
Coffee lovers take note – French press coffee was recently introduced at the restaurant.
Lancaster’s Specialty Market is part of the mix of retail shops at Brickerville House Specialty Shops. The market’s focus is on meat, cheese, bread, coffee, tea and other culinary items. Local brands are well represented as are those from countries such as Italy, Germany, Greece and Spain. Gluten-free, organic and GMO-free products are also available.
In December 2015, George and Tony expanded their offerings by opening Lancaster’s Specialty Market, which takes its place among the 13 shops that comprise Brickerville House Specialty Shops (foodies should note there are shops devoted to candy and wine).
The market’s focus is meats, cheeses and other specialty items made locally or imported from Germany, Italy, Spain and Greece. For example, recent offerings have included such cheeses as Manouri (move over feta), Clawson’s Lemon Zest and Idiazabal (a Spanish variety made from sheep’s milk). There’s also a selection of gluten-free, organic and GMO-free products.
Sixteen different coffee beans and 30 different loose leaf teas are available in the market. An olive bar also distinguishes the market. Other products include breads (from such sources as Philadelphia Baked Breads and Thom’s Bread), whole and ground spices and herbs, and milk, which is from Trickling Springs Creamery in Chambersburg.
“Some of the items, such as the French press coffees, are cross-marketed at the restaurant,” says manager Halina Agadis, who is Tony’s wife. Trickling Springs products are also an example of cross-marketing. Its ice cream is available at the ice cream shop in the Brickerville House complex. Halina notes that this season, soft-serve ice cream will join the hand-dipped menu, while pints of the ice cream’s various flavors can be purchased at the market.
“Before we opened the market, we did a survey of customers at the restaurant to find out the types of products they would be interested in,” she explains. “We’ve used that to guide us in developing the market and its offerings.”
The Brickerville House Family Restaurant is located at 2 E. 28th Division Highway (corner of Routes 501 and 322), Lititz. Hours are Monday through Saturday, 6 a.m.-8 p.m., and Sunday, 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Reservations are suggested for parties of 8 or more. For more information, call 717-625-2525 or visit brickervillehouseshops.com.
Lancaster’s Specialty Market is open Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m. For more information, call 717-568-8686 or visit lancastersspecialtymarket.com.