Unique Eats: Hanover Area Restaurants
Situated just west of Pennsylvania Dutch Country and less than an hour from the Chesapeake Bay, Hanover’s taste buds cover a little of everything. From chicken and waffles, to hot dogs with “everything” and Maryland blue crabs, you’re sure to find a unique dish at Hanover area restaurants.
Bay City Restaurant
Established in 1963, Bay City Restaurant was the first seafood restaurant in Hanover. Owner William “Ted” Smith began his business by hauling fresh seafood over the Mason-Dixon line in the back of his VW Bug, seats removed to accommodate a dozen bushels of crabs.
In 1991, the current location on Eisenhower Drive was constructed, offering patrons a choice of formal dining room, outside deck, banquet room, and even a carry-out seafood shop. The lounge features weekly entertainment, and the outside deck is a popular hangout in the summer months.
Bay City’s menu features a plethora of options from the sea, with appetizers including steamed clams, Chesapeake Bay oysters, and U-Peel Shrimp prepared with Bay City’s secret recipe. On the dinner menu, Atlantic Salmon Monte Carlo, Bay City Stir Fry, and a variety of crab cakes steal the show.
What started as a catering company has blossomed into a popular local bistro and brewpub. Although catering is still a key component of their business, Warehouse Gourmet owners Keith and Melinda Stambaugh have continued to expand their restaurant’s offerings over the years.
Located on Pennsylvania Avenue, upscale flavor, a casual atmosphere and hand-crafted beer continue to drive the success of the restaurant. With offerings such as artisan sandwiches, seafood platters, meat dishes, craft beer and a new bistro lounge, Warehouse Gourmet is a delicious, affordable option that is perfect for lunch or a night out.
The Famous Hot Weiner
At “The Famous”, as it’s called by locals, you can still grab a dog with “everything”, fries and a milkshake for under $10. By everything, we mean the famous chili sauce and chopped onions; a winning combination for almost a century! The Hanover staple opened its doors in 1923, becoming the area’s first fast-food restaurant. The Famous Hot Weiner is still situated at the corner of York Street and Broadway, in addition to its second location on Dart Drive.
Dutch Country Restaurant
To truly get back to Hanover’s roots, make a stop at Dutch Country Restaurant on Baltimore Street. Famous Pennsylvania Dutch recipes have contributed to decades of success, and the menu encompasses local specialties like chicken and waffles, hominy and puddin’, beef with homemade filling and chipped beef gravy.
The Hofbrauhaus is known for hearty, full meals and classic German atmosphere. Located at the Abbottstown circle just a few miles north of Hanover, the Hofbrauhaus is worth the stop. Owned by Butch and Chris Duncan, the Hofbrauhaus first opened its doors in 1958 and has been serving authentic German food ever since. The Hofbrauhaus will be sure to serve you the Dutch in Pennsylvania Dutch.
If you’re craving an authentic Italian meal, look no further than La Cucina in South Hanover. Owner Armando Malvone first opened La Cucina to honor his heritage and to satisfy his passion for delicious food. La Cucina’s menu includes classic Italian appetizers such as bruschetta and antipasta rustica, soups, salads, pasta including penne vodka and fettucine alfredo, seafood and gourmet oven pizza. The restaurant also offers catering.
Big Mike’s Crabhouse and Grill
On the deck or inside at a table, Big Mike’s Crabhouse and Grill serves up perfectly seasoned and prepared shrimp, crabs and seafood year-round. Although it’s a relatively new kid on the block, the BYOB, family-friendly eatery has become popular for its fresh food, high quality service and crabhouse appeal.
Deck dining is available in the summer and fall (weather depend
ent), and customers rave about surf and turf burgers, appetizing shrimp and tasty soups. Crabs are steamed and seasoned Maryland-style with plenty of Old Bay. Broasted chicken is another fan-favorite and hits the spot for those that aren’t into seafood.
Just a short walk from downtown Hanover, a meal on the deck at Big Mike’s will remind you of a dock on the bay.
Find a complete guide to Hanover area restaurants in the membership directory!
This article first appeared in the 2017 “Discover Hanover” magazine. Click here to read more, or stop by the Hanover Chamber of Commerce to pick up a copy!
Photos courtesy of Steve Antonaccio for Warehouse Gourmet.