On the private island in his mind, my husband eats a snack plate every night. His dream comes true a few times a year, including that liminal space between Christmas and New Year’s Day.
He loves the assembly nearly as much as the demolition, with a cheese slicer or tiny forks to poke into cornichons and whatever else he’s scavenged from the refrigerator.
In this pandemic year, New Year’s Eve will most definitely be a stay-at-home affair, with a few rounds of competitive Scrabble and yes, a snack plate to while away the final hours of 2020.
In the spirit of stay-put snacking, I’ve compiled a running list of local spots in the business of helping you get your snack plate on, a mix of pre-made boards as well as a la carte items.
The list is intentionally short, which is where you come in; send me an email with your local picks for getting into a snack groove.
Happy New Year!
A la carte options
Just cheese, please
Linden Dale Farms
Artisanal goat cheese from a seventh-generation farming family in Ronks. I’ve got my eye on the Laughing Lindy, a creamy French-style round with a rind; the ash-coated Dalançy pyramid and the cave-aged, raw milk Tomme de Linden Dale.
To order: lindendalefarm.com for pickup at their stand at Lancaster Central Market; free delivery available in Lancaster Country for orders over $25.
Lancaster Vegan Cheese
Brie, herbed mozzarella and classic mozzarella made from non-GMO soy milk and coconut oil from this new venture helmed by Lancaster resident Sallie McCann Tupper. In an email, Tupper told LNP | LancasterOnline that a few new flavors and styles are in the works for early 2021.
- Where to find it: Green Circle Organics at Lancaster Central Market and Lemon Street Market (241 W. Lemon St.).
- For more info:lancastervegancheesecompany.com.
Town Clock Cheese Shoppe
More than 150 kinds of cheese from around the world are on offer from this unassuming shop across from the historical Gap Clock Tower. Expect a line when you arrive, as owner Bill Houder takes his time with each customer, sharing his passion and deep knowledge. Although masks are required to enter, it’s worth noting that the shop is small and can get crowded. Houder also sells a variety of locally made cheese spreads, hard pretzels and crackers.
- Where: 5381 Bridge St., Gap; 717-442-9090.
- Holiday hours: Dec. 30, 3-6 p.m.; Dec. 31 and Jan. 2, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
You may know of this family-owned property in Brickerville as an established Christmas tree farm, and you would be right. As reported this fall, the Coleman family’s new venture is raising Mangalitsa pigs, a heritage wooly breed prized for its rich marbled fat. In addition to various frozen cuts (shoulder, collar, belly and ribs), they are offering an impressive lineup of Mangalitsa charcuterie, from nduja (a spreadable spicy sopressata) and guanciale (unsmoked pork jowl) to various salami.
- Order online for farm pickup or free delivery in Lancaster and Lititz for orders over $50.
- For menu and order info: elizabethfarms.square.site.
Rooster Street Butcher
Rooster’s retail operations offer sundry options for the snack plate-inclined. If you like to indulge in pate and its decadent brethren, they are whipping up a trio just for the holidays, including house-made duck liver mousse, country terrine and smoked liverwurst, available in four-ounce portions. For a textural contrast, consider a bag of their house-smoked almonds or a container of giandiera-style pickled vegetables. If you want to do a one-stop shop, Rooster has cheese, too: a tempting artisanal variety from The Farm at Doe Run in Chester County.
To order: Visit roosterst-shop.square.site/s/shop for pick up at The Market at Wilbur (54 N. Broad St., Lititz) or Lancaster Central Market for Dec. 30-31 pickup only.
The carryout menu from this popular gastropub/bottle shop/gourmet market includes a Chef’s Board ($14), which includes a rotating selection of 2 kinds of cheese.
- Where: 920 Landis Ave., Lancaster; 717-208 -3808
- To order: hungernthirst.com; Wednesday through Sunday, 4-8 p.m.
Shop owner Missy McMahon and her husband Bill create “cheese and grazing boards” of all sizes, but it’s their board for four that has caught our shelter-in-place attention. For 40 bucks, you get five types of cheese, one type of cured meat, various dried fruit, candied nuts, and a choice of crackers, cleverly packed in a pizza box. Extras, like fresh baguettes from New York City, or additional charcuterie, are available on a la carte basis.
- Where: 53 N. Broad St., Lititz.
- To order: 717-625-1949, with 24 hours advance notice for curbside pickup. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.