A finalist in the 2003 season of Nashville Star, Grammy-winner Miranda Lambert's lively, heartfelt country rock sets toes a-tapping and eardrums abuzz with catchy Southern tunes. Strumming such well-known country songs as "The House That Built Me," and "Heart Like Mine," Lambert's virtuosic singing and guitar playing lends life to touching ballads and high-energy tunes alike, touching even the most curmudgeonly hearts and compelling weeping willows to wave their tendrils with unabashed excitement. Aural oceans wash over listeners in the Frank Gehry–designed Merriweather Post Pavilion, nestled among 40 acres of forest between Washington and Baltimore. Today's deal lets concertgoers relax with a Bud Light on the lawn, where they can watch the show beneath the open sky or whisper movie endings to clusters of furiously immobile grass stalks.
Winner of four dining Awards for 2009 in Howard Magazine, including Best Bar Food and Best Late Night Dining, Victoria Gastro Pub puts a gourmet spin on traditional pub cuisine. Chef Joe Krywucki’s menu draws on fresh, seasonal ingredients—including herbs grown right outside the restaurant—to hit diners with a flavor tornado, providing a mix of comfort and creativity. Begin with the Duck-Fat Fries, which can be served by the bucket, alongside the Roasted Garlic Aioli ($7), or partnered with their duck confit, gruyere cheese, and duck gravy to make poutine ($8 small, $12 large). More substantial fare includes the official sandwich of Flemish royalty, Lobster Grilled Cheese ($16), a duo of beef that pairs braised beef short rib with a petite filet and cheddar potato gratin and broccolini ($19), as well as the "Mushroom & Swiss" Snake River Farms Kobe burger with gruyere cheese and caramelized onions, and served with smoked paprika fries ($13, $15 with truffle cheese).
The Railroad House's corner bar appeal and faithful airing of favored sporting events helped it earn the honor of being named best neighborhood bar in 2009 by Berks County Living magazine. Their 8 oz. Black Angus burgers beg for customization, with an abundance of complimentary extras that cover everything from spicy patty rubs to extra meats, cheeses, sauces, and more. The menu also offers chicken and cheese steak sandwiches and a variety of specialty hot sandwiches like the Country breaded steak with gravy, the fried cod fish, and the hot dog. In addition to televisions showcasing the latest backgammon tournaments, their bar also has non-sports-related entertainment aplenty, with trivia challenge events, open mic nights, and live music performances.
Housed in what was once a sprawling textile compound that produced hosiery, The Works at Wyomissing hosts kinetic family outings in a large, historical space. Downstairs, a mammoth game room houses popular video games, such as a sports simulator, Dance Dance Revolution, and diminutive bowling lanes for children.
Upstairs, the Ballocity action center combines the can't-miss fun mix of playground balls, slides, climbing tubes, foam-ball launchers, and grandma's china. Still-remaining historical details add character to the building, including an entrance to 1.5 miles worth of tunnels that once channeled supplies and carried elaborate tin-can phone networks between factory buildings.
Carley's Ristorante and Piano Bar quells burning appetites for elegant flavors and family-style eating with an expansive dinner menu of shareables. Anchor incisors into The Meatball, a 12-ounce specialty studded with provolone cheese and three saucy dipping pools ($9.50), or prepare taste buds for scrumptious entrees with a variety of leafy delights, including the tuscan tossed salad with candied walnuts, goat cheese, and dried figs ($8.50+). Grain-grinding molars can chomp on mascarpone lasagna bolognese, built like an earthquake-ready skyscraper with secure layers of mozzarella, ricotta, and provolone cheeses ($13.50+). While soothing tongues with hugs of sophisticated flavors, enjoy live piano performances, including new-artist spotlights, open-mic nights, and group sing-along sessions of classic Beethoven sonatas.
The award-winning Arooga's Grille House & Sports Bar boasts more than 80 flat-screen televisions, ensuring visitors have the best seat in the house, regardless if they’re sitting at the centrally located bar or in the surrounding sports-themed dining rooms. As they root for their favorite NFL running back or reel in horror as a streaker wrecks another perfectly good lacrosse match, diners can feast on an enormous selection of pub classics, such as jumbo-fried Angus hot dogs, house-made mac and cheese mixed with sirloin burger, or wings tossed in one of more than 40 award-winning sauces.
To help wash down bites, bartenders can crack open more than 50 bottled beers and pour from 28 drafts, each kept at 29 degrees using their Blizzard Beer System. Barkeeps can also craft margaritas with a house-made sour mix or pour shots of Arooga's own Sagoora Premium Vodka, made in partnership with Philadelphia Distilleries.
Along with keeping thirsts quenched, Agoora's proprietors work to keep the environment in good shape by recycling grease and taking other eco-friendly measures, earning themselves a nice big green certification.