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The Farmhouse Restaurant
Taps: 6 / Bottles: 165
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: N
$$$ - a bit pricey
[ Bar, Eatery ]
1449 Chestnut Street
phone: (610) 967-6225
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Reviews by slander:
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
The phone rings and I'm like, "Who'd be calling me upwards of midnight?" Drunk BA's, that's who...
"We were drinking Liefman's Gluhkriek", she says. "What?!?! Where?!?!" "Ahhh, that's for us to know...", she starts. "What?!?! Where?!?!" "Don't you worry now, we know", she replies, and then, "They had a giant Rodenbach..." Okay, now this is just plum mean. "We're not telling", she sings tauntingly, "but maybe we'll take you there sometime". I'm feverish now. What if someone goes there and scaps up that magnum of Rodenbach? How can I protect my lego city on the sea without a second lighthouse?? The straight man in this comedy duo is no help. He's tight lipped, he'll give up no details. I will have to wait...
Months later, the Lehigh Valley beer stint in Easton, PA affords us a great opportunity. Turns out that the Farmhouse is a short ways down the road from Shangy's in Emmaus. It's a stand alone structure, an old 19th century stone farmhouse in a parking lot at the foot of a country club. You enter into the restaurant and you're in a foyer with a bunch of smaller rooms on to one side and a staircase that leads you upstairs to additional seating areas. The decor is walls painted with pastel scenes in yellow and green, rolling fields, trees with sprawling branches lightly leaved, all that. The smaller rooms each hold a few tables in them, very intimate dining. To the rear of the Farmhouse is another staircase, this one leading down below to the cellar.
There's very limited space down there. You're in a small room with benches and a cushy chair or two. Through this room lies the bar area. It's a small 6 seat, "L" shaped bar with a mirror backing. Stone walls, lots of dark wood, low lighting with lit candles, a fireplace over there in the corner, and a couple of tables.
6 taps (Victory Moonglow, Brooklyn East IPA, Avery ESB, Weihenstephaner Korbinian, Leffe Brune, Anderson Valley Oatmeal) and a cask (Bell's Best Brown). Very nice, but the real deal here is the 4 page beer list broken out by style. Much of the first 3 pages of the beer list are the Belgians (Abbey, Belgian Dark Strong, Biere de Garde, Belgian Red, Lambic/Gueuze, Belgian Golden Strong, Farmhouse/Saison, Trappist) and then German (Rauchbier, Bock, Wheat, Eisbock), English & American micro (many unusual selections here).
The 4th page is made up of vintage and large specialty bottles. 7 years of Anchor OSA's back to '93, Hardy's & Lee's Harvest back to '86, 3 years of Rogue Old Crusty ('93-'95), Samichlaus '94 & '95, Sierra Celebration '96, and so on. When I spotted the '87 Liefman Goudenband on the list, I was convinced that it was a typo. Not so. It held up quite nicely. Hey, '97 Liefman Gluhkrieks. I liberated the 1.5 litre magnum of Rodenbach, had to. They had the same size magnum of the Goudenband on the ledge near the fireplace. Hmmmn. And I can only wonder what the 3 litre bottle of Dock Street Barleywine was going for.
Service was pleasant enough, no complaints there. The food menu here seems to be somewhat upscale French. Don't know what I was thinking not snarfing on D's duck rolls app. I'd like to get back here for a full sit down meal (and drink).
A second lighthouse. The city is safe once again.
Update: Getting back here for a full meal only took 3 years, but it was well worth it. There were going to be the 4 of us but Handsome Ed & the Mrs bailed so that just left me and Phil. We took a table in the rear room, seemingly small but holding 6 candlelit tables; 3 squares angled and the others 2 seaters on the inside wall. Wood slat ceilings with track spots, wall mounted glass lamps and matching chandeliers overhead, paneled windows and painted pastel pastures. Very warm and comfortable.
The 6 taps tonight (Liefmans Goudenband, Southampton Tripel, Cantillon Lou Pepe Kriek 04, Southern Tier Pumpking, Delirium Tremens, Summit Scandia Wit) and a cask (Bluepoint Impy Stout). Any guesses as to what I drank? We both took in the same app, being the Manchengo creme fraiche ravioli (grilled merguez lamb sausage, swiss chard & sage pistou). Very nice. For dinner I had the fennel peppercorn seared pacific yellow fin tuna (Miso braised leeks & Oley Valley shitake mushrooms), and Phil had the pan roasted bronzini fillet with lemon risotto (Olive oil braised celery & Spanish capers). The app and entrees were absolutely fantastic, and I got to be thinking what wonders dessert would bring. I had the incredible caramel & cinnamon ice creams, served with a light wafer, Phil had the Pear Financier with star anise ice cream, also very good. The food was outstanding, the service was on and the overall meal experience was just wonderful. Seriously, the Farmhouse.
11-25-2004 05:42:39 |
More by slander
More User Reviews:
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3 | $$$
It has literally taken me 4 years to finally check this place out. Everytime I am in the area, the timing just isnt right. This past weekend I decided enough was enough and off we went for no other reason than to have brunch.
The layout of the place is as advertised. It is a farmhouse and you get that feel as you make your way through the building. I was seated in what felt like was at one time a sunroom. I didnt think it was appropriate to walk around and check the place out. I mean seriously, the place was packed with what looked like the Sunday post-church going crowd. Had I walked into another room of 3 filled tables, I surely would have been frowned upon or laughed at for looking lost.
3 different styles of eggs benedict to choose from and a vintage cellar full of desireable beer. Do I even need to say more? Their selection is fantastic and is in the upper tier of places I have been to.
The service was very proper and professional. My only gripe being that another table was giving the guy some serious shit and i could tell he was stressed/rushed to please them. In his haste, he neglected me sitting with an empty glass for half the duration of my visit. I wanted to have another beer. I even asked for the menu. He delivered that menu, then proceeded to take away my plate and 15 minutes later deliver my check. Ok then... I wont be having a second beer. I guess i just drove 2 hours for a single beer and mediocre food.
Regarding the eats. I am perfectly content with being patient for a well prepared plate of food. But when it takes 45 minutes and i am without a beer, my limits are stretched. When the food was served, the house style eggs benedict were fantastic and worth the wait. The side of smoked ham saw better days though. The ham had no signs of being house smoked. In fact, it hardly had any signa of being ham. You could tell that this skimpy piece of ham sat on the grill for the entire 45 minute duration.
Perhaps my visit was on a bad day. I seemingly built up unreasonable expectations and was let down by my experience. I regret making this trip a destination. If the stars align properly to let me visit while im in the area, I surely will. But I am not going out of my way again anytime soon.
08-06-2012 17:04:41 |
More by stakem
vibe: 2 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 2 | food: 3 | $$$$
Had great expectations for this place. Things started going downhill though as soon as we arrived. The building is indeed a farm house of sorts. But it is located right on a busy and noisy road. It definitely hurts the atmosphere, especially if you are eating outside. The tables inside were a bit too close together, which I really dislike. The bar is best described as a nano bar. My party chose to eat outside after a round of beers. Very limited outdoor seating and again, its just not as quaint as we had expected. The food was OK, but nothing to write home about and somewhat pricey. As far as beer goes... The bottle list was interesting but not mind blowing as some claim. The tap list was limited to a few offerings. The draft prices were very high and the pours were small. Small pours are really starting to irk me. I had an Old Rasputin for around $7 in maybe an 8 ounce glass. Its beer people... I need at least 12 ounces. I really wanted to like this place, and usually I can force that into happening. But this was a no go and a disappointment for me. Although, we did take a peak at the new banquet type facility they were working on (this review is from notes, summer 2011). This is probably open now, and is no doubt a very nice addition. I may revisit if I'm in the area just to check this out.
03-27-2012 18:01:46 |
More by mcslain
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$$
My husband and I were looking for a new place to try that wasn't too far out of the way, and I stumbled across The Farmhouse on BA so we drove the one hour to Emmaus. I am pretty bummed that this place isn't closer to us, because the atmosphere is what I would consider PERFECT for drinking and hanging out. No TVs, dark lighting, intimate...perfect. We were the only patrons there which definitely made the experience even better. Very, very small bar of only six seats...not a bad thing in this case. Service was amazing, likely because we were the only two people who our bartender, who was very friendly and knowledgeable, had to attend to. I'm only giving a 4.0 for selection because there were only six mediocre brews on tap, however, their bottle selection and VINTAGE selection is almost unparalleled. WOW. We ended up getting a 1995 Biere de Noel by Saint Sylvestre, which was amazing. Some of the other vintage brews were even more impressive, but obviously expensive. I think there was a 1997 Chimay that was around $80 to give you an idea. Kind of goes with you get what you pay for...where else will you find this stuff?
Food was amazing. I got the BBQ pulled pork, bacon and brie pizza. YUM. It was a good size and not as expensive as some of the other food ("only" $11). Some other dishes, such as the wild boar chops, were closer to $40. This place is obviously "fine dining" and you should come here expecting to drop a lot of money.
Overall, I loved The Farmhouse. I probably won't be in the Emmaus area again any time soon, but if I ever am I will sure as heck be going here for some more excellent service, delicious food and amazing vintage beer!
11-20-2011 14:22:32 |
More by MsRif
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Loved this place. A very rare find, unless you really know where to look, this place is quite literally in a farmhouse (there's a barn and hayloft right out back). The house has been refurbished into a nice little upscale restaurant, and when the wife and I were first ushered in, I had my qualms. But the waitress took us in around a few bends, through a few doors, and down a few stairs, and my interest was piqued, as we finally arrived at the tiny little bar hidden away in its own little bubble of existence, away from the hustle and bustle of the world. The bar itself had a mere 6 seats, and there were a few tables strewn about, amid bottles of beer rarities that glimmered mysteriously in the dim, gritty light. Talk about intimate. The bartender was a king of his little world down there, very friendly and knowledgeable about all things beer [and scotch]. Six beers on tap and a non-functioning hand-pump, makes for a selection that can't be overly impressive, but considering the size of the bar, you can't really complain. The bottle list kept things interesting, especially the vintage list, where you'll find bottles from all over the world, some dating back to the 90s and even the mid-80s. As such, you'll eventually probably have to dip in to this collection...and as such, you'll probably leave with a lighter wallet. However, there are some good vintage selections for well under $25 for a 750, and that's not bad at all. You won't find like Dark Lord verticals or anything, but there are still some neat things to choose. The food menu didn't offer many selections, but the ones it did offer all seemed very tantalizing. But the prices...ooh, ouch. There are a few reasonable selections, but if your date wants the scallops or boar steak, you're gonna be paying upwards of $40 for said entree. The pizza of the day is a good choice, well priced, well portioned, and very tasty.
Rarely to never do I visit this area of PA, but I loved this bar, and I'd love to go back.
11-20-2011 14:18:42 |
More by Rifugium
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$
I can't say enough good things about this place. Tucked in the basement of a fantastic restaurant is a hidden gem of a beer bar. The first time I set foot in the six, that's right six stool bar, I though "what the hell is this". I sat down and noticed ten taps with some good stuff on tap. That was the tip of the iceberg. the bartender hands me bottle menu that felt like a novel. Sifting through this beast you notice crazy Belgians some of which aren't brewed anymore. Then you come across there vintage stuff. I was blown away. Cuvee Rene 1994, De Dolle Mad Bitch 2000, Big Foot 1988. Are you kidding me. The service is excellent. The bartender went above and beyond to make sure we had a good time. This place is simply amazing.
08-01-2011 22:51:10 |
More by djrn2
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
I found out about the Farmhouse in an issue of DRAFT Magazine a few years ago. It states that it was one of the best bars in Pennsylvania. With that being said I needed to look into the place and go sometime.
The Farmhouse from the outside looks just like the name itself. There is a nice entrance to the building a slightly covered walkway with some vines growing all around. Once inside you can see some really nice paintings on all the walls, each room is a little bit different.
Making your way downstairs you'll find yourself amongst one of the smallest bars I've ever seen. If you're lucky there will be a spot open for you to sit down and enjoy some food or a few rounds of drinks. The look and feel of the bar is quaint and kind of old fashion. The bar is wooden with some pretty comfy stools that have backs on them so you can sit back and relax.
The food selection changes regularly with what ever the chef has chosen for the time being. Of all the food I've had there on several accounts have been quite good. There is still plenty more on the menu that I'll hopefully try to have before it changes again. Most of the food products they have are from local farms and dairies in the area. This gives them the freshest possible produce you can ask for.
The Beers, such an impressive list of beers. They have a really good sense for craft beers. The taps rotate on a decent basis, the bottled selection is massive, and their Vintage Bottles are something extra special but for a price. I seen stuff from Bell's 9000 to Avery's Rumking Ale to 95' Triple Bock. It's a very impressive selection of brews from past or present.
Overall this place is a little expensive but it's well worth it to stop in sometime when you can spare a few extra bucks on a beer that you may never see again. All in all, I have other places that I enjoy a little more than the Farmhouse in the same general area but it's still a really nice place to check out.
05-11-2011 19:31:39 |
More by Knapp85
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 5 | $$$
I went to the Farmhouse on my birthday after waiting anxiously for like 7 months. It was everything I hoped for and more. We got seated in a private room on the second floor. The atmosphere was very rustic and simple. Not much wall decor but very relaxing. The beer there was great. I even ordered an Oude Beersel Gueuze to go. I had the Filet Mignon for diner, and that and the sides were both excellent. Just the right size portion so as to leave enough room for desert and another few beers.
The bar downstairs is one of my favorites. It's old English style. Very rustic and cozy with a fieplace, show or real? Very big and extensive beer selection. Wish I could try more at once but as they say, I'm only human.
We sat in the lounge area right outside the bar.
It was one of the coolest area that I've ever sipped a Kriek in.
I'm definetly stopping back soon. Get the calander.
08-30-2010 05:46:49 |
More by cooch69
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
Dined here several times, never experienced anything less than an extremely enjoyable evening. Use of seasonal, local ingredients can make quality/selections variable but never dissapointing. New bar menu allows for quick, delicious meals accompanied by an exceptional beer selection. I can highly recommend the Glasbern grass-fed burger with a glass of Life and Limb, the duck confit and goat cheese spring roll is also tastey. Great place to take the spouse if they're not a big fan of the brewer's art, as they also have a serviceable wine list. Staff are friendly and courtious, knows the menu and can be trusted for pairings. Outdoor dining in the warmer months is also very pleasant.
01-07-2010 00:52:07 |
More by sl8drake
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$$
When paired a trip to Shangy's (or "Shangy's The Beer Authority" as they would have it) a mile up the road, this is a beer and food lovers' ideal journey. The Farmhouse was well ahead of its time in pairing top quality beer and gourmet cuisine.
The restaurant is set in a 19th century, uh, farmhouse, with a number of small dining rooms on three floors. We prefer the 7 seat bar in the bottom floor. A beautiful restaurant, though the dining rooms can be a little quiet so you feel the need to talk in a whisper.
Service is very knowledgeable and attentive.
The beer selection is out of this world (and the wine list is pretty good too, though we have only ever looked at it). There are only seven taps but of extremely high quality. On our most recent trip, we had Green Flash IPA, North Coast Pranqster, Port Brewing Serpent (!). Other choices included Triple Karmeliet and Lancaster Milk Stout. There is a more extensive list of aged beers than I have ever seen anywhere. Sierra Nevada Bigfoot going back to the late '80's, many versions of SN Celebration ale and JW Lees (or Thomas Hardy, maybe both). If you have a group you can share a 3L bottle of Hair of the Dog Fred (for only $100) or one of many other big bottles.
The food is very good. The highlights include the cheese plate, duck confit spring rolls and fried panko crusted goat cheese appetizer. The rolls are excellent. The main courses are good but not up to the level they aim for. Dessert rocks.
The place is priced as you would expect for fine dining.
I also need to give a shout out to the clientele here which is as pompous and annoying as any on earth. On an average visit, we will meet one nice couple and be surrounded by obnoxious a**holes the rest of the night. I would appreciate it if someone would open another fancy restaurant in Emmaus with valet parking and a sommelier so some of these people would go there. I guess that's selfish. :-)
04-07-2008 00:12:36 |
More by sholland119
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The Farmhouse Restaurant in Emmaus, PA