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Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue

“Everything at Tellus360 has a story. Reclaiming and reusing items is central to the establishment.”

Tellus360 is a live music and Irish pub in artsy and creative downtown Lancaster, PA. I entered the building from the West King Street entrance and was greeted by Ken Mueller, marketing director at Tellus360 and my tour guide for the afternoon. Ken was eager to show me the building, talk to me about future plans, and share stories about the many elements of architectural interest that are found throughout the property.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Tigh Mhary bar
Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Tap handles at Tellus360

“The large wooden doors behind the bar are from a Catholic church in Ireland and the bar itself is from County Waterford. The bar has three sections that are divided by glass panels. Originally, the section on the left was for the women, the one in the center for the men, and the lower section on the right? That was for the kids to hang out and get some candy at the counter while Mom and Dad were grabbing a pint.”

That sounds brilliant to me. 

(click on the photos in the gallery to see them larger for more detail)

Tellus360 occupies a large building near the square in Lancaster, PA. The first and only time I was in Tellus360 before this visit was to start out a downtown walking and tasting tour called Taste the World. Tellus360 was our check-in location where were given a bottle of water and had our first tasting of the event from Upohar. At that point in time, Tellus360 sold many repurposed goods. 

In case you’re wondering, tellus means earth in Latin.

There was jewelry made from Southeast Asian landmines, bottle openers made from old bike chains, and organic and ethical clothing. Today, the space looks quite different and although the style of business has changed from retail to bar, the same blood still courses through Tellus360’s veins. Guests will still find a uniquely repurposed environment here and the evolution is magnificent.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Table in Tigh Mhary

The spaces are eclectic, a mishmash of styles and texture. The front room, named Tigh Mhary, has a dais facing King Street where musicians perform. The tables are decorated with painted checkerboards and wax-dripped Jose Cuervo tequila bottles and some of the seating is old church pews. It is open and bright, pleasant and welcoming. There is a larger stage in The Temple which is located directly behind the Tigh Mhary room.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Looking down on Tigh Mhary from the balcony

Writing “The Temple Bar” puts me immediately in mind of Dublin and makes my heart feel a pang over missing a city I adore.

The bar in The Temple is topped with a gorgeous piece of solid wood from Africa that bears a blackened scar from a lightning strike. As with so much of what you’ll find at Tellus360, it is one-of-a-kind. A book could be written about this place with each chapter telling its own story, a true “if the walls could talk” tale. 

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue

The stages and speakers are professional remnants from shows put on by names like Lady Gaga, U2, AC/DC, and Maroon 5. Have you heard of Clair Global and Tait Towers? They’re the groups who are putting Lititz, PA, on the map when it comes to the music scene. They’re known for quality stage design and sound setup and have further expanded their influence recently with Rock Lititz. The speakers and stages at Tellus360 came from them so it’s not a stretch to say that the music experience you’ll have at Tellus360 venue will be outstanding. 

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue

And speaking of sound, you’ll hear plenty of it here. There is music going on most days of the week in a range of styles like traditional Irish, singer/songwriter, Americana, rock (that is the most generic term you’ll probably hear today), and DJs like The Thing With Two Heads spinning goodness for your freaky selves.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue

The bathrooms are located downstairs (also reminding me of many places in Dublin) and you should check them out even if you don’t need to actually use the facilities. The walls are covered in wood of varying colors, shapes, and sizes. One section of wall has varying bottom sashes from institutional-looking windows installed vertically, the indented handholds set at varying places and looking haphazardly perfect.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Bathroom

 The sinks are long troughs, fluid in their cement design and flowing the entire length downwards to the drain. The bathroom put me in mind of a forest glade, a place of harmonious marriage between industrial accents and organic canopies. 

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Sink closeup

As if two main level bars wasn’t enough, there is a balcony upstairs where the kitchen is located and food is served and further up are two more bars. (!!)

I told you Tellus360 was huge.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Looking down on Tigh Mhary from the balcony

The lounge-like room previously known as Gallery360 will soon have a rebirth with sofas, easy chairs, turntables and vinyl, bookshelves, and games like darts, ping pong, and cornhole. Wood-burning fireplaces will create a warm and cozy space to relax in and chill with friends or spend some quiet time alone. The lighting in this space comes from old air raid sirens that have been outfitted for bulbs. Keep an eye on this lounge as it comes together in the coming weeks and months.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Air raid siren lighting in the Lounge

The rooftop has a bar and seating area with some killer views of the city. Directly beside Tellus360 is the Downtown Marriott and behind is the Penn Square Parking Garage, which makes this a convenient location for those who don’t live in the city and want to visit.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Green rooftop bar at Tellus360

I loved this rooftop area and even on a stuffy, hot afternoon there was a whisper of breeze going on up there. The rumor is that mosquitoes don’t wander so far from the ground so you’ll be enjoying the urban outdoors in bite-free peace.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Green rooftop view

A green roof like what Tellus360 has implemented absorbs 70-90% of rainwater that falls during the summer.¹

More than half the rooftop is green, meaning it is covered with living plants that absorb rainwater and drastically reduce runoff.

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
A living green rooftop!

This is an important eco-friendly feature because the city of Lancaster is currently facing hefty fines from the EPA due to massive quantities of polluted rainwater runoff entering the Conestoga River, which eventually makes its way to the Chesapeake. Just think what a positive impact the city could have on the environment if more buildings followed Tellus360’s lead by creating their own green roof areas!

Tellus360 isn’t a sports bar but it does host gatherings for sporting events. There is definite Irish influence from the Tigh Mhary bar to menu items like a full Irish breakfast with black and white pudding. That kind of meal speaks to me. “Eat me. Eat me, Amber. I’m delicious.”

See what I mean? I am not crazy because my food talks to me.

In short, Tellus360 offers something for just about everyone. They also have free wi-fi, making it a perfect space for someone to work, too. I could hang out here for hours and write. 

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
“All who enter these doors are equal”

If you are planning an event, see what Tellus360 has to offer. If you dig live music, see what’s happening this week. Looking for a place to meet friends for a few drinks? You have plenty of options, including Irish whiskey and craft beer! My only disappointment was that I didn’t see the venue in its full glory during business hours. I need to remedy that soon and swing by for dinner and a show. 

Tellus360, an Irish Pub and Live Music Venue
Green Rooftop Bar

Have you been to Tellus360 yet?

You can find Tellus360 on Facebook! Follow them there for all the latest and stay hip to the know.

 ¹ Green Roof Benefits: http://www.greenroofs.org/index.php/about/greenroofbenefits

Sour & Stinky Fest | Fine Craft Living

Sour and Stinky Fest at The Fridge in Lancaster, PA

Sour and Stinky Fest at The Fridge in Lancaster, PA

Some of you may grimace when you hear the words “sour” and “stinky” in terms of a food and beverage festival. I assure all the doubters out there that there is absolutely nothing distasteful about this combination. In fact, the Sour and Stinky Fest at The Fridge in Lancaster, PA, was nothing short of an outstanding event and treat for the taste buds.

Two flights and two slices
Two flights and two slices

We arrived early on in the day, around noon. The tables were mostly full and there was a pleasant chatter filling the space. Sunshine flooded in through the windows but despite a week-long heatwave, it was comfortable and cool inside. As always, the staff was friendly and knowledgeable and my husband and I chose to get a two flights of five beers each, giving us the opportunity to try each of the nine beers available and providing a full flight glass of the Birra del Buttero Marsilia Gose with Sea Salt for both of us. 

The cheese table was lovely. Wheels and wedges of colors ranging from creamy white to a rich golden orange were on display and carved into 1 oz. portions by Bill Mandros from Mandros Imported Foods in Lancaster (remind me to look that business up, will ya?!). The menu for the beer offered suggested pairings of cheese, based on the flavor and body profiles of the sours. I tell you what, pairing like that is far beyond my skill level and I was impressed with the carefully selected matches. 

From upper left-hand corner, clockwise: Morbier, Sottocenere Al Tartufo, Gorgonzola Piccante, Beemster Goat, Aged Beemster Gouda
From upper left-hand corner, clockwise: Morbier, Sottocenere Al Tartufo, Gorgonzola Piccante, Beemster Goat, Aged Beemster Gouda

We settled on five cheeses, morbier, sottocenere al tartufo, gorgonzola piccante, beemster goat, and aged beemster gouda. These were a collection from France, Italy, and Holland and from cows and goat, some pasteurized and some unpasteurized. My two favorites were the sottocenere al tartufo, an unpasteurized beauty both visually and to the taste. This cheese is made from cow’s milk and what sold me on choosing it in the first place was the words black Umbrian truffles. There was a distinctive black truffle presence throughout and with a layer of spice-heavy ash coating the outside of the cheese, it was a super complex and sensory delight. The other cheese I was especially fond of was the Aged Beemster Gouda, a pasteurized cheese from cows in Holland. Holland has happy cows and they make happy humans when their milk is turned into cheese which we then eat. This cheese was a vibrant golden-orange and although it was a firm cheese, it turned to velvet on the tongue. There were crunchy bits in the cheese, too, and while I haven’t a clue what causes crystallization in a cheese, I do declare it to be a wonderful thing. The creamy melting mixed with crystals was supremely enjoyable.

Sour beer menu
Sour beer menu
Stinky cheese menu
Stinky cheese menu

 

The Birra del Buttero Marsilia Gose with Sea Salt was one of only 15 kegs to hit Stateside. Anytime I stumble across a beer so rare and hard to find that I may never see it locally again, I jump on the chance to try. This one had a creamy and persistent head and it was a cloudy lemon-colored yellow, appropriate since to taste it one can definitely pick out an almost briny and lemon tone. I wanted a dozen raw oysters with this. At 4.5% ABV, this is a session style that I could have definitely had more of before heading out. It was sour but not too much so that it puckered my lips. It was a gentle, soft sour … again reminding me of the tang in the air by the sea.

From foreground to background: Cantillon Iris, Round Guys Saison du Pomme, Jolly Pumpkin BAM Biere, Jolly Pumpkin Baudelaire Beer iO Saison, Verhaeghe Duchesse de Bourgogne
From foreground to background: Cantillon Iris, Round Guys Saison du Pomme, Jolly Pumpkin BAM Biere, Jolly Pumpkin Baudelaire Beer iO Saison, Verhaeghe Duchesse de Bourgogne (and Kevin Brown – hi!)
From foreground to background: Mikkeller/To Ol Betegeuze, Bockor Cuvee des Jacobins Rouge, Brouwerij Dilewyns Vicaris Tripel Gueuze, Birra del Buttero Marsilia Gose with Sea Sa.t
From foreground to background: Mikkeller/To Ol Betegeuze, Bockor Cuvee des Jacobins Rouge, Brouwerij Dilewyns Vicaris Tripel Gueuze, Birra del Buttero Marsilia Gose with Sea Sa.t

Verhaeghe Duchesse de Bourgogne is always a go-to for me in the Flanders red style and it didn’t disappoint. What surprised me was that I actually preferred the Bockor Cuvee des Jacobins Rouge even more than the Duchesse. Both are Flemish reds. Both are sour. Both are about the same color, a rich and deep reddish-brown. Both originate from Belgium and are aged in oak casks. One noticeable difference for me was that the Jacobins Rouge was more complex, drier, and more sour than the Duchesse, which seemed soft and fruity-sweet to me in comparison. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with either but I may be a Jacobins Rouge convert now.

There was only one beer that I wasn’t fond of and it wasn’t bad, it just didn’t tickle my fancy. That was the Round Guys Saison du Pomme. I didn’t get any saison from this sample at all because it was so overpowered by sour apple flavor. This one was aged in apple brandy barrels and I think that just pushed it way over the edge for me. It was like sipping on a Jolly Rancher sour apple candy. I don’t like my beer to taste like candy (or my liquor). I am not into the whole line of liquors like whipped cream or cotton candy vodka. With all that being said, my taste buds are different than everyone else’s taste buds. I’m sure there are plenty of folks who tried the Saison du Pomme and completely enjoyed it. This is merely my opinion.

Sour and Stinky Fest at The Fridge in Lancaster, PA

All in all, it was a great event put on by a group of great people at The Fridge and I hope they do another one in the future! Check them out on Facebook and give them a like to keep up with their many events, including live music.

Disclaimer: I was not compensated in any way for this post and it is not sponsored by anyone.

A Day at Susquehannock State Park, PA

It has been dark and dreary as of late. The weather has been warm enough but the sky has been piled thickly with clouds in various shades of grey (more than 50, I’m sure) and fog has been blanketing low-lying areas like a living, breathing creature. Yesterday was my birthday and I didn’t want to sit in the house all day long. The kids have been stir-crazy and needed to get out of the house. We decided to don wet weather gear and head to a park, despite the rain.

Getting outside, no matter what the weather, is nearly always the best choice to make.

We wended our way to Susquehannock State Park in beautiful southern Lancaster County, PA. This park offers over 200 acres of outdoor opportunity for your family. There are various hiking trails, ranging from easy to difficult. It is a just a short walk from the parking lot to Hawk Point Overlook, recognized by the Audubon Society as an Important Bird Area because of its importance to the bird population (makes sense, huh?). From the overlook, you will see the Susquehanna River flowing through the land as it winds through an area once inhabited by a small tribe of Native Americans who Captain John Smith called the Susquehannocks, the people at the falls.

Of course, like many Native Americans who lived in this newly “discovered” land, the Susquehannocks were eventually chased off of their land or killed. That’s a post for another time.

What else is there to do at Susquehannock State Park?

 

 

Play baseball. Hike one or several of the trails. Hike them all! Be still and watch for eagles – Mt. Johnson Island can be seen from Hawk Point Overlook and it was the world’s first bald eagle sanctuary. Take your horses, these trails are equine-friendly, except for the Rhododendron Trail. Picnic at one of the 100+ tables scattered throughout the park. Take your dog (on a leash, please).

 

 

 

 

There are even complimentary doggie doodie bags at the park information sign. Take your kids and point out moss on trees, ask them to listen to the many birds singing, and encourage them to touch the dirt. It’s okay! Make sure you keep an eye on young children at the overlook, as the drop off is nearly 400 feet and quite steep. Bring some quarters to use the optical viewer, at least on a clear day. Camp.

Get out and enjoy the beauty around you.