Around Town: A celebration of bacon and a new place to grab a pint


Do baby back ribs wrapped in maple bacon and slathered in barbecue sauce sound appetizing?

How about bacon around fried pickles?

Or bacon meatballs amid your spaghetti?

Bacon served every which way was on the menu during Bacon Week – the week before Lent where many choose to indulge in all things bacon at the Anthracite Café on Scott Street in Wilkes-Barre.

Schools were closed Wednesday.

The roads were somewhat icy, and throughout that day, some folks’ moods were too.

But the wacky weather didn’t deter our group of bacon lovers from celebrating what’s become a ritual this time of year.

My meatloaf meal – stuffed with bacon and cheddar cheese, served with a slice of maple bacon, barbecue sauce and creamy cheese on top – was something to swoon over.

The bacon craze is still a thing, with foodies and party planners incorporating the meat into even the simplest of dishes – and Anthracite is surely one of the area leaders when it comes to creatively incorporating it into the menu.

During a week like this, you can even order a bacon-something to accompany your cocktail of choice.

Take the dirty bacon martini, with its bacon-wrapped olives. That drink appeared popular for the dining crowd, despite the snow and ice storm that deterred many from making it outdoors that evening.

If you were one of the wary, make your way there sometime soon, because – and I can vouch for it – the regular menu is just as appealing.

While bacon was big at Anthracite last week, something else big also happened around town: the grand opening celebration of Molly O’Shea’s inside Mohegan Sun Pocono.

That party, which I couldn’t miss despite spending the better half of the day deluged in dust (that’s another story), kicked off at 2 p.m. Feb. 3. When I got there around 5 p.m., the crowd was jovial and spirited, listening to Irish music and imbibing Guinness, Harp, Smithwick’s and other Irish staples on tap.

One couple, in particular, had a lot for which to be jovial after winning a trip to Ireland (shame on me for showing up a little too late to enter).

I did, however, get some Jameson trinkets, and ran into Ed Troy, a Nationwide agent who’s as cool to hang around as he is clever when it comes to explaining insurance.

Even Erica Tessier, the new vice president of marketing at the casino, was greeting folks as they wandered in and out – a nice touch considering her schedule is as full as ever due to her move to Northeastern Pennsylvania, where she’s tasked with steering the ship for all things marketing and promotional at MSP.

Let’s hope Molly O’Shea’s, which was a relaxing, fun place to spend a Saturday, keeps its Irish atmosphere. The local Irish diaspora and those fond of the heritage need a space at which to unite – and eat a Blarney Burger.

Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.

Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.